Press Release24 Mar 2020

World Athletics U20 Championships in Nairobi postponed


Nairobi's Kasarani Stadium filled with athletics fans (© Getty Images)

It is with regret that World Athletics, together with the Government of Kenya and Athletics Kenya, have made the decision to postpone the World Athletics U20 Championships Nairobi 2020 (7-12 July), due to the ongoing challenges posed by the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) internationally.

The current global situation would have seriously compromised the event at this time as many countries are restricting international travel, invoking necessary quarantines and advising citizens and event organisers to avoid mass gatherings.

We had to consider the health and well-being of athletes, officials and spectators in making this call. We recognise the immense preparations that have gone into the event and wanted to give certainty to the athletes as early as possible as we collectively come to terms with the global impact and threats associated with COVID-19.

The advice from the World Athletics medical team, who are in contact with the World Health Organisation, is that the spread of the novel coronavirus is at a concerning level in many countries and all major gatherings should be reviewed without delay.

We are working together to identify a mutually appropriate alternative date convenient for the Government of Kenya and elite competitors.

We sincerely thank His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta, President of the Republic of Kenya and his administration for their support in planning this event.

The Local Organising Committee will continue with the preparations as we engage on new dates which we hope to announce in the coming weeks.

World Athletics