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Summary

  1. England coach applicants crazy - Hayden
  2. Murray beats Chardy at Rome Masters
  3. Real Madrid v Juventus (19:45 BST)
  4. GET INVOLVED: Toure gift ideas via #bbcsportsday

Live Reporting

By Phil Dawkes and Steve Canavan

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Goodnight all

    That's it. We're done, finito, finished.

    But don't go anywhere. Replacing us right now is live Champions League text commentary of Real Madrid v Juventus at the Bernabeu, which, if we may, we strongly recommend you following. It should be a belter.

    We'll be back at 08:00 BST tomorrow for another edition of Sportsday - see you all then.

  2. Cricket

    No concerns

    Zimbabwe coach Dav Whatmore expects their tour of Pakistan later this month to be a "tremendous success" and said he would not travel if he thought lives were in danger.

    getty

    Zimbabwe will be the first country to tour Pakistan since a gun attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore in 2009 left seven players injured and six policemen plus two civilians dead.

    "I'm fully behind the tour," said Whatmore, who coached Pakistan for two years from 2012.

    "I understand others feel differently, but I would never put anybody else in an unsafe environment. I understand the significance of this tour to Pakistan and I'm very happy to go."

  3. Football

    Heading Stateside?

    Juventus's Argentine striker Carlos Tevez - likely to play a big part in tonight's game (or at least he's hoping so) - could move to the MLS when his contract expires in 2016.

    tevez

    American broadcaster NBC Sports say Tevez's camp have contacted three separate clubs in the MLS to enquire about the possibility of a move.

  4. Football

    The Real view

    Carlo Ancelotti's side have slipped four points behind leaders Barcelona with two matches left and their defender Dani Carvajal has conceded his team will not win the league title.

    "Our reputation is on the line against Juve and the crowd will be spectacular and will be our 12th man," Ancelotti said.

    "We put in a shift for the full 90 minutes against Valencia. We ran, fought, and if you don't put it in, it ends up taking its toll, but tonight we're going to go all out. The crowd got behind us and didn't give in at any point."

    Remember, there is live text commentary right here on the BBC Sport website from 18:30 BST (kick-off at the Bernabeu is 19:45).

  5. Football

    The Juve view

    Juventus are in their first semi-final since 2003 and coach Massimiliano Allegri said: "I won't know my starting line-up right until the last minute.

    "We know it will be a very difficult game in Madrid and a different one entirely, a more attacking affair. We passed up four or five decent chances in the first leg. We'll have to put them away at the Bernabeu if we want to go through."

    pogba

    Midfielder Paul Pogba added: "We know it's going to be really difficult. They're used to playing in semi-finals and they won the competition last year.

    "They're playing at home so it's going to be even harder for us. But we want to win and we'll do everything we can to pull it off."

  6. Football

    Keeping the faith

    Carlo Ancelotti is confident Real Madrid will reach the Champions League final if they repeat the performance of Saturday's 2-2 draw with Valencia.

    getty

    The European champions trail 2-1 from the first leg against head coach Ancelotti's former club Juventus.

    "We feel good and if we play like this on Wednesday then everything will go well," the Italian said.

    Cristiano Ronaldo missed a penalty and Real hit the woodwork three times as they came from 2-0 down to draw with Valencia in La Liga.

  7. Football

    Keane: 'Bale a top player'

    Gareth Bale

    Former Manchester United midfielder Roy Keane was heavily critical of Bale's display in Real Madrid's 2-1 Champions League semi-final first-leg defeat to Juventus. But the Republic or Ireland assistant coach maintains that if Bale performs tonight he can help Real overturn the deficit and reach the final, where Spanish rivals Barcelona await.

    "There's no doubt in his [Bale's] talent," said Keane. "We've seen him do it before. We've seen him do it last year in the big, big games. If Gareth is at it tomorrow [Wednesday] night, then they've got a chance. That's if he turns up. He's a top player."

  8. Football

    Ancelotti warning for Bale's agent

    Gareth Bale

    'Stay quiet'. That is the message from Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti to the agent of winger Gareth Bale. Like an overly-keen dad shouting from the sidelines on a Sunday morning, the Welshman's representative says that his client's current woes at the Spanish club are because his team-mates do not pass to him.

    But Ancelotti has responded: "This is a world in which a lot of people talk and sometimes they talk too much. Bale has never had problems with his team-mates and his team-mates have never had problems with Bale."

  9. Football

    Game on

    Now then, it's under two hours until the main event of the evening gets under way - Real Madrid v Juventus.

    Real trail 2-1 from the first-leg in Italy and so who goes through to the Champions League final against Barcelona in Berlin on 30 May is hanging in the balance.

    Here's a little look at tonight's game, starting with a man who is finding himself at the centre of attention for the wrong reasons - world's most expensive player Gareth Bale.

  10. Football

    Chesterfield - the new Liverpool?

    Dean Saunders has been talking to the media after taking over as Chesterfield boss.

    "I've played for some big teams," he said. "Like Liverpool. We didn't play well every week but we beat you. That's what I want to bring to this football club."

    getty

    Will it work? Time will tell. Saunders has three relegations at three different clubs as manager thus far, but Chesterfield chairman Dave Allen says he is certain he has hired the right man. "He's the only person I interviewed, that's how confident I am," said Allen.

    Paul Cook quit as Chesterfield boss to take over at Portsmouth, after the Spireites lost to Preston in the League One play-offs.

  11. Road Cycling

    Latest from the Giro

    Slovenia's Jan Polanc claimed the first major win of his professional career when he took the fifth stage of the Giro D'Italia on Wednesday.

    getty

    Overall race favourite Alberto Contador of Spain finished fourth to take the pink jersey from Australian Simon Clarke after the 152 kilometres from La Spezia to Abatone, the first mountain stage of the race.

    Contador leads the overall standings by two seconds from Italian Fabio Aru, with Team Sky's Richie Porte in third place a further 18 seconds behind.

  12. Tennis

    Watson wiped out

    Oh dear. That really didn't take very long at all.

    British number one Heather Watson has been thumped at the Italian Open, beaten 6-1 6-1 by Spain's 10th seed Carla Suarez Navarro.

    watson

    It was always going be a tough game - Navarro is the fourth best player in the world on 2015 form - but even so, 22-year-old Watson will be very disappointed she didn't give hr opponent a tougher workout.

  13. Football

    'I can be the best'

    Memphis Depay has set himself the ultimate ambition - to become the best player in the world at Manchester United.

    The 21-year-old will move from PSV Eindhoven to Old Trafford when the transfer window opens in July.

    getty

    Depay, who has scored 25 goals this season, said: "I believe I can be one of the best players in the world and I have to dream and believe to achieve.

    "You just have to work every day on your dreams. After the World Cup in pre-season I spoke to my manager and said I have to keep focused. Scoring in the World Cup was good but not the end of it. Now I am on fire."

    Which, given what happened to his soon-to-be new team-mate Chris Smalling's hot-tub earlier, is an unfortunate way of putting it.

  14. Formula 1

    Over to you

    Formula 1 drivers will take the unusual step of surveying fans as Bernie Ecclestone and other key figures explore ways of spicing up the sport.

    Ecclestone and co are already contemplating rule changes for 2017.

    Nico Rosberg

    But drivers have decided to take matters into their own hands by asking fans what they would do.

    They intend to use social media to canvass views on a wide range of issues - technical, commercial, audience behaviours, etc - even asking fans whether F1 should be viewed as sport or entertainment.

