Tuesday's Sportsday as it happened

Reaction to Ronnie O'Sullivan's decision to defend his world title, build up to Tuesday's football and updates from Swansea City's League Cup parade.

26 February 2013 Last updated at 18:49 GMT

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As it happened

  1. 1848: 

    The time has come to end today's Sportsday. Tom Rostance is the man who will guide you through this evening's football action, which includes the FA Cup replay between Everton and Oldham and an El Classico as Real Madrid and Barcelona play the second leg of their Copa del Rey semi-final.

  2. 1844: 

    Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins - whose team are celebrating League Cup triumph with a victory parade around the city - has said he hopes leading goalscorer Michu is with the club "for another few years".

    The Spaniard scored in the club's 5-0 victory over Bradford in Sunday's League Cup final.

    "He's come into the Premier League from La Liga and done exceptionally well. He's still hungry, because he's building his way through the leagues," Jenkins told Sky Sports.

  3. 1838: 

    Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins on Michael Laudrup's future as manager: "I hope that Michael's here for a few years yet. He's cemented his roots here in Swansea. His family are here. I just hope he's still with us and we're firmly focused on working together and having a good season next year as well. At this level, the type of club we are, there's no doubt teams involved in the Champions League can be a big pull and we've just got to put up with that, do our preparation, and keep our fingers crossed."

  4. 1832: 

    Northampton forwards Dylan Hartley and Courtney Lawes are among 10 players who will be released from England duty back to their clubs for this weekend's Premiership action.

    Hartley and Lawes, who started in the victory over France three days ago, will be joined by team-mates Ben Foden and Lee Dickson, Wasps flanker James Haskell, Worcester's Matt Kvesic, Saracens pair David Strettle and Joel Tomkins, plus Bath prop David Wilson and Leicester back-row forward Thomas Waldrom.

  5. 1827: 

    Inter Milan are set to give Norwegian striker John Carew a chance to revive his career with a short-term contract until the end of the season.

    Carew, 33, is a free agent and has been without a club since playing for West Ham United last season.

    "I'm ready, I feel good because I have been working with the team for the past two weeks," Carew told the website of Italy's Gazzetta dello Sport.


    Swansea City's Wayne Routledge: "Extremely humbled! Thanks those who could make it out, get home safe!"


    Infostrada Sports: "Messi needs 1 goal tonight to equal Di Stéfano's all-time goalscoring record of 18 goals in official El Clásico matches."

  8. 1819: 

    Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has said the rivalry between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi has driven the pair on to greater things.

    Real and Barcelona go head-to-head on Tuesday night in the second leg of the Copa Del Rey semi-final.

    "They are the best players in the world but they will never be best friends," says Carragher. "Really, though, they should go out of their way to thank each other. The question both men should be asking, however, is this: where would I be without you?"

  9. 1811: 

    Stuart McCall, whose Scotland side face Wales in next month's World Cup qualifier at Hampden, has described Gareth Bale as the most influential player in the Premier League.

    The forward was the star man as Wales secured a controversial 2-1 victory over the Scots in Cardiff in October.

    Scotland assistant coach McCall said: "Luis Suarez is sensational and Robin van Persie is having a great season as well, but, for impact on a game and match winning goals, it is certainly Gareth Bale at this moment in time. He's terrific."

  10. 1804: 

    Wales wing George North says cyclist girlfriend Becky James's success at the World Track Cycling Championships has been the talking point among his Wales rugby team-mates.

    James became the first British rider to win four medals at a single championships.

    "Everyone's coming up to me and there's a bit of banter flying about. That's rugby," said the winger. "I know that she has worked so hard over the last few months and to have a weekend like that was excellent for her."

  11. 1748: 

    David Beckham will start for PSG in the French Cup last 16 tie against Marseille.

    "Yes, Beckham will start in the position of (suspended midfielder) Marco Verratti," said PSG manager Carlo Ancelotti.

    "Beckham must help make the play and defensively have a good tactical position on the pitch. Can he still take corners and free-kicks? He has the quality to do so. Beckham can play a whole match. He has the quality to play in the middle of the park."

  12. 1737: 

    Swansea City's players and coaches have ended their parade around the city and have arrived at Brangwyn Hall to be greeted by flag-waving and screaming fans.

    "Fantastic to see you all here today. I imagine you're as happy as we are after the result the other day," manager Michael Laudrup tells the supporters.

  13. 1729: 

    Dundee United manager Jackie McNamara has challenged his side not to give Inverness any added incentive in Wednesday night's Clydesdale Bank Premier League match at the Caledonian Stadium.

    McNamara watched his side concede two goals in last Sunday's 2-2 SPL draw with Hibernian at Tannadice, a game in which United required a late penalty from Johnny Russell to earn a share of the spoils.

    "Hopefully we have learned our lesson from that point of view," said McNamara. "It's something we have to work on and have got to do better."


    Swansea captain Ashley Williams on BBC Wales: "They really deserve this. There are supporters at this club who have seen the club during tough times. Now they can celebrate the club's first major trophy. I'm sure they're all really enjoying this success."

  15. 1715: 

    London Welsh are to face a Rugby Football Union competitions hearing after being charged with fielding an ineligible player in "a number" of Premiership games this season.

    The RFU has announced that the hearing, which relates to the registration of scrum-half Tyson Keats, will take place on 5 March in London.


    Wales rugby captain Ryan Jones: "As if being on the pitch post Grand Slam wasn't enough for 1 little boy, he's now on the Swans victory parade coach with Mrs J!#v.proud."

