LAHORE: Pakistan will only be able to host the South Asian Games in 2024 after the Olympic Council of Asia announced fresh dates for the postponed 19th edition of the Asian Games on Tuesday.
Pakistan was looking to host the South Asian Games during September and October next year but the OCA announcement to hold the Hangzhou Asian Games, postponed due to Covid-19 last year, from Sept 23 to Oct 8 means Pakistan’s wait to hold its first South Asian Games since 2004 will extend by another year.
The Pakistan Olympic Association’s initial preference to hold the South Games was in March next year but the delay in finalising issues surrounding the host cities with the Pakistan Sports Board saw them settle on hosting the event in September-October 2023.
The POA will now hold a meeting to set new dates for the hosting of the South Asian extravaganza.
“Definitely after the new dates of Asian Games are set to fall in September-October next year, it is not possible for Pakistan to host the games in the same period so we will likely shift them to March 2024,” POA secretary Khalid Mahmood told Dawn. “Soon the POA will hold a meeting with the national sports federations to review the situation and to finalise any new dates.”
Published in Dawn, July 20th, 2022