  15. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Lloyd Rusbatch: Newcastle Utd fans and Alan Pardew, Zebrahead's track Careful What You Wish For.

    Andrew Valette: Beckham - These Boots Were Made For Walking (not bashing eyebrows)

  16. Cricket

    Gillespie no-show

    Yorkshire requested that coach Jason Gillespie did not talk to the media after the county's victory over Hampshire.

    Gillespie

    Gillespie, at the centre of much speculation linking him with the job as England coach, was scheduled to give a press conference today but, instead, Yorkshire's director of cricket Martyn Moxon appeared.

    Moxon said Yorkshire had not received any approach from the ECB to speak to Gillespie and that the county do not want to lose him.

    Moxon admitted Gillespie's aim is to coach at international level, but refused to indicate the answer he thinks Gillespie would give to the ECB.

    The saga rumbles on.

  17. Tennis

    Watson has it all to do

    Alas, it looks like women's British number one Heather Watson might not join Murray in advancing at the Italian Open.

    In her second round match against Spain's 10th seed Carla Suarez Navarro at the Italian Open, Watson lost the opening set 6-1.

    getty

    And she's been broken in the second set and trails 3-1.

    In short, things don't look good.

  18. Tennis

    'I played a good match'

    Some reaction from Andy Murray after his defeat of France's Jeremy Chardy at the Italian Masters, his 10th straight win on clay this year.

    murray

    "My legs were a bit tired at the beginning, but then I started to feel better after the first few games," said Murray, who only decided to take part in the tournament late yesterday after a busy schedule of late.

    "For me, I felt like I played a really good match. He served big for the first set and a half.

    "It was tough for me. But I hung in. I felt like I moved pretty well and I served well throughout the match. I was happy with the way I adjusted to the conditions."

    Hope he's gone for a lie-down now, the lad deserves one.

  19. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Msquare: Kevin Pietersen to ECB - Love the way you lie, by Rihanna.

    T33L: Raheem Sterling and Liverpool to ABBA's Money! Money!! Money!!!

  20. Football

    Police-free

    There was no initial police presence at Tuesday's trouble-hit Manchester Under-21 derby, it has been confirmed.

    Old Trafford

    Disorder in the north-east corner of Old Trafford between United and City fans was first reported by a spectator inside the stadium at about 20:50 BST.

    Greater Manchester Police said it was examining CCTV footage of the incident.

    As we reported earlier, three arrests were made.

  21. Headlines at 5

    It's been a busy day. Sportsday will be here for another hour-and-a-half (we're clocking off at 18:30 BST, to make way for live text coverage of Real Madrid v Juventus), but here is a reminder of what's been making the news so far:

    Tennis: Britain's Andy Murray took his winning run on clay to 10 matches with victory over France's Jeremy Chardy at the Italian Open.

    Golf: Former world number one Tiger Woods has written to a young fan being bullied because of his stutter, saying "I know what it is like to be different".

    getty

    Cricket: Anyone applying for the job of England head coach would be "crazy", says former Australia opener Matthew Hayden - who says the new man will merely be a stooge for the ECB.

    Formula 1: Drivers will take the unusual step of surveying fans as Bernie Ecclestone and other key figures explore ways of spicing up the sport.coach.

  22. Birthday presents for Yaya Toure

    Get involved via #bbcsportsday

    DID: Get him Subbuteo or some Transformers. They can replace the toys he threw out the pram last year.

    Jordan Cooper: A one way ticket to Milan?

  23. Football

    Saints target teen keeper

    Southampton could be poised to make a bid for Newcastle United's highly-rated 18-year-old goalkeeper Freddie Woodman, according to the Journal.

    getty

    Woodman, who is also on the radar of Manchester City and Arsenal, has yet to start for the Magpies but has impressed in the FA Youth Cup and at England age group levels.

  24. Tuala agrees new Saints deal

    Rugby Union

    Ahsee Tuala

    Northampton full-back Ahsee Tuala has signed a new deal with the club, while Scarlets back-row Sion Bennett and Sale scrum-half Alex Mitchell have agreed to join the Premiership leaders from next season.

    Samoa international Tuala, 25, joined Saints in February, and has scored four tries in his eight appearances.

  25. 'May ready for career farewell'

    Tom May

    London Welsh captain Tom May says Saturday's final Premiership game against Saracens will be "strange" but he is ready to retire.

    May, 36, is set to make his 247th top-flight appearance - third on the all-time Premiership list.

    "It's going to be strange waking up on Monday morning and not having a job," May told BBC Radio Oxford.

    "My body is killing me. Monday to Friday is tough and it makes it really difficult physically.

    "Seventeen years is a long time and I want to quit while I'm ahead so that I make the decision and no-one else does. Now is the right time."

  26. Birthday presents for Yaya Toure

    Get involved via #bbcsportsday

    Barrie Duggan: Maybe a sedan chair. When the other 10 are carrying him he would get a better view.

    Viv: Birthday present for Yaya - get another agent & learn to be humble in all circumstances. City made u more famous than Barca!

    Laurence McBeth: 25-year-old legs and engine.

  27. Boxing

    Crolla comes back

    Eddie Hearn has confirmed Anthony Crolla will make his boxing return in July.

    getty

    He will fight WBA interim lightweight champion Darleys Perez on 18 July at Manchester Arena.

    Crolla suffered a fractured skull and a broken ankle when confronting burglars in December.

  28. Old Trafford set for tense finish

    Cricket

    Gloucestershire 388 & 275-9 dec, Lancashire 364 & 145-5

    Having gone into lunch 11-2, Lancashire looked in deep trouble when Ashwell Prince and Steven Croft fell quickly after the restart.

    But a century stand from Alviro Peterson (63 not out) and youngster Alex Davies (58) got the run chase back on track, before Davies mistimed a pull shot to Hamish Marshall at mid-wicket.

    Both sides will still think they could come away with a win, with Lancashire needing another 160 runs to win from 32 overs.

  29. Result in balance at Derby

    Cricket

    Derbyshire 343 & 407-5 dec, Northants 324 & 309-8

    The match is still in the balance at the County Ground with Derbyshire needing two wickets and Northants requiring 118 runs for victory.

    Rob Keogh advanced his score to 135 not out at tea, having shared an eighth-wicket stand of 83 with Josh Cobb (43).

    Scott Elstone and Mark Footitt have so far taken three wickets each for Derbyshire.

  30. Tennis

    Watson v Suarez Navarro

    After Andy Murray's straightforward win over Jeremy Chardy earlier today, fellow British number one Heather Watson now takes on Spain's 10th seed Carla Suarez Navarro at the Italian Open.

    The 22-year-old from Guernsey beat local favourite Roberta Vinci in round one, ending a run of three defeats, but faces a tough task against on-the-rise Suarez Navarro - who is the fourth best player in the world on 2015 form.

    Follow the latest score here.

  31. Patience key to Yorkshire victory

    Cricket

    BBC Radio Leeds' Dave Callaghan at Headingley

    Yorkshire players celebrate a wicket

    Yorkshire 370 & 305-4 beat Hampshire 227 & 143 by 305 runs (Scorecard)

    "The ability to remain patient helped Yorkshire to the Championship last season and it helped again in this match.

    "Hampshire remained defiant for a time on the final day. To their credit, the champions plugged away and got their reward.

    "Spin bowler Adil Rashid, bowling with confidence and skill, produced two wickets in two balls to end with figures of 4-48. Hampshire, despite an unbeaten 64 from Will Smith, were bowled out for 143 to lose by 305 runs.

