The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will begin this week despite COVID-19 rearing its ugly head in a big way over the last few weeks. Japan is in a state of emergency and won't allow fans at any events. Several athletes arriving in Tokyo have already tested positive. The USA already lost two of its participants after Coco Gauff tested positive and Bradley Beal had to be replaced after entering health and safety protocols last week.
It will be unlike any Olympic games we've ever seen and hopefully the only version like it we'll ever see. Athletes from all over the world will flock to Tokyo over the next few days if they haven't arrived already. Rory McIlroy, who will be representing Ireland at this year's games, was asked about it all after he finished up at The Open over the weekend.
He does not sound pumped, to say the least, about the opportunity to represent his country at the Olympics.
Tough to blame him. Unlike previous Olympics, this won't double as a vacation for the athletes participating. It'll be a situation closer to deep quarantine in 2020 than the relative freedom to travel and go outside much of the world has enjoyed since vaccines became widely available.
His comments about patriotism are interesting, because you'd think that would be the primary motivation to go represent his country. But McIlroy just seems to think it's what he's supposed to do, rather than what he wants to do. So it won't be a very fun trip. But maybe he can use it to find a groove after finishing +1 following four rounds at The Open.