Wednesday Lunchtime Sports Update

RUGBY

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt insists Johnny Sexton will be fit for next week’s Six Nations opener against England.

The World Player of the Year has been out of action since suffered a lower leg injury during Leinster’s December defeat to Munster.


Speaking at the tournament launch in London today, Schmidt was confident Sexton will start the first game of the Grand Slam defence.

England captain Owen Farrell is expected to play against Ireland.

The Saracens out half recently underwent minor surgery on a thumb injury.

He is hoping to return to training towards the end of the week, and is looking forward to the head to head with Johnny Sexton.

SOCCER

Cardiff City have no plans to rearrange their upcoming Premier League match against Arsenal.

The search is continuing for the Welsh club’s new signing Emiliano Sala, who was on board a light aircraft that went missing over the Channel Islands on Monday.

Chairman Mehmet Dalman says everyone at the club has been affected, but expects Tuesday’s game against the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium to go ahead.

Manchester City can set another record tonight.

Pep Guardiola’s men hold a 9-nil lead heading into the second leg of their League Cup semi final against League One Burton Albion.

City need just two more goals to record the biggest victory in the history of the competition.

Kick off at the Pirelli Stadium is at 7.45

Celtic will hope to at least hold onto their position at the top of the Scottish Premiership this evening.

The champions return to top flight action for the first time since the winter break with a home match against St Mirren.

Manager Brendan Rodgers is hoping for a repeat of Saturday’s cup win over Airdrieonians.

There’s a crucial clash at the top of the Scottish Premiership as second-placed Rangers travel to third-placed Kilmarnock.

Rangers boss Steven Gerrard is looking forward to the resumption of play.

TENNIS

Novak Djokovic is a step closer to a seventh Australian Open title.

The Top Seed is through to the last four after Kei Nishikori retired from their quarter final with an injury.

Djokovic had won the first set with ease and was leading 4-1 in the second when his Japanese opponent conceded the match due to a thigh problem.

Serena Williams is full of praise for Karolina Pliskova.

The Czech seventh seed won their Women’s singles quarter final in a dramatic fashion.

Williams failed to convert a 5-1 lead and four match points in the final set.