PlayStation 2 gamers are set to get an online sports network, offering a number of services which appear to directly rival those of Xbox's XSN Sports.

The network, called 989SportsOnline, is set to launch on August 26th - a day after Microsoft launch XSN Sports for the Xbox - and will see features similar to those being offered by Microsoft such as rankings, stats, leagues and community functions.

Other aspects of the service will include real-time weather allowing you to compete against other gamers in the actual weather that you'd have if you were at the stadium, along with community message boards, a sports ticker for the latest sports scores and news, and user messaging service.

Both Sony and Microsoft are putting their faith in NFL to kickstart their offerings, with 989SportsOnline seeing the launch of NFL GameDay 2004, and XSNsports launching at the same time as Microsoft's NFL Fever 2004, with further titles from a broad range of sports are set to follow during the months leading up to Christmas.

Further details about Sony's PS2 sports service can be found on the 989sportsonline website, and Microsoft's Xbox sports service can be found at