2018 sport calendar: Eight key dates for your diary from the World Cup to England's Twickenham showdown with the All Blacks

 
Joe Hall
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England are headed to the World Cup next year...but don't worry, there's plenty else to be excited about (Source: Getty)

There's plenty of sport to be looking forward to in 2018. Our extensive listings below detail all of the key dates but if you want to get really excited, we've picked out the eight blockbuster events to mark in your diaries.

The World Cup in Russia — June/July

FBL-WC-2018-DRAW
Hands of God: England were drawn against Panama, Tunisia and Belgium in the group stage (Source: Getty)

Allegations of corruption, dodgy characters, Russia’s human rights record. If it was any other event, it would be tempting to feign righteous indifference such are the clouds that hover over the tournament. But it’s the World Cup. There's always so much to be giddy about. Can Neymar and Brazil heal the wounds left by their 7-1 humiliation in 2014? Will Lionel Messi finally drag Argentina over the line? What new depths can England sink to? Who will win the grandstand opening of Russia v Saudi Arabia? Don’t pretend you won’t be watching it.

Read More: City A.M.'s Devilishly Difficult 2017 Sports Quiz Part 1 - The good and the bad of the sporting year

The Ryder Cup — September

Ryder Cup 2018 Eiffel Tower Stunt
Now watch this drive: Next year's Ryder Cup will be in Paris (Source: Getty)

It’s the highlight of the golf calendar every other year, but the Parisian flavour of next September’s Ryder Cup promises to be particularly memorable. The French capital is providing the cinematic backdrop to just the the second ever Ryder Cup to be held in continental Europe. What better place for captain Thomas Bjorn and Team Europe to seize the trophy back from America? Europe could have a fresh young squad to get excited about featuring the likes of Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrell Hatton and Jon Rahm.

Chris Froome in the Giro d’Italia — May

Vuelta a Espana - Stage 21
Froome won the Vuelta a Espana and the Tour de France last year (Source: Getty)

The Team Sky rider might have other matters on his mind at the moment, but on the bike 2018 could be another historic year for Froome. Next May he will race in the Giro d’Italia for the first time since 2010 as he aims to become only the third cyclist in history after Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault to hold all three Grand Tour titles at the same time.

Read more: City A.M.'s Devilishly Difficult 2017 Sports Quiz Part 2 - The odd and business stories from the sporting year

Chris Eubank Jr vs George Groves — February

George Groves and Chris Eubank Jr. Press Conference
The biggest all-British fight since Froch v Groves? (Source: Getty)

It's not going to sell out Wembley, but the super middleweight between Eubank Jr and Groves might just be the biggest all-British affair in boxing since the latter’s second bout with Carl Froch filled the iconic stadium. Not only is Groves’ world title at 168-pounds on the line, the fight is a semi-final in the World Boxing Super Series which has a $10m (£7.5m) honeypot waiting for the winner. But most importantly, it promises to be a well-matched affair between two of Britain’s most talented boxers. Groves, 29, has the nous that comes with having fought in five previous world title fights while Eubank Jr has been remorseless in winning seven of his last eight fights by stoppage.

India tour England — July-September

England v India: 3rd Investec Test - Day Four
England will hope to have better results against Virat Kohli than they have against Steve Smith in the Ashes (Source: Getty)

The visit of the world’s No1 side might not be the most appealing prospect for English cricket fans currently facing up to the very real possibility of Joe Root’s side being routed 5-0 in Australia, but India’s five match Test series next summer will be something to savour — it’s only the second time they’ve played a series of that length in England since 1959.

Read more: The six best sport documentaries you should watch this Christmas

England vs New Zealand — November

Barbarians v New Zealand - Killik Cup
The All Blacks have not played England since 2014 (Source: Getty)

There’s plenty to look forward to for Eddie Jones and co in 2018; the chance to become the first team in history to win the Six Nations for a third successive year, a first tour of South Africa for six years and the first ever visit of Japan to Twickenham. But the stand out date on the fixture list is England vs New Zealand on 10 November. After four years without facing each other, the two stand out sides in the world will finally get to do battle ahead of the 2019 World Cup.

Jo Konta at Wimbledon — July

Day Ten: The Championships - Wimbledon 2017
Konta came up short against Venus Williams in 2017's semi-final (Source: Getty)

British men’s singles champion at Wimbledon? Been there, done that. Twice in the last five years, in fact. After Andy Murray’s two triumphs, the focus is now on Johanna Konta who last year became the first British women since Virginia Wade in 1978 to reach the semi-finals. Can she go even further and become the first since Wade in 1977 — a 41 year wait — to win? The pressure’s on for the world No9.

The Winter Olympics — February

Team GB Skeleton Media Session
Can Yarnold defend her Olympic title? (Source: Getty)

Pyeongchang in South Korea hosts the Winter Olympics next year where there should be plenty of British representation amongst the medals. Pick of the bunch is 2014 hero Lizzy Yarnold. The skeleton racer who won gold in Sochi has since won the World Cup twice, the World championship and the European championship. Keep an eye out too for the women’s curling team who will be aiming to improve upon 2014’s bronze.

Full diary:

January

Date Event Sport
3rd-7th Ashes fifth Test Cricket
5th-8th FA Cup third round weekend Football
13th-4th Feb Africa Cup of Nations Football
14th-21st Masters Snooker
15th-28th Australian Open Tennis

February

Date Event Sport
4th Six Nations: England v Italy Rugby
4th Super Bowl American football
9th-25th Winter Olympics Winter sports
10th Six Nations: England v Wales Rugby
17th Eubank Jr vs Groves Boxing
24th Six Nations: Scotland v England Rugby
25th Carabao Cup final Football

March

Date Event Sport
9th Winter Paralympics Winter sports
10th Six Nations: France v England Rugby
17th Six Nations: England v Ireland Rugby
25th F1 season begins: Australian Grand Prix Formula 1

April

Date Event Sport
4th-15th Commonwealth Games Multi-sport
5th-8th Masters Golf
22nd London Marathon Running

May

Date Event Sport
4th-27th Giro d'Italia Cycling
5th Haye v Bellew Boxing
10th-13th The Players Championship Golf
12th European Champions Cup Rugby
16th Europa League final Football
19th FA Cup final Football
24th-28th England v Pakistan First Test Cricket
26th Champions League final Football
26th Pro14 final Rugby
26th Premiership Rugby final Rugby
26th-28th Football League play-offs Football
27th-10th June French Open Tennis
31st-17th June World Cup of Darts Darts

June

Date Event Sport
14th-15th July World Cup Football
14th-17th US Open Golf
18th WC: England vs Tunisia Football
24th WC: England vs Panama Football
28th WC: England vs Belgium Football

July

Date Event Sport
2nd-15th Wimbledon Tennis
7th-29th Tour de France Cycling
8th British Grand Prix Formula 1
15th World Cup final Football
19th-22nd The Open Golf

August

Date Event Sport
1st-5th England v India first Test Cricket
9th-12th PGA Championship Golf
15th Uefa Super Cup Football
27th-10th September US Open Tennis

September

Date Event Sport
7th-11th England v India fifth Test Cricket
28th-30th Ryder Cup Golf

October

November

Date Event Sport
2nd-25th Women's World Twenty20 Cricket
3rd England vs South Africa Rugby
10th England vs New Zealand Rugby
11th-18th ATP World Tour finals Tennis
15th-18th DP World Tour Championship Golf
17th England vs Japan Rugby
19th Davis Cup final Tennis
24th England vs Australia Rugby
25th F1 season ends: Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Formula One

December

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