  17. 1710: 

    BBC World Service has been talking about who will be the next rising star in the football world. #nextbigthing

    "There's this big question hanging over Neymar - is he the real deal?" asks Daniel Gallas from BBC Brazil Service. "People are getting to a consensus that if he doesn't go to Europe he won't be able to prove himself.

    "In 2011 he was proving himself in Brazil, but Neymar's team isn't playing well anymore. That's having an affect on his career. In 2011, when he was South America's top player, it was reported that Barcelona and Real Madrid were in love with him and would be willing to wait until after the 2014 World Cup, but now's the time for Neymar to move on."

  18. 1656: 

    Jubilant Swansea City fans have taken to the streets to welcome home their Capital One Cup heroes.

    Club captain Ashley Williams says: "The fans can celebrate the club's first major trophy. It's a great reward for them, and I'm sure they are all really enjoying this success."

  19. 1656: 

    Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods responded to their surprise early exit from last week's WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship by going head-to-head in their own private challenge.

    World number two Woods and top-ranked McIlroy spent Sunday morning in a golfing duel at the Medalist club in Hobe Sound, Florida.

    McIlroy said: "We thought we would play our own match play final except it was over 36 holes. We had two matches. He beat me the first time and I beat him in the second so we're even."

  20. 1652: 

    In the wake of the inquest into cricketer Tom Maynard's death and the issues it raised over recreational drug use, the ECB and Surrey CCC have released a joint statement.

    It says: "While the ECB accepts that recreational drug use is a part of modern society, we do not condone it and will take all reasonable steps to prevent its use within the game."

  21. 1647: 

    Rafa Nadal's management company admit the Spaniard could miss the ATP World Tour Masters Series events in Miami and Indian Wells.

    Spanish paper Marca today suggested he would sit out of the tournaments to rest a knee problem.

    B1PR tweeted: "The speculation in Marca is just that. Hopefully it's wrong."

  22. 1642: 

    George Burley, the man who sold Gareth Bale to Spurs when Southampton boss in 2007, says he is destined to be a world class talent.

    He tells BBC World Service: "The way Gareth Bale is progressing there's no doubt he could be great. He's still young, still maturing. He made his debut at 17 at Southampton and he's developed tremendously.

    "He played pretty much every game for them. He has great ability, a magnificent left foot and he has added goals to his game as well. He's the full package and has everything in his locker, and he's scoring goals for fun. A top class player."

  23. 1637: 

    Judd Trump gave Ronnie O`Sullivan an indication of how hard it is going to be win the World Championship by whitewashing Mark Joyce 5-0 in their World Open first-round clash in Haikou.

    Joyce was the man who stopped Trump retaining his UK title in York before Christmas by knocking him out in the first round.

  24. 1633: 

    Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina insists Brendan Rodgers's methods will see the Reds regain their mantle as a great club once more.

    He says: "If the players follow the philosophy we'll definitely become a great side - a difficult and strong side to beat and a competitive one."

  25. 1627: 

    Barry Hearn is excited by Ronnie Sullivan's decision to defend his world snooker title.

    He tells BBC Radio 5 live: "Ronnie is a one-off. He has had time to reassess his life and his career in general.

    "He made a good move for himself and for the sport in general."

  26. 1620: 

    More of your views on BBC World Service's debate about who is the #nextbigthing.

    Joe Atkins: "Nakhi Wells (Bradford) has looked decent! Still very young, could have a decent future!"

    Tasker: "Thomas Eisfeld at Arsenal, Nick Powell at Utd, and George Green at Everton."

  27. 1616: 

    The jury returns a verdict of accidental death at the inquest of cricketer Tom Maynard.

  28. 1610: 

    John Carew - remember him? He could be back in football with reports in Italy suggesting Inter Milan are close to signing the former Aston Villa striker on a short-term deal.

    The Norwegian is a free agent having left West Ham in the summer and is training with the Serie A side.

    Inter need a striker because Argentinian Diego Milito is out for the rest of the season with knee ligament damage.

  29. 1606: 

    Stuart Cummings is stepping down as referees' chief after 13 years in the role.

    Cummings, who retired from refereeing to head up the RFL's match officials department in 2000, will quit his job on March 20 but will stay on in a consultancy capacity.

  30. 1601: 
    Luke_Shaw Plenty of support for Southampton's Luke Shaw in BBC World Service's debate about who is the #nextbigthing
  31. 1555: 

    Conor O'Shea removes himself from the running to become Ireland's next head coach by confirming his intention to continue as Harlequins' director of rugby.

    Current coach Declan Kidney is unlikely to have his contract renewed when it expires this summer and O'Shea is the bookmakers' favourite to take over.

    But he said: "I'm contracted to Harlequins until the end of the 2013-14 season. I will be honouring that commitment and hopefully continuing beyond it,"

  32. 1549: 

    BBC World Service is asking who you think is going to the next rising star in the world of football. Tell us your views on #nextbigthing

    Chris Sloley: "Toni Kroos at Bayern. Only 23 still and bossed Arsenal about. Class player."

    Nathan Morris: "Marco Verratti: elegant, poised, stylish. Undoubtedly the new Pirlo."

    Jozef Brodala: "Machim Matsour, only 15 and AC Milan have put in a special request for him to play in Serie A despite being too young."

  33. 1545: 

    Jose Mourinho will leave Real Madrid to coach David Beckham's new club Paris St-Germain in the summer, if you believe the Spanish club's former president Ramon Calderon.

