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Closing Ceremony at Rio Olympics Might Feature Pokémon GO Game

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The U.K. website The Telegraph is reporting on Saturday that this year's Olympics Closing Ceremony in Rio de Janeiro might feature the wildly popular Pokémon GO smartphone game.

As is tradition, the event will feature a handover to the next Summer Olympic Games, which will take place in Tokyo in 2020. The handover includes a segment where the next host city puts on a show. Details on what will happen during the ceremony are usually kept under wraps, but The Telegraph said one insider stated a reference to Pokémon was "inevitable." The ceremony will also show the "cutting edge science and technology" that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will display.

Olympic athletes had been bemoaning the lack of Pokémon GO in Brazil earlier this month, but the game did launch in Brazil on August 4, right before the Olympics kicked off on August 5.

Unfortunately, Japanese Olympic gymnast athlete Kohei Uchimura racked up a 500,000 yen (about US$5,000) data roaming bill while playing the game in Brazil, not realizing that he didn't have a flat rate for overseas usage. His teammate Kenzo Shirai said that when Uchimura found out, "He looked dead at the team meal that day." Uchimura contacted his cell provider and explained what happened, and the phone company spared him the charge, saying instead he could pay a daily flat rate of 3,000 (US$30) for data usage.

The closing ceremonies will take place on August 21 starting at 8:00 p.m. local time (7 p.m. EDT) at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana Stadium. More than 41,000 tickets have been sold for the event. The ceremony will also feature the traditional handover of the Olympic flag, in this case to newly elected Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike, who said she is training for the moment.

Sources: The Telegraph (Tom Morgan), Yahoo! News/Indo Asian News Service, Kyodo


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