The road to Tokyo 2020: A week in quotes 

Anaso Jobodwana of South Africa, Xie Zhenye of China and Zharnel Hughes of Great Britain compete in the Men's 200 Metres heats at the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Anaso Jobodwana of South Africa, Xie Zhenye of China and Zharnel Hughes of Great Britain compete in the Men's 200 Metres heats at the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Athletes around the world have been busying themselves in preparation for the resumption of live sport, with some nations allowing training complexes to open and others even giving the green light for competitive action to start.

Tokyo 2020 has been speaking to several athletes whose journey to the Olympic and Paralympic Games is slowly gathering pace.

Olympic champion Yannick Agnel’s passion for Japan

Yannick Agnel of France celebrates winning the Swimming Men's 200m Freestyle Final at the 2013 FINA World Championships (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Yannick Agnel of France celebrates winning the Swimming Men's 200m Freestyle Final at the 2013 FINA World Championships (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
2013 Getty Images

I visited Japan for the first time in 2015. It was a fantastic discovery.

The two-time French Olympian has fallen in love with Japan and its culture and tradition. At next year's Games, the former swimmer and new e-sports aficionado will be in Tokyo to watch the action as an Olympic commentator for French TV station.

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Japanese honeymooners honoured to be Cape Verde Olympic ambassadors

As Olympic ambassadors, Rikiya and Ayumi Kataoka received the official Olympic Cape Verde uniform and a national flag as gifts from the National Olympic Committee.
As Olympic ambassadors, Rikiya and Ayumi Kataoka received the official Olympic Cape Verde uniform and a national flag as gifts from the National Olympic Committee.
Courtesy of Rikiya Kataoka

I am very honoured because not many people can do it even if you really want to do it.

After being stranded for five months in Cape Verde, Japanese couple Rikiya and Ayumi Kataoka have been appointed as Olympic ambassadors for the archipelago. Find out how they landed this important role.

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From a sinking boat to two Olympic Games

Dolores Moreira Fraschini of Uruguay competes during the Women's Laser Radial Race 1 at Rio 2016   (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Dolores Moreira Fraschini of Uruguay competes during the Women's Laser Radial Race 1 at Rio 2016 (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
2016 Getty Images

Obviously, every time I’m able to qualify for the Olympics it brings me tremendous joy.

Being able to qualify was very beautiful.

Sailor Dolores Moreira was the first Uruguayan to qualify for Rio 2016 - and has repeated this feat again for Tokyo 2020. From her humble beginnings and sailing on a sinking boat, Moreira has come a long way and is now her country's hope for the Olympics.

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XIE Zhenye: 'I’ll give everything in Tokyo to show the best of myself'

Xie Zhenye of People's Republic of China celebrates after winning the 200m Men's final during the 2019 Asian Athletics Championships (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
Xie Zhenye of People's Republic of China celebrates after winning the 200m Men's final during the 2019 Asian Athletics Championships (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
2019 Getty Images

Both the 100m and the 200m are very important to me.
I’ll aim for the podium.

It’s a dream I’ve had from the beginning of my career.

Chinese sprinter Xie Zhenye talks about the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on his training and how he is planning to reach podium next year at Tokyo 2020 in either 100m and 200m events.

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Team France coach Patrick Guimez: 'Finally, we are considered elite athletes'

Team France BMX Freestyle coach Patrick Guimez doing a Flip superman seat grab during the Master of Dirt 2014 event in Hamburg, Germany.
Team France BMX Freestyle coach Patrick Guimez doing a "Flip superman seat grab" during the Master of Dirt 2014 event in Hamburg, Germany.
© Hiishiiphoto.com

BMX's introduction to the Olympic programme professionalises it, and gives us credibility.

Patrick Guimez - legendary BMX rider - is the new national coach for Team France for Tokyo 2020 - where the sport is set to make an appearance for the very first time in an Olympic programme. His aim - to win France's first Olympic medal in BMX.

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Five athletes selected for the Australian Olympic team

Kelsey-Lee Barber of Australia competes in the Women's Javelin at the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kelsey-Lee Barber of Australia competes in the Women's Javelin at the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
2019 Getty Images

It’s a wonderful feeling, it makes the Games feel real again.

Javelin world champion Kelsey-Lee Barber and Olympic bronze medallist Dane Bird-Smith have made the cut for next year's Tokyo 2020 Games and will be joined by runners Jessica Hull and Stewart McSweyn as well as racewalker Jemima Montag, who will all be making their Olympic debut.

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Number one in Softball: The day Japan reached the top of the world

Players from Japan receive their gold medals after they beat the United States 3-1 during the women's grand final gold medal softball game during the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Players from Japan receive their gold medals after they beat the United States 3-1 during the women's grand final gold medal softball game during the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
2008 Getty Images

I will do my best to win a gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 Games.

I ask for your continued support.

Olympic gold medal in Beijing inspires Japanese women's softball team to give their all - and aim for another gold - at their home Games in Tokyo next year.

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Vincent De Haître: From Tokyo to Beijing in 180 days

Vincent de Haitre of Canada  competes during the Men's 1km Time Trial Final during day 3 of the 2020 UCI Track Cycling World Championships Berlin at Velodrom. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)
Vincent de Haitre of Canada competes during the Men's 1km Time Trial Final during day 3 of the 2020 UCI Track Cycling World Championships Berlin at Velodrom. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)
2020 Getty Images

Because I told myself I can do it...

well, now if I don't do it, I've just lied to myself.

Canadian dual-sport Olympian Vincent De Haître will compete as a cyclist at Tokyo 2020, while he also aims to compete as a speed skater at Beijing 2022. Following the postponement of the Games, he now has less time than ever between one Olympics dream and another - 180 days.

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