Evening Sports Update

RUGBY

Ulster have given their hopes of qualification to the European Champions Cup quarter-finals a massive lift.

They’ve defeated La Rochelle 20-13 at Kingspan Stadium to move top of Pool 1 with one game to play.


Les Kiss’s side ran in three tries in all, with two in the first half through Rory Best and Jacob Stockdale and a third from Nick Timoney.

Ulster now sit on 17 points, one clear of La Rochelle and seven ahead of Wasps, who have a game in hand away to Harlequins at 5.30.

Ulster travel to Wasps for their final pool game next week knowing a win secures them a place in the last eight.

Connacht have booked their place in the quarter-finals of the European Challenge Cup after a 24-all draw away to Worcester.

Kieran Keane’s side overcame an awful start when they trailed 12-nil after 5 minutes, running in three tries in all from John Muldoon, Niyi Adeolokun and Tiernan O’Halloran.

SOCCER

Martin O’Neill is again the favourite to take over as manager of Stoke City.

That’s after Quique Sanchez Flores pulled out of the running, opting instead to remain in charge of Spanish side Espanyol.

O’Neill met Stoke officials earlier in the week and has still yet to sign a contract which keeps him with the Republic of Ireland for the Euro 2020 qualifiers.

According to reports Stoke are angry at Sanchez Flores for his late change of heart, and are now eager to get O’Neill on board.

Chelsea have failed to move up into 2nd in the Premier League table after a nil-all draw at home to Leicester.

Antonio Conte’s side failed to capitalise on an extra man advantage, after Ben Chilwell was shown a second yellow card mid way through the second half.

That was one of six games which kicked off at 3pm.

West Ham’s resurgence under David Moyes continues – they struck 3 times in the first 15 minutes of the second half to beat Huddersfield 4-1.

Crystal Palace also continue their good form under Roy Hodgson, beating Burnley 1-nil.

Watford came from 2-nil down at half-time to secure a 2-all draw at home to Southampton.

West Brom enjoyed a 2-nil win at home to Brighton, and it finished 1-all between Newcastle and Swansea.

GAELIC GAMES

A last minute goal by Stephen Sherlock has clinched the McGrath Cup for Cork in dramatic fashion.

It had looked like Clare would win the competition for a 13th time after they reduced a 10 point deficit to lead heading into injury time.

But a 71st minute strike by Sherlock gave the Rebels the title with a 3-13 to 3-12 win.

The Kilkenny hurlers booked their place in the final of the Bord na Mona Walsh Cup.

They beat Offaly with a battling performance at O’Connor Park, winning by 1-20 to 3-11.

Dublin or Wexford meet in the other semi-final tomorrow with the decider scheduled for next weekend.

CRICKET

Ireland have secured back-to-back wins over the United Arab Emirates in their one-day international tri-series in Dubai.

Ireland set the hosts a target of 302 to win after centuries from both William Porterfield and Andy Balbirnie.

In response the UAE were bowled out for 234.

RACING

The Willie Mullins-trained Getabird was cut to as short as 7-2 favourite for the Sky Bet Supreme Novices Hurdle after a convincing success in the Grade 2 Sky Bet Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown on Saturday.

In the hands of Patrick Mullins, the son of Getaway jumped superbly and quickened up really smartly from the final flight to beat previous Grade 1 winner Mengli Khan by an easy nine lengths. Having won his maiden hurdle here over 2m4f last month, this was very impressive and puts him in line to follow the same owner Rich Ricci’s Vautour and Min to the Supreme Novices after winning this trial.