The Lucerne 2021 Winter Universiade was cancelled earlier this week after the emergence of the Omicron variant ©Getty Images

Organisers have confirmed that there will be no change to the decision to cancel this month's Winter Universiade in Lucerne, despite Switzerland dropping its 10-day quarantine requirement for all international travellers.

The emergence of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 led to the imposition of mandatory self-isolation periods for visitors from several countries, including Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Britain, The Netherlands, Hong Kong, Israel and Czech Republic.

On Monday (November 29), International University Sports Federation (FISU) Acting President Leonz Eder said the restrictions left it with "no other choice but to cancel the Lucerne 2021 Winter Universiade".

This came less than two weeks before the Opening Ceremony was set to be held on December 11.

The Swiss Federal Council has now confirmed that from today all countries have been removed from the European nation's quarantine list, instead opting to apply "a stricter testing regime" for all arrivals.

However, Lucerne 2021 confirmed that this had come too late to rescue the fate of the Winter Universiade.

"Adjustments to the entry regulations do not change anything about the cancellation of the Winter Universiade," it said in a statement.

Quarantine requirements in Switzerland have been replaced by
Quarantine requirements in Switzerland have been replaced by "a stricter testing regime" ©Getty Images

It added that discussions with Switzerland's Federal Office of Public Health and Federal Department of Home Affairs after the imposition of the quarantine rules failed to secure an exemption for athletes and technical staff, and there were fears that the list of affected countries could be extended.

The Organising Committee said the extensive preparatory work required for the event stopped following the announcement of its cancellation.

It had also been informed of additional local measures affecting Lucerne and central Switzerland, with cases and hospitalisations increasing across the region.

"Against this background, too, it is correct today that the Winter Universiade does not take place," said the Lucerne 2021 President Guido Graf.

"As hosts, we are responsible for our guests, but also for the population."

Graf said earlier in the week that almost 50 legacy projects would serve to benefit the region despite the cancellation.

The Winter Universiade was originally scheduled for January 21 to 31 this year before being put back because of the pandemic, and FISU secretary general and chief executive Eric Saintrond said another postponement was "not an option".

Lucerne 2021 had been set to be the final FISU event held under the Winter Universiade branding, with the next winter edition of the FISU World University Games set to be held in Lake Placid in the United States in 2023.