The sports wrap, Monday 9 March 2020

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French forward Mohamed Haouas' exuberance earned him a first-half red card against Scotland

Scotland dash French hopes of a Grand Slam title

Scotland dashed French hopes of a Grand Slam ending their winning run in the Guinness Six Nations championship with a 28-17 victory. England kept in the hunt for the title with a 33-30 win over champions Wales. With Ireland’s match against Italy postponed because of the coronavirus threat, it may be some time before a Six Nations champion is crowned as England’s final match in Italy is in limbo. As it stands, England and France top the table on 13 points after four matches with Scotland third on 10 points. Ireland are fourth on nine points but have played one match less.

At Murrayfield, a revitalized Scotland ended France’s hopes of a Six Nations Grand Slam with a 28-17 victory – their fourth consecutive Murrayfield defeat.  Fabien Galthie’s side had won their first three games but a first-half red card for forward Mohamed Haouas let Scotland seize control. Sean Maitland crossed either side of the break after Damian Penaud’s score, before Stuart McInally added a third. Charles Ollivon’s late try could not deny Gregor Townsend consecutive wins. Adam Hastings, who impressed in place of the exiled Finn Russell, added 13 points with the boot.

At Twickenham, tries by Anthony Watson, Elliot Daly and Manu Tuilagi drove England to a

George Ford (left) celebrates Manu Tuilagi’s third try in England’s win over Wales

more convincing victory over Wales than the 33-30 scoreline suggested in winning the triple crown at Twickenham on Saturday. England led 20-9 at the break and looked to be running away with the game by extending the score to 33-16 after an hour but, down to 13 men after a yellow card for prop Ellis Genge and a red for centre Tuilagi for a dangerous tackle, they were cut open by the defending champions for two late tries. For Wales, it was a third successive defeat after winning the Grand Slam.

Liverpool extend lead at the top as Man City lose

Liverpool extended their lead at the top of the English Premier League to a remarkable 25 points as arch rivals Manchester United did them a favour by beating city neighbours Manchester City 2-0. The win moved United up to fifth place, three points behind Chelsea who beat Everton 4-0 at Stamford Bridge. Leicester City remain third, seven points behind Manchester City, but can make up some ground if they beat Aston Villa on Monday night.

At Old Trafford, Manchester United completed the Premier League double over neighbours Manchester City for the first time in a decade as Anthony Martial’s first-half goal and an injury time strike from Scott McTominay gave them a 2-0 victory.The match was a personal nightmare for Manchester City’s normally reliable Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson, who gifted Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side both goals in sharply

Anthony Martial scores Manchester United’s first goal in their 2-0 win over neigbhours Manchester City

contrasting fashion. He allowed Martial’s routine shot to squirm under his body from a quick Bruno Fernandes free-kick on the half-hour and then, with seconds left, threw a clearance straight to McTominay, who showed great technique to send a long-range finish, struck first time, to take United’s unbeaten run to 10 games in all competitions.

At Anfield, runaway leaders Liverpool returned to winning ways with a shaky 2-1 win over relegation-threatened Bournemouth after losses to Atletico Madrid in the Champions League, Chelsea in the FA Cup and Watford in the Premier League, The victory was Liverpool’s 22nd successive Premier League win at Anfield, breaking the English top-flight record set by Bill Shankly’s team in 1972. The hosts fell behind in controversial circumstances, Callum Wilson slotting home Jefferson Lerma’s low cross after appearing to shove Joe Gomez in the build-up. Liverpool soon recovered, however, and Mohamed Salah restored parity with a low finish after Sadio Mane dispossessed Jack Simpson deep inside the Cherries’ half. Mane latched on to Virgil van Dijk’s perfectly weighted through ball to complete the turnaround.

At Stamford Bridge, Chelsea thrashed Everton 4-0 side to cement their top-four place. Chelsea started the game at a fast tempo and went ahead after 14 minutes when Mason Mount ended an 18-game goal drought by firing past Jordan Pickford at his near post. Pedro then latched on to a superb through ball by Ross Barkley to score his first league goal of the season as Frank Lampard’s side took control. Two goals in three minutes shortly after the break ended the game as a contest as Willian found the bottom corner with a low shot and Olivier Giroud continued his renaissance with a tap-in from a short corner.

