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Midweek Huddle

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Midweek roundup

 

Football

Manchester City’s title hopes took another blow on Monday night as they lost 2-1 to Crystal Palace. City remains in 4th behind rivals Manchester United who they play in the game of the weekend this Sunday.

Last night saw a 3-3 draw between Aston Villa and QPR, when really both sides could have done with a win to help them with Premier League survival.

The weekend’s fixtures see all the bottom clubs with difficult games. Leicester travel to West Brom, Burnley host Arsenal, Aston Villa travel to Tottenham, Hull Travel to Southampton and QPR host Chelsea.

Liverpool host Blackburn tonight in a FA Cup quarter-final replay the winner will play Aston Villa in the semi.

Malky Mackay was sacked by Wigan on Monday. Even though they are struggling this comes as a bit of a strange decision after the abuse they got over appointing him in the first place.

The FIFA presidency takes another strange twist with the president of the Confederation of Africa Football stating that all its members will be voting for Sepp Blatter. Now maybe I’m mistaken but isn’t voting supposed to be secret. For me this just shows how oddly FIFA is run and if this statement has been made then all these votes should be declared void.

 

Cricket

Alastair Cook had a much needed boost before the test series with the West Indies as he scored a century in a warm-up match. Trott, Root and Stokes also hit half-centuries.

 

Boxing

This weekend will see action in Leeds as Josh Warrington takes on Dennis Tubieron in a WBC featherweight title eliminator. Vinnie Jones will walk to the ring with Warrington as he is a massive Leeds United fan.

The undercard see’s Chris Jenkins v Tyrone Nurse for the British light-welterweight title. Martin J Ward v Maxi Hughes is a repeat of a controversial draw a few months ago and Bob Ajisafe v Daniel Wanyonyi for the commonwealth light heavyweight title.

After a few weeks of negotiating Eddie Hearn appeared on telly to offer Carl Frampton £1.5 million to fight Scott Quigg in July. Very strange move by Matchroom so will be interesting to see what happens now. It does seem the stumbling block is that one side wants to co-promote the bout with the other not wanting to.

Kell Brook looks likely to fight Frankie Gavin on the 30th May. Brook’s IBF title will be on the line and will be a huge step up for Britain’s only world amateur champion. When he did step up in class he was found wanting.

If this fight is made it seems a strange matchup after the Amir Khan fight fell through. If Brook wanted to make a statement he maybe should have picked a Thurman or Broner as his next opponent.

 

Rugby League

Easter Monday’s action saw some strange results. Castleford beat Warrington, Hull FC beat St. Helens and Salford beat Wigan. There was also wins for Leeds, Hull KR and Catalans.

Friday fixtures:

Hull FC v Widnes Vikings

Saturday fixtures:

Warrington Wolves v Wakefield Wildcats

Castleford Tigers v Hull KR

Sunday fixtures:

Salford Red Devils v Leeds Rhinos

Huddersfield Giants v St. Helens

Wigan Warriors v Catalans Dragons

Sam Tomkins will be returning back to these shores from New Zealand due to homesickness. He will return at the end of the season with Wigan having first refusal on him.

 

Darts

The Premier League moves onto Sheffield this week and is now contested by 10 players after Huybrechts and Wright were eliminated last week.

This week’s fixtures:

Adrian Lewis v James Wade

Gary Anderson v Dave Chisnall

Phil Taylor v Barney

Stephen Bunting v MVG

Dave Chisnall v James Wade

Standings:

  1. MVG
  2. Dave Chisnall
  3. Gary Anderson
  4. James Wade
  5. Phil Taylor
  6. Stephen Bunting
  7. Adrian Lewis
  8. Barney 

Tennis

Andy Murray yet again could not find a way to beat Novak Djokovic having got the match evenly poised at 1 set each, Murray lost the last set 6-0 and handed Djokovic his 5th Miami open title and extend his run over Murray to 7 games.

 

Golf

The Masters tee’s off tomorrow with Rory McIlroy favourite to win and earn the grand slam of golf.

Selected groups:

Vijay Singh, Darren Clarke, Russell Henley

Miguel Angel Jimenez, Anirban Lahiri, Lee Westwood

Bubba Watson, Justin Rose, Gunn Yang

Adam Scott, Dustin Johnson, Antonio Murdaca

Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, Ryan Moore

Jamie Donaldson, Tiger Woods, Jimmy Walker

Jason Day, Sergio Garcia, Rickie Fowler

 

F1

China will host this weekend’s Grand Prix as Lewis Hamilton will look to get back to winning ways and hope Ferrari’s win was just a flash in the pan.

Alonso and Button will just be hoping to finish the race in the out of sorts McLaren.

 

Snooker

As we build up to the World Championships the qualifying draw has thrown up an interesting first round. 10 times ladies champion Reanne Evans will play 1997 World Champion Ken Doherty. If she wins she will then have 2 more qualifying rounds to work through to make the main draw.

6 time winner Steve Davis will play Jamie Cope. 6 time runner-up Jimmy White will play James Wattana, whilst 2006 champion Graeme Dott will play Mark Owens.

 

Across the pond

History was made in the NBA last night as Sim Bhullar became the NBA’s first player of Indian descent to step onto court. He played 16 seconds of Sacramento Kings win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

NBA divisional standings see Toronto lead the Atlantic, Cleveland the Central and Atlanta the Southeast.

The conference standings are as follows.

  1. Atlanta (x)
  2. Cleveland (x)
  3. Chicago (x)
  4. Toronto (x)
  5. Washington (x)
  6. Milwaukee
  7. Brooklyn
  8. Boston

(x) Play-off berth

Washington and Cleveland are on 3 game winning streaks. Philadelphia is on a 6 game losing streak.

Out west Portland leads the Northwest division, Golden State the Pacific and Houston the Southwest.

The conference standings are as follows.

  1. Golden State (x)
  2. Houston (x)
  3. Memphis (x)
  4. Portland (x)
  5. LA Clippers (x)
  6. San Antonio (x)
  7. Dallas (x)
  8. New Orleans

(x) Play-off berth

San Antonio is the form team on a 8 game winning streak. Minnesota is on 7 game losing streak. OCK are out of the play-off picture at the moment as they are on a 4 game losing streak.

NHL East divisional standings see Montreal lead the Atlantic and the NY Rangers leads the Metropolitan. NY Rangers leads the Eastern conference and have clinched the Presidents’ Trophy (Best Regular-Season Record).The Rangers and Boston are the form teams on 5 game winning streaks. Pittsburgh is on the slide with a 4 game losing streak.

Play-off berths.

NY Rangers

Montreal

Tampa Bay

Washington

Eliminated:

Buffalo

Toronto

Carolina

New Jersey

Philadelphia

Columbus

Florida

The West divisional standings see St. Louis lead the Central and Anaheim the Pacific. Anaheim leads the Western conference. Winnipeg is the form team with a 3 game winning streak. Nashville is in a bit of a slump losing their last 4.

Play-off berths.

Anaheim

St. Louis

Nashville

Chicago

Minnesota

Vancouver

Eliminated:

Arizona

Edmonton

Colorado

San Jose

Dallas

MLB and the season is underway. Early days but the standings are as follows:

American League

East: Baltimore

Central: Detroit

West: Houston

National League

East: Atlanta

Central: Cincinnati

West: Colorado

 

 

 

@ahuddlestone77


Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Andrew Huddlestone

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