The Sport Matrix: Friday 16 January 2015


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Watson maintains fine recovery

Heather Watson continued her good recent form as she beat Roberta Vinci in straight sets to reach this morning’s semi-finals of the Hobart International event. The Briton approaches next week’s Australian Open in fine fettle following her recovery from glandular fever. British men Liam Broady and Kyle Edmund are a victory away from qualifying for the Australian Open proper for the first time.

More injuries force Wenger’s hand

Further injury setbacks will force Arsenal’s manager, Arsène Wenger, into the transfer market after Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy were ruled out until the final month of the season. The former has undergone ankle surgery while defender Debuchy hurt his shoulder against Stoke on Sunday. “We are in the market,” Wenger said. “We work really hard morning until night to try to get players in.”

Torres triumphs as Atletico stun Real

Fernando Torres scored the first goals of his second spell at Atletico Madrid last night as the visitors stunned neighbours Real to progress to the last eight of the Copa del Rey. The former Liverpool and Chelsea forward, in his third match back since returning to his boyhood team, scored in the opening minutes of both halves as Real were held to a 2-2 draw at the Bernabeu, Atletico progressing 4-2 on aggregate.

Patel admits he is a dope for using drugs

Little-known American golfer Bhavik Patel has been banned by the PGA Tour for one year after violating its anti-doping policy on the use of performance-enhancing substances.

Patel, who competed on the lower-tier Tour in 2013 and 2014, accepted a provisional suspension last year and will be eligible to return to competition on 7 October.

“In an effort to overcome injury, I made a lapse of judgement,” said Patel, a 24-year-old from Bakersfield in California who turned professional in 2012.

He is only the second player to be suspended by the PGA Tour for a violation since its  anti-doping programme  was launched in 2008.

Special Kaymer leads world No 1

Martin Kaymer led after the opening day of the Abu Dhabi Championship yesterday, but the world No 1 Rory McIlroy is handily placed just three shots further back on five under. Rickie Fowler joins the Irishman there, with Darren Clarke level and Justin Rose one over.