Comm Games 2022 pushed back 24 hours

Commonwealth Games organisers hope athletes will rise to the unique challenge of claiming three major championship medals in one summer after moving the Birmingham 2022 event to encourage greater participation.

The tournament has been moved back 24 hours to provide more recovery time for those competing in the rearranged World Athletics Championships, which take place in Oregon from July 15-24.

The Birmingham Games will now start on July 28 and finish on August 8.

The organisers' dilemma came as a result of a major reshuffle of the sporting calendar amid the coronavirus pandemic, with the new date also ensuring the opening ceremony will not clash with the semi-finals of the UEFA Women's European Championship, which will be held in England a year later than planned.

Commonwealth Games organisers will compress the athletics component from seven to five days and push it towards the end of the event to allow more rest from the Oregon event.

And they will seek to promote the hectic schedule as a golden opportunity for athletes rather than a problem.

"It's a wonderful challenge in some respects to do the unprecedented. You can almost create it as a grand slam and I think it's something athletes respond to. It's a challenge. Athletes like a challenge," said Commonwealth Games Federation chief executive David Grevemberg.

"It will probably invoke some ambitions. We need to invent the realm of possibility here: a grand slam that summer in terms of getting golds in all three of those, I think could be a really momentous opportunity, not only for the sport but those individual athletes. It's a huge opportunity."