Athletics' next World Championships are due to take place in Eugene, Oregon in August 2021, which would pose a problem if the Olympic Games were scheduled in the summer.

World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said the organisers of the Championships were open to discussions around the scheduling of that event, which could be moved to 2022.

"At this stage it's fair to say nothing is on the table, nothing is off the table," he said.

"But clearly it is an advantage in athletics not to have an Olympics and a World Championships in the same year.

"We have already had good discussions with Oregon and what I can report is Oregon are very clear that they will do whatever they can to help in our deliberations on this.

"No hard and fast decisions have been made. It may well be that one of the options is to move into 2022, but that's where our discussions are now taking place." 

Coe admitted every sport would have to be flexible in helping to find a new date for the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics, but appeared to indicate a spring Games would not be ideal for track and field.

The Games were postponed until next year on Tuesday due to the acceleration of the coronavirus pandemic across the globe.

The task force which is looking at alternate dates held a meeting with the 33 international Olympic sports federations on Thursday to gather some initial feedback, and while Coe said every sport would need to keep an open mind, he accepted an event in April or May would be a challenge for an athlete.

He said: "I think the one overwhelming view around the table was 'look, we're probably not going to get a solution which meets with the approval of every sport, but there does have to be an element of flexibility'.

"I'm rather inclined to let the IOC get on with that deep dive. I think there is a recognition that the decision needs to be made as quickly as possible, because the athletes and the federations will always be seeking clarity."

When it was put to him that athletes are rarely able to deliver their best performances in the spring, Coe said: "I wouldn't disagree with that." 

Coe expressed immense sympathy with Tokyo organisers, having led London's delivery of the 2012 Games.

"By the time you get to the end of that seven-year journey, your teams are running on empty and that included the president, right the way down through the organisation," he said.

"I am hoping that there is a recognition that there is exhaustion suffused with massive disappointment. It was the right decision, but if I was president of an organising committee in those circumstances I would want to be looking at how I would take some of that exhaustion away from my teams before they regathered for yet another year of delivery.

"For me that would be uppermost in my concern - managing the exhaustion and the disappointment all coming together in a perfect storm.

"I'm sure the Tokyo organising committee will be thinking about that."