KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: Thomas Bach has announced his intention to run for a second term as president of the International Olympic Committee.

Bach, who was elected at the Buenos Aires Session in 2013, is expected to be unopposed at the election Session in Athens next spring. A second session will be held on the eve of the rescheduled Tokyo Games.

Under the Olympic Charter a president may serve a maximum of two terms, one of eight years and one of four. Hence Bach would, on re-election, complete his terms of office in  2025, one year ahead of the Paris summer Games.

Bach told IOC members, in virtual conference: “If you, the IOC members want, I am ready to run for a second term as IOC President, and to continue to serve you and this Olympic Movement which we all love so much.”

It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that one or more of Bach’s loyal supporters might seek later propose rule changes which would enable the 66-year-old former German gold-medal fencer to extend his stay in power for one or more further terms.

Bach’s first eight-year term began at the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires, where he beat Puerto Rico’s Richard Carrión, Singapore’s Ng Ser Miang, Swiss member Denis Oswald, Olympic pole vault champion Sergey Bubka, and Chinese Taipei’s Ching-kuo Wu to succeed Jacques Rogge as IOC President. He won 49 votes of a total 93 in the final round.

Previously he headed the German Olympic Sports Confederation from 2006 to 2013.

The IOC also elected five new members including Lord Seb Coe, president of World Athletics.

He said: “As president of World Athletics I’m absolutely delighted to represent our sport in the Olympic movement as an IOC member. Thank you to all of you who voted for our sport, our federation today, and I look forward, our whole sport looks forward, to working even more closely with all of you in reforming and building all sports.

“At this time, of all times, the need for community and elite sport to thrive and flourish, has probably never been more important.”

The other new IOC  members elected were Princess Reema Bint Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, who serves on the Board of Saudi Arabia’s National Olympic Committee and has been part of the IOC Women in Sport Commission since 2018, controversial former Croatian president Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, Cuban Olympic Committee board member Maria de la Caridad Colon Ruenes and acting Mongolian National Olympic Committee president Battushig Batbold.

John Coates and Ser Miang Ng will replace Professor Uğur Erdener and Juan Antonio Samaranch as vice-presidents. Mikaela Cojuangco Jaworski and Gerardo Werthein will replace Sergey Bubka whose  eight-year term on the board came to an end, and Ser Miang Ng, whose four-year term came to an end.