The IFAF Flag Football World Championships are set to be held in Israel ©AFI

The International Federation of American Football (IFAF) has moved its Flag Football World Championships, a qualifier for the 2022 World Games, from Spain to Israel.

Jerusalem is scheduled to host the event, which had been due to take place in Denmark last year before being postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic, from December 6 to 8.

More than 40 teams are expected to compete at the Championships at the Kraft Family Sports Campus.

The IFAF had switched the venue to the Spanish island of Majorca in November but has now decided to stage the three-day tournament in Israel, which has administered the most COVID-19 vaccinations per 100 people in the world.

"The Kraft Family Sports Campus in Jerusalem is fast becoming an iconic venue for flag football," said IFAF President Richard MacLean. 

"I look forward to seeing the world's finest flag football players coming together for what will undoubtedly be a great event. 

"The competition is tremendous, as teams compete to secure their place at the World Games, and one team will earn the honour of being crowned IFAF flag football world champions."

The top seven teams in each of the men's and women's events will qualify for the 2022 World Games ©AFI
The top seven teams in each of the men's and women's events will qualify for the 2022 World Games ©AFI

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is the lead sponsor of the event, where the top seven men’s and women’s teams - excluding the United States - will qualify for the World Games in Birmingham in Alabama.

The US men’s and women’s teams have already qualified following their gold medal-winning performances at the 2018 World Championships in Panama.

"We love the game of American football and are so proud to see the sport’s popularity continue to grow internationally in its various forms, including flag football," Kraft said. 

"When we invested in the Kraft Family Sports Campus it was with the hope that it would not only provide a location for daily exercise and competition for all Israelis, but that it would also become a destination for Championship-level competition for football leagues throughout the Middle East and Europe. 

"It was an investment in both Israel and American football, two of my greatest passions."

The World Games were due to be held in Birmingham in July 2021 but were postponed by 12 months to avoid a clash with the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

More than 3,600 participants from over 100 countries are due to compete across 30 sports at the World Games.

Lacrosse, duathlon and wheelchair rugby are the other invitational sports.