The Sport Matrix: Wednesday 1 May 2013


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The Independent Online

Warburton is Lions captain but Wilko says no to the call

Sam Warburton of Wales has been named captain for this summer’s British and Irish Lions tour of Australia. Head coach Warren Gatland also revealed that Jonny Wilkinson declined his invitation to tour Hong Kong and Australia, but refused to rule out his participation at a later date in the event of injury.

Wilkinson insisted that his club commitments with Toulon in France and the deteriorating state of his fitness prevented him from accepting.

“I asked Jonny if he could tour and he said he wasn’t available. I wouldn’t have made the phone call if it wasn’t to offer him a place on the tour,” Gatland said. “He appreciated the call, but he said he’s struggling with his body.” Ireland’s Jonathan Sexton and Owen Farrell of England are the only recognised fly-halves.

New Zealand-born Gatland named 15 Welsh players in the 37-man squad, the highest in a Lions party for 36 years, but there was no place for England captain Chris Robshaw. MORE

Dortmund through despite Real fight

Real Madrid’s 2-0 win over Borussia Dortmund was not enough to prevent the German side reaching the Champions League final. Late goals from Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos were not enough for Madrid to overcome Dortmund’s 4-1 first-leg advantage. MORE

Havelange resigns after bribery claim

Joao Havelange has resigned as Fifa’s honorary president after a report ruled the 96-year-old had taken bribes from a World Cup rights marketing agency. Paraguayan Nicolas Leoz has also been accused in the report by Fifa’s ethics chairman Hans-Joachim Eckert. MORE

Lampard future looking brighter

Frank Lampard’s future may lie at Chelsea with the club ready to offer the midfielder a one-year extension. Discussions over the 34-year-old’s future have ran all season but now the club look set to offer Lampard the same one-year deal they offered defender Ashley Cole in January. MORE

Doping facilitator escapes prison

The doctor accused of running one of the world’s largest sport doping rings has received a one-year suspended sentence. Eufemiano Fuentes was found to have been providing doping services to cyclists, and is also thought to have worked with boxers and footballers. MORE

England worry as Broad is forced off

Stuart Broad’s injury problems are continuing after he was forced off for the second successive day of Nottinghamshire’s match with Durham yesterday complaining of further discomfort in the groin problem he picked up batting. MORE

Singh cleared over deer antler spray

Vijay Singh has been cleared by the PGA Tour over his use of deer antler spray, which contains a banned performance enhancer, after the World Anti-doping Agency confirmed it was not “prohibited unless a positive test results”.

Bayern boss: We will attack Barça

Jupp Heynckes insists his team will not sit back and defend against Barcelona tonight, despite his Bayern Munich side leading 4-0 from the first leg in Germany. “We want to attack,” he said. “We are not a team that likes to defend.” MORE

Stalemate leaves Millwall waiting

Millwall and Crystal Palace played out a 0-0 draw at The Den last night, meaning the home side go into the final game of the Championship season not knowing their fate. The draw also means Palace are not guaranteed a play-off spot. MORE

Black Cats contest Sessègnon red

Sunderland have appealed against the red card given to Stéphane Sessègnon during the 6-1 defeat to Aston Villa on Monday. Suspension would rule him out of their relegation battle. The case will be heard today.

Opinion: James Lawton

There is certainly irony in the fact that the two notable Lions omissions are Jonny Wilkinson and Chris Robshaw, whose greatest pain is knowing that the Six Nations finale swept him out of contention. MORE