Morning Sports Update

The fixtures for the Kerry Senior Hurlers in the Joe McDonagh Cup have been unveiled with the Kingdom playing their opener against Carlow on Saturday the 5th of May.

The round 1 game at Netwatch Dr Cullen Park will have a 3 o’clock throw-in.

Austin Stack Park Tralee will be the venue for Kerry’s second and third round games against Laois and Westmeath on Sunday the 13th and 20th of May respectively.

Kerry will travel to Meath on Saturday June the 2nd to play the Royals in Round 4 and then to Antrim a week later for Round 5.

The relegation and promotion play-off is pencilled in for Saturday the 30th of June with the final scheduled for Sunday the 1st of July.

RACING

It’s day two of the Grand National Festival in Liverpool and with the latest from Aintree, here’s Dave Keena.

Racing at home today is at Naas where there’s a seven-race card getting underway at 1.35. The going there is soft.

There’s an evening meeting at Ballinrobe where the going is heavy. The first in six-race card is at 5.30.

Cross channel,

Aintree runs at quarter to 2

Sedgefield is currently under inspection with the going heavy and Kempton Park is standard with the first off at 5.45.

Soccer

Arsenal are in this morning’s draw for the Europa League semi-finals – but they made hard work of getting there.

Arsene Wenger’s side took a 4-1 lead into last night’s quarter-final second leg against CSKA Moscow, but fell 2-nil behind in Russia.

Late goals from Danny Welbeck and Aaron Ramsey made sure they went through 6-3 on aggregate.

Wenger says his team appeared to be caught out by a lack of motivation.

Liverpool will find out their Champions League semi-final opponents when the draw takes place in Switzerland at lunchtime.

They’ll now face holders Real Madrid, German champions Bayern Munich or Barcelona’s conquerors Roma.

RUGBY

It’s a much-changed Munster side that takes to the field in Bloemfontein later.

The likes of Simon Zebo, Darren Sweetnam and Peter O’Mahony return to the team for their Pro 14 meeting with the Cheetahs.

Ulster aim to maintain their hopes of a playoff place with the visit of Ospreys to Kingspan Stadium.

While Bundee Aki is restored to the Connacht midfield for their trip to Glasgow.

Snooker

There’s plenty of Irish involvement at the World Championship qualifiers in Sheffield today.

Not least of which is the all-Irish meeting of 1997 champion Ken Doherty, and Newbridge’s Josh Boileau (PR: Bol-loo).

Limerick’s Leo Fernandez goes up against Tom Ford,

Jordan Brown of County Antrim takes on world number 79 Hammad Miah

Fergal O’Brien faces Yuan Sijun of China.

While Gerard Greene takes on Mark King.

Last night, Joe Swail lost 10-8 to Ricky Walden.

GOLF

Paul Dunne’s is on top of the leaderboard at the Spanish Open in Madrid.

He’s got his second round underway with a birdie on the first hole which gives the Wicklow man a one-shot lead over the field.

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Meanwhile,

Graeme McDowell’s nine shots off the lead into the day two of the R-B-C Heritage on the P-G-A Tour.