The Sport Matrix: Wednesday 17 April 2013


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The Independent Online

Misses could prove to be costly for wasteful Arsenal

Arsenal edged closer to Champions League qualification for a 16th consecutive season last night, despite being frustrated by Everton in a goalless draw at the Emirates. Arsène Wenger’s side sit two points clear of Chelsea and Spurs, although both of their London rivals have games in hand. The hosts enjoyed the majority of possession and had the better chances, but were denied by an Everton side who retain European ambitions of their own. Olivier Giroud, above, wasted the best of Arsenal’s chances.

Visiting manager David Moyes admitted his side’s chances of a top-four spot are small: “The games are running out so it’s harder for us,” the Scot said. “We will get talked about at the end of conversations about the Champions League as we are rank outsiders.” MORE

Cardiff City clinch  top-flight return

A goalless draw with Charlton was enough to secure promotion to the Premier League for Cardiff City last night, returning the Welsh side to the top-flight for the first time in 51 years. Elsewhere, Millwall overcame Watford 1-0 thanks to a late goal by Shaun Batt. MORE

Leicester edge it as Bristol City go down

Jeff Schlupp’s goal helped Leicester City win an entertaining match against Bolton 3-2 to take their opponent’s position in the Championship play-off zone. At the bottom, Bristol City were relegated to League One after losing 1-0 at home to Birmingham City. MORE

Martinez questions Cup kick-off time

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez has criticised the scheduling of the FA Cup final as a 5.15pm kick-off. “When the FA makes a decision of that magnitude, there must be a reason behind it,” he said of the meeting with Manchester City. “I would like to know what that is.” MORE

Rovers slammed  in pay-off dispute

Blackburn Rovers’ way of operating was yesterday described as “utterly unforgivable” by a presiding judge. A High Court hearing into unpaid wages owed to former manager Henning Berg led to Judge Mark Pilling labelling the club’s actions “woefully inadequate”. MORE

Ryan favourite  to replace Hill

The former England international Richard Hill last night  left his role as Worcester head coach, with Dean Ryan installed as hot favourite to replace him. Hill, 51, leaves Sixways after just under three years in charge. MORE

Murray tells Evans: beef up to progress

Andy Murray has warned Dan Evans of the need to become physically stronger if he is to realise his potential in the sport. “He’s been given a lot of opportunities,” Murray said. “It’s a lifestyle that you have to decide: ‘I want to do this’.” MORE

Marathon must go on, says Strauss

Andrew Strauss believes this weekend’s London Marathon  should go ahead in the wake of the Boston bombings. “It is  absolutely right and very important to go ahead,” the former England cricket captain said. “It’s a matter of solidarity.” MORE

Ennis leads the Olympic reunion

Jessica Ennis is to compete in two events at the Anniversary Games as part of her build-up towards August’s World Championships in Moscow. Mo Farah and Greg Rutherford will also take part, along with Christine Ohuruogu and Robbie Grabarz. MORE

KP sits out Kiwis to prepare for Ashes

Kevin Pietersen is to sit out next month’s Tests with New Zealand in an effort to get himself fit for the Ashes series later this summer. The England batsman has been suffering from bone bruising on his right knee. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Boston has resurrected the nightmare which lurked below the surface throughout the London Olympics. If you hit sport you strike at one of the most comfortable places the world likes to think it inhabits. MORE