In the Scottish Premiership, Leigh Griffiths scored a hat-trick as defending champions Celtic stayed 13 points of Rangers after brushing aside St Mirren 5-0 at home.  Griffiths scored twice in the first-half – from Odsonne Edouard’s cross, then after a one-two with Australian Tom Rogic. Edouard netted before Griffiths’ third while Callum McGregor converted a late penalty as Celtic edged closer to a ninth consecutive title. Rangers stayed second, 21 points ahead of Motherwell after beating Ross County 1-0.

Marseille slip up with draw against lowly Amiens

Marseille missed a chance to close the gap on French Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint German as they wasted a two-goal lead in a 2-2 home draw against lowly Amiens on Friday night. Second-placed Marseille, who lost to Nantes two weeks ago, went ahead with goals by Morgan Sanson and Dimitri Payet, but conceded the draw in stoppage time when Saman Ghoddos netted the equaliser shortly after Serhou Guirassy had reduced the arrears. The result meant that PSG, whose match against Strasbourg was postponed because of the coronavirus threat, still lead Marseille by 12 points with a game in hand. Rennes who trashed Montpellier 5-0 at home on Sunday are third, six points behind Marseille. Relegation threatened Nimes, remained third from bottom after losing 2-1 to Metz while Toulouse, who look doomed for the drop, lost again, this time 2-1 away to Dijon.

In the Spanish La Liga, Barcelona lead the table by two points over Real Madrid who suffered a shock 2-1 loss at mid-table Real Betis on Sunday night. Barca’s Lionel Messi scored a late penalty as his side edged to a 1-0 victory over Real Sociedad on Saturday. The home side’s spot-kick was awarded for Robin le Normand’s handball, which the referee saw on the pitchside monitor, allowing Messi to convert. Real Madrid were sunk by a late goal from former Barcelona player Cristian Tello.

In the Italian Serie A, champions Juventus beat Inter Milan to go top of the table – in a surreal match behind closed doors because of the coronavirus threat. One of the biggest games of the Italian season took place with no fans, with all sport in Italy being played in empty grounds until 3 April at least. Some 366 people in Italy have died of coronavirus, with 7,375 infected. Welsh midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Paulo Dybala scored the goals to take Juve one point above Lazio at the top of the table. Inter’s title challenge is likely to be over as they now sit nine points behind Juventus.

In the German Bundesliga, defending champions Bayern Munich restored their four-point advantage at the top of the table with a 2-0 home victory over FC Augsburg. Thomas

Borussia Dortmund celebrate their win over Borussia Monchengladbach which took them up to second

Muller put the hosts ahead in the second half courtesy of a superbly controlled volley. They sealed victory through Leon Goretzka in injury time after the Germany midfielder exchanged passes with Serge Gnabry before converting. Borussia Dortmund moved up to second after England teenage winger Jadon Sancho provided a club record-equalling 15th assist in their 2-1 victory at fifth-placed Borussia Monchengladbach.

Exeter drown Bath to top the Premiership again

Exeter scored eight tries as they blew away Bath 57-20 to move back to the top of the Gallagher Premiership. Early scores by Tom O’Flaherty and Olly Woodburn put Exeter in control before Sam Simmonds and Jannes Kirsten crossed to secure the bonus point. Simmonds added his second soon after the break and after Bath’s Zach Mercer replied, Elvis Taione also crossed. Max Wright and Ruaridh McConnochie went over for Bath before Woodburn’s second and a Jack Maunder try for Exeter. The win saw Exeter return to the top of the table, while Bath dropped to sixth as a

Olly Woodburn scored two tries for Exeter against his old club Bath

consequence of Wasps’ win over Gloucester. Having lost narrowly at Harlequins last week, Exeter racked up another half century at home against a play-off rival having beaten Northampton 57-7 at Sandy Park two weeks ago. Sale are second on the ladder, five points behind Exeter after demolishing London Irish 39-0 on Friday night.  Interceptions triggered both Sale’s first-half tries – Sam James went in on 17 minutes before his brother Luke crossed in stoppage time. Robert du Preez’s penalty put Sale further ahead before Rob Webber was mauled over for Sale’s third try. Sam James got the bonus point before Denny Solomona and Byron McGuigan went over late on as Irish crumbled.

