Morning Sports Update

RUGBY

A broken arm for Sean O’Brien was the only major negative for Ireland, as they warmed up for next week’s meeting with the All-Blacks with victory against Argentina.

The flanker suffered the injury late in the first half, on what was his first Irish appearance in a year.

Despite struggling at times, Ireland produced a strong finish to win by 28 points to 17 at the Aviva Stadium.

Ireland led by 15 points to 14 at half time, tries for Kieran Marmion and Bundee Aki, with Johnny Sexton adding 5 off the tee.

The Leinster captain kicked a further two penalties after the break, as well as converting Luke McGrath’s 66th minute try.

Next week Ireland entertain the world champions who had to come from behind to beat England.

New Zealand won 16-15 at Twickenham.

SOCCER

Last night in the Premier League – Tottenham moved up to fourth place with a 1-0 win at Crystal Palace.

Juan Foyth scored the crucial goal.

Today – all focus is on the Etihad Stadium where fierce rivals Manchester City and Manchester United clash at 4:30.

At the same time Arsenal entertain Wolves.

Before that – Liverpool will be aiming to bounce back from their midweek Champions League defeat.

The Merseysiders lost to Red Star Belgrade.

They host bottom side Fulham in the Premier League today at 12.

At 2:15 Chelsea meet Everton at Stamford Bridge.

In the Scottish Premiership – at noon Celtic kick-off away to Livingston.

Rangers host Motherwell at 3.

CRICKET

Ireland open their group campaign in the Women’s ICC T20 World Cup later.

Laura Delany will lead the team out against Australia in Guyana at 8pm Irish time.

RACING

There’s a seven-race card at Navan this afternoon.

Apple’s Jade may have won the Lismullen Hurdle at Navan last year before recording back-to-back Grade 1 triumphs in the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse and Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown, but the way her form tapered off in the second half of the season will be on most people’s minds ahead of her repeat bid in the race today.

Connections of the seven-time Grade 1-winning hurdler, owned by Gigginstown House Stud, have attributed the defeats suffered at Cheltenham and Punchestown to the fact that Apple’s Jade kept coming into season last spring.

They are confident the real Apple’s Jade will turn up on Sunday, but trainer Gordon Elliott, who also runs Dortmund Park, does expect the likely odds-on favourite to improve for the outing, a warning he also issued before Samcro’s surprise defeat on his return at Down Royal recently.

This TheTote.com Fortria Chase has been the target for Ballyoisin for some time. Enda Bolger’s stable star has enjoyed a fine campaign, comfortably landing a pair of chases at Killarney and Punchestown before exploiting his hurdles rating in a valuable contest at Listowel in September and hopes are high the seven-year-old can continue his progression.

Yet to be seen since landing that nice pot under young Darragh O’Keeffe, Ballyoisin will be partnered by Barry Geraghty as he bids to complete win number four on the bounce and, in doing so, etch his name alongside recent Fortria winners including Flemenstar and Big Zeb.

Racing at Navan begins at 12.35 and the ground is good.

It was a brave decision by Harry Whittington to send Saint Calvados to Naas to take on Footpad on home turf yesterday, having been beaten so comprehensively by him in the Racing Post Arkle at Cheltenham – but what a good decision it turned out to be.

The Sparsholt trainer’s front-running flagbearer had Footpad, last season’s unbeaten star novice, cooked in the Grade 3 Poplar Square Chase when he took an uncharacteristic fall at the final fence.

Gavin Sheehan sent Saint Calvados to the front early and that is where he stayed, the Kate and Andrew Brooks-owned five-year-old crossing the line four-and-a-half lengths clear of Tycoon Prince.

The 4-9 favourite Footpad was in trouble jumping the second-last after a less than fluent round, having suffered an over-reach at the third fence, and he came down at the final flight. Thankfully he and Ruby Walsh were on their feet straight away.

The Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown next month, for which he was cut to 9-2 (from 8) by Paddy Power, is the winner’s immediate target according to Whittington, who said: “He’s actually in the King George but I think we’ll leave that.

“Two miles is his trip, he has that raw pace. After Sandown I would be tempted to give him a break and maybe come back for something around February before Cheltenham, if all goes to plan.”

FORMULA ONE

Britain’s Lewis Hamilton is on pole for the Brazilian Formula One Grand Prix.

The world champion finished ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who will start from second and his Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas.