Shantou 2021 has promised further work on the Asian Youth Games after the event was delayed ©Shantou 2021

Shantou 2021 has pledged to work even harder on delivering the Asian Youth Games after the event was postponed to next year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The third edition of the Games in the Chinese city, organised by the Olympic Council of Asia, was postponed in September to "ensure the safety and health of athletes and other Games participants".

New dates of between December 20 and 28 next year were set, meaning the event will take place over Christmas.

"Shantou 2021 will continue to advance the sports entry programme as scheduled, make meticulous preparations for the Chefs de Mission seminar, test events, Opening and Closing Ceremonies and other major events," organisers said.

"The Organising Committee will also strengthen the publicity and marketing of the Games to enhance its visibility and impact in order to host a youth sporting and cultural event."

Twenty-one sports and disciplines will be on the Shantou 2021 programme, with the construction and renovation of 25 competition venues and the Athletes' Village said to be complete. 

Sponsorship agreements in seven areas have been signed while plans are in place for a Torch Relay.

Nanjing hosted the last Asian Youth Games in 2013 ©Getty Images
Nanjing hosted the last Asian Youth Games in 2013 ©Getty Images

The Games were due to take place between November 20 and 28 this year, but next year's event will keep the name Shantou 2021 with the same logos used.

Shantou 2021 is scheduled as the first edition of the Asian Youth Games since Nanjing in China in 2013.

Athletes aged between 14 and 17 take part, with the first edition in Singapore in 2009.

Both Singapore and Nanjing went on to host the Summer Youth Olympic Games in the following year.

The 2017 Asian Youth Games were awarded to Sri Lanka, only for the country to drop out following a series of problems.

Indonesian capital Jakarta was then lined up as a replacement, but the city also later withdrew and the event did not take place. 

Uzbekistan's capital Tashkent has been awarded the 2025 edition.