Cash-strapped UK Athletics cling onto Diamond League meet next summer with London Anniversary Games set to go ahead… but it relies on fans being allowed in as they look to make up shortfall from loss of £2m broadcast deal
- UK Athletics thought about cancelling a Diamond League meet to save money
- However, they confirmed there will be a Diamond League meet next summer
- UKA have secured a July 13 midweek slot for the Anniversary Games in London
- The meet in Gateshead has, however, been sacrificed as a cost-cutting measure
UK Athletics have kept their place on the Diamond League circuit after confirmation there will be a meet at the London Stadium next summer – but it is set to be side-stepped by several leading names because of its proximity to the Olympics.
The cash-strapped governing body had warned one or both of their two Diamond League events could go as a cost-cutting measure.
But while the meet in Gateshead has been sacrificed, UKA have secured a July 13 midweek slot for the Anniversary Games in London.
UK Athletics have confirmed that there will be a Diamond League meet next summer
The secondary issue now will be attracting leading athletes just 10 days before the Tokyo Olympics start, and Sportsmail understands British endurance contenders Laura Muir and Jemma Reekie are among those who will no longer be able to run in London owing to their preference to train at altitude for a sustained period prior to the Games.
Plans to stage the meet in London are dependent on fans being able to attend, with UKA already struggling to make up the financial shortfall caused by the expiration of their broadcasting deal with the BBC, which was worth more than £2m a year.
They are in talks with the BBC over a new arrangement on less favourable terms, and have also met with ITV, as well as online options.
There was worries both of their Diamond League events would have to be cut to save costs