New Zealand will represent Oceania at the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup next year after the regional championship was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The OFC Under 16 Women's Championship was originally set to take place in Tahiti in December but was postponed due to the measles epidemic in the Pacific.
It was rescheduled to April and renamed the OFC Under 17 Championship for this year to reflect player eligibility, but was further postponed because of the coronavirus.
With border restrictions still in place throughout the Pacific and many football teams still unable to train together due to social distancing measures, the OFC Executive Committee decided to cancel the tournament and nominate defending champions New Zealand as the region's representative for the rescheduled World Cup in India next year.
"We understand this is a deeply disappointing situation for all of the players, coaches and officials involved but the health and safety of the Pacific football community remains our top priority," OFC General Secretary Franck Castillo said.
"We want to provide the team who will represent OFC with the best chance to prepare for next year's FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup in India."
Oceania Football said the regional championship is normally scheduled during school holidays and with no clear window available in the coming months, they wanted to ensure the winner had adequate time to prepare for the Women's World Cup.
New Zealand have won the four previous editions of the OFC Under 16 Women's Championship and were nominated to attend the World Cup as OFC's representative due to their strong history in the regional event.
An update on other OFC tournaments, including this year's Champions League and the Men's U-19 Championship are expected on 31 July.
"The coronavirus continues to provide unique logistical challenges and we are speaking regularly with our 11 Member Associations to ensure they're well informed about what is going on with future events," Castillo said.