Other Sport

Tokyo's 1964 Olympic flame went out 4 years ago

2017-10-16 11:23
Olympic flame (File)

Tokyo - A flame from the 1964 Tokyo Olympic torch that was supposed to be kept alight eternally actually went out four years ago, it emerged on Monday after red-faced officials confessed.

The flame, housed in a sports training facility in the southwestern Japanese city of Kagoshima, was touted as an "Olympic sacred flame" from 1964 and received widespread media coverage when Tokyo was awarded the 2020 Games.

But it turned out that the flame had gone out in November 2013, two months after Tokyo won the Games, and had been hastily re-lit, the then head of the facility told AFP.

"At that time, I could not say something that could destroy (people's) dreams," added the official, who declined to be named.

"I saw with my eyes that the flame went out on November 21," he added. "We re-lit the fire and kept it going for about two weeks, but I thought that was not good."

At that time, there was considerable media interest in the flame as Japan had just been awarded the 2020 Games, he said.

"In addition, we kept receiving a number of requests from various people to use the 'sacred flame' for town festivals and weddings. I decided to come clean," he said.

Local Kagoshima official Mitsuru Horinouchi also told AFP the flame was extinguished for good in November 2013.

The facility now keeps a different flame - ignited by a magnifying glass and sunlight in December 2013 - in a camp site.

"We now have a display panel explaining the that existing flame was created after the flame from the 1964 Olympics went out," the current head of the facility Etsuko Tabata told AFP.


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk
Breaking News

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Besides the 'Big 3' of rugby, cricket and soccer, which of the 'smaller' sports in South Africa do you enjoy the most?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.