After this years highlight events at the Wanda Diamond league, it is unsurprising that the following decision has been made. As the events in question, have arguably provided the most excitement in recent years.
Wanda DIAMOND LEAGUE ANNOUNCES CHANGES FOR 2021 SEASON
The Wanda Diamond League (WDL) today announced a number of sweeping changes for the 2021 series. Many are already calling it a ‘u-turn’ after they confirmed that 200m, 5000m, 3000m steeplechase, triple jump. And discuss will make a full return next year. After they were originally removed from the core list in November 2019.
Christian Taylor, The President of the Athletics Association, which represents athletes, welcomed the announcement. “We are delighted that athletes’ voices have been heard. And the events that were removed from the schedule have returned”, he said. He added, “we will continue to advocate for all stadium-events to be included in the future.”
The future of the Wanda Diamond league
The 2021 series is scheduled to constitute 13 meetings, across 12 countries. Each meeting will feature 14 events and will take place in a 2-hour TV slot to maximise commercial revenue.
And it promises an exciting finish, with the athletes that have obtained the most points in each discipline qualifying for the 2-day final in Zurich. Where all 32 events will be staged.
For the field events of long-jump, triple-jump, shot put, javelin and discus a new ‘final 3’ format has been introduced. Where the top 3 performers will compete in a play-off with their previous scores cleared. The advocates of this format have said that their motivation behind introducing this new format is, “to better promote the field events in an action-packed two-hour schedule and give them their own stand-alone moments of focus and drama”.
Although this has attracted controversy, WDL have committed to reviewing it at the end of the season.
A total pot of $7 million will be available in prize money across the season for all athletes and a further $500,000 bonus pot which has been set-aside for the 10 “best performing athletes” across the season.
Seb Coe’s view on the Wanda diamond league
Chairman of Diamond League Association and President of World Athletics, Lord Sebastian Coe, said:
“This has been a frustrating year for the athletes, meeting directors, broadcasters, sponsors and of course fans. We have managed to host eight WDL meetings this year in one form or another and I would like to thank the meeting organisers and our athletes for believing, hosting and competing. We have also used this time to bring together the meeting organisers, broadcasters, athletes and managers to openly discuss issues, share ideas to grow the WDL and understand more about the pressures each group faces. I would like to thank my colleagues on the WDL Board for driving these discussions and all our broadcasters, organisers, managers and particularly our athletes for being candid and innovative and giving us their time. The process has helped remind all of us about why the WDL is so special and I am confident this will shine through to the fans in this coming season.”