    "Yorkshire are just behind the leading pack in Division One and unbeaten in four games. Hampshire are still searching for their first win this season."

  32. Kent press for victory

    Cricket

    BBC Radio Wales Sport's Nick Webb at Canterbury

    Kent 357 & 327, Glamorgan 281 & 194-6 (Scorecard)

    "Kent remain on course for their first Championship win of the season as Glamorgan reached tea on a precarious 194-6 at Canterbury.

    "Nightwatchman Dean Cosker led the resistance with a career-best 69 before giving Calum Haggett his second wicket, while Ivan Thomas chipped in with the wicket of Colin Ingram for 51.

    "Kent have a possible 37 overs to claim the last four wickets."

  33. Leicestershire tail defies Surrey

    Cricket

    Rob Taylor of Leicestershire bats during day four against Surrey

    Leicestershire 292 & 470-8, Surrey 557 (Scorecard)

    After being on the receiving end of Kevin Pietersen's 355 not out on days two and three, Leicestershire have risen to the occasion with the bat to give themselves a good chance of leaving The Oval with a draw.

    Clint McKay was lbw to Gareth Batty for 41, but that was the only wicket to fall in the afternoon session as tail-enders Rob Taylor and Jigar Naik shared an unbroken stand of 52.

    The visitors reached the interval on 470-8, a lead of 205.

  34. Football

    Cooling breaks in Champions League semi?

    Tonight sees Real Madrid face Juventus for the right to face Barcelona in the Champions League final, and it is sure to be a heated atmosphere. Literally. Wednesday night's game could include cooling breaks, with the Italian team having asked Uefa to include this possibility and the administrative body accepted their request.

    There could be one break in each half - in the 30th and 75th minutes - if temperatures in Madrid are at least 32 degrees 90 minutes before the start of the match.

  35. Football

    Let's move on

    This might be easier said than done but Newcastle midfielder Vurnon Anita has urged the club to put their difficulties behind them by securing their Premier League status.

    The Magpies ended a run of eight successive league defeats with Saturday's 1-1 draw against West Brom, but are just two points above the drop zone - and head coach John Carver remains under huge pressure.

    getty

    "It's important to put the past behind us and move on. We can't keep constantly looking back and talking about things that have happened," Anita told the Newcastle Journal.

    "The spirit in the team was never a problem. It was nice to be able to draw a line under a few things at the weekend and move on."

  36. Football

    Chesterfield and Preston charged by FA

    Chesterfield and Preston North End have both been charged by The FA in relation to their Football League One play-off match on 7 May.

    The clubs have been charged for failing to control their players after an incident in the 28th minute in the first leg which Preston won 1-0.

    Preston assistant manager Glynn Snodin has also been charged for improper conduct during the first half of the match.

    The Lilywhites went on to win the tie 4-0 on aggregate. to book their place in the play-off final.

  37. Birthday presents for Yaya Toure

    Get involved via #bbcsportsday

    Darwinian: Get Yaya a dummy to replace the one he spat out. #bbcsportsday

    James Knott: A new agent, a reality check and a pay cut.

    Ryan Williamson: A first-class ticket to Italy and swap him for Pogba.

  38. Rugby Union

    Ireland to host Women's World Cup

    Ireland's Niamh Briggs scores a try

    Ireland has been selected to host the 2017 Women's Rugby World Cup.

    The pool stages will be held at University College Dublin, before the players convene in Belfast for the semi-finals and positional play-offs, including the final at the Kingspan Stadium.

    "The awarding of Women's Rugby World Cup 2017 to Ireland is great news for teams and fans as the sport continues to reach out and inspire new participants in our great game. I am sure that Dublin and Belfast will prove to be popular destinations," said World Rugby Chairman Bernard Lapasset.

  39. Rugby Union

    Gatland playing North 'mind games'

    George North

    Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder says Wales head coach Warren Gatland is playing "mind games" with his comments about George North.

    Winger North is having a period of rest after a series of concussions, and last week Gatland said he was "hugely worried" over the 23-year-old's health.

    Gatland has also stated his preference for North not to play until the World Cup later this year.

    "We know what Warren's like. He enjoys a few mind games," said Mallinder.

  40. Cricket

    Gillespie pulls out of interviews

    Jason Gillespie

    Yorkshire coach Jason Gillespie has pulled out of speaking to the media following his side's victory over Hampshire as speculation continues that he will be approached to succeed Peter Moores as England head coach.

    However, Yorkshire director of cricket Martyn Moxon has spoken to BBC Sport's David Ornstein about Gillespie, saying the County have not received any approach from the ECB to speak to their coach and that they do not want to lose him.

    If there is an approach, Moxon said they would deal with that accordingly and admitted Gillespie's aim is to coach at international level, but refused to indicate the answer he thinks the Australian would give to the ECB.

  41. Football

    'She's not good enough for this level'

    Kelly Smith

    Arsenal Ladies forward Kelly Smith says she is "furious" after being sidelined for three to four months after a potentially career-ending tackle.

    The 36-year-old needed ankle surgery following a tackle by Abby Holmes in last month's 4-1 win over Sunderland.

    "While she gets a three-match ban I, in effect, get a 15-game ban in the league as well as cup games," the ex-England international wrote on her blog. "She's clearly not good enough to be playing at this level. I can't get that tackle out of my head.

    "Sure, she apologised as I got stretchered off and Sunderland subsequently apologised to Arsenal. That's all well and good but she should be thinking more about how to tackle, not how to apologise. Those type of tackles end careers."

  42. Football

    Love thy neighbour

    Manchester City and United are co-operating with police following minor crowd disturbances at an under-21 match between the two clubs.

    A crowd of 16,708 turned up at Old Trafford as United beat City 4-0 on Tuesday to move within a point of clinching the Barclays under-21 Premier League title.

    Three arrests were made by Greater Manchester Police following incidents at the ground.

    "Club officials are liaising with Greater Manchester Police and Manchester United FC over this situation and will assist with their enquiries."

    The two clubs liaised prior to the Old Trafford game to ensure rival supporters were segregated.

  43. Gift ideas for Yaya

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    Here are a few of the present ideas you have for birthday-boy Yaya Toure...

    BillyBoy: Pep Guardiola.

    Kiani: A decent defence.

    CCSDan: A one way ticket to Galatasaray!

    Keep your ideas coming via #bbcsportsday or 81111 (UK).

  44. Football

    Yaya gets six-figure reward

    Yaya Toure

    Birthday presents? Who needs one when you can be made £720,000 richer overnight. According to the Daily Mail, that's the bonus Yaya Toure received when Man City secured their Champions League qualification at the weekend. Maybe it's time to buy that Bugatti Yaya.

    Remember to send us your idea's for Yaya's birthday via #bbcsportsday or 81111 (UK).

  45. Rashid sends England reminder

    Cricket

    Adil Rashid

    Adil Rashid boosted his chances of an England Test call-up as Yorkshire beat Hampshire by 305 runs at Headingley. (Scorecard)

    With the squad for the first Test against New Zealand due to be announced on Thursday, the leg-spinner claimed 4-48 for match figures of 8-118.

    Will Smith made an unbeaten 64, but Hampshire were bowled out for 143 when last man Fidel Edwards was caught off Steve Patterson, having earlier survived a hat-trick ball from Rashid.

    We should hear from Tykes coach Jason Gillespie shortly on the subject of the vacant England head coach position.

  46. Football

    Naughty Carlo

    Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has been handed a two-match suspension for showing public dissent towards a referee.

