Tokyo Olympics 2020: Live updates and latest news from sweltering Japan as Adam Peaty's Games begin

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·10-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Tokyo Olympics 2020: Live updates and latest news as Adam Peaty's Games begin - GETTY IMAGES
Tokyo Olympics 2020: Live updates and latest news as Adam Peaty's Games begin - GETTY IMAGES

Air conditioning units have been adapted to keep sweltering tennis players cool during what may prove to be the hottest Olympic Games on record.

The road-race cyclists, meanwhile, were having ice packs shoved down their lycra suits as the opening day's events made use of high and low-tech solutions.

With temperatures as high as 35C in recent days, the Tokyo Games is already putting organisers' technology to the test. Team GB are among athletes who have swallowed Bluetooth pills so medics can monitor their temperatures. However, the technology failed to stop Russian archer Svetlana Gomboeva, 23, fainting in the intense heat.

Earlier this week, experts said Tokyo's heat and humidity could pose a significant threat to competitors.

Amid efforts to mitigate the risk at the tennis, stewards rolled out mini air-conditioning units with makeshift plastic ducts pointed towards the likes of Team GB's Heather Watson during her breaks.

Watson also placed a bag of ice over her head during her one hour 49 minutes first round defeat to German Anna-Lena Friedsam.

Heather Watson of Team Great Britain attempts to keep cool between games during her Women's Singles First Round match against Anna-Lena Friedsam of Team Germany on day one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Tennis Park on July 24, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/G - GETTY IMAGES
Heather Watson of Team Great Britain attempts to keep cool between games during her Women's Singles First Round match against Anna-Lena Friedsam of Team Germany on day one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Tennis Park on July 24, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/G - GETTY IMAGES
Serbia's Nina Stojanovic cools off with air conditioning during her women's singles first round match against Japan's Nao Hibino - GETTY IMAGES
Serbia's Nina Stojanovic cools off with air conditioning during her women's singles first round match against Japan's Nao Hibino - GETTY IMAGES

"I did everything I could to prepare right and I literally could not have done any more," Watson said after losing to Friedsam 7-6 (7-5) 6-3. "I felt really good going out there."

Amid the dangerously high temperatures, Team GB rowers have also been making use of everything at their disposal. Vicky Thornley, was pictured cooling down by pulling on specially tailored iced vests, with iced wristbands.

In the road race, meanwhile, Team GB were handing the likes of Geraint Thomas ice to place down his back during the brutal 100km course.

Temperatures had peaked at around 32C for the opening day's competition on Saturday, but Mark England, Britain's Chef de Mission in Tokyo, said the team was well-prepared.

Uzbekistan's Sanjar Tursunov, center, sits in his corner between periods of a men's heavyweight 91-kg boxing match against Algeria's Abdelhafid Benchabla - AP
Uzbekistan's Sanjar Tursunov, center, sits in his corner between periods of a men's heavyweight 91-kg boxing match against Algeria's Abdelhafid Benchabla - AP

"We've done such a lot of work on technological development and advancement, not only in the kit that we have and the cooling mechanisms that we have for those who are competing outdoors in extreme heat," he said.

There is less the team can do to mitigate the potential disruption caused by a typhoon, however. In the days ahead, an area of low pressure southeast of Japan is expected to gather strength and move northwestward. That means a potential typhoon developing over the warm ocean southeast of Tokyo, Monday morning Japan time.

The latest forecast by the Meteorological Agency shows a storm in Tokyo is less likely than previously feared to strengthen into a typhoon but heavy rains and strong winds are still expected. "While it’s still too early to have high confidence in the exact track and intensity of this system, there are early indications that it could threaten Tokyo later Monday or Tuesday, local time," AccuWeather Meteorologist Jake Sojda said.

08:31 AM

In case you missed it....

Not even the searing Tokyo heat was going to dampen Andy Murray's mood. This was Murray back with a spring in his step, back doing his famous fist-pumps and back winning in his Olympic kingdom. This time he had company there, too.

With each point impressively won in their straight-sets victory over five-time Grand Slam doubles winners Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut, Joe Salisbury, Britain's highest-ranked doubles player, must have been increasingly delighted with his decision to pick Andy over brother Jamie for the men's competition at these Olympics.

Andy Murray of Team Great Britain celebrates after a point during his Men's Doubles First Round match with Joe Salisbury of Team Great Britain against Nicolas Mahut of Team France and Pierre-Hugues Herbert of Team France on day one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic - GETTY IMAGES
Andy Murray of Team Great Britain celebrates after a point during his Men's Doubles First Round match with Joe Salisbury of Team Great Britain against Nicolas Mahut of Team France and Pierre-Hugues Herbert of Team France on day one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic - GETTY IMAGES

Meanwhile Heather Watson's stuttering season continued when she lost her opening round match to Germany's Anna-Lena Friedsam. The 7-6 6-3 defeat swiftly brought an end to British hopes in the women's singles after Johanna Konta had withdrawn pre-Games due to Covid.

