Next year’s planned World Athletics Indoor Championships in the Chinese city of Nanjing have been postponed until March 2025 due to ongoing COVID-19 conditions in the country.
Nanjing had been due to stage the event from March 17-19, 2023 but will now play host two years later, with exact dates to be confirmed.
It marks the third postponement of the event, which was originally due to take place in March 2020, and then in March 2021. The event was postponed both times due to uncertainty caused by the pandemic.
The latest decision has been taken with the agreement of both the Nanjing organising committee and the Chinese Athletics Association.
Following the postponement, the next edition of the World Athletics Indoor Championships will now be in the Scottish city of Glasgow from March 1-3, 2024. The bidding process has already commenced for the 2026 edition, which is why 2025 has been designated as the year for Nanjing to host.
World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said: “We’re disappointed that we have had to postpone this event again due to circumstances beyond our control, but we have done so to give certainty to athletes and member federations preparing for the 2023 competition season. Unfortunately, the timeframe will prevent us from relocating the 2023 event, but the indoor championships will return in 2024 in Glasgow.
“We have offered Nanjing the 2025 edition because we are mindful of the substantial preparations the LOC has already done to host the event and we want to avoid potential financial losses for all parties. I want to thank CAA and the LOC for their cooperation in resolving this situation.”
The 2025 event will be held at Nanjing’s ‘Cube’ arena, which forms part of the city’s Youth Olympic Sports Park. The competition is usually held every two years and the most recent edition took place in March in the Serbian capital of Belgrade.
China has already relinquished its hosting rights to the 2023 edition of football’s Asian Cup due to the challenges created by the pandemic. The city of Hangzhou was also due to host the multi-sport Asian Games this year but the event will now take place in 2023.
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