The sporting week ahead (17/03/13)

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The Independent Online


Sorry but you've missed it. The Australian Grand Prix has already happened, so don't try looking here for a prediction. Suffice to say that someone's fuel-injector gauge probably blew up and the turbo- drag preventer might have been the main talking point... or something like that. Formula One remains an intriguing world if you like that sort of thing, and a noisy irritant if you don't. Nearer to home, the Europa League continues to hinge the fixture list, with four Premier League games today, two of which are London derbies. Chelsea v West Ham normally generates its fair share of passion, while the presence of Dimitar Berbatov in the Fulham side and Moussa Dembélé in Tottenham's gives their clash an added backcloth. In the Championship, Burnley have not beaten Blackburn in a meaningful match for 34 years, so no pressure there, then.


It is one of the wonders of the modern world that supposedly bankrupt Spain can bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games, and today the International Olympic Committee's Evaluation Commission carry out an on-site inspection in Madrid.


Having made history by drawing the First Test in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh embark on the all-decisive second in Colombo.


A completely blank midweek day in the football calendar. How amazing!


Uefa mount their hearing into Sir Alex Ferguson's failure to express his obvious fury into the television microphones after Manchester United's defeat by Real Madrid in the last 16 of the Champions' League last week. But instead of fining him, they should reward him. It was, after all, a joy NOT to hear his views about a refereeing conspiracy. Meanwhile England's Under-21s play Romania in High Wycombe. In cricket, England face New Zealand in the Third and final Test in Auckland.


England travel to San Marino for their Group H World Cup qualifier. Does anyone care? Scotland v Wales, meanwhile, might be worth watching.


You would be hard pushed to find a sporting highlight today. Sheffield United v Brentford in League One, perhaps, or Exeter v Leicester in the Aviva Premiership. There's qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix but you will have to get up early for that, which is where we came in.