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Tokyo 2020 Olympics

Tokyo Olympics confront new doubts with 6 months to go

Qualifiers, vaccinations and crowd size still up in the air as pandemic rages

The start of Japan's torch relay on March 25 is seen as a possible deadline for any decision to cancel the Tokyo Olympics. (Photo by Kai Fujii)

TOKYO -- With just six months until the start of the Summer Olympics here, one of the biggest challenges to overcome involves the athletes themselves -- or the lack of them.

Only 57% of the roughly 11,000 slots are filled, according to the International Olympic Committee. Most of the qualifying tournaments are scheduled for March or later, but the coronavirus pandemic continues to cloud prospects.

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