Latest Sport

By Daniel White on 8.6.2023

Summer of Sport

Summer is upon us, and if you aren’t one of the lucky people who are going away to some fancy, exotic location at some point, then there is plenty of sporting action to keep you occupied over the summer months…

Football

European Under 21 Championships
This biennial event is taking place in Denmark beginning from Saturday 11th June, and is a great opportunity to see the next generation of footballing talent on a big stage. In the past, the likes of Luis Figo, Iker Casillas and Francesco Totti have all participated in this tournament for their respective countries.

The tournament consists of two groups of 4, with the top two from each progressing to the semi-finals where it becomes a knock-out competition. The major shock is that the current champions, Germany (who defeated England 4-0 in Sweden) will not be competing this time round, leaving Spain as the over-whelming favourites to add another championship to their World Cup victory last year. They are in the same group as England, Ukraine and the Czech Republic. The other group consists of the hosts Denmark, Switzerland, Iceland and Belarus.

Copa America
The quadrennial Copa America (South America’s version of the European Championships) is taking place in Argentina from July 1st until July 24th. It will feature the 10 teams that make up CONMEBOL (the South American Football Confederation) as well as 2 other invited teams. One of these was originally going to be Japan, but they chose to pull out following the shocking sequence of events that took place there only a few months ago. They were later replaced by Costa Rica. Current champions Brazil are likely to be considered slight favourites again this time round; however Lionel Messi’s Argentina will be determined to win their first Copa America since 1993.

Cricket

England vs India
Following England’s current home series against Sri Lanka; a much bigger challenge in the form of current World Cup champions India will await Andrew Strauss and his men. The iconic figures of Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag are still very much at the top of their game and this is likely to be a tight contest between the current number one Test side and arguably their biggest rivals to the number one spot. As well as the 4 Test matches beginning on the 21st July, there is also a single T20 match (August 31st) and 5 ODI’s starting from September 3rd.
By the end of this series, it is likely that we will be much closer to finding out who really is the best cricketing team in the world…

Rugby Union

Tri-Nations Series
Arguably the three most dominant teams in international rugby, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa will take part in this southern hemisphere orientated annual competition, beginning on 23rd July in Sydney as Australia take on the Springboks. The All-Blacks are the current holders, but this year seems wide open. Interestingly, this will be the last time this competition is known as the Tri-Nations, because as of next year, it will become the “Four Nations”, with the inclusion of Argentina to this event.

Rugby World Cup 2011
Just a few months later, the best that the Southern Hemisphere has to offer will be joined by the Northern Hemisphere’s finest, along with the inclusion of a few so-called minnows in New Zealand for the Rugby World Cup 2011. 20 teams will be competing for the biggest prize in Rugby Union when the competition starts on the 9th September until the final on the 23rd October. It is expected to be the biggest ever sporting event that New Zealand has ever held, with over 70,000 visitors from overseas expected to travel there for this event. All of the big teams (England, France, Wales, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa) will be looking to make a big impression; but spare a thought for the likes of Russia, who will be making their debut appearance at this year’s World Cup after coming through a series of play-off matches.

Tennis

Wimbledon
Yes it’s that time of year again when we will all be screaming “Come on Andy!!!” at our TV screens, thinking that maybe…just maybe…this is Andy Murray’s year of Wimbledon glory. The only slight problem is that there are 3 very formidable rivals ahead of him in the World rankings at the moment in the form of current champion and World Number One Rafael Nadal, the ever improving Novak Djokovic and the greatest player of all time, Roger Federer. For two weeks beginning on June 20th to July 3rd, expect plenty of twists and turns and the inevitable heart-stopping Murray drama…

Athletics

World Athletics Championships 2011
The 13th World Athletics Championships will be held in Daegu, South Korea from the 27th August until 4th September. Just a year before the London Olympics, the world’s finest athletes will be in peak condition as they strive to win a medal that will reward all of the years and years of hard work. Yet despite the world class field that will be on show, it’s hard not to refer to one individual in particular, Usain Bolt. In the last two major athletic competitions (Beijing Olympics in 2008 and World Championships in Berlin, 2009), Bolt has stormed to the gold medal in the 100m and consequently, smashed the world record each time. Can he do it again for a third time? I wouldn’t bet against it…

Golf

US Open
The 111th US Open which begins on June 16th and ends on June 19th, will look to see if Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell (the first European winner of the US Open since 1970) can retain the title he won last year at Pebble Beach. This year the competition will be played at the Congressional Country Club; the third time in the US Open’s history. The last time was in 1997 when Ernie Els won his second major championship, finishing at −4, a stroke clear of Colin Montgomerie.

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