Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Morning headlines


Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund are through to the semi-finals of the Champions League - but only after surviving dramatic quarter-final battles last night.

Dortmund staged a remarkable late rally to earn a spot in the last four - beating Malaga 3-2 on aggregate.
Malaga twice took the lead against their hosts but Dortmund scored two injury-time goals to claim an unlikely victory, although Malaga were upset with Felipe Santana's winner, which appeared to have been scored from an off-side position.

In the other quarter-final, Real Madrid booked their place in the last-four - but not before they had to withstand a brave challenge from Galatasaray.

The Turkish club won the second-leg tie in Istanbul by 3 goals to 2 thanks to goals from Emanuel Eboue, Wesley Sneijder and Didier Drogba. But Cristiano Ronaldo's brace meant that Madrid did enough to advance with a 5-3 aggregate win.

Tonight Barcelona host Paris Saint Germain with the tie locked at two all while Juventus host Bayern Munich trailing 2-0

Leo Messi has received the medical green light to play for Barcleona but is expected to start from the bench, PSG will assess centre backs Alex and Thiago Silva ahead of kick off

Bayern Munich are without Toni Kroos but welcome back Javi Martinez from suspension

Championship leaders Cardiff were held to a 1-1 draw by Barnsley, and Sheffield Wednesday won 2-1 at Millwall.

Celtic can be confirmed as SPL champions before they play their next game. The post-split fixtures are out, and they show that Neil Lennon's team will next feature in the league at home to Inverness on Sunday 21st of April.

Two days before, nearest challengers Motherwell, who must win all of their remaining games to stand any chance of taking the league title, are away at Dundee United.

In the Combined Counties Football League Youths Cup Quarter Finals this evening it's Mullingar Athletic against Edenderry Town with kick off at Gainstown at 6.30

There's also one game in the Under 19 Division where leaders Tullamore welcome third place Clongowes Wood to Leah Victoria Park for a 6.30 kick off


Rory McIlroy says that it's doing a disservice to Tiger Woods to consider him an equal of the 14-time Major winner. McIlroy says that he's now "100 per cent there" in the transition to his new Nike clubs but insists that its still too soon to start talking of a rivalry between himself and Woods.

Speaking at Augusta National ahead of this week's tournament, McIlroy cited Tiger's 77 PGA Tour wins in comparison to his six victories as an example of the gulf that still exists between them.

McIlroy will play alongside 2011 PGA Championship winner Keegan Bradley and Sweden's Fredrik Jacobson for the opening two days. The trio will be the penultimate group off on Thursday, at around 6.40 Irish time.

Tiger Woods will play alongside fellow American Scott Piercy and Luke Donald for the first two rounds - teeing-off on Thursday at 3.45. Padraig Harrington will be in the group out immediately after Tiger's and will be playing alongside both Jason Day and Rickie Fowler.

Graeme McDowell will be an early starter on Thursday when he goes out alongside Zach Johnson and KJ Choi. Defending champion Bubba Watson will be playing alongside Ian Poulter and Steve Fox for the first two days.

The par three contest takes place today


Tipperary face Cork in the Cadbury under 21 Munster final tonight , throw in is at 7.30
At 8 in Brewster Park Enniskillen Cavan face Donegal in the Ulster decider.

Paddy McBrearty is expected to play despite being at the centre of allegations that he was bitten during their league match with Dublin on Sunday.
Cavan are looking for a third Ulster title in a row.

Westmeath manager Pat Flanagan says it's not ideal to have a round of local championship games the week before the Lake County's Division Two National League Final with Derry

Westmeath lost to the Oak Leafers last weekend having already secured promotion to the top flight
Flanagan says the opening round of the senior football championship cuts down his preparation time for the final

The all Midlands Leinster Post Primary Schools Junior Football B Final between Colaiste Iosagain Portarlington and Gallen Community School Ferbane has been fixed for O'Connor Park Tullamore at 4pm tomrrow

Cistercian Roscrea are set to play Avondale in the Senior Football D Semis tomorrow, a venue will be confirmed later today


It's 40 by 20 doubles finals weekend in handball

At the O'Louglins club on Saturday afternoon the Laois team of Andrew Dowling and Peter Whelan take on John Casey and Denis Quinn of Cork in the Junior B decider from 3pm

At the same time at Nenagh it's Offaly's Billy Mullins and Jim Guilfoyle in the Diamond Masters Final
They're also up against Cork opponents, Paddy Buckley and Chris Hurley, at 3pm


Former Ireland scrum-half Peter Stringer is to continue playing for Bath next season. The 35-year-old has been on-loan with the Premiership side this season after agreeing a short-term deal to leave his native Munster. But, after working his way into the Bath first team, the Corkman has now agreed a new extension that will keep him at the Rec up until the summer of 2014.

The decision means that the 98 times capped Irish international will not be returning to Munster at the end of the season and he says that he still feels as though he has "a lot to give" as a player.

Connacht's postponed Pro-12 game away to Benetton Treviso has been rescheduled for Friday, April 26th with a half-7 kick-off.

Welsh club the Scarlets have confirmed that George North will be joining the Northampton Saints next season.

The 20-year-old still has one year left to run on his current deal with the Llanelli-based club, but the Scarlets have agreed a compensation package to allow one of their biggest stars to leave ahead of schedule.
Sale have confirmed that powerful Welsh flanker Andy Powell will switch codes at the end of the season to join Rugby League side Wigan.

Ireland winger Niamh Kavanagh says Cloneygowan native Peter Bracken has been an excellent addition as scrum coach with the national womens team

Walsh Island's Kavanagh, along with Laois' Alison Miller, won a first ever Grand Slam this year
Former Heineken Cup winning prop Bracken has been working with the team's forwards and Niamh feels his experience has been of great benefit


Lance Armstrong's home city of Austin, Texas is to play host to an anti-doping symposium that will feature contributions from Greg and Kathy LeMond as well as Betsy Andreu. The trio have been among the most out-spoken critics of Armstrong through-out the career of the former cyclist and have been invited to attend the gathering at the University of Texas where they will discuss the costs of doping and how it has affected professional cycling.

While David Walsh has revealed that he and the Sunday Times are unlikely to ever get a feature interview with Lance Armstrong. A lengthy sit-down between Lance and Walsh was suggested by Armstrong's lawyer Tim Herman, as a possible make-weight in the cyclist's legal settlement with the Sunday Times
But Walsh says that the deal now appeared to be off the table because Armstrong is now reluctant to be seen to be settling legal cases while he's facing further action from a litany of former sponsors and insurance companies.


Reigning flat jockey's champion Joseph O'Brien travels to Dundalk this evening and has two rides for his father Aidan amongst the seven races at the all weather venue
O'Brien partners Master Speaker in the six furlong maiden at 10 to 7 and Count of Liomande in the one mile handicap at 20 past 8

The feature on the card is the Fundraising Made Easy at Dundalk Handicap at 10 to 8 where the twice recent winner Eastern Rules looks the one to beat, Rhode jockey Pat Smullen is aboard Paddy Stanley in the same race


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