The Australian Short Course Swimming Championships usually doubles as a selection event for international competitions ©Getty Images

The 2021 Australian Short Course Swimming Championships have been cancelled due to Melbourne's lockdown, Swimming Australia has confirmed.

The event was scheduled to take place from September 23 to 26 in the Victoria city.

"With the competition scheduled to take place in less than six weeks, the ongoing effects of COVID in many states and the uncertainty regarding border closures throughout the country, resulted in the difficult decision to cancel the event," said Swimming Australia, per Australasian Leisure Management.

The 2020 edition was delivered virtually, also due to COVID-19, in four sessions of timed finals in Brisbane, Sydney, Hobart, Perth and Melbourne.

"This is an unfortunate situation and again a decision we did not take lightly, but we needed to provide our swimming community with some certainty and with the borders being so unstable and regular lockdowns still occurring we feel this is the right decision," said Swimming Australia's chief executive Alex Baumann.

The Australian Short Course Swimming Championships was first held in 1980 ©Getty Images
The Australian Short Course Swimming Championships was first held in 1980 ©Getty Images

"We would like to thank the Victorian Government and Melbourne Sports Centres - MSAC for their understanding and support during this time."

Due to the updated federal Government policies on international travel restrictions and subsequent mandatory quarantine requirements, Swimming Australia has said this will impact its participation at the 2021 International Swimming Federation (FINA) World Short Course Championships in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, set to run from December 15 to 20.

Swimming Australia will facilitate entries to the World Short Course Championships under a revised selection criteria for targeted athletes but will not be sending an official Australian team to the event.

"With limited options to return to Australia, the quarantine requirements following competition falling over the Christmas and New Year period and many of our athletes just undertaken more than 10 weeks away from home, we felt sending a team to the event was not viable," Baumann continued.

"For those athletes that still wish to attend and meet the selection criteria, we will provide a level of support to assist in travel and accommodation for the meet."