    He told talkSPORT: "It seems he's going to leave and it looks like he's off to Paris St-Germain. He says he's going to stay but I don't think so. Things have gone too far and Real Madrid are not willing to accept any more of his behaviour."

  34. 1541: 

    Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta both miss Chelsea's FA Cup fifth round tie at Middlesbrough tomorrow.

    Defender Cahill has been struck down by a virus, while right-back Azpilicueta has a leg problem.

  35. 1537: 

    Theo Walcott feels it is about time Arsenal players pay back the faith of under-fire manager Arsene Wenger.

    Speaking in the March edition of the official Arsenal magazine, Walcott said: "If we don't perform he always takes it back on himself, but at times it is not fair because we are the players that go out there and do it."

  36. 1532: 

    Back-row forward Roddy Grant has extended his contract with Edinburgh for two years beyond this summer.

    Grant, 26, is part of an Edinburgh team that has lost all six Heineken Cup games and are struggling in the RaboDirect Pro12.

    He says: "This season has been difficult and disappointing from a performance perspective but there's a real sense of urgency among the players and the club to finish this season strong and start the process of getting back to where we believe we can be."

  37. 1528: 

    We are still running our debate about who is the player of the year following Gareth Bale's recent run of brilliant form. Tell us who you think it is using #bbcsportsday.

    Hishaam Habib: "RVP, Michu, and Suarez provide goals. But can any of them rip an entire team to shreds with pace, then finish sublimely."

    Kolo Kenneth Kadiri: "Yet again, an unnecessary hype of a British player begins. Bale has not outperformed even Leighton Baines talk more."

    nick mason: "People saying about Ronaldo and Messi's goal rate and saying there way ahead of Bale. However they have never been left backs."

  38. 1522: 

    Inter Milan are lining up a £20m bid for Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri, according to Metro.co.uk

    They claim the Serie A club see Nasri as a potential successor to Wesley Sneijder, who they off-loaded to Galatasaray.

  39. 1515: 

    Today's Question of Sport teaser asked which THREE players Ronnie O'Sullivan has beaten in World Championship finals.

    The answer is: John Higgins in 2001, Graeme Dott in 2004 and Ali Carter in both 2008 & 2012.

  40. 1511: 

    BBC Sport's Frank Keogh: "Ronnie O'Sullivan popular with punters. 6-1 joint fav with Judd Trump on betting exchange for world title. Mark Selby + Neil Robertson 7s."

  41. 1507: 

    League Two leaders Gillingham complete the loan signing of Brentford striker Antonio German.

    The 21-year-old, who has scored once in four appearances this season, joins the Priestfield outfit on a one-month deal.

  42. 1502: 

    Paris St-Germain coach Carlo Ancelotti is delighted with the way David Beckham is fitting in at the French club.

    He says: "I like the Beckham who is at the centre of training. He works, he is humble every day."

  43. 1458: 

    Scotland international Richie Vernon is returning to Glasgow Warriors for next season.

    Vernon, 25, currently plays for Sale but is signing a three-year deal at the club he played for between 2007 and 2011.

    He says: "I've been watching their progress this season and it's a very exciting time to be getting involved with the club."

  44. 1454: 

    Chelsea interim manager Rafa Benitez plays down reports of a bust-up with his players.

    Reports in this morning's papers claimed there was a row between Benitez and the Blues squad with John Terry vocal in his defence of the Blues players.

    Asked about his relationship with the Chelsea players, Benitez says: "It is fantastic. I have no problem.

    "This was a normal meeting between players and technical staff, which happens after every game, it was normal talk, nothing else."

  45. 1450: 

    Pro12 leaders Ulster suffer a blow with centre Paddy Wallace facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a knee injury suffered in Friday's defeat by Glasgow.

    Wallace, 33, sustained a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament and will have surgery on his left knee.

  46. 1442: 

    Inter Milan's fee for the racial abuse of Mario Balotelli is raising some interesting views on #bbcsportsday. Tell us what you think?

    Steven Marshall: "Problem with points deduction is fans could wear other teams kit and deliberately get them docked points!"

    Trey: "Points deduction is unfair on the players. We need to have stewards/police near all fans to hear out for racist abuse."

    Eivind Haugan: "If the clubs like Inter are told to raise the ticket price for the next match with one Euro, the fans will police themselves."

  47. 1437: 
    Scott Brown Bad news for Celtic and Scotland with Scott Brown set to miss crucial games.
  48. 1430: 

    Celtic captain Scott Brown will miss the Champions League last 16 clash with Juventus and Scotland's double header against Wales and Serbia with a thigh injury.

    Manager Neil Lennon said on Tuesday: "We're still waiting to hear about Brown but he will miss Juventus and the Scotland double header.

    "We are still waiting to hear from the specialist, whether he requires surgery or not and I am hoping that we will get a definitive answer by the end of the week."

  49. 1424: 

    Barnet's clash with Fleetwood has been re-arranged and now takes place on Tuesday 19 March.

  50. 1418: 

    Inter Milan's 50,000 euro fine for the racial abuse aimed at Mario Balotelli is stirring up some strong reaction on #bbcsportsday.

    Marvin: "Inter's fine is a joke. Should be docked 6-12 points, the racist fans will take notice when they miss out on Champions League."

    Dean McNamara: "€50k fine to Inter for racial abuse, that's just peanuts to them. No lesson learned there then! Has to be points deduction...."

    Ben Manley: "Points deduction rather than fines the only way all clubs will take racism seriously. Inter culprits unaffected."

  51. 1414: 

    Ipswich defender Patrick Kisnorbo has dismissed reports he is signing for Chinese club Liaoning Whowin.

