At a time when the all the biggest sporting events, including the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games, have been postponed in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, Fina, the governing body for water sports, has decided to reschedule the 2020 Abu Dhabi Fina World Swimming Championships.
Abu Dhabi was scheduled to stage the Fina World Swimming Championships (25m) in December, 2020.
But due to the coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 300,000 people across the world, the organizers have now decided to stage the event in 2021 (December 13-18).
An official statement said that Abu Dhabi would also host the Fina World Aquatics Convention from December 10-12 in 2021.
"Given the uncertainty related with the evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic worldwide, Fina has decided to reschedule the upcoming edition of the Fina World Swimming Championships (25m), initially programmed to take place in December 2020 in Abu Dhabi," Fina said on its official website.
"The new dates of this competition are December 13-18, 2021, with the Fina World Aquatics Convention taking place also in Abu Dhabi, from December 10-12, 2021."
Fina president Dr Julio C Maglione said they tried to find the best solutions considering the health crisis that has crippled the world.
"We have worked in close cooperation during the last weeks with the UAE authorities on this matter and we believe this is the most suitable solution for all those taking part in this competition," Maglione said.
Despite the delay, the UAE will be putting their best foot forward next year, having successfully staged the 2010 edition of the Championships in Dubai.
"The Abu Dhabi rendezvous in December 2021 will be a great success and will be a strong inspiration for the development of swimming and aquatics in the region," Maglione added.
Meanwhile, Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said having all the safety measures in place was the top priority for the local organizers,
"These are extraordinary times and we want to ensure all the safety measures are in place to stage a prestigious event like the Fina World Swimming Championships," Al Awani said.
"Rescheduling the Championships was the most appropriate option under the prevailing Covid-19 situation. We will definitely make up for lost time when we regroup in December 2021."
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