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Four Olympic sports lose funding for Tokyo 2020 cycle

By Tom Walker    09 Dec 2016
Despite its successes at Rio 2016, cycling was among the sports to have its funding decreased

Elite sports funding body UK Sport has left four Olympic sports – archery, badminton, fencing and weightlifting - without funding for the 2020 Games in Tokyo.

Announcing its funding decisions for the next four years today, UK Sport said it needs to continue to “prioritise” sports which have the best hope of winning medals at the Games.

In total, the quango will invest up to £345m in 16 Olympic and 15 Paralympic sports for the Tokyo Games – £2m less than the record £347m allocated in the run-up to Rio.

“We would like to invest in every sport, but the reality is that we have to prioritise within agreed resources to protect and enhance the medal potential within the system,” said Liz Nicholl, CEO of UK Sport.

“If we underinvest across the board, then the British teams will ultimately underperform at the Games and medal success will be put at risk.

“We know what it takes to win and what it costs to win, and believe these investments will deliver medal winning success to inspire the nation once again in Tokyo.

“We have not taken these decisions lightly and we know that this impacts on the hopes and dreams of athletes, coaches and support teams that miss out.

“We are committed to managing this with appropriate care and will be working with those affected by these decisions to help them in their transition.”

Sports that have had their funding reduced for Tokyo include cycling (£25.98m, down from £30.27m); rowing (down to £32.1m from £32.6m); and canoeing (£19m, down from £20m).

Sports that have seen an increase in funding, following their Rio performances, are athletics (up to £27.1m from £26.8m); swimming (£21.7m, up from £20.8m) and Gymnastics (£16.7, up from £14.6m).

Among the biggest winners is shooting, which nearly doubled its funding – from £3.95m during the Rio cycle to £7.02m for Tokyo.

UK Sport has also confirmed its medal targets for the Tokyo 2020 cycle – it expects to see 51-85 Olympic and 115-162 Paralympic medals being won by Team GB athletes.

Commenting the increase in funding, David Sparkes, British Swimming CEO, said: “We’re delighted with the ongoing support from UK Sport, but are under no illusion that funding comes with some tough, 2020 medal targets.

“However, we look forward to the challenge of achieving these and providing the nation with more of those fantastic, golden-medal moments we all so enjoyed this summer.”

Sports Minister Tracy Crouch added: "UK Sport's approach to elite sport has proven successful in Beijing, London and Rio, and the ambition to win more medals in Tokyo is a bold one that, if achieved, would mean a sensational summer of sport in 2020."

To download the full UK Sport investment figures as a PDF, click here.

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