    Spain's football federation said Ancelotti applauded in a disrespectful manner as referee Clos Gomez blew the final whistle on Madrid's 2-2 draw against Valencia last Saturday.

    According to the match official's notes, Ancelotti continued the exaggerated applause in the tunnel, and did the same to one of the assistant referees.

    According to the rules, coaches who show "contempt or disregard" can be banned from the touchline for up to a month.

  47. Football gossip

    Ronaldo bombshell?

    getty

    The Sun: Cristiano Ronaldo is ready to walk out on Real Madrid - and an announcement on the 30-year-old Portuguese forward's future could come as soon as this week.

  48. Cakegate - what to buy Yaya?

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    Now you know what today marks don't you? That's right, the anniversary of Cakegate. It's Yaya Toure's 32nd birthday and let's hope Manchester City have something special planned for their star midfielder.

    Last year, City thought they could get away with a happy birthday message on their Twitter account and presenting him with a birthday cake.

    Nice, eh? Erm, well no. Because Toure's agent Dimitri Seluk said the player was "very upset" about it and "could leave the club". "He got a cake but when it was Roberto Carlos's birthday, the president of Anzhi gave him a Bugatti," Seluk added.

    So, here's the thing: what do you think City should buy Toure this year to ensure they keep him sweet and he remains at the cub?

    Send us your gift ideas via Twitter at #bbcsportsday, on the BBC Sport Facebook page, and by text on 81111 (UK).

    cake
  49. Tennis

    Murray tells it how it is

    Earlier today, we asked if Andy Murray could be the new king of clay following his recent victories on the surface?

    Well, the British number one has been good enough to reply to our Tweet...

    Andy Murray tweet
  50. Football

    Pope on move?

    Port Vale striker Tom Pope is set to hold talks over a move to League One rivals Doncaster Rovers within the next few days, BBC Radio Stoke has learned.

    The 29-year-old, who is out of contract, said: "Everybody knows that I'd love to stay at the club and I've got no desire to leave.

    "But I've got to look after my family, and if the deal on the table's nowhere near what anybody else is offering then I'll have to weigh up my options."

  51. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Vaughan Try: Paul Pogba and Manchester United - I Want You Back, Jackson 5.

    Andy Bentley: Massimo Cellino and Leeds supporters. The lunatics have taken over the asylum!

    Matt Everitt: David Beckham and Sir Alex... This Town Aint Big Enough For The Both Of Us

  52. Football

    Busy time at Oxford

    Oxford have signed midfielder Liam Sercombe, 25, on a two-year deal following the expiry of his contract at Exeter City.

    Sercombe told BBC Radio Oxford: "Everyone knows how big the club is and I want to be part of helping them get out of League Two, hopefully we can do that next year."

    Sercombe is Oxford's second signing in two days, following forward Kemar Roofe's move from West Brom.

  53. Golf

    Rory gets aggressive

    getty

    A spot of golf now and world number one Rory McIlroy has vowed to take an aggressive approach on the greens as he looks to find his putting touch this week at the Wells Fargo Championship.

    McIlroy finished eighth in the Players Championship at Sawgrass on Sunday after struggling to convert his excellent play from tee to green into enough birdies to challenge for the title.

    "I'm really happy with where everything is from tee to green, so more of the same with that and just hole a few more putts," said the Irishman.

    "I'll try to get the speed a bit better and be a bit more aggressive on the greens and hopefully that will make a difference."

  54. Football

    Duo to stay

    Casper Ankergren and Inigo Calderon
    Image caption: Casper Ankergren (left) and Inigo Calderon were both part of the Brighton side that won League One in 2011

    Brighton & Hove Albion goalkeeper Casper Ankergren and defender Inigo Calderon have signed new one-year deals with the Championship club.

    The pair, both 35, both joined the Seagulls in 2010 and helped the Sussex club win the League One title in 2011.

  55. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Tom Thrall: Gareth Bale - Lonely. Not really a break up, but it might lead to one soon...

  56. Charlton deny move for striker Mboyo

    Football

    Charlton have denied reports linking them with a move for Genk striker Ilombe Mboyo, who spent time in prison in Belgium for participating in the gang rape of a 14-year-old girl in 2004.

    A report in the Daily Mail on Wednesday suggested the Addicks were attempting to sign the Belgium international.

    "He is absolutely not on our radar. He is not a player we are interested in signing," said a Charlton spokesman.

  57. Cricket

    Akmal signs in

    Leicestershire have signed Pakistan batsman Umar Akmal for part of this summer's NatWest T20 Blast.

    getty

    Akmal will play four games in June - including a possible meeting with his international team-mate Shahid Afridi when Northamptonshire visit Grace Road on 12 June.

    Part of Pakistan's World Cup squad, Akmal can certainly bat - he has a prolific record in Twenty20 cricket, with a top score of 94 and a strike rate of 128.65.

  58. Football

    'We're not the same without Robben'

    Netherlands coach Guus Hiddink has admitted his side will be a much weaker force without the injured Arjen Robben when they play Latvia in a key Euro 2016 qualifier next month

    "With the absence of Robben, the team will lose 30-40% of its quality and production. That's the impact he has shown over the last year and a half," said Hiddink.

    robben

    Robben recently recovered from an abdominal muscle injury only to suffer a calf tear, which ended his season and ruled him out of Bayern Munich's Champions League matches with Barcelona.

    The Dutch play Latvia away in Riga on 12 June and - lagging behind the Czech Republic and Iceland in their group - need maximum points.

  59. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Simon Goodall: Kevin Pietersen to the ECB. I could be so good for you - Dennis Waterman.

    We've just watched the video to that song in the interest of research and have to say it's one of the weirdest we've ever seen, featuring a dancing policeman, an elderly greengrocer and Dennis kissing a traffic warden. All of which is of absolutely no relevance to our debate but we thought we'd tell you anyway.

  60. Football

    Mother knows best

    Mothers can sometimes be embarrassing can't they? We've all been in the same position, they mean well, they've got your best interests at heart, but really they're making things a lot worse.

    Well, even Man United striker Radamel Falcao can empathise with that today.

    getty

    "Not everything has been easy in Falcao's life. He has had some difficult moments in his career that have slowed his progress and prevented him from participating in important competitions like the World Cup, or have confined him to the bench, like in Manchester," his mother told Colombian newspaper El Espectador.

    "Even if he's unhappy not to be in the starting XI, he has to accept the coach's decisions. It's not a normal situation given what he has experienced in his career, but it happens in football."

    She even dropped a clue about where her son's future may lie, saying: "If God shows him a new path, he'll leave Manchester; if not, he'll stay."

    OK, so it's not much of a clue...

  61. Lancashire start run-chase badly

    Cricket

    Gloucestershire 388 & 275-9 dec, Lancashire 364 & 11-2

    Lancashire made a poor start in their attempt to score exactly 300 to beat Gloucestershire on the final day at Old Trafford.

    In only 3.4 overs before lunch, they lost both Luis Reece and first-innings centurion Paul Horton to the new ball.

    Earlier, Hamish Marshall missed out on a century for Gloucestershire when he was bowled by Kyle Jarvis for 92, 12 overs before skipper Geraint Jones made the declaration.

  62. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Bertie Kennedy: Mario Balotelli and Liverpool. 'The Passenger' by Iggy Pop.

    Liz Broughton: The Blackpool Fans and Karl Oyston, played to Radiohead's Let Down.

