Delay will make best ever Games: Gregson

A one-year delay to the Tokyo Olympics will make it the biggest and best ever according to Australian athletics team captain Genevieve Gregson.

Dual Olympian Genevieve Gregson says holding the Tokyo Games in 2021 will ensure they are the most celebrated ever, with the world coming together after the coronavirus pandemic.

The Australian Olympic Committee this week announced its withdrawal from Tokyo, set to start in July, with the IOC set to soon formalise the postponement of the Games for 12 months.

Gregson applauds the AOC's move, as holding the Olympics in four months time would have been grossly unfair.

"We are really close with all the other athletes we come up against around the world and there's some who aren't allowed out of their house; it's a crime to step outside so it would have been an unfair playing field," Gregson (nee LaCaze) said on Tuesday.

"We haven't all been given the same opportunity to qualify let alone get ready for it so the right decision was made."

While personally frustrated at the likely delay due to being in top shape after a long battle with injuries, Gregson says it will make the event one to remember.

"It can have a proper lead-up that the Olympics deserves and when it rolls around it's going to be the biggest one in history - what anticipation, what relief," the 30-year-old said.

"I think sport always brings the world together and I think that's what Tokyo 2021 will do."

Australian team co-captain at last year's world athletics championships with 400m runner Steve Solomon, Gregson said the pair had reached out to fellow athletes during such a tumultuous period.

They had been offered psychological help and financial advice, with the shutdown of world sport having a massive impact for some on their potential earnings.

"We sent out an email to the team from Doha just saying we understand the hurt everyone's going through," Gregson said.

"I struggled for a while there, I kept saying, 'I don't know what to do, what's the purpose right now - do I still wake up and give 100 per cent when there's other things I should be focusing on?'

"I think a lot of people would have found they needed some advice so we've reached out as a community to make sure no-one's left alone."

Originally down to compete at the 2020 nationals in Sydney this week, Gregson used her sparkling form to break the 14-year-old women's Tan record in Melbourne and will now take time off before setting up for another Olympic tilt.


AAP