Triathlon Olympic qualification rankings have been frozen since March this year ©Getty Images

Triathlon qualification for next year’s rescheduled Olympic and Paralympic Games could resume in March 2021 – a year after it was suspended.

Following the outbreak of coronavirus, World Triathlon froze the qualification rankings for Tokyo 2020 in March this year.

Since then, no events that have been staged by World Triathlon have counted towards those rankings.

World Triathlon has now agreed to not restart the qualification before March 15 next year following an Executive Board meeting.

A consultation process is set to take place between January and February with the various committees including Continental Confederations, International Olympic Committee and International Paralympic Committee before making a final decision on the exact start and finish date of the qualification process.

Miyazaki in Japan is due to play host to the first World Cup of the season from March 23 to 24.

Triathletes are set to battle it out for places at next year's Olympic Games ©Getty Images
Triathletes are set to battle it out for places at next year's Olympic Games ©Getty Images

A total of 110 triathletes are expected to compete in the Olympics which will feature a new mixed team event, while 80 qualification spots are available for Para-triathlon at the Paralympics.

The Executive Board meeting, held via teleconference, launched the bidding process for the 2023 and 2024 World Triathlon Championship Finals, the 2023 and 2024 Sprint and Relay Championships and the 2024 Multisport Championships.

Bid documents should be submitted by February 28 next year with the announcement of the host city scheduled to be made on March 31.

The meeting saw recently re-elected President Marisol Casado thank the retired and departing Board members Loreen Barnett, Ria Damgren, Terry Sheldrake, Barry Siff and Peter Hedge for their "commitment, dedication and contributions" over the years.

Casado also welcomed Michelle Cooper, who has been elected President of Oceania Triathlon, onto the Board.