    The 31-year-old Australian, who is on loan from Leeds, told Town's website: "It's all rubbish. I have never heard of the club so I don't have a clue where the story has come from."

  52. 1410: 

    Katusha have lifted a provisional ban on Spanish rider Angel Vicioso after he testified at a high-profile doping trial in his home country.

    Vicioso, 35, was suspended by Katusha for misleading them over his scheduled court appearance in Madrid but he was allowed to rejoin the team after testifying by a video link last week.

    "We're satisfied with his testimony, therefore Angel will be able to race again," a Katusha spokesman said.

  53. 1408: 

    Bolton midfielder Mark Davies is "very close" to signing a new four year deal, according to manager Dougie Freedman.

    Freedman told The Bolton News: "Mark Davies is somebody I want to build a team around.

    "Where we are with it right now, I don't think the ink is dry yet but I think it is very close."

  54. 1402: 

    Northampton have loaned defender Dave Artell to Blue Square Bet Premier leaders Wrexham for the rest of the season.

    Former Crewe stopper Artell has not played for the Cobblers since undergoing an operation on an Achilles injury in October.

  55. 1358: 

    BBC Sport's Joe Wilson at the inquest into the death of cricketer Tom Maynard: "Evidence now concluded, coroner to sum up. We have a jury for this inquest."

  56. 1353: 

    The Football Association is to look into a number of incidents that occurred at Monday's Premier League Under-21s match between Liverpool and Manchester United, according to Press Association.

    It reports that late in the second half of Liverpool's 1-0 defeat a fan ran onto the pitch at St Helens' Langtree Park stadium and appeared to direct abuse at Liverpool striker Adam Morgan before tussling with stewards as he was led away.

    It also says there were also two instances of flares being set off in the stands, with one being thrown onto the pitch.

  57. 1349: 

    Argentina World Cup winner Diego Maradona has returned to Naples to plead his innocence over an outstanding 40m euro (£32m) tax bill issued to him by the Italian justice system.

    The 52-year-old played for Napoli and won two league titles - in 1987 and 1990.

    Quoted in the Gazzetta dello Sport, Maradona said: "I want to tell everyone that I have Napoli in my very soul. I've wanted to say so for a long time, but there are people who would not let me do so."

  58. 1341: 

    Here's more #bbcsportsday reaction to Ronnie O'Sullivan's decision to defend his world snooker title:

    Daniel Dodsworth: "The Rocket is the most exciting, and unique snooker players of all time, a true pleasure to watch!! "

    Rob Keegan: "The Rocket is back... He is everything Judd Trump wants to be... He won't ever be as good though... Robbo vs Rocket final!"

  59. 1337: 

    BBC Sport's Joe Wilson at the inquest into the death of cricketer Tom Maynard:

    "British transport police confirm no suspicious circumstances surrounding Maynard's death."

  60. 1335: 

    Uefa say that a decision will be made on Galatasaray striker Didier Drogba's Champions League eligibility at about 1800 GMT on Wednesday.

    Schalke lodged a protest against their Turkish last-16 opponents following the tie which ended 1-1.

    The German club believe that Galatasaray did not register Drogba before 1 February - which is the latest clubs can register a maximum of three new eligible players for the latter stages.

  61. 1321: 

    It is a jam-packed night of football action with Everton hosting Oldham in their FA Cup fifth-round replay; Aberdeen up against Ross County in the Scottish Premier; three Championship matches, including Leicester v Blackburn, plus League One and League Two fixtures.

    Stay with BBC Football for the latest scores, news and reports.

  62. 1312: 

    Stoke's Robert Huth is charged with violent conduct in relation to an incident during Saturday's Premier League game at Fulham, the Football Association confirms.

  63. 1310: 

    Cort Robson: "Didn't take long for Ronnie to want to come back did it, knew he couldn't stay away! #bbcsportsday"

    Rob Bancroft: "Am I the only person underwhelmed by Ronnie O'Sullivan's ego trip? Back until he loses form again and strops off home... yawn!"

    Samuel Butler: "The Rocket is back! Would love to see him and @judd147t in the world championship final, the two biggest characters in snooker"

    Are you happy to see O'Sullivan back? #bbcsportsday

  64. 1306: 

    Former world number three Neal Foulds on ITV4: "I think there will be a mixed reaction among the players. Some will think it adds to the tournament. Others will say it takes the limelight away from them.

    "I like Ronnie, he is a lovely man to talk to, but he can be extremely frustrating.

    "It is good news that he is going to play. There will be a lot of interest to see what shape he turns up in, because a year out of the game is a long time."

  65. 1304: 

    David Beckham will start for Paris St-Germain in the French Cup last-16 encounter against rivals Marseille, according to coach Carlo Ancelotti.

  66. 1301: 

    France coach Philippe Saint-Andre makes two changes to his squad for the Six Nations fixture against Ireland.

    Toulouse wing Maxime Medard comes in at the expense of Racing Metro counterpart Benjamin Fall, while Perpignan lock Sebastien Vahaamahina is in for Toulon's Jocelino Suta.

    Watch the match on the BBC on Saturday 9 March.

  67. 1259: 

    Salford prop Lee Jewitt will miss his side's home game against London Broncos on Friday through suspension.

    Jewitt, who was sent off along with Hull KR front rower Adam Walker for fighting in Sunday's game at the City of Salford Stadium, entered an early-guilty plea to a grade B charge of punching.

  68. 1253: 

    Six-times Olympic champion Usain Bolt will race over 200m at the Paris Golden League meeting on 6 July as part of his build-up for the world championships in Moscow in August.

