The Japanese city of Tokyo will host from July 23rd the Thirtieth-Second version of the Olympic Games of the modern era. It will be the first time that they are carried out in an odd year and under special health safety rules for athletes and the public attending, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which caused them to be postponed from last year to this summer.
Taking into account this irregularity, the International Olympic Committee (IOC), agreed to keep 2020 as the year of the Games so that they would not lose their status as Olympics or four-year cycles determined by their ancient creators. For this reason, the upcoming Games already indicated for Paris will take place in three years, that is, in 2024.
Always these periods of time between each Game, were respected since its inception in Athens 1896, although on three occasions they were not celebrated due to the world wars of the 20th century. Those corresponding to 1916 in Berlin, were those of the Sixth Olympiad, not celebrated by the first conflagration, like those of 1940, in Tokyo; the Twelveth in 1944; in London, the Thirteenth , not carried out, due to the second universal belligerence; The reason why the current meeting in the Japanese capital will be the Thirtieth-Second and not the Twenty-ninth , if we add those that did take place.
Other notable absences from the Olympic Games are those of 1984 in Los Angeles, where for lack of guarantees the Soviet Union did not attend, nor most of the countries of the socialist camp and in 1988, in Seoul, in protest that the Games were not shared between the two Koreas, about a dozen nations were missing, including Cuba.
The Cuban presence in Tokyo, for these four-year meetings, will be its 21st in the history of the Olympic Games, fourteen years after the triumph of the 1959 Revolution, a stage in which it adds its greatest harvest of medals.
In the previous 20 presentations in summer events, our small country has won 226 medals, of which 216 were achieved in the last thirteen competitions, a result that raised Cuba to be part of the select list among the 20 most outstanding nations of the Olympism.
The metals achieved by our athletes are broken down into 78 gold, 68 silver and 80 bronze, with feats such as those of Ramón Fonst, winner of five medals, four gold in the 1900 and 1904 Games; the triple boxing champions, Teófilo Stevenson and Félix Savón; the three consecutive titles of volleyball, women’s branch and baseball, as well as the golden triplet of Mijaìn López, in the fight, which could become four in a few days, like Idalys Ortiz, in judo in search of his quartet of all the colors.
Three other Cubans accumulate four Olympic medals: Ana Ibis Fernández from Matanzas, volleyball player, and Guantanamo judoka Driulis Gonzàlez and Pinar del Río baseball player Pedro Luis Lazo.
In the current Tokyo Games, with a delegation of only 69 athletes, 33 of them women, who will compete in 64 events, Cuba hopes to remain in the world elite, which will require the best effort of our representatives to achieve this. Again the boxers must provide the best results, together with the fighters, athletics with some individuals, boating, judo, shooting and another always welcome surprise, will be decisive in these aspirations.
The province of Matanzas will have seven competitors in that relationship led by the formidable boxer Andy Cruz, from the 63 kilogram division, together with the shooter Laina Pérez, the judokas Magdiel Estrada, Iván Silva and Andy Granda, the table tennis player, Daniela Fonseca and 4-for-400 relay member Sahily Diago.
Of the 14 presentations of Matanzas in the Olympic Games, before the current ones, they have won 10 gold, eight silver and seven bronze medals for a total of 25.
In the last three Olympic competitions, Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio de Janeiro 2016, no man from Matanzas has won medals, something that these young competitors could destroy on this occasion.