This year’s World Rugby U20 Championship has been cancelled due to health and safety concerns arising from the coronavirus pandemic, the sport’s world governing body announced.
The event was supposed to take place in Italy in June.
“The World Rugby U20 Championship 2021 will not take place this year due to the ongoing impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic,” World Rugby said in a statement on Wednesday.
“The decision was made in consultation with potential hosts and participating unions considering all aspects from financial impact to player welfare implications.”
World Rugby said it was exploring alternative ways for stakeholders to hold local competitions which will enable the sport to continue its growth.
“World Rugby is currently working with regions and federations to identify regional competitions that can be held in a safe environment, reflecting the international federation’s ambition to develop high level competition models for future rugby stars,” it added.
This is the second time the tournament has been cancelled because of the pandemic. Last year’s event which was also scheduled to be hosted in Italy around the same time was cancelled.
Europe is currently battling a second wave of the pandemic in addition to new strains of the virus leading several nations across the continent to impose strict measures to contain the spread of the virus.