Next year's World Veteran Table Tennis Championships have been cancelled ©ITTF

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) has confirmed the cancellation of next year's World Veteran Championships (WVC) in France.

Bordeaux was due to hold the competition between April 26 and May 2 but organisers said the COVID-19 crisis had made preparations impossible.

Next year's dates already represented a postponement as the tournament was initially scheduled for between June 8 and 14 this year, before being moved into 2021.

Competition was due to take place at Vélodrome de Bordeaux and the Parc des Expositions after the French city was awarded the event in 2015.

"It is with a lot of sorrow that we announce the final cancellation of WVC 2020 which was meant to take place in April 2021," an Organising Committee statement said.

"We must sadly accept that the health crisis linked to COVID-19 might still be running on the rescheduled date of WVC 2020 in 2021. 

"Facing this circumstance, we gathered the main WVC 2020 stakeholders and assessed all risk management. 

Bordeaux was due to hold the competition for older players next year ©Getty Images
Bordeaux was due to hold the competition for older players next year ©Getty Images

"They unanimously highly recommend to cancel the event. 

"Health of players, accompanying persons, referees, volunteers and all stakeholders being our top priority.

"Be aware that our team remains mobilised so that each and every one can receive a full refund of all expenses incurred (players and accompanying persons registration, hotel bookings and tourist excursions made through the organisers). 

"You will soon receive an email specifying the refund procedure. 

"We share your disappointment and hope that our paths may cross in future World Veterans Championships organisations. 

"Until then, please stay healthy."

The next World Veteran Championships are due to take place in January 2023 in Oman. 

Top level table tennis recently returned with the successful #RESTART series, which took place in a bubble environment in China.