BEIJING: Thousands of runners will line up for the Beijing marathon in November after a two-year Covid pause, organisers said, as sporting events gradually return to China. The world’s most populous country has cancelled almost all international sports competitions since Covid emerged there in 2019, with the Beijing Winter Olympics in February this year a rare exception. Race organisers said on Tuesday that 30,000 runners would be able to take part in the 26-mile (42-kilometre) course through the capital on November 6 — but only Beijing residents can register. China is the last major economy wedded to a zero-Covid policy, stamping out virus flare-ups with snap shutdowns, mass testing and lengthy quarantines. The table tennis world team championships kicked off last Friday in the megacity of Chengdu, though participants must stay in a “closed loop”, and it was announced last week that China would host the season-ending World Tour Finals for badminton in December.