ISL pro series to fund swimmers until the Tokyo Olympics

LONDON: the professional International Swimming League ( ISL ) will finance its contracted athletes with monthly payments from September until next year's rescheduling Tokyo Olympics , the series announced on Friday.

He also plans to get all his 320 swimmers together for a special five-week training and competition event, possibly filmed behind closed doors and with Australia as the likely location, Oct. 14-Nov. 17, subject to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2016 Hungary Triple Olympic Gold Medalist Katinka Hosszu He told Reuters that the Solidarity Program would provide reassurance in a time of uncertainty, with some countries locked up as they fight the new coronavirus.

For us athletes, it is really important to get past this time frame and everyone will be able to prepare for next summer, he said.

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They have some security, as well as some racing and training fields to look forward to.

the Tokyo Games , originally scheduled to start in July this year, has been postponed from July 23 to August 8, 2021 due to the pandemic.

the ISL launched last year as a fast-paced competition with 10 teams from Europe and North America featuring an array of world and Olympic champions and bankrolled by Ukrainian businessman Konstantin Grigorishin .

Grigorishin told Reuters the contracted swimmers would each get a guaranteed $1,500 a month from Sept. 1 to July 1 with $11 million set aside to cover wages, bonuses, ambassador payments and prize money in a condensed season.

the total cost of paying for everything could amount to $20 million, although that could be reduced by television deals and sponsorship and depends on the planned five-week 'radical swimming event' going ahead.

During these five weeks we will organize 10 games, such as preliminaries, Grigorishin said. And maybe a month later we organized finals, just one match for four teams. This is our ideal setting.

"But it's hard to say. It's not easy to travel now and maybe there will be a lot of restrictions. So we have to find some place for the swimmers to collect them together.

Creo que todavía habrá algunas restricciones en the grandes eventos públicos hasta fin de año, por eso quizás tengamos que organizar esta competencia en formato de programa de televisión sin espectadores.

He said Australia, Budapest, Japan or Florida were options with Australia the frontrunner: "We asked swimmers and coaches about their preferences and the majority liked Australia."

the pandemic has put the sporting calendar on hold, with many athletes forced to train at home.

the European aquatics championships that were scheduled for Budapest in May have been postponed to August, subject to review.