The Sports Matrix: Tuesday 28 February 2012


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The Independent Online

Peerless Pietersen sets up series win

Kevin Pietersen became only the second man to carry his bat through a completed international Twenty20 innings as he struck a superb 62 in Dubai yesterday. England's opener drove the side to 129 for 6, laying the foundation for a thrilling five-run victory over Pakistan that helped secured the series 2-1. MORE

Wales climb past England in ranking

Wales, realistic Grand Slam candidates following last weekend's narrow squeak over England at Twickenham, had the second part of a glorious double whammy confirmed yesterday by leapfrogging England into fifth place in the official International Rugby Board world rankings. MORE

Djokovic Jnr fails to make his Marko

The name is the same and the game is not dissimilar, but it was clear in Dubai yesterday that Marko Djokovic still has a way to go till his tennis can match his older brother, Novak. The 20-year-old Marko, world-ranked No 869, was well beaten, 6-3, 6-2 by Andrei Golubev. MORE

Haye insists brawl was 'self-defence'

David Haye has claimed he was acting in self-defence when he punched Dereck Chisora at the notorious post-fight press conference in Munich, and that he did not use a bottle he was holding as a weapon. "He comes over, his knuckles in my face, what am I supposed to do?" Haye said. MORE

More scrutiny over spot-fixing fears

The organisers of the London Olympics, Locog, will host daily meetings with police, gambling experts and other agencies throughout the Games this summer, in an attempt to combat the threat posed by illegal spot-fixing. MORE

Injured Bent set to miss the Euros

England's striking problems worsened yesterday with news that Darren Bent is now almost certain to miss Euro 2012 and will not play again this season for Aston Villa. Bent needs an operation on his ankle that will rule him out for three months and leave the England squad with just three fit forwards. MORE

Dutch masters under threat

The Netherlands, England's friendly opponents tomorrow, are no longer seen as the side most likely to challenge Spain's dominance – thanks to the rise of their rivals, Germany. The 2010 World Cup finalists need their big stars to shine if they are to make an impact this summer. MORE

'Topping Spurs is all that matters'

Following Sunday's astonishing comeback win over Tottenham, the Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny says that finishing above their north London rivals is the target for his club. "We can't win the Premier League so now my main ambition is to finish above Tottenham," he said. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Now Liverpool are back in the terrain of hopeful speculation. It is ground that cannot be fairly denied Dalglish. Heaven knows, he has made some mistakes, but he has also accepted a mighty task. MORE