The Hangzhou Asian Games, which were all set to take place from 10th to 25th of September, were postponed forever amidst a recent increase in COVID-19 cases in China.
The new dates will be declared in near future.
An air of unpredictability was floating over the 19th version of the multi-sports Games ever since Shanghai experienced a fresh wave of the pandemic, coercing a lockdown in the city.
The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Executive Board met in Tashkent on Friday to discuss the situation and felt deferring the Games was the best decision under the situation.
“Following detailed discussions with the Chinese Olympic Committee (COC) and the Hangzhou Asian Games Organising Committee (HAGOC), the OCA Executive Board (EB) today decided to postpone the 19th Asian Games, which were scheduled to be held in Hangzhou, China, from 10 to 25 September 2022,” the OCA stated in a statement.
“The new dates of the 19th Asian Games will be agreed between the OCA, the COC and the HAGOC and announced in the near future,” the statement further said.
The OCA stated the HAGOC was all prepared to deliver the Games on time in spite of global challenges. Nevertheless, after pondering the pandemic situation and the magnitude of the Games, the decision was taken by all the partners.
The name and the emblem of the 19th Asian Games will remain changeless, and the OCA reckons that the Games will accomplish complete success through the joint efforts of all parties.
About 11,000 athletes were to take part in 61 sporting disciplines in the Games.
The change comes at a time when China is struggling a record number of daily cases in Shanghai, which is only a short distance away from Hangzhou, the Games host city.
Furthermore, the 3rd Asian Youth Games, which was all set between 20th to 28th of December in Shantou after being postponed for the second time is now again deferred for the third time as, China have also been abandoned.
The next Asian Youth Games will be conducted in 2025 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.