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29th March 2019

Amazing April - A Look Ahead to the Thrilling Month across all IMG ARENA Properties

The month of April gets off to a flyer for IMG ARENA as the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur hosts the CELCOM Malaysia Open 2019. The tournament has been held since 1937 and is part of the Super 750 in the BWF. The highest ranked players from across the world will be competing and it looks sure to be a fiercely competitive tournament. Will Men’s World No.1 Kento Momota hold his blistering 2019 form and repeat his recent win in the All England Open.

The EuroLeague season & play-offs finish in April and will decide the Final Four to compete at the Fernando Buesa Arena, Vitoria-Gasteiz in May. Five teams could still qualify for the play-offs and final four hosts KIROLBET Baskonia have all but qualified for the play-offs. They like others will be looking to maintain their position in order to secure a kinder game in the play-off draw.

In football at IMG ARENA the FA Cup reaches the semi-finals and Manchester City, Brighton, Wolves and Watford remain. Manchester City are still fighting on all four fronts as they look to secure a historic quadruple. None of Wolves, Brighton or Watford have seen an FA Cup Final since 1984. Wolves are four time winners of the trophy but have not contested a final for 59 years. Brighton and Watford have never won the historic competition and both have only ever reached the final once. Incidentally they reached their only finals in consecutive seasons, 1982-3 & 1983-4.

The MLS sees a clash between the two current conference leaders. Eastern leaders and team of Wayne Rooney, D.C. United will take on Western leaders Los Angeles FC. LAFC were only founded in 2014, a time when Rooney had just taken the captains armband at Man Utd and also became the Premier League’s third highest goalscorer.

After some fantastic hard court action in March at Indian Wells and the Miami Open, the focus moves to the clay. Will Nadal maintain his crown as ‘King of Clay’? Injury woes and a growing band of hungry up-and-comers make his position at the top of the clay tree tenuous. Clay specialist Dominic Thiem will be looking to assert himself having surprised himself by winning on the hard court at Indian Wells.

The UFC hosts a fantastic night of action in Atlanta for UFC 236. Max ‘Blessed’ Holloway takes on Dustin ‘The Diamond’ Poirier in a highly anticipated rematch. Poirier defeated Holloway on his first ever UFC appearance in 2012 at UFC 143. Since defeat to Conor McGregor in 2013, Holloway has gone on a thirteen fight win streak and captured the Featherweight Championship. He moves up to Lightweight for the interim belt as he eyes a belt in another division.

Finally, starting on the 20th April and running into May the World Snooker Championship concludes a magnificent season of snooker. Mark Williams will be looking to regain his crown at the Crucible and has had a reasonable season. However, the title looks likely to go to either Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump or Neil Robertson. O’Sullivan has finally regained his crown as World No.1 for the first time since 2010. Trump has had his best season to date winning the Dafabet Masters and the World Grand Prix this year. Robertson has been fantastic all season winning the Welsh Open and finishing runner-up to the ‘Rocket’ in both the Players Championship and Tour Championship. It looks likely to be another quality Championship in Sheffield!

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