Unmissable sporting events over the next couple of months to kick, tackle and slam dunk those winter blues away.
Sport isn’t just for the summer. In fact, if the first few months of 2022 are anything to go by, far from it. Be it the return of the Guinness Six Nations, the awaited Final of the British Basketball League or the exciting debut of the Arnold Clark Cup, there’s plenty out there to help you limber up and cheer on your favourite team. Here’s our collection of sporting highlights happening in the first couple of months of the year.
When: 17, 20 & 23 February
Where: Riverside Stadium, Carrow Row, Molineux
The Arnold Clark Cup is a brand new international tournament in women’s football, which will pit the senior teams from England, Spain, Germany and Canada in a short and sweet round robin tournament. Competition will be fierce, with all four teams ranked in FIFA’s Top Ten, not to mention that Canada will likely be galvanised from taking home gold in the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. The tournament takes place across three matchdays (17, 20 & 23 February) at Middlesbrough’s Riverside, Norwich’s Carrow Row and Wolverhampton’s Molineux stadiums respectively. The inaugural Arnold Clark Cup is a perfect taste of excitement for those who can’t wait until the summer for the Women’s Euros.
When: Until June 2022
Where: Brentford Community Stadium, London
One of Rugby Union’s most historic teams, London Irish, made a triumphant return to the Premiership back in 2019/20, having topped the RFU Championship the season before. After a 20 year stint in Reading, The Exiles moved back to the capital for the 2020/21 season, calling the new Brentford Community Stadium home; in spite of interrupted fixtures the team are eagerly welcoming fans back to see them face the likes of Edinburgh Rugby, Exeter Chiefs, Saracens and Harlequins as the team aim to continue their steady rise up the league table.
When: 30 January
Where: Utilita Arena, Birmingham
The British Basketball League Cup of 2021/22 reaches its dramatic conclusion in this double-header as Leicester Riders go against Manchester Giants in the men’s Final, whilst the women’s London Lions face Newcastle Eagles. Double league leaders Leicester will no doubt be seeking a clean sweep, whilst Manchester – who came back from a late 10-point deficit against Glasgow Rocks – will be charging forward for their first Cup. In the WBBL, Newcastle will seek revenge against Lions, who stole their hopes of the playoffs title last year.
When: 12 February, 11 March, 19 March
Where: The Principality Stadium, Cardiff
February sees the 128th instalment of the mighty Six Nations Championship commence, where once more England, Ireland, Italy, France, Scotland and Wales will battle for the coveted trophy. Reigning champions Wales will hope to harness the energy of their home crowd as they try to fend off France, Scotland and Italy at The Principality Stadium in Cardiff. With talisman Alun Wyn Jones still out on injury, will new captain Jonathan Davies, or hotshot winger Lois Rees ‘Lightning’ Zammit, lead the boys in Red to a consecutive Six Nations victory?
When: Until April 2022
Where: Copper Box Arena, London
The London Lions have had several homes since their inception in 1977 – which reflects their previous namesakes, including Hemel Hempstead Lakers and Watford Royals – but since 2013 the team have made their mark from their base in the Copper Box Arena as the only official London-based professional basketball club. It’s here the Lions will play the likes of Bahcesehir and Bakken as the 2021-22 FIBA Euro Cup reaches its climax, whilst the BBL Championship also draws closer to the final as the team faces the Leicester Riders, Glasgow Rocks and more.