Esther O'Loughlin 28 Jun 2018 04:53pm

Six alternative sporting events to the World Cup

Whether you’re a football fan or not it is hard to avoid getting caught up in the World Cup. But maybe football isn’t really your thing or perhaps you already have some WC fatigue. Worry not; there are plenty of other sporting events to enjoy over the next few weeks
Caption: There are plenty of sporting events to enjoy over the next few weeks

Tennis – Wimbledon

The world famous tennis tournament begins on 2 July, with the women’s final scheduled for the 14th and the men’s on the 15th. Andy Murray is back but struggling after a long injury layoff. Rafael Nadal and Rodger Federer will draw the crowds as always, but keep an eye on Argentinian favourite Juan Martin del Potro. Returning from her recent pregnancy, 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams has just been seeded 25th for this year’s tournament, while many are also anticipating strong matches from the seemingly-unbeatable Romanian Simona Halep.

Cycling - Tour de France

This year’s race will run from the 7-29 July. The 21-stage route runs mostly through France, with a brief excursion into Spain. It will see riders ascending the Alpe d’Huez (among other summits), undertaking a 35km time trial, a 65km stage in the Pyrénées, and – in stage nine – having to face 21.7km of cobbles. Squads have been limited to eight members this year, in an attempt to improve rider safety, meaning the peloton will be reduced to 176 riders from 198 last year.

Formula 1 - British Grand Prix

The race will be held on 8 July in Silverstone where it first began in 1950 – making it the oldest race in Formula One history. This will be a year of celebration as it marks the race’s 70th anniversary, with concerts and entertaining activities provided in a weekend-long party following the race. The locals, of course, will be cheering on Lewis Hamilton.

Rowing – Henley Royal Regatta

The five-day long Ragatta begins 4 July, with clubs from around the world competing in the events. Event categories include single, double and quadruple sculls, eights, coxless pairs, and coxed and coxless fours – with multiple men’s and women’s cups up for grabs in each one. Competitions run in experience, intermediate and junior divisions, but all compete two-abreast on the 2,112 metre course.

Cricket – England vs India ODIs

England is set to play three One Day Internationals against India, as part of the away teams UK tour. They will take place on the 12th, 14th and 17th of July, at Trent Bridge, Lord’s, and Headingly, respectively. The tour is being described as “an ultimate test” for India, as it prepares the team for UK conditions ahead of the 2019 World Cup, held in England. They also face off against England in five Tests and three twenty20 Internationals and play a first-class match against Essex.

Athletics – The Athletics World Cup

The 2018 championship will be held at London Stadium on 14-15 July and will cover various track and field events up to 1500m. Athletes from the USA, Great Britain & Northern Ireland, Poland, China, Germany, France, Jamaica and South Africa will all compete for £1.45m in prize money. The format traditionally sees one athlete from each nation go head-to-head in each event’s men’s and women’s final. This year, to mark 100 years since women received the right to vote, all teams will chose a female captain. Two new events are also being introduced this year: The Para Meet – where top athletes from last summer’s World Para Athletics Championships will return to the track – and The Meet, where UK and USA teams will be pitched directly against one another.