The Cheltenham Festival takes place in England from Wednesday to Saturday (13th to 16th of march), with several Aussie bookies taking bets from punters. The festival will take place across four days, starting around 12:30 in the morning each day and running through to the early hours of the Aussie morning. This festival is known for throwing out some big upsets, and there’s no reason this year will be any different.
Footy fans, mark down Thursday March 14 and Thursday March 21 in your diaries. Those are the dates when the NRL and AFL seasons begin with matches featuring the Melbourne Storm vs Brisbane Broncos at AAMI Park and Richmond vs Carlton at the MCG.
Richmond head into the 2019 AFL season as premiership favourites, with reigning premiers West Coast hot on their heels along with Collingwood, Melbourne, Essendon, and Adelaide. The Tigers face arch-rivals Collingwood in round two in a replay of last year’s preliminary final which saw the Pies end Richmond’s hopes of going back-to-back. Other big matches to look out for in round two include: Sydney vs Adelaide, West Coast vs Greater Western Sydney, and Geelong vs Melbourne.
The Sydney Roosters are hot favourites to go back-to-back and win the 2019 NRL premiership. The other likely contenders include Melbourne, Brisbane, the South Sydney Rabbitohs, Penrith, and the Cronulla Sharks. Round one of the NRL season will be massive, with the Storm-Broncos clash on Thursday night, followed by the Roosters vs Rabbitohs on Friday night in a replay of last year’s all-Sydney prelim.
There are five all-Australian derbies to watch out for in Super Rugby in March. On March 8 and 9, the Rebels host the Brumbies in Melbourne and the Waratahs host the Reds in Sydney. The Brumbies host the Tahs at GIO Stadium in Canberra on March 15. The Reds host two Aussie opponents at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium in successive weeks: the Brumbies on March 24 and Rebels on March 30.
The domestic basketball and cricket leagues both wrap things up in March. The NBL Grand Final will see one of the Perth Wildcats and Brisbane Bullets play one of Melbourne United and the Sydney Kings in a five-match winner-takes-all series. The Sheffield Shield final starts in the last week of March. Heading into March, five of the six teams were in contention, with Victoria top of the table. The A-League continues with matches throughout the month, punctuated by a blockbuster between title contenders Perth Glory and Melbourne Victory on March 30.
From March 14-17, the sound of high-powered motor vehicles will take over Melbourne for the Australian Grand Prix. This race once again opens the Formula One season, and Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes will once again be favoured to win. Hamilton finished second to Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in last year’s Australian Grand Prix but went on to win the season championship title.
As everybody knows, Australia is one of the greatest sporting nations in the world. The international teams in rugby and cricket and individuals in the worlds of golf, tennis and Olympic sports constantly do Australia proud but the domestic sporting scene provides the bulk of the sporting action.
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