Morning Sports Update

RUGBY

Munster have made the trip to France for one of their toughest games of the season so far.

They face Racing 92 in the European Champions Cup, with the hosts still in with a great shout of reaching the quarter-finals.


Munster are in pole position to top the group and know a win guarantees them a last eight spot.

Munster head coach Johann van Graan knows they’ve a tough task ahead of them

Kick off in Paris is at 3.15.

Munster are 4 points ahead of their opponents at the top of Pool 4 with Castres and Leicester – who meet at the same time – both out of the running. 

Kieran O Callaghan of Tralee rugby club looks ahead to the clash

Leinster aim for their 8th straight win in all competitions this afternoon as they host the Glasgow Warriors in the Champions Cup.

Kick off at the RDS is at 1.

Wasps’ hopes of qualifying for the quarter-finals of the European Champions Cup are in the balance.

They conceded a late try in a 33-28 defeat at Harlequins – who were already out.

It leaves them four points behind second placed La Rochelle, with Ulster the Pool 1 leaders.

Eliminated Northampton inflicted a first European defeat of the season on Clermont Auvergne – beating them 34-21 in Pool 2.


SOCCER

There’s four teams in action in the Premier League today, including three of the top six.

First up at 1.30 Arsenal will look to put a tough week off-the-pitch behind them as they travel to Bournemouth.

Then at 4pm Liverpool aim to become the first side to beat Manchester City this season as they face off at Anfield.

City have a poor record at the venue, failing to win a league game there since 2003.

Man City fan John O’Regan and Liverpool supporter Colin O Grady share their thoughts on the encounter

Harry Kane’s become Tottenham’s all-time leading goalscorer in the Premier League.

He’s moved to 98 – one more than Teddy Sheringham – by scoring twice in a 4-nil win over Everton at Wembley.

Aitor Karanka’s lost his first game in charge of Nottingham Forest.

His new side were beaten 1-nil by Aston Villa – who have moved up to fourth in the Championship.

GAELIC GAMES

Today in the Munster Hurling League final Clare face Limerick.

Meanwhile, in the Bord na Mona Walsh Cup semi-final Dublin face Wexford for the right to meet Kilkenny in the decider.

In football the O’Byrne Cup final pairing will be decided, with Westmeath facing Offaly and Meath meeting Longford.

There’s also fixtures in the Bank of Ireland Doctor McKenna Cup and FBD Insurance League.

HORSE RACING

The €100,000 Bar One Racing Dan Moore Memorial Handicap Chase (2.35) over 2m1f is the richest race of the day at Fairyhouse today with a field of 13 going to post.

Gordon Elliott, who won this corresponding contest 12 months ago with Ball D’arc, has four runners going in search of the lucrative €59,000 winners’ pot headed by Cause Of Causes who is joined by stable companions’ Tell Us More, Doctor Phoenix and The Game Changer.

Willie Mullins got his name on the score sheet here in 2014 with Turban and he is well represented also with three runners including the favourite Acapella Bourgeois who renews rivalry with his stable companion Polidam who was nine lengths too good when the pair clashed at Navan early last month. Townshend, last of five behind the side-lined Death Duty in the Drinmore Chase here last time, completes the Mullins trio.

Gordon Elliott has two of the five runners declared for the Promote Your Business At Fairyhouse Hurdle (1.30) headed by dual winner Mitchouka, third behind the exciting Espoir D’allen in a Grade 2 event at Leopardstown over Christmas. His stable companion Veneer Of Charm opened his account over jumps at Punchestown last time and he too looks capable of another big run.

The Irish Stallion Farms EBF Rated Novice Chase (3.35) is another five-runner race on the card with the Noel Meade-trained Art Of Synergy having his first start over fences in the hands of Sean Flanagan. The other four runners have all gained experience over fences with Jessica Harrington’s Close Shave and the Charles Brynes-trained Alto Esqua having already recorded wins in this sphere this season.

The going at Fairyhouse is soft to heavy.

GOLF

Europe are still the holders of the Eurasia Cup – after coming from behind to beat Asia on the final day in Kuala Lumpur.

Thomas Bjorn’s side won eight of the twelve singles matches to claim a 14-10 overall victory – with England’s Tommy Fleetwood and Tyrrell Hatton among the winners.

Bjorn’s using the event to prepare for his Ryder Cup captaincy in the clash with America in Paris this autumn.

SNOOKER

World number one Mark Selby opens the Masters Snooker at London’s Alexandra Palace this afternoon.

The three-time champion takes on Mark Williams – who’s won it twice.

Tonight, Mark Allen faces Belgium’s Luca Brecel.

DARTS

Glen Durrant attempts to win the BDO World Darts Championship for the second year running later.

He takes on number one-ranked Mark McGeeney in the final at the Lakeside in Frimley Green.

Lisa Ashton successfully defended the women’s title, beating Russian Anastasia Dobromyslova (pron: DOB-BROM-SLOE-VER) in the final.