Read Pippa Field's tennis dispatch from Tokyo here.

08:10 AM

Geraint Thomas speaks after his crash

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

07:53 AM

Novak Djokovic defeats Hugo Dellien 6-2, 6-2 in the first round

World number one Novak Djokovic safely negotiated the opening hurdle in his bid for a first Olympic gold medal by beating Bolivia's Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2.

Djokovic, who is looking to become the first man to win a Golden Slam of all four grand slam titles and singles gold in the same year, eased past his lowly-ranked opponent in just 61 minutes.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

07:43 AM

British men's gymnastics finish fourth

Max Whitlock qualifies for the individual pommel horse final, while Team GB finish with a total of 256.594 points, leaving them in fourth.

The top eight teams qualify - and there are more to come - but that's a solid start from Whitlock and his team. They have every chance of qualification.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

07:17 AM

Archery

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

07:13 AM

Tokyo's first and second gold medals go to China

Yang Qian won the women's 10m air rifle gold overnight - the first of this year's Games - as GB's Seonaid McIntosh missed out on qualifying.

Then, earlier this morning, Hou Zhihui won the women's 49kg weightlifting event and set a new Olympic Record in the process.

07:06 AM

Topless Tongan flag bearer

Read all about Pita Taufatofua's return to the Olympics here.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

06:57 AM

Men's gymnastics

13.400 for Max Whitlock on the horizontal bar. A clean routine with no movement on the dismount

James Hall, on the same apparatus, scores 13.933.

But Japanese icon and seven-time medallist, Kohei Uchimura fell off the high bar and so will not qualify for the finals at Tokyo 2020. What a blow for the host nation.

06:50 AM

Men's gymnastics qualifiers underway

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

We will bring you more updates as soon as we have them.

Max Whitlock in practice - PA
Max Whitlock in practice - PA

06:39 AM

A new Olympic record

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

06:35 AM

Team GB's Chef de Mission Mark England speak to the BBC

I was very confident with the organising committee and the Tokyo government.

We are very happy to be here. It's just brilliant, brilliant news that sport is taking place.

There has not been any talk within the camp about the potential for any further cancellations or disruptions. all the athletes are excited to be here and in competition mood. We are looking forward to seeing how the story unfolds over the next 14 days.

We have nearly over 900 athletes and support staff in Tokyo - with 300 in the athletes' village. But we have not had one Covid positive here [in Japan] - which is fantastic. And there's a great level of support around and everyone is in great spirits and physical form.

06:22 AM

In pictures: Day one

The images are beginning to land from Tokyo and some of them, as ever, are terrific.

Catch up on all the best snaps from overnight with our gallery here.

And here is my favourite:

Japan's Naohisa Takato (white) competes with Georgia's Lukhumi Chkhvimiani during their judo men's -60kg quarterfinal bout - GETTY IMAGES
Japan's Naohisa Takato (white) competes with Georgia's Lukhumi Chkhvimiani during their judo men's -60kg quarterfinal bout - GETTY IMAGES

06:09 AM

Good morning

Hello and welcome to Telegraph Sport's live coverage of the afternoon and evening of day one in Tokyo.

Just waking up? Catch up on everything that happened overnight by clicking here. There was a victory in the men's doubles for Andy Murray, but another Brit crashed out...

This morning we will be bringing you all the news from Tokyo, as well as live coverage of the Team GB men's hockey team (10.30am), who begin their Games against South Africa, and Adam Peaty's breaststroke heat (11am).

Adam Peaty’s coach, Mel Marshall, has admitted that the next 36 hours might provide the last chance to beat his world record for the sixth time and set the sort of landmark time that could last for generations.

After becoming the first swimmer under 58 and then 57 seconds for the 100m breastroke, Peaty begins his quest to become Britain’s first back-to-back Olympic aquatic champion today ahead of a scheduled semi-final and then final in the early hours of Sunday and Monday mornings.

At 26, there is an acceptance inside the Peaty camp that this may be the absolute physical peak of his career and thought has already been given to the possibility of gradually managing his athletic decline - while still winning gold medals - through to Paris in 2024 and potentially Los Angeles in 2028.

“He’s aware, because of where he is in his life, that this may be the last one - not Olympics - but maybe the last chance to go quicker one more time,” said Marshall. “Now it is about every single detail and making sure all these details are in line to get another improvement. He can go faster. “The challenge for us is, can we get all the 20 things which are needed to be faster together at one point on one day?

“That is what we are trying to achieve. This would be a perfect end to the second chapter. He ended that first chapter in Rio. That’s what we are trying to do.”

You can continue reading more from Peaty's coach by clicking here.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting