Evening Sports Update

RUGBY

A hat-trick of tries from Kotaro Matsushima helped Japan get their World Cup campaign off to a winning start.

The Cherry Blossoms came from behind in Tokyo to register a 30-points to 10 bonus point victory over Russia.

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Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt says he has no concerns over the pitch ahead of Sunday’s opening match with Scotland.

The Yokohama pitch will host the meeting of the All Blacks and the Springboks less than 24-hours before Ireland’s tournament bow.

Jordan Larmour and Andrew Conway will start in place of Rob Kearney and Keith Earls,

While CJ Stander gets the nod at number-8 ahead of Jack Conan.

Munster Head Coach Johann van Graan has named an extended squad for Saturday’s pre-season clash against Connacht at the Sportsground (3pm).

The game is Munster’s second pre-season fixture following last week’s 45-5 victory over London Irish.

The Guinness PRO14 kicks off at Thomond Park on Saturday week as Dragons visit Limerick for a 3pm kick-off.

Tommy O’Donnell will captain Munster in Galway with seven Academy players included.

Alex McHenry and Keynan Knox both keep their starting places in the starting XV with fellow Academy men Jack O’Sullivan, Jack Stafford, Liam Coombes, Jonathan Wren and Alan Tynan among the replacements.

Wren and Tynan are in line to make their senior debuts off the bench.

Mike Haley starts at full-back with Darren Sweetnam and Shane Daly on either flank.

Rory Scannell and McHenry pair up in the centres as Nick McCarthy, on his first Munster start, teams up with JJ Hanrahan in the half-backs.

James Cronin made a welcome return from injury against London Irish last week and packs down in the front row with Kevin O’Byrne and Knox.

Darren O’Shea and Fineen Wycherley start in the second row as Arno Botha, O’Donnell and Jack O’Donoghue complete the side.

Munster: Mike Haley; Darren Sweetnam, Alex McHenry, Rory Scannell, Shane Daly; JJ Hanrahan, Nick McCarthy; James Cronin, Kevin O’Byrne, Keynan Knox; Darren O’Shea, Fineen Wycherley; Arno Botha, Tommy O’Donnell (C), Jack O’Donoghue.

Replacements from: Rhys Marshall, Liam O’Connor, Jeremy Loughman, Stephen Archer, Billy Holland, Seán O’Connor, Gavin Coombes, Paddy Butler, Conor Oliver, Jack O’Sullivan, Alby Mathewson, Neil Cronin, Jack Stafford, Tyler Bleyendaal, Liam Coombes, Jonathan Wren, Alan Tynan

GOLF

Shane Lowry’s making steady progress on day 2 of the BMW PGA Championship.

He’s moved to 2-under par with four holes to play.

Padraig Harrington and Rory McIlroy are both battling to make the cut – Harrington’s just above the cut mark on 1-over par, while McIlroy’s below it on 2-over.

Paul Dunne’s week is over – he reached halfway in 13-over par.

Danny Willett and Jon Rahm are the joint-clubhouse leaders on 11-under.

Irish Schools Senior Championship

Results R 1
Senior Schools 19th September
At Ballyneety GC

Qualifier: St. Josephs Secondary School, Ballybunion 238 Other Scores
243:St. Francis College, Rochestown
276: Ard Scoil Ris, Limerick
277: Castletroy College 291: C.B.S. Ennistymon 321: Crescent College Comprehensive, Limerick
At Fermoy GC
19th September
Qualifier: Colasite Choilm Ballincollig 240 CBC Sidney Hill Cork 247
At Macroom GC
19th September
Qualifier: Colaiste An Spioraid Naoimh Bishoptsown 236 Kinsale Community School 239
Coachford College 258 Hamilton High School 267 Tralee Mercy 276
St. Michael’s Listowel N/R
At West Waterford GC
19th September
At West Waterford GC
Qualifier: De La Salle, Waterford 225 Ard Scoil na Mara, Tramore 247
St Augustines, Dungarvan 249
Abbey Community College, Ferrybank 275 Clonmel High School 278.
Waterpark College 283.
CTI Clonmel – NR.

SOCCER

Dundalk could set up a title-deciding game with Shamrock Rovers tonight.

The SSE Airtricity Premier Division leaders will be one win away from retaining their title with victory away to Waterford.

Rovers will look to keep their dwindling hopes alive when they face St. Pat’s.

The race for Europe heats up at the Ryan McBride Brandywell where Derry City entertain Bohemians.

Elsewhere, Finn Harps go to Cork, and UCD play Sligo Rovers.

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There’s a south-coast derby in the Premier League tonight with Southampton welcoming Bournemouth to St. Mary’s.

RACING

The funds raised to support Cancer Charities in last weekend’s Irish Champions Weekend, featuring the race of Champions won by Tony McCoy has passed two and a half million.

Former Champion Jockey Pat Smullen, fighting the disease, says he is ‘overwhelmed’ .