About the Games
To celebrate 100 days to go until the beginning of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in 2021, here are 100 facts about Japan and the Olympics that will make you seem like the smartest person in the room. Part 2: From outdoor handball matches to judo medals.
35. Handball made its Olympic debut as an outdoor sport. The first edition in which these events were held indoor was in 1972.
36. Two flagbearers - one male and one female - per team will ne allowed in the Opening Ceremony of Tokyo 2020.
38. Gymnast Oksana Chusovitina will compete at Tokyo 2020 in her eighth Olympic Games at the age of 45.
39. For the first time in the history of the Games, hydrogen will be used to power the torch during part of its journey through Japan.
40. The five main islands of Japan are Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku and Okinawa.
41. Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympian with 28 medals (23 gold, 3 silver, 2 bronze).
42. Agnes Keleti, a five-time Olympic gold medallist, is the world’s oldest surviving Olympic champion and in 2021 she turned 100 years old.
44. The Tokyo 2020 Olympics are also known as ‘The Recovery and Reconstruction Games’ as they have the goal of supporting the recovery efforts of the Tohoku region after the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011.
45. The current population of Japan is 126,180,983, as of Tuesday 6 April 2021 (latest United Nations data).
46. The men's pole vault world record is 6.18m, set by Sweden's Armand Duplantis in 2020.
18-year-old Mondo Duplantis cleared 6.05m becoming the youngest ever male athlete to win a field event in European championships history.
47. The surfing competition at Tokyo 2020 will be held over four days, from 25 to 28 July. However, dates depend on wave conditions, therefore the Olympic Surfing Festival is planned from the 25 July to 1 August.
48. The Spanish artistic swimmer Ona Carbonell has 19 World Championships medals, but “only” two Olympic medals, which she won at London 2012.
49. People’s Republic of China have won the most ever badminton medals (18). At London 2012 they won all of the badminton events.
50. The women's hammer throw world record is 82.98m and was set by Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk in 2016.
51. Argentina made history at Athens 2004 by winning their first and only Olympic basketball gold medal.
52. The first time the Refugee Olympic Team competed at the Games was Rio 2016. The roster for Tokyo 2020 has not yet been announced.
53. Neymar scored the fastest goal in Olympic history at Rio 2016. He just needed 14 seconds in the semi-final between Brazil and Honduras to find the net.
54. The men's 1,500m world record is 3.26.00 seconds, set by Morocco's Hicham El Guerrouj in 1998.
55. There will be two events contested when skateboarding makes its debut as an Olympic sport: street and park.
56. Originally, table tennis went by several names, such as 'ping pong', 'whiff waff' and 'flim flam'.
57. The only title that Novak Djokovic is missing in his tennis career is the Olympic one. The closest the world number 1 has come is a bronze medal at Beijing 2008.
58. The nine sports that were part of the Olympic programme at the first modern Olympic Games in 1896 are still on the programme for Tokyo 2020: athletics, cycling, fencing, gymnastics, weightlifting, wrestling, swimming, tennis and shooting.
59. The women's triple jump world record is 15.50m and was set by Ukranian Inessa Kravets in 1995.
60. The President of Tokyo 2020, HASHIMOTO Seiko, competed in seven editions of the Summer and Winter Olympic Games.
61. The logo of Tokyo 2020 Games expresses the message of ‘Unity in Diversity’ as Tokyo 2020 promotes the message that diversity is a way to connect the world.
63. For the first time in Olympic history, the sport pictograms are animated.
64. Since Barcelona 1992, the men’s Olympic Football competition is for players under the age of 23, with only three older players allowed to play. Due to the postponement of the Tokyo Games, the age limit for this Olympics has been upped to 24.
65. Four-time Olympic Champion Simone Biles is the most decorated artistic gymnast in the history, with 19 World Championships gold medals.
G: Simone Biles (USA) S: Alexandra Raisman (USA) B: Aliya Mustafina (RUS)
66. Tokyo 2020 will be the first Olympic Games since Athens 2004 without sprint legend Usain Bolt.
67. In Japanese, Tokyo means "Capital of the East".
68. Judo is the sport in which Japan has had the most success at the Olympics. Since it was introduced at Tokyo 1964, Japanese athletes have won 72 medals, with 36 golds, 18 silvers and 18 bronzes.