Shibata gives support to 2020 bid


Former Olympic swimmer Ai Shibata will be one of the speakers during Japan’s presentation for the Tokyo 2020 bid at the upcoming Association of National Olympic Committees meeting in Moscow.

The 2004 Athens women’s 800-meter freestyle gold medalist will join Japanese Olympic Committee President Tsunekazu Takeda, Vice President Masato Mizuno and executive board member Yuko Arakida in the presentation on April 14, Mizuno said Monday.

Shibata retired from competitive swimming in December 2008 at the age of 26 after bowing out in the 400- and 800-meter heats at the Beijing Olympics that summer.

Tokyo, which hosted the Summer Olympics in 1964, is vying against Doha, Istanbul, Baku and Madrid.

The host city will be decided in Buenos Aires on Sept. 7, 2013.