  69. 1250: 

    BBC Sport's Joe Wilson at the inquest into the death of cricketer Tom Maynard:

    Jade Dernbach [Surrey player] says no-one at Surrey aware of Maynard using any drugs

  70. 1248: 

    Inter Milan are fined 50,000 euros (£43,169) as punishment for fans racially abusing their former player Mario Balotelli in Sunday's derby with AC Milan, Italian league Serie A announce in a statement.

  71. 1244: 

    BBC Sport's Frank Keogh: "Jimmy White tells me he needs to win 3 qualifiers to reach World Snooker Championship + hopes to play pal Ronnie O'Sullivan in round 1"

  72. 1239: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan on Sky Sports News: "A lot of rivals have things to say about you - boot you when you're down. I'm happy to be back, although I'm not sure if they'll be happy to see me back. Let's see if I can get that trophy cabinet stacked up again."

  73. 1235: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan on Sky Sports News: "Maybe I'll enjoy it now. Before, I was tough on myself if I didn't play well."

  74. 1230: 

    George Royal: "Time to start watching snooker again, The Rocket's back..."

    Kye Inglis: "Yes Ronnie! Nans going to be over the moon!"

    Sunil Parmar: "Delighted Rocket Ronnie will be back for the World Championship. I'm glad he got bored!"

    Have your say on Ronnie O'Sullivan's return using #bbcsportsday

  75. 1224: 
  76. 1223: 

    Durham confirm that county championship captain Paul Collingwood has undergone surgery to repair a ruptured tendon in his right thumb.

  77. 1218: 

    World Snooker's response to Ronnie O'Sullivan announcing he intends to play at the Crucible:

    "Ronnie O'Sullivan has stated his intention to play in 2013 World Champs. We are awaiting his formal entry, required by Feb 28th. As defending champion Ronnie is number one seed and will be scheduled to play on the opening Saturday April 20, 10am & 7pm."

  78. 1216: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan: "It will be a tough call to go back in there. The match tables are fast and I haven't played on them for a while.

    "I just see this as the start of the bigger picture. A few months ago I was thinking I would take it and lose 10-0 at Sheffield rather than this. I was just getting up and going for lunches and that was it. I was bored.

    "Just getting back to win or lose shows how big a part of my life it is."

  79. 1216: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan: "I have probably played three or four exhibition matches and I have probably played ten days in nine months.

    "I still pot a few balls but I am very match rusty.

    "I haven't played many match situations and I haven't played in any tense situations."

  80. 1213: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan: "I certainly feel refreshed I was never out of juice. I don't find snooker hard mentally or physically. It is your job and you get used to it.

    "I needed to take time out for other things. I knew I couldn't take too much time out. It was always in the back of my mind that I had to come back and come back with a clear head after sorting a few things out."

  81. 1210: 

    Humpo: "The return of Ronnie is fantastic news for snooker. It relies on him to draw in irregular viewers, ala Tiger Woods for golf."

    Have your say on #bbcsportsday

  82. 1207: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan: "I'm going into the unknown. But hey, embrace it. I might get smashed in Sheffield."

  83. 1203: 

    Ronnie O'Sullivan, who announced he will play at the 2013 World Snooker Championship: "I was bored - time to get back."

  84. 1158: 

    So there you have it. 'Rocket' Ronnie O'Sullivan will go for his fifth Crucible crown in Sheffield. A relief for his fans and for many fans of snooker.

    What do you think of the decision? Use #bbcsporstday

  85. 1157: 

    Four-time champion Ronnie O'Sullivan will defend his world snooker title.

  86. 1155: 

    Our man Frank Keogh is in London for the announcement:

    "While I have front row seat at Ronnie O'Sullivan press conference, I wouldn't bet against well-connected @andygoldstein05 having news 1st"

  87. 1154: 

    O'Sullivan has battled depression over the years and has had to deal with major family issues.

    Despite this, the Essex Exocet is regarded as one of the most successful and naturally gifted players to have graced the green baize.

    He was ranked ninth at the end of last season, and although he has provisionally dropped to 24th after missing several tournaments, as defending champion he would qualify for the world championship [starts 20 April] and be the top seed.

    World Snooker chief Barry Hearn said he would welcome back O'Sullivan - now it's up to the man himself to decide whether he wants to compete in the finale to the snooker season.

  88. 1149: 

    Right - less than 12 minutes remaining before four-time world champion Ronnie O'Sullivan announces whether or not he will defend his Crucible title.

    Or will he reveal he is going retire from the sport altogether, having taken a break from the sport in November?

    The 37-year-old is a keen runner - is he set to compete in marathons?

    Who knows with the Rocket. Stay here for the latest from the news conference that is due to start at 12:00 GMT.

  89. 1140: 

    BBC Sport's Joe Wilson at the inquest into the death of Tom Maynard:

    Police on duty trailed black Mercedes because they thought it was stolen - driven at speed during the early hours

    4.15am police blocked black Mercedes in road and activated blue lights - it was an unmarked car

    Police now describes how driver of Merc ran off when they alerted him - police searched car, no drugs

  90. 1130: 

    Abou Cyril K: "Robin Van Persie must be the #playeroftheyear . He has been outstanding all season long."

    Nick Osborne: "#playeroftheyear Liam Bridcutt for #bhafc"

    Park: "#playeroftheyear contenders: Bale, Carrick, RVP, Zabaleta, Michu, Mata, Wilshere, Lambert, Weiman, Fellaini?"

