Cross-channel racing traffic a welcome sight in Galway; No plans to scrap scrums

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 Fulham host Cardiff City at Craven Cottage tonight in the second leg of their Championship playoff semi-final. File photograph: Getty Images

Fulham host Cardiff City at Craven Cottage tonight in the second leg of their Championship playoff semi-final. File photograph: Getty Images

The pair of English-trained horses set to line up for today’s Guinness Galway Hurdle almost feels reassuring in the current climate. Both Olly Murphy’s Hunters Call and the Dan Skelton-trained Fair Mountain will take their chances in this evening’s Ballybrit feature despite complicated travel arrangements due to coronavirus restrictions. Read Brian O’Connor’s preview of Thursday’s action here. Early Doors supplied owner JP McManus with a seventh success in the Tote Galway Plate on Wednesday evening, while Mohaather produced an irresistible burst of acceleration from a seemingly impossible position to beat the Guineas winners from England and Ireland in the Group One Sussex Stakes at Goodwood.

Despite developments in the UK, there are no suggestions, as yet, from either the Irish government or the IRFU to scrap scrums when the club game resumes in early September. A report in the Guardian has indicated there may be no scrums in “recreational rugby union” in the UK until after Christmas. Also in this morning’s rugby pages, Louise Lawless asks why can’t we buy an Ireland women’s rugby jersey? “Until the players look out to the stands at Donnybrook, Murrayfield or Twickenham and see Aon jerseys, until potential sponsors can see it as a worthy investment, and until fans can buy a jersey without it becoming a question of the worthiness of women’s sport, the Irish women’s rugby team will remain a “Team of Them” and the men the “Team of Us”.”

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