The Sport Matrix: Thursday 29 January 2015


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The Independent Online

‘So, Marshawn, tell us why you are here again’

The Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch gave the same answer to no less than 29 questions in a pre-Super Bowl press conference.

NFL players are contractually obliged to appear in front of the media before games and Lynch has previously been fined $50,000 for violating the league’s policy. He opened his press conference with: “I am just here so I won’t get fined. So y’all can ask me all the questions you want, I am going to answer the same answer,” before repeating his first sentence 28 more times. His phone alarm rang when his allotted time was up, at which point he shouted “time!” and vacated his seat.

Broad: I feel ready to peak after injury

England’s Stuart Broad feels he is close to top form ahead of tomorrow’s crucial game against India. Broad, who was given a break at the end of last summer to try to heal a tendinitis complaint, said: “I feel like I’m getting better and better. I’m also experienced enough to know I go through periods where I don’t pick up wickets and then I get a chunk of them, and hopefully it’s my turn this week.”

McIlroy braced for ‘nasty’ legal battle

Rory McIlroy has spoken of next week’s “tedious and nasty” court case against his former management company. “It’s not something that I would want anyone to go through,” he said, ahead of the final leg of the European Tour’s Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

Vallverdu plays down Murray link

Andy Murray faces Tomas Berdych in the Australian Open semi-final today, with the Briton’s former coach Dani Vallverdu now in the Czech’s corner. But Vallverdu, who has known Murray for 15 years, believes his connection will bring no more than “a little bit of an advantage” to the encounter. “Everyone who knows tennis knows everyone’s game,” Vallverdu insisted. “It’s not rocket science.”

Ivory Coast reach quarter-finals

Former Leeds forward Max Gradel sent the Ivory Coast into the quarter-finals of the African Cup of Nations with the only goal in a 1-0 win over Cameroon. Gradel’s effort in the 35th minute in Malabo produced the first decisive result in Group D, which up to that stage had only had 1-1 draws. Mali and Guinea drew 1-1, which means they must draw lots today to decide who also progresses.