Monte Carlo, December 10, 2020: World Athletics and the organisers of the 18th World Athletics Indoor Championships in Nanjing, China – due to be held from March 19-21, 2021 - have agreed to postpone the event to March 2023.
“Whilst we have been liaising with the Organising Committee and the Chinese Athletics Association to evaluate the staging over the last few weeks, given the current global situation, there is still significant uncertainty about the state of the Covid-19 pandemic in the early part of 2021,” World Athletics said in a statement.
“For the safety of our athletes and technical officials, we must duly consider the risks in bringing a large group of people to attend the event under the pandemic situation and fully respect and carry out the pandemic prevention policy of the host country.”
The indoor season for athletics falls within a narrow calendar window - up to the end of March - so it was not possible to extend the event to later in the year.
World Athletics concluded: “We would like Nanjing to be the host of our World Indoor Championships given the extensive planning and preparation they have put into this event so have agreed they will stage the event one year after the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade in 2022.
“Despite this postponement, our athletes will still have substantial competitive opportunities available in the early part of 2021 through the World Indoor Tour which comprises 26 meetings spread across 12 countries in Europe and North America.”
The World Indoor Tour runs from the end of January to the end of February 2021 and is organised across three different tiers of competition – Gold, Silver and Bronze.
The original dates for Nanjing were March 12-15, 2020.