    Steve Moore: Fabregas and Arsenal fans - Chelsea Dagger

  63. Northants cling on at Derby

    Cricket

    Derbyshire 343 & 407-5 dec, Northants 324 & 134-5

    Derbyshire are well-placed to leapfrog Northants into second place in the Division Two table after picking up three wickets during the final morning at the County Ground.

    There was one each for Mark Footitt, Shiv Thakor and Scott Elstone as the visitors reached lunch still 293 runs in arrears.

    Rob Keogh batted well for Northants, progressing to 60 not out, with seven fours.

  64. Kent look to polish off Glamorgan

    Cricket

    BBC Radio Wales Sport's Nick Webb at Canterbury:

    Kent 357 & 327, Glamorgan 281 & 114-3

    "Kent struck two early blows on the final day as Glamorgan reached lunch on 112-3 after being set an unlikely 404 for victory.

    "James Kettleborough fell leg before to the accurate Darren Stevens for 20, while first-innings centurion Will Bragg went the same way to Matt Coles for nought.

    "But nightwatchman Dean Cosker survived until lunch on 35, with Colin Ingram 42 not out at the other end, giving Glamorgan an outside chance of salvaging a draw."

  65. Leicestershire hold up Surrey

    Cricket

    BBC London 94.9's Mark Church at The Oval:

    Leicestershire 292 & 394-7, Surrey 557

    "It's all set up for a fascinating afternoon as Leicestershire lead by 129 and Surrey need three more wickets before they can start a run-chase.

    "Ben Raine fell to Zafar Ansari for 33 this morning and Niall O'Brien's nuggety effort was brought to an end by Tom Curran on 78.

    "If the visitors can extend the lead to something up around 200, the number of overs left in the day will come into play."

  66. Smith frustrates Yorkshire

    Cricket

    Let's begin our round-up of the scores at lunch in the county championship..

    BBC Radio Solent's Kevan James at Headingley:

    Yorkshire 370 & 305-4, Hampshire 227 & 114-6

    "Will Smith reached his first half century of the season and was keeping Yorkshire at bay on 51 not out at the interval as the home side seek the wickets they need for victory.

    "They have picked two of the six required at the start of play so far - one each for Adil Rashid and Tim Bresnan.

    "And it is Rashid (2-37) who looks the most likely despite having to work hard to find the slow turn he has extracted from time to time."

  67. Rugby League

    Fund-raising game for Jones' children

    Wales are to play Keighley in a fund-raising match for the family of Danny Jones.

    John Kear, the Wales head coach, says there has been a "tremendous response" to the idea and that his players have all offered to play without pay.

    Danny Jones

    The match, which still needs the go-ahead from the authorities, will take place at Cougar Park on Sunday, 26 October.

    Funds raised will go to the children of Keighley and Wales stand-off Jones, who died 10 days ago of a rare heart condition after collapsing during a match at London Skolars.

  68. Burgess 'can offer more' at flanker

    Rugby Union

    Sam Burgess (left)

    Cross-coder Sam Burgess says he "can offer more" at flanker for Bath, but is unsure how the change of position will impact on his England prospects.

    The 26-year-old, in his first season in rugby union, started out in the centres before moving to flanker last month.

    "I think the way the two teams play is certainly different," he told BBC Points West. "In our system at Bath playing at six gets the most out of me and works for the team. But how it works down the line, we'll just wait and see."

  69. Ban ends Bai's season

    Rugby Union

    Leicester centre Seremaia Bai will miss the rest of the season after being banned for three weeks for charging in to a ruck in Saturday's win over Wasps.

    It means he will miss the final Premiership game of the season, against Northampton, and the play-offs should Leicester be involved.

    The Fiji international was sent off for charging in to Nathan Hughes and pleaded guilty at a Rugby Football Union disciplinary hearing.

  70. Rugby Union

    Diamond criticises 'desperate' McCall

    Sale Sharks boss Steve Diamond

    Sale Sharks boss Steve Diamond has called Saracens counterpart Mark McCall "desperate" for questioning Sale's motivation for their trip to Exeter.

    Speaking after Sarries' loss to the Chiefs, McCall referenced Sale's 65-10 loss at Munster when they were already out of the European Champions Cup.

    Saracens need to beat relegated London Welsh on Saturday and hope Exeter lose to finish in a top-four play-off spot.

    "I think he should just concentrate on motivating his own team," Diamond told BBC Sport. "All they've got to do is beat London Welsh like everybody else has done, it's ridiculous."

  71. Simpson out for up to eight weeks

    Rugby Union

    Wasps scrum-half Joe Simpson will miss the Premiership season finale after straining a ligament in his left knee against Leicester Tigers.

    The 26-year-old does not require surgery, but will be unable to play for between six and eight weeks.

    Sixth-placed Wasps require at least a point from their trip to London Irish to guarantee European rugby next term.

  72. Rugby Union

    Come to England

    World Cup-winning captain Martin Johnson says if Steffon Armitage or Nick Abendanon want to play for England they should be playing club rugby in the Premiership.

    England's 45-man training squad is to be announced on May 20 by Stuart Lancaster - but is unlikely to include France-based players Armitage and Abendanon, despite their excellent form.

    getty

    England's stance is only to pick overseas-based players in "exceptional circumstances".

    Johnson said: "Ultimately guys know the rules. If they wanted to put themselves in a situation to play for England then come over and play here. It's as simple as that."

  73. Football/999

    A very hot, hot tub

    Now here's a first-world problem if ever there was one. Man United's Chris Smalling has had to call firefighters after his hot tub caught fire.

    An electrical fault is thought to have sparked the blaze, which started in the back garden of the Premier League star's home in Altrincham.

    getty

    Police reported the fire after spotting smoke rising above the millionaires' row property, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said.

    It is understood the England defender was not at home at the time.

  74. Kevin Pietersen latest

    We're hearing that Kevin Pietersen is back at The Oval following his precautionary scan on a calf injury. But there is not news yet as to whether he will take the field or bat in Surrey's second innings. Leicestershire are currently 387-7 in their second innings, leading by 122 runs.

  75. Tennis

    Murray beats Chardy 6-4 6-3

    Andy Murray

    Andy Murray completes an impressive straight-sets win over Frenchman Jeremy Chardy to get his Italian Open campaign off to a solid start.

    The Briton, seeded third, breaks twice in the second set and goes on to face French 13th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or Belgian David Goffin in the last 16.

    "It would have been strange to miss the biggest French Open warm-up tournament because you're playing so well," says Telegraph correspondent Simon Briggs on 5 live sports extra. "He did what he's been doing for the last couple of weeks and Chardy had no answer."

  76. Cricket

    Sunrisers confirm KP arrival

    Kevin Pietersen competes in the IPL

    In a statement, Sunrisers Hyderabad have confirmed that Kevin Pietersen will join the IPL team early evening on the 15 May.

    The statement ends with a reminder of what England fans will be missing from now on: "Pietersen, or KP as he is known, made his IPL debut in 2009 and has played 32 games so far, scoring 928 runs at an impressive strike rate of 136.07. He is regarded as one of the most exciting and destructive batsmen in modern day cricket."

  77. Boxing

    Focus on shoulder, not fighting

    An injured Manny Pacquiao arrived back in the Philippines to a hero's welcome today - and says his focus is on recovering from shoulder surgery, not his next fight.

    The 36-year-old southpaw suffered a torn rotator cuff (not sure exactly what that is but it sounds painful) during his defeat to Floyd Mayweather J on May 2 and was wearing a sling on his right arm as he arrived home.

