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The Sports Matrix: Monday 24 September 2012


Terry quits England and turns fire on the FA

John Terry made last night's shock decision to retire from international football in protest at what he regarded as a change of position by senior members of the Football Association over the likelihood of him being charged by the governing body for alleged racist remarks, it is understood.

Terry, 31, made the surprise announcement that he was retiring from the England team less than 24 hours before his disciplinary hearing is due to begin today, on an FA charge of racially abusing Queen's Park Rangers' Anton Ferdinand. He said that the FA had made his "position untenable" by pursuing the case, which is understood to refer to what Terry views as a change of heart from the organisation over the decision to charge him.

Having been cleared of the same allegation in Westminster Magistrates' court on 13 July, Terry believed that he would not stand accused of the same offence by the FA. Yet 14 days' later in July, the governing body charged him with breaking rules E3(1) and E3(2) of their code, the same offence for which Liverpool striker Luis Suarez was found guilty last year.

Terry, who won the last of his 78 caps for England against Moldova this month, said in a statement last night that it "breaks my heart" to have to make the decision. He said: "I am making this statement in advance of the hearing of the FA disciplinary charge because I feel the FA, in pursuing charges against me where I have already been cleared in a court of law, have made my position with the national team untenable."

It is understood Terry called Roy Hodgson yesterday afternoon to tell him of his decision before the announcement was made public. Hodgson picked Terry and controversially omitted Rio Ferdinand, brother of Anton, from his Euro 2012 squad in May following a meeting with the Chelsea captain at the club's training ground. MORE

England torn apart by Indian spinners

England scored their lowest Twenty20 total and suffered their heaviest defeat as they lost by 90 runs to India in their final World Twenty20 group match. Stuart Broad's side were bowled out for just 80 after India put on 170, helped by a half-century from Rohit Sharma. MORE

Ba stakes his claim with only goal

Chris Hughton's return to St James' Park ended in bitter defeat as Demba Ba scored his third goal in a week to give Newcastle a 1-0 win over Norwich. Ba latched on to a fine pass from Ben Arfa in the 19th minute and finished smartly from 18 yards. Papiss Cissé missed a first-half penalty after Steve Morison's clumsy challenge on Mike Williamson, with Norwich missing several good chances through Wes Hoolahan and Andrew Surman. MORE

Villas-Boas relief at first home win

Tottenham Hotspur registered their first home Premier League win of the season after turning round a half-time deficit to beat QPR 2-1. Two second half goals in two minutes, courtesy of an Alejandro Faurlí* own goal and Jermain Defoe's fourth goal of the season, overturned Bobby Zamora's opener. "We really wanted to get this home win for quite some time," said Villas-Boas. MORE

Koscielny grabs late draw for Arsenal

Arsenal earned a well-deserved point at the Etihad as Manchester City drew for the third time in five games. Joleon Lescott headed in the opener shortly before half-time, only for Laurent Koscielny to smash in the equaliser eight minutes from the end. The visitors were far more impressive in possession and Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger said: "I hope the game will reinforce our belief and confidence and reassure us about our potential in the league." MORE

Adlington rules out 2016 Olympics

Double Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington has confirmed she will not compete in the 2016 Games in Rio. The swimmer, who will be aged 27 by the time of the next Games, aims to teach the sport's rising stars instead. Adlington will look to compete in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Hamilton failure sees Vettel through

Sebastian Vettel cruised to victory for Red Bull in the Singapore Grand Prix, after Lewis Hamilton's McLaren retired while leading the German for the first 22 laps of the race. Jenson Button came in second from a distant Fernando Alonso, who saw his championship lead cut to 29 points by Vettel with six races remaining. Hamilton's gearbox failure all but rules the British driver out of contention for the title. "This is one of the toughest races of the year," said Vettel. MORE

Snedeker snatches Fedex Cup gong

Brandt Snedeker was set to be named Fedex Cup winner last night after leading The Tour Championship in Atlanta. Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy would have been guaranteed the $10million title if they had won the tournament, but fell back early on after being in a good position at the start of the day.