International Weightlifting Federation officials wearing Mickey Mouse ears after awarding 2019 Youth World Championships to Anaheim. They also awarded the 2019 Junior World Championships to Fijian capital Suva ©IWF

The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has awarded its 2019 Junior and Youth World Championships to Fiji’s capital Suva and American city Anaheim respectively.

The unanimous decisions to allocate the events were made at the IWF Executive Board’s meeting in Japan’s capital Tokyo, where the 2017 Junior World Championships are scheduled to begin tomorrow.

Suva’s presentation was given by Fiji Weightlifting Association President Atma Maharaj, who was joined by Isikeli Mataitoga, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Fiji to Japan.

It is the first time a country from the Oceania region will organise an IWF World Championships since 1993, when Melbourne in Australia hosted the senior event, and the first time on a Pacific island.

Robin Mitchell, President of the Oceania National Olympic Committees, will take the position of Organising Committee chair.  

Fiji hosted the continental qualification event for last year's Olympic Games, as well as several regional weightlifting competitions.

The awarding of the Youth World Championships to Anaheim gives the Southern California city a second IWF World Championship event to host within the next three years.

Anaheim is also due to stage the 2017 World Championships from November 28 to December 5 and, according to the global governing body, aspires to become a regular host of IWF events.

Their presentation was given by USA Weightlifting chief executive Phil Andrews, who was joined by Roy Edmondson, vice-president of sports development at Visit Anaheim.

Also present were Sports Anaheim sports events manager Anthony Brenneman and USA Weightlifting’s competition director Pedro Meloni, sport’s manager at Rio 2016.

Anaheim is located in close proximity to the Los Angeles International Airport and is home to the Disneyland Resort, with officials donning Mickey Mouse ears at the meeting to mark the awarding of the event.

Thailand's capital Bangkok hosted this year's IWF Youth World Championships ©IWF/Facebook
Thailand's capital Bangkok hosted this year's IWF Youth World Championships ©IWF/Facebook

"We truly appreciate the trust of the weightlifting community to host another World Championship-level event, this time for the best youth in the world," Andrews said.

"There is no better place in the US than Anaheim to hold a Youth Championship with Disneyland right across the street.

"We look forward to welcoming the world's strongest teenagers to Anaheim in two years."

The Anaheim Convention Center (ACC) will serve as the venue for the 2019 IWF Youth World Championships.

It will mark the first time ever that the United States and Anaheim will host the event. 

The ACC played held wrestling competition during the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. 

The IWF Youth World Championships showcases the best athletes in the world aged 17 and under.

At the 2017 edition in Thailand’s capital Bangkok, the US won two world titles. 

Harrison Maurus and Clarence Cummings Jr posted youth world records on their way to victory in the respective 77 and 69 kilograms categories.

The US also hosted the 2015 IWF World Championships in Houston and is due to host the 2017 Pan American Championships in Miami.  

"In our aim to become a strong partner of the IWF, we appreciate the trust they put in us to host another event," Ursula Garza Papandrea, USA Weightlifting President and IWF vice-president, said.

The 2017 IWF Junior World Championships at Tokyo's Ota City General Gymnasium will see medals awarded in eight men's categories - 56kg, 62kg, 69kg, 77kg, 85kg, 94kg, 105kg and over 105kg - and eight women's categories - 48kg, 53kg, 58kg, 63kg, 69kg, 75kg, 90kg and over 90kg.

Action is due to run until June 23.