Paddy Power’s guide to the biggest sporting events this Christmas and New Year ​

The key dates for your festive diary.

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The coronavirus pandemic may have reared its ugly head once again but hopefully the bloomin’ bug won’t get in the way of feasting on plenty of live sport this Christmas.

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Santa’s sack is stuffed full of sporting goodies from the Premier League to the PDC World Darts Championship to the King George VI Chase at Kempton – and we’ve rounded up all the key dates for you diary below.

Cricket

England are having a mare Down Under and they’ll need to win the Third Test to stand any chance of regaining the Ashes from Australia. The iconic MCG in Melbourne plays host to the five-day match, which gets underway on Christmas Day from 23:30.

Darts

The second-round action at the PDC World Championship is scheduled to finish on Thursday, December 23 before a three-day break of play. The third round picks up at Alexandra Palace on Monday, December 27 as we rattle through the business end of the tournament culminating in the final on Monday, January 3.

Football

A whole host of Premier League and EFL fixtures have been postponed in December due to positive coronavirus cases so *fingers crossed* the Christmas schedule avoids the worst of it.

There is Premier League action every day from Boxing Day until Thursday, December 30 before a bumper New Year programme from Saturday, January 1. The Liverpool v Leeds lunchtime kick-off is the perfect way to kick off the festive footie fun.

If the EFL Championship is more your sort of thing then you’re sorted with three rounds of fixtures over nine days from Sunday, December 26.

The Scottish Premiership also gets in the thick of it with three sets of matches between Boxing Day and Monday, January 3 before the winter break kicks in.

Horse Racing

The King George VI Chase at Kempton Park on Boxing Day is one of the biggest races of the National Hunt season and a whole host of Grade 1 winners including Clan Des Obeaux, Minella Indo and Frodon are set to meet in a mouthwatering renewal. There are further Grade 1s on the card with the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase and Christmas Hurdle.

Leopardstown’s own Christmas Festival is a four-day fiesta of top-quality racing which also begins on Boxing Day. We’ve got our name on a whole host of contests on day two including the Paddy Power Chase.

Chepstow, meanwhile, plays host to the biggest race of the year in Wales, the Welsh Grand National, on Monday, December 27 as Secret Reprieve attempts to defend his crown.

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