The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that the Tokyo Olympics will be held July 23-Aug. 8, 2021, while the Paralympics will be Aug. 24-Sept. 5. According to a statement by the IOC, the new dates give the health authorities and all involved in the organization of the Games the maximum time to deal with the constantly changing landscape and the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The statement continued to address that the new dates, exactly one year after those originally planned for 2020, also have the added benefit that any disruption that the postponement will cause to the international sports calendar can be kept to a minimum, in the interests of the athletes and the IFs. Additionally, they will provide sufficient time to finish the qualification process.
Officials announced the postponement of Tokyo 2020 on March 24 due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Prior to the postponement, softball, which was making its return in 2020, was to open competition two days before this year's Opening Ceremony. The new competition schedule for the Tokyo Games in 2021 has not been released.