Shantou was awarded the 2021 Asian Youth Games last year ©ITG

Shantou will remain hosts of the third edition of the Asian Youth Games next year, with organisers claiming preparations have not been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The city, located in southern China, was awarded the Games last year by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).

Shantou had been the sole bidder for the event.

The OCA claim preparations for the Games have not be affected by the coronavirus pandemic, which began in China.

More than 81,000 coronavirus cases have been reported in China since the outbreak began, resulting in more than 3,300 deaths.

The cases led to lockdowns in Chinese cities, leading to numerous sporting events in the country being either postponed or cancelled.

The OCA claim preparations remain on track for the Asian Youth Games.

"The OCA while maintaining a very strict isolation policy is still continuing its activity and liaising with the various Asian Games Organising Committees to ensure that the preparations for the Games are not hindered," said Husain Al Musallam, OCA director general, according to Asia News International.

"In this respect I have the pleasure to inform you that the OCA in coordination with the Shantou Asian Youth Games Organising Committee has decided the dates and sports programme of the third Asian Youth Games."

The OCA claim preparations have not been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic ©Getty Images
The OCA claim preparations have not been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic ©Getty Images

The Games are set to take place from November 20 to 28 in 2021.

A total of 18 sports are expected to be included on the programme for the Games.

This will include athletics, aquatics, badminton, 3x3 basketball, beach volleyball, dragon boat racing, football, gymnastics, golf and handball.

Breakdancing, climbing, rugby, surfing, table tennis, taekwondo, wind surfing and wushu will also feature.

The Asian Youth Games were first held in Singapore in 2011 and then again in Nanjing in 2013.

The 2017 event was awarded to Sri Lanka, only for them to drop out following a series of problems.

Jakarta was then lined up as a replacement but they also later withdrew.

Nearly 2,500 athletes from the 45 countries are expected to compete at Shantou 2021.

Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, will host the fourth edition of the Games in 2025.