Morning Sports Update

SOCCER

Wes Hoolahan has announced his international retirement.

He won his last and 43rd cap in the 5-1 European Champions play-off defeat to Denmark and says he informed Martin O’Neill of his his decision last week.


Hoolahan told The Herald “It wasn’t an easy decision to make, to retire, but I feel it’s one I had to make and this is the right time to do it,”

“It’s a mixture of things that led me to make this decision but mainly age, I will be 36 soon, I’ll be 38 when the next Euros come around, so it’s time to move aside.

Tottenham have set up a trip to League One Rochdale in the fifth-round of the F-A Cup.

An own-goal from Dan Butler and an Erik Lamela goal gave Spurs a 2-nil win over League Two Newport County in their fourth-round replay at Wembley.

JK Sport 12 Premier

Killarney Celtic 3-0 Killarney Athletic

Josh Bowler 2

Jason O’Sullivan

Killarney Celtic open a 6 point gap at the top of the table.

GOLF

There’s a strong Irish interest at the A-T-and-T Pebble Beach Pro-Am – which gets underway today.

Rory McIlroy will hope to build on his recent second-place finish at the Dubai Desert Classic when he plays Spyglass Hill alongside Phil Mickelson and Matt Kuchar.

British Masters champion Paul Dunne will also take on Spyglass today.

Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowry and Seamus Power all begin at Monterey Peninsula while Graeme McDowell’s first round is at Pebble Beach.

RUGBY

Ireland head-coach Joe Schmidt is expected to make widespread changes to his pack when the team to face Italy in the Six Nations is named this afternoon.

Dan Leavy could come in for the injured Josh van der Flier in the back-row while Jack Conan is in contention to replace C-J Stander at number-eight.

Experienced lock Devin Toner, who has been carrying a slight groin injury, could replace his Leinster team-mate James Ryan in the second-row.

While Schmidt must decide between Jack McGrath and Cian Healy at loose-head prop.

The Irish Independent’s Ruaidhri O’Connor thinks Toner’s inclusion would bolster Ireland in both the line-out and maul …………

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