In Review

Sport in 2016 – nine key dates for your diary

From Euro 2016 to the Rio Olympics and the Ryder Cup, the next 12 months promise plenty of sporting drama

With the Rio Olympics, Euro 2016 and the Ryder Cup among the many events to look forward to next year, 2016 promises to be a sporting year to remember.

Here are nine key dates for your diary:

6 Feb: Six Nations begins

A new era dawns for English rugby as Australian coach Eddie Jones takes charge for the first time against Scotland at Murrayfield. England failed to get out of the group stages of the World Cup, while Scotland almost made the final, so will the Scots be favourites for once? The tournament will also be the first to be split between the BBC and ITV. Ireland vs Wales will be the first to be shown on ITV.

3 April: T20 World Cup final

India hosts the T20 World Cup cricket tournament for the first time next year and the final takes at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, India, on 3 April. Sri Lanka are the reigning champions, but India is the spiritual home of T20 and the hosts have not won the tournament since the inaugural event in South Africa in 2007.

9 April: Grand National

The biggest race of the year takes place on 9 April at Aintree. Over 150,000 race-goers descend on the racecourse for the event, while an estimated 600 million people tune in to watch it live on television each year.

15 May: Premier League climax

It's been a roller coaster season so far, so who knows what will be left to decide come the final round of matches. Will Leicester still be fighting for the title? Will Chelsea be battling against relegation? Who will be in charge of Manchester United? This season could see the greatest climax to the campaign ever.

28 May: Champions League final

The biggest prize in European football is up for grabs at the San Siro stadium in Milan. Barcelona are the current holders and are being tipped to become the first side to retain the title. However, they have a tricky tie against Arsenal in the last 16 and there are plenty of other contenders around the continent – not least Pep Guardiola's Bayern Munich.

10 July: Euro 16 final and men's singles at Wimbledon

There is no escaping the football this year and as soon as the domestic season comes to an end there is the small matter of the Euro 2016 championships in France. England, who qualified with a perfect record, face Wales in the group stages but will expect to progress from a relatively easy group. Northern Ireland have a tough group featuring Germany, Ukraine and Poland, while the Republic face Belgium, Italy and Sweden.

The Scots will not be at the tournament, but it could still be a red letter day north of the border if Andy Murray makes the final at Wimbledon, which will also be played on 10 July.

14 August: Men's 100m final at the Rio Olympics and men's tennis final

The Rio Olympics gets underway on 5 August and the biggest event of the lot, the men's 100m final, takes place on 14 August. Will Usain Bolt claim yet another gold?

Andy Murray will be hoping to retain his Olympic tennis gold, won in 2012, but once again he will have to share the sporting limelight as the men's tennis final takes place on the same day as the 100m final.

8 September: Paralympics begins

The end of the Olympics does not mean the end of the excitement in Rio as the Paralympics gets underway just a few days later on 8 September. Just as they did in the Olympics, the British team came third in the medals table in 2012 and will be hoping for a similarly impressive display in Brazil.

23 September: Ryder Cup gets underway

Europe romped to victory in the 2014 edition of the transatlantic golfing rivalry held in Scotland. This time the action will take place at the Hazeltine National Golf Club in Minnesota, where the US team will be determined to end a run of three straight losses. Tiger Woods may not be there, but America has a new golfing hero in the form of Justin Spieth, who will lead the charge.

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