The Mixed Ability Rugby World Cup, which was due to take place in Cork this summer, has been postponed amid the Covid-19 outbreak.
Over 1,000 players from 14 countries were due to compete in the International Mixed Ability Rugby World Tournament (IMART) and at a parallel mixed ability week (MAW), showcasing mixed ability sports, at venues across the city this June.
But given the global public health crisis, the organisers felt that postponing the event was the most appropriate course of action to protect the health and safety of players and supporters.
It is the second time that efforts to stage the event in Cork have been scuppered.
IMART was intended to be a joyful event, celebrating diversity and the welcoming nature of rugby, a spokesperson said.
But under the current circumstances and uncertainty this would be impossible to guarantee within the next three months, she said.
"The postponement of IMART and MAW to a proposed time of Summer 2021 comes as a big disappointment to us, the community working to make IMART a reality, but we are delighted with the continued support of our sponsors and players, and know that we will rise again," IMART chair, Liam Maher, said.
He described the coronavirus pandemic as "the biggest crisis that the world has faced in living memory" but reiterated that "Cork looks forward to giving the international rugby community a warm welcome in the Summer of 2021."