The Blog

2021 will deliver a feast of sport . . . eventually

You might want to see a trailer before buying a 2021 calendar but as far as sport goes we can (hopefully) look forward to some top class action in the second half of the year.

The postponed Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, Euro 2020 and Ryder Cup top the bill but there’s also a Lions tour of South Africa, the Ashes and the prospect of a heavyweight clash between Anthony Joshua versus Tyson Fury to relish.

The race between the virus and the vaccine will determine whether we are watching from home or in stadiums but either way it should be an unforgettable sporting year.

The Olympics, as the greatest show on earth, will represent a sense of renewal across the world. Team GB will be hoping the better the 67 medals they won at Rio in 2016. Among our gold medal hopefuls are sprinter Dina Asher-Smith, heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson, middle distance runner Laura Muir, gymnast Max Whitlock and swimmer Adam Peaty. At the Paralympics be sure to cheer on one of our own, world record beating sprinter Sophie Hahn MBE.

The Euros represent England’s best chance in a generation of winning a second major trophy with Gareth Southgate’s exciting young team due to play all three of their group games at Wembley which will also host both semi-finals and the final. There will be plenty of home nations interest with Wales and Scotland also in the tournament.

The match-play nature of the Ryder Cup, which will see Europe bidding to retain the trophy on American soil, never fails to thrill and entertain. Who will get nervy and who will be nerveless and triumph?

The Lions, meanwhile, pits the northern hemisphere against the southern hemisphere and like the Olympics only happens every four years which makes each tour special. It could be staged in the UK if fans can’t travel but the fact South Africa did for England in the last World Cup final will only add extra spice.

England’s male cricketers, meanwhile, will be calling in to Trent Bridge this summer for a T20 against Pakistan and a Test match against India before heading Down Under for the T20 World Cup and an Ashes series.

The heavyweight clash of the decade between Joshua and Fury could happen as early as May and don’t be surprised, given the theatre and money involved, if there is a second act before the year is out.

There’s also Wimbledon, the Women’s World Cup Rugby, Rugby League World Cup and cricket’s inaugural Hundred tournament to look forward to as well as Sir Lewis Hamilton’s tilt at an outright record of eight F1 world titles.

In the meantime stay safe and keep active.

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