In Japan, the live narration includes two voices: Japanese announcer DJ Ketchup and English announcer Andy Taylor. Together, they cover the presentation on Center Court. Additional Japanese and English speaking announcers cover Courts 1 and 2 at Ariake Tennis Park.
An historic Women’s Doubles Gold Medal match
For the first time in Olympic history, both the Women’s Singles and Women’s Doubles Finals included opponents from the same countries: Switzerland and the Czech Republic.
Yesterday, Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic captured Singles Gold versus Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic. Today, the tables flipped in favor of the Czechs.
Additionally, Belinda became the 5th Olympian to reach both the Singles and Doubles Gold Medal matches at the same Summer Games since tennis’ return in 1988:
- Venus Williams / 2000 Sydney
- Nicolas Massu / 2004 Athens
- Serena Williams / 2012 London
- Andy Murray / 2012 London
- Belinda Bencic / 2021 Tokyo
Match context: 11th Women’s Doubles Championship of the Olympic Games
In their Olympic Games debuts here in Tokyo, both of these teams have earned four consecutive victories to reach today’s championship match. Today, they compete for Gold and the enduring title: Olympic Champions.
 Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova (CZE) | Gold Medal Announcer Introduction
They are the #1 Doubles Team in the World. Together, they are 3-time Grand Slam champions, Billie Jean King Cup champions, and today marks their 15th career Final as a tandem. This time, its for Olympic Gold. Since January, they’ve reached the Final of the Australian Open and captured three titles, including their second title at Roland Garros. In pursuit of their nation’s first Gold Medal in Women’s Doubles – and second tennis medal of these Olympic Games – Representing the Czech Republic, the top Doubles Team in the World, Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova.
- FF — W — Belinda Bencic and Viktorija Golubic (SUI) | Score: 7-5, 6-1
- SF — W — Elena Vesnina and Veronika Kudermetova (ROC) | Score: 6-3, 3-6 [10-6] | COURT-3
- QF — W — Storm Sanders and Ashleigh Barty (AUS) | Score: 3-6, 6-4 [10-7] | COURT-6
- R2 — W — Sara Sorribes Tormo and Paula Badosa (ESP) | Score: 6-2, 5-7 [10-5] | COURT-4
- R1 — W — Chieh-Yu Hsu and Yu-Chieh Hsieh (TPE) | Score: 6-2, 61 | COURT-9
Belinda Bencic and Viktorija Golubic (SUI) | Gold Medal Announcer Introduction
Competing together for the first time in 5-years, this tandem upset the #2-seeds from Japan, Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara in the opening round – and on Friday, earned a straight sets victory over Bronze Medalists Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani of Brazil. By reaching today’s championship match, they’ve earned their nation’s second tennis medal here in Tokyo. Last night, Belinda Bencic became the first woman from her country ever to claim tennis Gold at the Olympic Games. Representing Switzerland, Belinda Bencic and Viktorija Golubic.
- FF — L —  Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova (CZE) | Score: 5-7, 1-6
- SF — W — Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani (BRA) | Score: 7-5, 6-3 | COURT-3
- QF — W — Sam Stosur and Ellen Perez (AUS) | Score: 6-4, 6-4 | COURT-1
- R2 — W — Carla Suarez Navarro and Garbiñe Muguruza (ESP) | Score: 3-6, 6-1 [11-9] | COURT-2
- R1 — W —  Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara (JPN) | Score: 6-4, 6-7(5) [10-5] | COURT-5
SUMMER GAMES | Women’s Doubles Medalists
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Amid COVID concern, the Games go on
Postponed for a year due to the global coronavirus pandemic, the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games finally launched on Friday, 23 July 2021. After 18-months of lockdowns, desperately trying to contain COVID’s insidious spread, the world finally developed effective vaccines. Sadly, though, 4-million lost their lives, while over 193-million contracted the virus. And Tokyo’s case count was also on the rise.
But thanks to science and nearly 2-years of experience, organizers understood that it was entirely possible to responsibly stage the Summer Games without creating a super-spreader event. No fans allowed. Tickets revoked. All international visitors barred from the country – unless competing or working.
From the athlete, to the volunteer, to the Japanese announcer and English announcer — everyone involved with the Games exercised the procedures and protocols painstakingly learned through 18-months of uncertainty and despair. Quarantines. Life in bubbles. Regular hand-hygiene. Masks. Limited long-term indoor exposure to others. And of course, social distancing. But above all else: Most of the Tokyo 2020 team was vaccinated.
Come hell or high water, the Summer Games would go on.
Naomi Osaka ignites the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Cauldron
On a more positive note, one of the most distinguished honors in all of sport is to light the Olympic cauldron. Any American over 40 remembers the emotional moment in 1996 when Muhammed Ali courageously climbed the steps to light the flame in Atlanta. His body ravaged by Parkinson’s disease. That singular moment creates indelible memories.
This year, the Japanese Olympic Committee secretly bestowed the honor to 23-year-old Naomi Osaka. Originally scheduled to play the first match on Center Court Saturday morning, it was unusual on Friday to hear that her match had been moved to Sunday. Nothing further was said.
Then, at the conclusion of a subdued, yet deeply respectful opening ceremony and parade of nations – it was Naomi Osaka who climbed the steps and torched the flame that brightly burned over the Games of the 32nd Olympiad. Obviously, it was a humbling honor not lost on the 4-time Grand Slam Champion, who was making her Olympic debut.
Well represented during the parade of nations, tennis players Petra Kvitova (CZE), Jelena Ostapenko (LAT), and Veronica Cepede Royg (PAR) all served as flag-bearers.
Tennis at the Summer Games
One of the premier sports featured during the Games’ initial revival, tennis still has a contentious history with the Summer Games. It fell off the radar after 1924, mainly due to conflicts between the International Lawn Tennis Federation and the IOC. The two major obstacles:
- Allowing professionals to compete in a global showcase for amature athletics.
- Scheduling. With the Summer Games so close to the conclusion of the Wimbledon Championships, the ILTF and the IOC were in direct competition for tournament participation by the sport’s top-athletes.
After a 60 year absence, tennis and the IOC worked out their differences, and the sport returned as an official event during the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul. Now under the guidance of the International Tennis Federation, professionals proudly represent their home nations.