    Manny

    "I haven't discussed with anyone about my next fight," he said. "My focus right now is my shoulder recovery and to make it 100 percent okay - and on my congress work and family,"

  78. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    We asked for your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it...

    Sigs-NHS Tenenbaum: Every Arsenal fan and Fabregas with Unbreak My Heart.

    Titha: Teddy Sherrignham and Andy Cole, We Don't Talk Anymore.

  79. Rowing

    Katherine Grainger will make her competitive international comeback at the European Rowing Championships this month in the same boat that she guided to Olympic gold in 2012.

    getty

    The 39-year-old took two years off from the sport after winning the double sculls with Anna Watkins in London.

    But the Scot returned to training last September and has been paired with Vicky Thornley, who beat her in the single scull final in at the GB rowing team trials in April.

    The duo are part of a 50-strong team named on Wednesday for the event in Poznan, Poland on 29-31 May.

  80. Tennis

    Murray 6-4 3-2 Chardy

    Andy Murray whips a backhand pass across Jeremy Chardy to take a grip of his second-round match at the Italian Open, breaking serve for the second time.

    "Some world-class tennis there from Murray," says Telegraph correspondent Simon Briggs on 5 live sports extra.

    You can follow match commentary on 5 live sports extra.

  81. Golf

    Woods letter to young fan

    Former world number one Tiger Woods has written to a young fan being bullied because of his stutter, saying "I know what it is like to be different".

    getty

    The 39-year-old American revealed to the teenager, called Dillon, that he too had a stutter as a child.

    Woods said he was "proud" of the boy and urged him to keep fighting. "I know what it's like to be different and to sometimes not fit in," wrote Woods.

    Full story here.

  82. Football

    Dream final

    Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has welcomed the prospect of facing rivals Real Madrid for the first time in a Champions League final.

    pique

    Barca beat Bayern Munich over two legs to seal their place in the final in Berlin on 30 ay. Real Madrid face Juventus in the other semi tonight, trailing 2-1 from the first-leg.

    "We are in a fourth final of the Champions League in 10 years, and a final against Madrid would be very exciting and historic," said the Spanish international.

  83. Football

    Saunders named Chesterfield boss

    Dean Saunders

    Dean Saunders has been named as Chesterfield manager, succeeding Portsmouth-bound Paul Cook in the role.

    Saunders, 50, ended the season in interim charge of Crawley but was unable to prevent them from being relegated to League Two.

  84. Tennis

    Murray 6-4 Chardy

    Andy Murray takes the first set of his Italian Open second-round match against Frenchman Jeremy Chardy, breaking serve with some wonderful backhands at 3-3.

    "Chardy played a good set so it's far from being job done yet," says Telegraph correspondent Simon Briggs on 5 live sports extra.

    You can follow ball-by-ball commentary on 5 live sports extra.

  85. Formula 1

    Big changes afoot

    Formula One bosses and top teams will meet on Thursday to discuss a revamp of the sport.

    Formula One has major challenges to address, including soaring costs, struggling teams, falling viewing figures in some regions and a failure to engage a younger audience.

    Ferrari are among those to have called for a rules 'revolution' from 2017, with bigger, louder and more affordable engines in faster and more fearsome cars.

  86. Football gossip

    Evergreen Rob

    getty

    Daily Express: If Petr Cech leaves Chelsea in the summer - as seems likely - Blues boss Jose Mourinho could offer £2m for QPR's 35-year-old England goalkeeper Robert Green, as a back-up to first-choice Thibaut Courtois.

  87. Cricket

    Yorkshire close in on victory

    Hampshire are now six down against Yorkshire and staring defeat in the face. Looks like we might be hearing from Jason Gillespie on him being linked with the England coach's role sooner rather than later.

    You can follow that match on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra.

  88. Football gossip

    Gunning for Cech

    Cech

    Daily Telegraph: Arsenal have made Chelsea's out-of-favour keeper Petr Cech, 32, their top goalkeeping target this summer but Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich will have the final say on whether or not the deal goes through.

  89. Tennis

    Murray 3-3 Chardy

    Andy Murray is in trouble early on as he begins his Italian Open campaign against Jeremy Chardy, the 2005 Wimbledon junior champion who is all about crunching forehands.

    The Briton falls 15-40 behind but saves one break point with a stunning backhand winner and a second with another heavy blow from the same side. A couple of big serves keep Murray on level terms.

    You can follow ball-by-ball commentary on 5 live sports extra.

  90. Football gossip

    Chase for Charlie

    Austin

    Daily Express: Southampton will make a £10m offer for QPR striker Charlie Austin, 25, who has scored 17 goals this season but couldn't prevent Rangers from slipping down to the Championship.

  91. The soundtrack to sporting separations

    Get involved at #bestsportingbreakups

    It was once love in the middle, a relationship that brought runs, the Ashes and a place on top of the world.

    But first the texts, then the book, and - despite that 355 and an awful lot of hoohah - Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen are finished. Well, probably.

    Check out this video - complete with iconic 'Our Tune' presenter Simon Bates - which takes us through the rocky relationship between the two former team-mates.

    But, more importantly, we want your nominations for most memorable sporting separations - and a song to accompany it.

    Maybe David Beckham and Sir Alex Ferguson, played out to Cat Stevens The First Cut Is The Deepest (remember that flying boot?)

    We want to know. Don't be shy, get in touch now on Twitter via #bestsportingbreakups and at the BBC Sport Facebook page.

    getty
  92. Your KP reaction

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    Jenni in Newtownards: What I don't understand is that Strauss and the ECB label Kevin Pietersen as being toxic and having no place in the England playing setup due to the negative impact he has on the squad. Yet, they offered him an advisory role with the T20 and One Day international squads? That just doesn't make any sense whatsoever. The whole situation juat smacks of Andrew Strauss' personal dislike of KP; nothing more, nothing less.

    Andrew, Richhill: Kevin Pietersen has shot himself in the foot in this latest saga. This whole circus revolves around the issue of trust and the lack of it between KP and the ECB management structure. But what does Pietersen go and do, he tells the world that he, Strauss and the ECB are going to have a 'private' meeting on the eve of Strauss' first press conference to talk about him England future. Way to show that you can be trusted KP!

    Mickey G, London: What's interesting and possibly enlightening is what KP does now. Knuckle down at Surrey and play it like he said or stomp off in a huff to the IPL?

  93. Football

    Yeung loses appeal

    Former Birmingham chairman Carson Yeung has lost an appeal against his conviction for money laundering.

    Yeung was jailed for six years in March 2014 after being found guilty of five counts of money laundering between 2001 and 2007.

    carson

    The businessman's appeal was rejected by the Hong Kong Court of Appeal on Wednesday.

    Yeung bought Birmingham in October 2009 from David Sullivan and David Gold, now the co-owners of West Ham.

  94. Tennis

    When in Rome...

    Twitter
  95. Cricket

    Pietersen leaves Oval for scan

    Kevin Pietersen

    You're reading of the four sentences that follow this depends entirely on how cynical you are...

    Surrey have confirmed that Kevin Pietersen has left the Oval for a scan on a calf injury. He drove himself to hospital after reporting at the ground. It is a precautionary scan and he could still play later today. He was feeling the injury yesterday and missed a few overs in the field.

  96. Football

    BBC Sport predictor league

    Are Manchester United fans more knowledgeable about football than Liverpool fans?

    Well, according to our BBC Sport Predictor league they are, with Man Utd in 51st place and Liverpool in 87th after the opening round of our new Premier League game.

