The Sport Matrix: Friday 4 April 2014


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The Independent Online

Smith criticises Cook’s captaincy

Alastair Cook needs to “answer important questions in his role” as England captain, according to Graeme Smith. The former South African captain yesterday labelled Cook’s beleaguered side “stale” and suggested England have made a mistake in jettisoning Kevin Pietersen. MORE

West Indies’ hopes are washed away

Sri Lanka reached the World Twenty20 final after a storm ended their semi-final against defending champions West Indies, who were 80 for 4 from 13.5 overs, needing 161 to win, when the deluge came. Under Duckworth-Lewis, they were stranded 28 runs short. MORE

Edwards: success will attract talent

The England Women’s captain, Charlotte Edwards, whose side face South Africa in the World T20 semi-finals today, feels on-field success and the awarding of full-time contracts will help cricket attract the country’s best young athletes. “The future looks bright,” she said. MORE

Referee sends off the wrong twin

An Italian amateur football  match has been ordered to be replayed after a referee sent off the wrong identical twin. Michele Rossi, of amateur side SSD Castello in the ninth level of Italian football, was sent off for a foul by his brother Matteo in a game against GS Alviano.

Sunderland claim Ji case is closed

Sunderland are confident they will not face further punishment for allegedly fielding striker Ji Dong-won in four games for which he was ineligible. The club informed the Premier League to their administrative mistake and were fined. MORE

Spirited Saracens set for Ulster clash

Saracens’ Jacques Burger hopes his side’s team-bonding trips have made them ready for tomorrow’s Heineken Cup quarter-final at Ulster. They saw an ice hockey match in New York last week and he said: “It’s as important as training.” MORE

Murray suffers bug ahead of Italy tie

Andy Murray was struck down by a stomach bug yesterday on the eve of GB’s biggest Davis Cup tie for 28 years, their World Group quarter-final against Italy. “He’s a fighter and obviously desperate to play,” said the team captain, Leon Smith. MORE

McCoy a contender with Double Seven

Tony McCoy picked Double Seven over Colbert Station for tomorrow’s Grand National and may start as favourite. McCoy will be riding in the Aintree showpiece for the 19th time and Double Seven is now at 12-1, with Teaforthree at 8-1. MORE

Non-stop Watkins eyes Tokyo Games

London 2012 gold medal-winning rower Anna Watkins reveals she plans to add to her family before return to the water for the Tokyo Games in 2020. “I want to cram as much as I can into my life,” the 31-year-old said. MORE

Bayern adventure

Dale Jennings tells Simon Hart why he swapped life at Bayern Munich in favour of a relegation battle at Barnsley – and what he learnt from players such as Philipp Lahm and Frank Ribéry. MORE