The Invictus Games in The Hague will now take place in 2022, after being postponed for a second time.
The original date for the tournament was the summer of 2020, but due to the coronavirus pandemic, it was postponed until this year.
However, with the pandemic still affecting the world, the decision has been made to put the tournament back again, this time until the spring of 2022.
It had already been announced that teams from Australia, New Zealand and Jordan would not be travelling to the Netherlands if the competition went ahead in the early summer.
The Invictus Games was scheduled for 29 May to 5 June 2021, but activities will instead be held to mark the dates.
As a precaution, the closing ceremony for the 2021 event had been rescheduled to the evening of Friday 4 June and had been revised to meet potential COVID-19 restrictions.
An Invictus Games Foundation statement said: "The Organising Committee are conducting plans to reschedule the Invictus Games to spring 2022, and a date will soon be confirmed.
"Options to deliver a games this year, including digitally or later in 2021, were not taken forward by the respective boards of the Organising Committee or the Invictus Games Foundation on the basis of identifying the best opportunity to deliver a physical games in The Hague which would bring the Invictus community together.
"The competitor recovery journey and the wish to provide them with as much certainty as possible lay at the heart of the decision-making," it added.
Dominic Reid, chief executive of the Invictus Games Foundation, said: “As you can imagine, it’s been a lot of work – working with a brilliant planning team in the Hague, they’ve been absolutely fantastic, liasing very closely with another brilliant team in Dusseldorf for 2023.
“There’s been an awful lot going on, a lot of moving parts, there’s still quite a lot to nail down, but we think that this is the most sensible thing to do.”
He added that the move takes away an element of uncertainty for athletes preparing for the Games.
“It is a community that is on a road to recovery and this is there specifically to underpin that – to improve their recovery process and to make it better and to allow them to recover more fully and to allow their friends and families to be part of that process. So it’s really important to do that,” he explained.
The sixth edition of the Invictus Games, hosted by Dusseldorf, is taking place in 2023, after also being moved back a year due to coronavirus.
Cover image: US Department of Defense.