The Sport Matrix: Saturday 28 March 2015


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Marquez pushed hard by Crutchlow

It was business as usual for Marc Marquez as he ended up top of the time sheets for the Qatar Grand Prix after three free practice sessions yesterday. The defending champion didn’t have it all his own way on his Repsol Honda though. His time of 1min 54.822sec was just 0.096sec ahead of Briton Cal Crutchlow (above) on the new LCR Honda. Other Britons – Scott Redding (12th), Bradley Smith (16th) – and Northern Irishman Eugene Laverty (19th) fared less well at the Losail circuit.

World Cup chief Jevans resigns

Preparations for this year’s World Cup hit a snag yesterday when Debbie Jevans, the chief executive of the organising committee, resigned citing “personal reasons”. There had been little indication that Jevans, who was previously director of sport for the London 2012 Olympic organisers, was close to a departure. Stephen Brown, the RFU’s financial director, will take over her duties.

Peacock to join the Hull KR hierarchy

Veteran Leeds prop Jamie Peacock will join Hull KR next season in the new role of football manager. Peacock had already announced his intention to finish his playing career at the end of this season. He said: “The Rhinos are a blueprint for a successful sporting business and the challenge for me now is to take those lessons and try and implement my own thoughts in a new environment.”

Mönchengladbach interested in Ings

Borussia Mönchengladbach are the latest European team to express an interest in Burnley’s striker Danny Ings, who is out of contract at the end of the season, making him available to clubs outside England for a minimal compensation payment. The club, third in the Bundesliga, believe they can tempt Ings with the prospect of Champions League football next season.

O’Sullivan pulls out of China Open

The world No 3 Ronnie O’Sullivan has pulled out of next week’s China Open for health reasons. O’Sullivan was due to meet either Robin Hull or Yan Bingtao in his opening match on Tuesday, so the winner of that encounter will receive a bye to the last 32. The five-time world, UK and Masters champion qualified for the tournament with a 5-1 win over Luca Brecel last month.