By Paul Osborne

Birmingham in Alabama United States will host the 2021 World Games ©IWGA

Birmingham in Alabama, United States will host the 2021 World Games, it was announced today.

As was widely expected, the city was chosen ahead of Lima, Peru and Ufa, Russia by the International World Games Association (IWGA) Executive Board following final presentations at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) headquarters in Lausanne.

It will be the first time since the inaugural World Games in 1981 that North America has hosted the event, with Santa Clara, California given the honour on that occasion.

"The city of Birmingham will make the World Games 2021 the best World Games that you all have ever seen," said Birmingham City Council President Johnathan Austin.

"Everyone is invited.

"And I just want to thank the team from Birmingham for their hard world, their diligent work, to put Birmingham forward.

"It will be something amazing for the visitors and more importantly, the athletes."

Birmingham were awarded the 2021 World Games today following a final presentation from the three candidates in Lausanne ©IWGABirmingham were awarded the 2021 World Games today following a final presentation from the three candidates in Lausanne ©IWGA

Final negotiations between the IWGA and Birmingham will take place between now and March, before final ratification is made at the IWGA General Assembly in Sochi in April.

Birmingham will then receive the flag in a handover ceremony at the Closing Ceremony of the 2017 World Games in Wrocław, Poland, due to take place between July 20 and 30.

The 2021 Games will mark the 40th anniversary of the World Games, with the Games' return to the United States presenting a significant celebration of this landmark milestone.

"We are happy to showcase our sports in Birmingham in July 2021, and we are sure that we will be offered optimal conditions for our sportsmen and women there," said IWGA President José Perurena.

"All the bids we received were of very high quality, and it was not easy for us to reach a decision.

"We have to deliver nothing less than outstanding World Games.

"We are convinced that Birmingham will exceed these expectations."

Following the announcement, World Archery President Uğur Erdener praised the Birmingham bid, describing the US as a country "that has always found international success in the World Games archery disciplines."

He added: "US compound athletes won gold and silver at the Archery World Cup Final this year."

Archery has been on the World Games sports programme since the second edition in 1985.

The only World Games archery was not featured in, the 1981 event, was held in the United States in Santa Clara.

"Not only is World Archery pleased to take compound archery to the US with the IWGA, but I am certain that USA Archery, and its community, will relish the chance to show itself to the world," added Erdener.

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