Olympic president Thomas Bach struck an optimistically downbeat tone as he refused to rule out quarantines for next year's rearranged Tokyo Games and admitted rapid testing could be key to their staging, writes James Toney.
His comments were in subtle contrast to Japanese minister Seiko Hashimoto, who said the Games should be staged 'any cost' and Olympic vice-president John Coates, who said Tokyo will happen 'with or without Covid-19'.
Bach's organisation have set aside £614 million ($800m) for costs arising from the 12 month postponement, while reports in Japan claim the delay is adding over £2 billion to their budget.
In addition, a recent poll of the Japanese public suggested only 24 percent wanted the event to go-ahead.
"It's too early to give a concrete answer on what will be the final scenario and approach for the Tokyo Olympics," said Bach.
"We don't know what the world looks like tomorrow, so you can't expect us to know what the world will look like 316 days from today.
"It requires sacrifices and compromises of all of us. If you need a quarantine to ensure a safe environment for all the participants of the Games, then you will need to go to quarantine.
"We have to prepare for many scenarios not knowing what the environment will be. Social distancing is under consideration and there are many other questions.
"We are following closely the development of rapid testing, this could really facilitate the preparations. We are also informed on encouraging news on vaccines and all this will play a role but they will not be a silver bullet."
Bach reiterated his belief in Japanese officials and expressed no concern about the recent resignation of prime minister Shinzo Abe, one of the Games most enthusiastic cheerleaders.
And while a number of sports events are up and running - including the ongoing Tour de France and US Open in New York - Bach said lessons learned there may well be redundant in 12 months.
"We are following very closely how these events are being organised and we're in contact through our task force to exchange information and learn and this will continue," he added.
"I'm only sure about one thing in this uncertain world and that's the environment in July and August 2021 will be different than the environment today - we just don't know in which way.
"Unfortunately, you can't transfer the experience we are gaining right now to the organisation of the Games in one year's time."
In any normal year, the issue of athlete protest would be the biggest file in the Olympic president's bulging in-tray but Bach would not be drawn on his thoughts about changes to the IOC's 'Rule 50', which states that the field of play and medal events should be 'separate from political, religious or any other type of interference'.
"Consultations are ongoing and the IOC executive board and president will not interfere with this," he added.
"We are waiting for the report of the athletes' commission and we won't comment until then. We'll talk more when all the consultations have been finalised and as many athletes as possible have had the chance to contribute to the discussions."