Olympic flame reaches in Tokyo for no-watcher relay

The Olympic flame arrived in Tokyo on Friday.  The public was in dilemma keeping away from a low-key welcoming ceremony over coronavirus fears, after a "heartbreaking" announcement that spectators would be banned from most Games events.

On a rainy morning two weeks before the opening of the biggest sports tournament since the pandemic began, the flame was brought on stage in a lantern and handed to Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike.

"I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all those who have helped to make the Torch Relay a successful one," Governor of Tokyo, Koike Yuriko said. "We have been able to overcome these difficult conditions with the help of the people all over Japan, and with a lot of ingenuity."

Before the flame arrived on Friday morning, five male trumpet players dressed in suits played a rousing melody under a gazebo to shelter them from the drizzle, with only journalists and officials looking on. Friday's event gave a taste of the atmosphere that could await athletes at the opening ceremony, to be held on July 23 at the National Stadium in the city centre.

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