The Sports Matrix: Tuesday 1 March 2011

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The Independent Online

Rogge: Illegal betting a ‘cancer’

President of the IOC Jacques Rogge has cited illegal betting as an increasing threat to the integrity of sport. He claims that betting is “potentially crippling” and a “cancer”, is just as much a danger as illegal drug use, and also that it has links to the mafia. MORE

Bell hails ‘best ever’ Strauss 158

Ian Bell was vocal in his praise for Andrew Strauss’s innings against India on Sunday. “It was the best knock I have seen for a long, long time,” said Bell. “Probably the best knock I have ever seen from an England player.” Bell shared a 170 stand with Strauss. MORE

Roach hat-trick demolishes Dutch

A Kemar Roach hat-trick saw West Indies beat the Netherlands by 215 runs in Delhi. Chris Gayle hit 80 as they made 331 for 8, before they bowled the Dutch out for 115, making it the sixth-biggest win in World Cup history.

Arsenal nurse wounds from final

Arsenal may bear a heavy mental and psychological impact from their final defeat to Birmingham. The players failed to end their trophy drought while Robin van Persie is now a doubt for next week’s game at Barcelona after he injured his knee scoring. MORE

Davies gives media fee to charity

Steven Davies has donated the fee for the interviews in which he publicly announced his homosexuality to charity. The news was well known by the end of England’s Ashes tour, at the start of which he told Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower. MORE

Gardner: Arsenal scared of Zigic

Birmingham City midfielder Craig Gardner said that Arsenal were “petrified” during Sunday’s final. “[Zigic] played up front on his own and I think he bullied them. They were petrified of him,” he said. Stephen Carr said they had shown more heart than Arsenal. MORE

Doran-Jones stays in England squad

England have retained Gloucester’s Paul Doran-Jones for this week but have released Matt Banahan back to Bath ahead of this weekend’s derby against Gloucester. All three French-based players also remain with the squad. MORE

Vela fires Albion out of drop zone

A late equaliser from Carlos Vela at the Britannia Stadium moved West Brom up to 17th in the table. Rory Delap headed Stoke in front before Vela, a substitute, levelled with three minutes left. The Mexican then had a close-range shot saved in stoppage time. MORE

NHL violence in spotlight after bans

The fight between Eric Godard and Trevor Gillies in a recent NHL game saw the pair banned for a total of 19 games and Gillies’ New York Islanders fined $10,000. It has led to questions whether violence in professional ice hockey is out of control. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

The force of Birmingham’s performance on Sunday was a testament to the lessons Alex McLeish learnt under Alex Ferguson at Dundee. Both of their teams always display a a proud level of commitment. MORE

Rooney and Cole cleared to make better headlines

Both Wayne Rooney and Ashley Cole will play in tonight’s league match at Stamford Bridge. Rooney was not suspended after elbowing Wigan’s James McCarthy on Saturday, after referee Mark Clattenburg insisted that he had seen the incident. The Football Association is frustrated but Fifa guidelines prevent retrospective upgrades of punishments in such cases. Ashley Cole, meanwhile, will also play after Chelsea insisted they had taken “appropriate action” against him over his accidental shooting of a 21-year-old with an air rifle. “He made a mistake and knows this,” Ancelotti said of Cole. MORE

Giggs close to 20 years at United

Today is the eve of the 20th anniversary of Ryan Giggs’ Manchester United debut. His longevity may owe something to his passion. He said that his summer had been ruined by United’s failure to win the title last year: “It’s just craving that feeling of winning.” MORE

Kaymer praises ‘joke’ Donald

Luke Donald has the best short game in the world, according to the man he beat in Sunday’s Accenture World Match Play final, the world No 1 Martin Kaymer. “What Luke is doing at the moment is a joke,” Kaymer said of the Englishman. MORE

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