This year’s Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) in Hanoi have fallen victim to surging Covid-19 cases across the region.

The SEA Games were originally due to take place from the 21st November to 2nd December 2021 in Hanoi and 11 other locations in Vietnam, but ten of the 11 member countries voted to postpone the event until next year during the federation’s teleconference meeting this week.

“The new dates for the SEA Games will be known within ten to 14 days. Hosts Vietnam will propose and finalise the new dates,” Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president Tan Sri Norza Zakaria said after the meeting.

The Vietnamese delegation explained that talks would need to take place with government officials before deciding on a rescheduled date for the Games. A number of members have proposed new dates from the end of April to early May 2022 to reschedule the Games.

However, next year’s sports calendar is congested with the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham taking place from the 28th July and the Asian Games in Hangzhou is scheduled to get underway from the 10th September.

After previously containing the spread of Covid-19 in the country Vietnam has seen a major spike in infections. Vietnamese authorities announced that the nine million people in Ho Chi Minh City would go into lockdown for two weeks from the 9th July.