    Help represent your club by making your predictions for this weekend's fixtures here.

  97. Tennis

    Murray v Chardy

    Andy Murray is about to take to the court at the Foro Italico in Rome, where he will face Frenchman Jeremy Chardy in round two of the Italian Open.

    The British number one, who had a first-round bye, is on a nine-match winning streak on clay having landed back-to-back titles in Munich and Madrid.

    We will bring you regular updates and you can follow ball-by-ball commentary on 5 live sports extra.

  98. Cricket

    'Like playing with five Mariah Carey's'

    Former England player and international team-mate of Kevin Pietersen, Andrew Flintoff has been alluding to the KP issue on Twitter...

    Andrew Flintoff tweet
    Andrew Flintoff tweet

    Feel free to speculate about the identity of the players to whom he is referring.

  99. Your KP reaction

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    Guy: So - Shane Warne tweets in support of KP shock! Frankly I don't care what friends of KP say. I think the absolute culprit in all this is Colin Graves for telling KP what he did. He's a lame duck chairman and hasn't even started the job yet.

    Nick in Wycombe: Everyone missing the point. Pietersen's behaviour created a situation in which he became unselectable, his ongoing current unapologetic behaviour, based on self righteousness and clouding the original issue merely reinforces this point, he, not anyone else, has dug his own grave, primarily through his own vanity and ego, everything else is a red herring.

    Seamus O'Fergy, Belfast: Would so love Gillespie to say he'll only take the job on the condition he picks the team! (Warne has already said Gillespie would want KP!!).

  100. Football

    Adam eyes Scotland return

    Charlie Adam hopes his goalscoring form with Stoke will catch the eye of Scotland manager Gordon Strachan.

    Adam

    Adam's last game for Scotland was a friendly against Poland last March and he admits he has been in only occasional contact with Strachan by text since then.

    The midfielder, 29, has scored four goals in Stoke's last six Premier League games and said: "I'm confident that when I am playing well, scoring goals, dictating games, I can get in to the Scotland side."

  101. Football

    Not for sale

    But despite the speculation about Ings, Burnley chief executive Lee Hoos has insisted the club do not need to sell players despite their relegation from the Premier League.

    Hoos told the club's website: "We are in the fortunate position right now where we will not be forced to sell anyone for financial reasons.

    "I can't predict the future and what might happen to individuals, but last time we were relegated we were forced to sell players to balance the books. We won't be in that position next season."

  102. Football gossip

    In for Ings

    ings

    The Times: Manchester United have joined Liverpool and Real Sociedad in the race to sign Burnley's Danny Ings - but Brendan Rodger's side remain most likely to seal a deal for the striker.

  103. Road Cycling

    Italian's two-year ban

    Italian cyclist Matteo Rabottini has been banned for two years after testing positive for EPO.

    getty

    The International Cycling Union says three months of Rabottini's ban is deferred to reward his cooperation with the investigation. He is eligible to race again next May.

    Rabottini, 27, tested positive for the banned endurance-boosting hormone in training last August. He was then withdrawn from Italy's team for the road world championships.

  104. Football gossip

    'I'm not playing boss'

    getty

    QPR's Chilean striker Eduardo Vargas refused to play for the club at Crystal Palace as they battled relegation, reports The Mirror. The 25-year-old will leave this summer.

  105. Football gossip

    £43.5m for striker?

    Right, that's quite enough cricket for the time being (although please keep your views on KP coming in if you would). Let's turn our attention to a bit of transfer speculation in the morning papers, starting with this...

    getty

    Daily Mail: Atletico Madrid are reluctant to sell Chelsea target Antoine Griezmann as they look to strengthen this summer. The France forward, 24, has a buy-out clause set at £43.5m and super-agent Jorge Mendes is understood to be poised to enter negotiations on Chelsea's behalf.

  106. Your KP reaction

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    Helen Davies: re: 09.59 update from Radio 5 live. We can't afford not to have an oz coach for the Ashes but we can overlook KP?

    Matt Flecknoe: What will happen when the new coach comes in and says I want KP in my team...

    Simon Genner: As per usual in British sport, we always ignore/under value the Maverick. ..#KPforEngland

  107. Cricket

    'A great foe to Australia'

    Here is Matthew Hayden's view on Kevin Pietersen and his exile from the England cricket team. You can almost here the knife being twisted...

    "Kevin Pietersen probably couldn't be a greater foe to Australian cricket and to the Australian cricket team.

    "Whether it's that classic Australian anti-authoritarian position that we seem to have bred into our genetics. But more than anything what we really love about Kevin Pietersen is his freedom and ability to be able to express himself within the game of cricket and more specifically with his bat.

    "There have been very few players in the last one or two generations that have had the ability to entertain and direct their attention towards positive cricket like Kevin Pietersen has. He has captured the imaginations of all the Australian cricketing public, who love to see positive cricket, love to see the game moving forward. They don't even love to see it, they demand to see it."

  108. Cricket

    'You'd be crazy to apply for the job'

    Jason Gillespie (left) and Matthew Hayden (right)

    With his compatriot Jason Gillespie in the frame, former Australian international Matthew Hayden has been speaking to BBC Radio 4 about the England coaches job. He had this to say about the latter:

    "You'd be crazy to apply for the England coach's role because with a director, you are the man the establishment is going to kick. You're going to have no control whatsoever.

    "I think they entering into a very dangerous space. They have been in a perilous position for the last six months and they are going into very deep times now with an absolutely on-fire New Zealand team and a really revengeful and very in form Australian team too.

    There are going to be some really tough times ahead for Engand and they need to sort their back of office out quickly otherwise we are going to see England fall well behind in those Test rankings."

  109. Cricket

    England getting Dizzy?

    BBC Radio 5 Live

    BBC Radio 5 Live are debating if Jason Gillespie could be England's new head coach. If you want to know how his current side, Yorkshire, are getting on in the County Championship, you can listen via our cricket pages and on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra.

  110. Football

    New sponsorship deal for SPFL

    Alasdair Lamont

    BBC Scotland sport reporter

    The Scottish Professional Football League has agreed a sponsorship deal with Ladbrokes, starting next season. The two-year deal is described as the biggest ever Scottish football title sponsorship.

    It marks the end of a two-year period without a sponsor for the league, with chief executive Neil Doncaster stating: "Today's announcement is the result of significant investment of energy and effort and further strengthens our optimism about the future health of the game in Scotland."

  111. Football gossip

    Wanted man

    getty

    Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke will decide his future in June after playing in Belgium's end-of-season internationals as Chelsea, Manchester United, Liverpool and Roma weigh up £30m bids, reports The Mirror.

  112. Your KP reaction

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    The big story today (as it was yesterday) is Kevin Pietersen's England exile and subsequent attack on Andrew Strauss and the ECB. Here are some of your insights on the matter...

    Emma Sanders: They asked him to play county cricket & score runs. He did. And a lot of them! What more do they want? Loss to English cricket.

    Alex Barreto: Just pick the best players. Cook Lyth Ballance KP Bell Root Stokes Buttler Rashid Broad Anderson.

    Josh Benson: The turning point is Graves telling KP he would be picked if he scored runs, without that KP would still be playing IPL.

  113. Cricket

    Dizzy to address England speculation

    Jason Gillespie

    Play will soon get back under way at Headingley in the County Championship game between Yorkshire and Hampshire, with the latter struggling on 37-4, still 411 runs short of the home side's tally.

    The reason I mention this is that champions Yorkshire are coached by Jason Gillespie, who was yesterday named by Andrew Strauss as one of the candidates the ECB are considering as the next England head coach.