    Get involved using the hashtag #playeroftheyear

  91. 1125: 

    The family of cricketer Tom Maynard react to the findings of the inquest into his death:

    "The results of the inquest do not define our son. The fact that so very many people thought the world of him is what defines him as a person.

    "The only people who would judge Tom on the findings of the inquest are people who didn't know him. He made choices that night that tragically cost him his life but his devastated family and friends will love and miss him unconditionally always.

    "He was a very special person and his death leaves a huge hole in all our lives."

  92. 1121: 

    John Still leaves his position as manager of League Two side Dagenham to take up the vacancy at non-league Luton.

  93. 1119: 

    Away from Ronnie O'Sullivan, action is taking place at the World Open in Haikou, China. Former world champion Shaun Murphy is into the second round after recording a 5-4 win over Martin Gould.

  94. 1112: 

    Glasgow Warriors announce that Scotland international Richie Vernon will return to the club from Sale Sharks in the summer.

  95. 1109: 

    More of your thoughts on who should win Player of the Year. Please send them to the hashtag #playeroftheyear.

    Chris Hanlon: how is there even a debate for #playeroftheyear Man Utd wouldn't be 12 points clear without a certain Robin Van Persie! best by far!

    Ben: "For me it's got to be Suarez he has kept some of us Scousers happy this season. Bale's been great too though and Michu."

    Rich: "If you have any doubt about Bale's class, just watch him for 90 minutes. Don't watch the ball, just the man."

  96. 1108: 

    BBC Sport's Joe Wilson at the Tom Maynard inquest:

    Letter read out from Maynard's father says Tom had no history of depression

    Toxicology tests on Tom Maynard showed high level of alcohol plus drugs including cocaine and ecstasy

    Pathologist says possible Maynard was killed by contact with live rail before hit by tube train

    Pathologist says Maynard's judgement wd have been affected by alcohol and drugs in system

    Hair sample suggests Maynard was regular user of cocaine in three months prior to death

    Maynard approx three times over legal blood alcohol level

  97. 1103: 

    BBC Sport's Frank Keogh at the Ronnie O'Sullivan news conference: "Whirlwind [Jimmy White] not saying what Rocket [Ronnie] will be saying later. Plot thickens."

  98. 1100: 

    More from BBC Sport's Frank Keogh ahead of the Ronnie O'Sullivan press conference which we are expecting to be around midday: "World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn, who has twice managed Ronnie O'Sullivan in the past, says he does not know if the player will return to the game.

    "Will he retire, or will he return? 'You just never know with Ronnie, although there does seem to be a bit of the old sparkle in his eyes,' says Hearn. Despite his absence, O'Sullivan - as reigning champion - would be top seed if he turned up for the start of the World Championship in Sheffield on 20 April."

  99. 1059:  
    BBC Radio 5 live5 LIVE SPORT

    A reminder about tonight's 5 live Sport with Mark Pougatch from 19:00 GMT, which comes live from Goodison Park as Everton face Oldham in an FA Cup fifth-round replay. Full match commentary comes from John Murray, with summaries by former Hull boss Phil Brown. On 5 live sports extra from 19:45 GMT there is commentary of Leicester-Blackburn in the Championship.

  100. 1057: 

    Here's today's Question of Sport teaser, and with Ronnie O'Sullivan about to unveil his future plans, can you name the THREE players he has beaten in World Championship finals? Answers from 14:00 GMT.

  101. 1055: 

    Northampton's former Saracens and England Saxons wing Noah Cato, 24, joins Newcastle for the remainder of the season.

  102. 1052: 

    Gareth Bale still leading the way in the poll on our Facebook page. The Tottenham star has 240 votes, Luis Suarez second on 163 and Robin van Persie third on 127.

  103. 1049: 

    Former world number one Rafael Nadal will miss next month's ATP World Tour Masters Series events in Miami and Indian Wells, reports Spanish paper Marca. The 11-time Grand Slam champion only returned to the court this month after a seven-month injury lay-off with a persistent knee problem, but has decided to only play on clay courts as he prepares his bid for an eighth French Open title in May.

    "It's better on some days and worse on others, which isn't ideal for someone like me, because my idea of competing is based on giving it all at all times," he says.

  104. 1041: 

    Former world champion Dennis Taylor analyses Ronnie O'Sullivan, who is due to outline his future plans at a press conference this afternoon. "The game needs Ronnie O'Sullivan. He's not just any player, he's the most naturally gifted player we have ever had in the game and for Ronnie not to defend his world title would be unprecedented," Taylor tells 5 live.

    "I'm hoping that he does play. It's going to be difficult for him. He hasn't played much in a year, he's practised, but even if you have put a lot of practise in, to go out into a main arena and perform the way he did previously it's going to be difficult, but you never know with Ronnie, he can change his mind overnight. "

  105. 1036: 

    Chris Chohan: "RVP, Michu, Suarez and man of the moment Gareth Bale for #playeroftheyear so far! Goals aplenty, key players and quality/talent in abundance." (They can't ALL win Chris!)

    Damien Davis: "For me, it's between Michu and Bale. Michu was the bargain signing, but Bale has been on a different planet!"

    Ian Stoddart: "No-one listened when I said Carlton Palmer as Englands best, maybe you'll listen now, Bosingwa, quiet modest humble classy." (Ian. Oh dear.)

  106. 1032: 

    The inquest into the death of Surrey batsman Tom Maynard last June will take place today. England bowler Jade Dernbach is one of several former team-mates who will attend at Westminster Coroner's Court.

