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World Athletics awards events to Belgrade, Yangzhou

Jakub Krzewina of Poland celebrates winning the Men's 4 x 400 Metres Relay Final during the 2018 World Indoor Championships in Birmingham (by Michael Steele/Getty Images for IAAF)

World Athletics has awarded hosting rights for its 2022 Indoor Championships and Half Marathon Championships to Belgrade and Yangzhou, respectively.

The decisions from the World Athletics Council mean Serbia will stage its first ever World Athletics Series event. Belgrade, which missed out to Nanjing for the rights to the 2020 World Indoor Championships, has staged several major track and field events over the years – including the 1962 European Championships, 2013 European Cross Country Championships, 2017 European Indoor Championships and the 2017 Balkan Championships.

The 2022 Championships will be held at Belgrade’s Stark Arena, which seats 18,386 for sporting events and has been used for the 2009 Universiade, the Davis and Fed Cup, the World Championships in karate, and the World Cup finals in volleyball.

The Chinese city of Yangzhou has landed the 2022 World Half Marathon Championships, with China one of the fastest-growing markets in road running. The country has 24 World Athletics Label road races in 2019, more than any other nation. It previously hosted the World Half Marathon Championships in 2010 in Nanning, with the 2020 event to be held in the Polish port city of Gdynia before returning to China.

Commenting on the awards, World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said: “Both presentations were comprehensive and we are very excited about going there.”

The most recent editions of the World Indoor Championships and Half Marathon Championships were held last year in the English city of Birmingham and Valencia, Spain, respectively.