The Tokyo Olympic Games will be held without spectators, organizers confirmed on Thursday (July 8).
The decision comes after Japan declared a state of emergency for the capital due to the global health crisis that will run throughout the event.
The move was made following talks between the government, Tokyo organizers and Olympic officials.
Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto.
A sports psychologist said having no fans could affect the performances of the athletes.
Clinical Sports Psychologist Dr Victor Thompson.
"And maybe for some athletes that's going to help them raise the game because they won't feel the pressure of the fans or it won't be a distraction, but for most top performers it will feel strange and it may actually make them a bit concerned that they may not deliver their best performances because often the fans bring the atmosphere, bring the excitement and help athletes to bring their best performances on the night."
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said the state of emergency was essential to stop Tokyo becoming the source of another wave of infections, as the highly infectious Delta variant spreads.
The ban on spectators has ended hopes for Tokyo organizers of adding a public spectacle to the event, which has already been delayed by a year.
Medical experts welcomed the decision, having said for weeks that no fans would be the least risky option.
But warned that risks from people's behavior around Olympic events, like drinking and dining together, were tougher to control than those inside the venues.
There are also concerns among the public that the arrival of thousands of athletes and officials will fuel a fresh wave of infections.