    Word on the street is that the Australian will be speaking after today's play is concluded. Should be interesting.

  114. Cricket

    Andy Murray on KP

    Andy Murray tweet

    Yep.

  115. Football

    Ashley wants his cash back

    Mike Ashley

    Sticking with the theme of football club owners and Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley has called on the Rangers board to hold an extraordinary meeting to pay back his £5m loan to the Glasgow club.

    Ashley, who owns a 9% stake in Rangers, has also asked the board to explain why the club has been delisted from the AIM stock exchange.

    The move comes after the Sports Direct owner lost control of the Ibrox boardroom to South Africa-based businessman Dave King, who is awaiting Scottish FA approval to become the club's new chairman.

  116. Football

    10 years of the Glazers

    Manchester United directors Avram (centre) and Joel (right) Glazer

    Here is a question for you: are Manchester United better off after 10 years under the ownership of the Glazers?

    As our man Simon Stone says, "demonised and ridiculed yet praised for their business brains and financial foresight, the Glazer family have split opinion during their 10-year reign as owners of Manchester United."

    To read more about the decade-long Glazer reign at Old Trafford, click on these words.

  117. Tennis

    Murray in action in Rome

    Andy Murray

    Hey, why doesn't Andy Murray just go make hay on clay, then lay by an Italian bay? He just may! What'd ya say?

    British number one, and winner of back-to-back titles in Munich and Madrid this month, Murray will be back in action today in Rome as he continues his preparations for the French Open.

    Murray, seeded third, will and we will bring you updates of how he is getting on from about 11:00 BST.

  118. Football

    Gerrard the gaffer?

    Steven Gerrard

    Once he has said goodbye to Liverpool, Steven Gerrard will be heading off to the USA (he likes American things now). But after that, what does the future hold for Stevey G? Well, his former Reds boss Gerard Houllier thinks the midfielder will make a "great manager" when he retires from playing.

    "He has got everything it takes to think about the team, the club and the development of others," said Houllier. "He is a natural born leader, a very inspirational leader. He is somebody you want to follow."

  119. Your KP reaction

    Get involved at #bbcsportsday

    The big story today (as it was yesterday) is Kevin Pietersen's England exile and subsequent attack on Andrew Strauss and the ECB. Here are some of your insights on the matter...

    Peter: After all KP's stirring, Strauss offered the olive branch of an advisory role to see if reintegration was on - no doubt now.

    Jon Evans: ECB are a joke. Ruining our team and the game. Play the best team, forget about personal feuds. #BringBackKP.

  120. Football

    The cost of saying goodbye

    Steven Gerrard

    How much would you pay to watch Steven Gerrard's last home game for Liverpool? £50? £500? How about £1,300?

    On Tuesday, the prices on ticketbis.net ranged from more than £100 to £1,324.64 before the captain's farewell against Crystal Palace at Anfield on Saturday.

    There'll be hell on if he starts on the bench.

  121. Football

    'I compare Messi with Pele'

    Lionel Messi (left) and Pep Guardiola

    Bayern Munich's former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola was magnanimous in defeat last night, backing his ex-side to win the Champions League.

    He also compared Lionel Messi to Brazil legend Pele. "He is the best player of all time," said Guardiola. So, it would appear, in the comparison, that Pele comes off second-best.

  122. Football

    Barca reach Champions League final

    Barcelona players celebrate in Munich

    OK, let's take a break from the KP saga for a moment and move into less choppy waters, where the good ship Barcelona is sailing happily to the Champions League final. Luis Enrique's side lost the semi-final second leg battle in Munich last night, but won the war, thanks mainly to their 3-0 first-leg win in the Nou Camp.

    So, we are now 50% on the way to an El Classico final showdown in Europe's premier club competition. Real Madrid need to overcome a 2-1 deficit against Italian side Juventus to bring that to fruition. More on that later.

  123. Cricket

    'England will struggle to win a Test this summer'

    Much like Kevin Pietersen, former Australia international Shane Warne is not one for pulling punches. His tweets this morning are a testimony to that...

    Shane Warne tweet
    Shane Warne tweet
  124. Cricket

    Tuffers and Vaughan

    "I'd have loved them to say to him 'you're an expert in T20 cricket, our one-day cricket is atrocious, so you're going to play T20 cricket for England."

    "You don't want Kevin Pietersen to be lost to English cricket forever. Yes, at times he can be an idiot, an absolute idiot, but he's got a lot to offer."

    "In Andrew Strauss they've got the right man for the role… the whole job spec suited Andrew Strauss, his personality, the way he will sit back. I'm more of a hands-on person."

    These are just some of the quotes from Michael Vaughan on yesterday's Tuffers and Vaughan programme on BBC Radio 5 Live. It is well worth a listen.

  125. Cricket

    31 Hours: A Cricket Saga

    Kevin Pietersen

    You may have seen 127 Hours, the Danny Boyle film where James Franco gets trapped under a rock and has to cut his own arm off. Well, here is 31 hours: a sad and sorry tale of lost trust, deceit and a whole load of bitterness, set in the crazy world of cricket. Cutting your own arm off may be preferable to trawling your way through every ugly detail.

  126. Cricket

    'Deceitful' ECB anger England

    Andrew Strauss (left) and Kevin Pietersen (right)

    If you want the full lowdown on yesterday's events, including Andrew Strauss' initial interview, Kevin Pietersen's response and the opinion of figures from across the cricketing world then you'll probably want to dip into our story. Warning: it does not make pretty reading, especially if you care about English cricket.

  127. Cricket

    KP remains on the attack

    The KP assault on Andrew Strauss and the ECB continues via Twitter...

    Kevin Pietersen tweet

    The more optimistic of us may have believed that Pietersen's England career was not completely over yesterday afternoon, with Andrew Strauss suggesting his international exile was only for the "immediate future". You would have to be looking on the brightest of bright sides to picture him an England shirt again following the last 12 hours.

  128. Football

    Football, football, football

    Wednesday's Daily Star back page

    The Daily Star plough their own furrow (barring a three word mention of Pietersen in the top left corner) by going with a rumoured Chelsea move for keeper John Ruddy, last night's Champions League and Gareth Bale's ongoing Real Madrid woes. The message is clear: football sells.

  129. Cricket

    'The bitter end'

    Wednesday's Daily Mail back page

    Bitter? You can say that again Daily Mail. End? Almost certainly, despite Andrew Strauss' attempts to make us believe the door was slightly ajar for KP.

  130. Cricket

    'Devastated, angry and misled'

    Wednesday's Daily Mirror back page

    The Daily Mirror carry on the KP anger theme, adding that it will all be going down very well in Australia ahead of this summer, particularly if Pietersen's claims that England have been "given permission to lose the Ashes" are true. Wound, meet salt.

  131. Cricket

    KP 'fury at England deceit'

    Wednesday's Daily Telegraph back page

    The Daily Telegraph proudly brandish the column from which so many of today's back pages have resulted. Fury, deceit and the smell of a bridge being completely burnt.

  132. Good morning

    Kevin Pietersen

    Good morning all. Do we really need to continue talking about Kevin? Yes, it appears we do.

    After the Andrew Strauss interview yesterday, in which England's new director of cricket confirmed that Kevin Pietersen would not be returning to the national team, the country's leading run-scorer in all formats has hit back in typical KP fashion, with a newspaper column hinged around the theme of deceit.

    And so, not for the first time in his life, KP is headline news...