  107. 1027:  
    BBC Radio 5 live5 LIVE PODCAST

    Last night's 5 live podcast is now available to download, Mark Chapman joined by Steve Claridge, John Motson and Darren Fletcher for a mini-Monday Night Club as Spurs won 3-2 at West Ham. Plus reaction to Swansea's League Cup victory and David Beckham's first game for Paris St-Germain.

  108. 1024: 

    We'll be finding out about Ronnie O'Sullivan's plans at his press conference later but the world champion has done a Q&A session with some of our students in School Report and you can read the results on the BBC website now.

  109. 1021: 

    Bale is still top of the charts in our Facebook poll, with 153 votes, Van Persie on 87 and Suarez 84.

  110. 1015: 

    More stats from Opta now, charting Gareth Bale's six seasons at Tottenham, and in his first term in 2007-8 he created 15 chances, dropping to 11 the following season.

    In 2009-10 he created 39, followed by 48 in 2010-11 and 84 last term.

  111. 1009: 

    Who is your Player of the Year? Keep them coming in please to #playeroftheyear.

    Dean McNamara: "As a Utd fan I would love to say RVP, but Bale has been fantastic, without him Spurs would be not be up there. Bale for me."

    GoodMorningFootball: "Juan Mata has been so important for Chelsea, had he not been there Chelsea would be below Arsenal in the table!"

    Randall Morrison: "Michu. Smaller club, bigger impact and for a bargain too!"

  112. 1005: 

    Manchester United captain Nemanja Vidic is confident that he will soon be available for every game as he seeks to overcome a troublesome knee injury.

    "After every game I feel better and better, which is a good sign," the 31-year-old tells BBC Manchester.

  113. 0959: 

    More stats on Gareth Bale from Opta and in his first season at Spurs he scored twice, or one every 307.5 minutes, there were no goals in his second season, 2008-9, the next season he scored three, with a goal every 569 minutes.

    In 2010-11 Bale hit seven goals, one every 350.1 minutes, last season there were nine, one every 357.4 minutes and, as we know, 15 this term already, one every 134.9 minutes.

  114. 0953: 

    Back to the Opta stats - and goals. Van Persie has scored 19 times in the Premier League, a goal every 114 minutes, Suarez 18, one every 129 minutes and Bale 15, a goal every 135 minutes.

  115. 0949: 

    Liam Richardson on the BBC Sport Facebook page: "Mata has been quality from start to finish this season and has been by far the most consistent. He has more assists than anyone in Europe! Carried Chelsea at times this season. They aren't the same team without him."

  116. 0947: 

    Gareth Bale leads the way with 85 votes in the poll on our Facebook page asking who should be Player of the Year. Robin van Persie is second on 43 and Luis Suarez has 39.

  117. 0944: 

    Rain stopped play mid-frame at the Haikou World Open ranking event on Hainan Island in China.

    Condensation started dripping down from the roof at the Hainan International Exhibition Centre in the match between Ryan Day and Mark Allen. Officials got a huge step-ladder out to find the source of the leak, before the part of the table affected was dried out with a cloth. Allen went on to win the match 5-2.

  118. 0940: 
    Liverpool's Luis Suarez

    More stories from overseas later but more stats from Opta for you now and in terms of chances created Suarez is well ahead with 79, Bale on 56 and Van Persie 47. Suarez creates a chance every 29 minutes, Bale every 36 minutes and Van Persie every 46 minutes.

    But in terms of actual goal assists Van Persie has seven, Suarez four and Bale one.

  119. 0936: 

    The Australian papers are in rather more sombre mood after the defeat. The Australian said: "Beaten Australians ponder way forward in India Test series" and the Sydney Morning Herald made "Tendulkar puts exclamation mark on India's big victory" its lead headline.

  120. 0930: 

    Now for some items from across the globe courtesy of our friends at BBC Monitoring and the media in India have given a rapturous welcome to the team's eight-wicket win over Australia. Experts and correspondents have special praise for home skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's fighting double hundred.

    The Times of India's report that India's spinners took all the 20 wickets for only the third time in their Test history and The Indian Express led with "India demolish Australia, Dhoni equals Sourav Ganguly's record" as a header.

  121. 0926: 

    Lazio are facing the prospect of playing a home Europa League tie behind closed doors after Uefa charged their supporters with offences of a racist nature for the fourth time this season.

    European football's governing body confirmed today they have charged the Rome club for the 'racist behaviour' of their fans during last Thursday's 2-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach as well as the 'throwing of missiles and or fireworks' and 'insufficient organisation'.

  122. 0919: 

    More Opta comparison stats for you now and in terms of chance conversion rate, Van Persie wins on 24%, Bale with 17% and Suarez 16%.

  123. 0913: 

    More of your thoughts on who should be Player of the Year. Keep them coming in please and it's a new hashtag for today, #playeroftheyear.

    Jamie McElwain: I'd have to say RVP right now, but if Bale's run of form continues I don't think anyone would deny him the title."

    Saral Karki: "Suarez without a shadow of a doubt closely followed by Bale."

    Jake Waring: "It's hard to decide who player of the year is yet as there are 11 games left, and they are the most important 11."

  124. 0905: 

    More Opta stats for you and in terms of shooting accuracy, Bale is top with 57%, Van Persie has 54% and Suarez 45%.

    Bale has had 51 on target and 39 off target, Van Persie 43 on target and 36 off target, Suarez 50 on target and 62 off target.

  125. 0902:  
    BBC Radio 5 liveFOOTBALL

    Tonight's 5 live Sport with Mark Pougatch from 19:00 GMT comes live from Goodison Park where Everton take on Oldham in the FA Cup fifth-round replay. There will be full match commentary from John Murray, with summaries by former Hull boss Phil Brown.

    On 5 live sports extra from 19:45 GMT we have commentary on the Championship match between Leicester and Blackburn for you, with John Acres, former Aston Villa, Wolves and Coventry player Steve Froggatt providing the summaries.

  126. 0856: 

    More of your thoughts on who should be Player of the Year. Keep them coming in please to #playeroftheyear.

    Rayyan Aziz: "Too early to tell who should be #playeroftheyear but as it stands its RVP. Arsenal literally gave United the title for £24m."

    Phil Myers: "Has to be Bale for pace, style and the ability to turn a game - on fire - sheer brilliance - exciting to watch - class!"

    Duncan Bown: "No doubt its Pablo Zabaleta, its not just about the guys who score the goals, Zaba has been outstanding every game." (Interesting Duncan)

  127. 0850: 
    Gareth Bale hits Tottenham's winner at West Ham

    Spurs legend Gary Mabbutt believes Gareth Bale will stay at White Hart Lane, despite the increasing interest in the talented Welshman.

    Mabbutt tells 5 live Breakfast: "Gareth has a very close family around him, he signed a new four year contract at the start of the season, he is enjoying his football and if Tottenham end up in the top four and with Champions League football, then I think he will have everything he desires at the moment."

  128. 0845: 

    BBC Sport's Frank Keogh with more details about Ronnie O'Sullivan, who we will hear from later: "The Rocket said in November 2012 he was taking a break from the sport until at least the end of the season, but he is reported to have considered a comeback.

    "O'Sullivan, 37, has until the entries deadline on 28 February to decide if he will seek a fifth world title at the Crucible in Sheffield. The tournament takes place from 20 April to 6 May."

  129. 0840: 

    More comparison stats from Opta and the pass completion category is won by Van Persie, who scores 80%, with Bale 78% and Suarez 77%.

  130. 0839: 

    We're running a poll on our Facebook page this morning on who should be Player of the Year and Bale leads at the moment from Van Persie.

  131. 0835: 

    More from former Spurs captain Gary Mabbutt, who ranks Gareth Bale amongst the best players in the world and tells 5 live Breakfast: "The form that he has had in recent times, of course that will attract a lot of attention towards him. With the performances he is putting in, he has to be judged as one of the best in the world at the moment.

    "You've got the likes of Lionel Messi and Ronaldo and certainly Gareth Bale is up there amongst them. He scored eight goals in our last six games and all of the goals have been top quality."

  132. 0830: 

    We're asking who you think should be Player of the Year. There is a different hashtag today so please send your views to #playeroftheyear.

    Mikey Sneijder: "Bale has to be Player of the Year, so much talent and consistent. I can't see him leaving Spurs for any less than £60m."

    Phil Harcourt: "Michu for me 1st season in PL been amazing, close call though him, Bale and Suarez."

    Kevin Huxley: "Suarez, excelled during a difficult transitional year for the Reds. Amazing individual skill & passion."

  133. 0825: 

    We've asked our friends at Opta to provide some stats to compare Bale, Suarez and Van Persie this season and we'll bring you some of those. Bale has had 111 dribbles and runs, compared to only 34 for Van Persie, but Suarez is way ahead in that category with 236.

  134. 0820:  
    BBC Radio 5 liveFOOTBALL

    Tottenham legend Gary Mabbutt also salutes Bale and tells 5 live Breakfast: "If you look at Gareth Bale's performances over this last couple of seasons, they have been outstanding. When he is in the form that he is in at the moment, he is unplayable.

    "Whenever you look at a player you are playing against, you look at their weaknesses, where you can exploit them, or get the better of them. But however much you look at him, Gareth doesn't seem to have any weaknesses.

  135. 0815: 

    No prizes for guessing today's subject matter. He scored two more spectacular goals to propel Tottenham to victory at West Ham, but is Gareth Bale your Player of the Season? If not, who could challenge him? Luis Suarez? Robin van Persie? Michu? Juan Mata?

    Please let us know who you think should win, regardless of the team he plays for or who you support, using the hashtag #playeroftheyear.

  136. 0812: 

    At around midday there is a Ronnie O'Sullivan press conference where the world champion is expected to reveal his future plans, including whether he will defend his world title. BBC Sport's Frank Keogh will be there to bring you the latest developments.

  137. 0808: 

    India take a 1-0 lead in the four-match Test series with Australia after winning by eight wickets in Chennai.

    Australia added only nine this morning, Moises Henriques stranded on 81 not out, and Sachin Tendulkar hit his first two balls for six as India reached their target of 50 before lunch on the final day.

  138. 0806: 

    Former England boss Steve McClaren parts company with FC Twente. Saturday's 2-1 league defeat at Heerenveen left Twente, who won the title under McClaren in 2010, in fifth place in the Eredivisie.

  139. 0804: 

    British heavyweight David Price wants a rematch with Tony Thompson, who ended his unbeaten record in Liverpool last weekend, and would consider fighting in the United States for a smaller share of the revenue.

  140. 0802: 

    Not surprisingly Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas hails Gareth Bale after the Welshman's stunning two-goal display inspired Spurs to a 3-2 win over West Ham. "He inspires people and he is a direct influence on every single player," the Spurs boss says.

  141. 0801: 

    Hello and welcome along to another Sportsday, from the BBC Sport Centre in Salford Quays. There is much to get through this morning but we begin with a look at the top stories on the BBC website.

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