Australia thrash India in Women’s T20 World Cup final

Australia thrashed India by 85 runs to win their fifth Women’s T20 World Cup title in front of more than 85,000 spectators at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday. It was a near-perfect evening for the hosts, who posted 184 for four after a brutal 75 from Alyssa Healy, which included five sixes, and opener Beth Mooney’s unbeaten 78. An overawed India slid to 18 for three in reply, with teenage star Shafali Verma falling to the third ball of the

Alyssa Healy (right) and Beth Mooney set Australia on the road to T20 World Cup victory over India

chase, and they were never in the game. Medium pacer Megan Schutt again shone, taking four for 18 as India were bundled out for just 99 with five balls left. Australia’s performance will be remembered as one of the most emphatic in a final by any side. The crowd fell short of breaking the record attendance at a women’s sporting event – which stands at 90,185 for the 1999 football World Cup final between the US and China – but it was an astonishing, atmospheric evening. Australia were as ruthless as they have ever been to steamroller India, whose heads dropped in the first over of the match when Healy was dropped by Verma. It means Australia’s dominance of women’s cricket continues – and India, once again, fell short at a global final.

Sofia Kenin wins inaugural Lyon Open

Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin beat Anna-Lena Friedsam 6-2 4-6 6-4 in the final of the inaugural Lyon Open. Kenin, 21, is the first player on the WTA Tour to win two titles in 2020 but a number of unforced errors gave unseeded

Sofia Kenin wins the inaugural Lyon Open

Friedsam, 26, the second set. The United States’ world No.5 regrouped in the final set, earning a double break before clinching victory on her third championship point. German Friedsam was in her first final since 2015 as she continues her comeback from a shoulder injury. It was the fifth title of Kenin’s blossoming career after her three triumphs last year in Hobart, Mallorca and Guangzhou – before beating Garbine Muguruza in the Australian Open in January.

Englishman Hatton wins Arnold Palmer Invitational 

Englishman Tyrrell Hatton secured a one-stroke victory over Australian Marc Leishman at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Florida on Sunday after hitting a series of clutch shots over the dangerous final stretch, culminating with a rock-solid par at the last.  He tapped in from two feet to clinch his first PGA Tour victory with a two-over-par 74 on another windy day at bone-dry Bay Hill in Orlando, becoming the third straight European champion after Rory McIlroy and Francesco Molinari. Hatton shot four-under 284 ahead of Australian Leishman (73) on three-under while South Korean Im Sung-jae (73), winner of last week’s Honda Classic, was another shot back in third place. World No.1 Rory McIlroy, joint second at the start of the day, had two double bogeys in a 76 and was four back in fifth. In Doha, Spaniard Jorge Campillo showcased a putting masterclass to beat Scotland’s David Drysdale in a two-way playoff on the fifth extra hole to win the Qatar Masters on Sunday. Campillo looked on course for a two-stroke victory on the final day at the Education City Golf Course but a wayward tee shot on the par-four 17th gave him a double bogey that meant he finished tied on 13-under overall.

Dragons move to sixth spot after beating Salford

Catalans Dragons kept their heads to win 30-14 in Perpignan with two late touchdowns after allowing Salford Red Devils to come back from 18-0 down at half-time. Two first-half tries from Matt Whitley to add to an early score from Wigan old boy Michael McIlorum earned the Dragons a comfortable half-time cushion. Full-back Niall Evalds crossed, and two tries for winger Ken Sio brought Salford to within a score at 20-14. But Fouad Yaha Dra

Former Widnes forward Matt Whitley scores his first tries for the Dragons since August 2019

and Lewis Tierney came up with match-clinching late tries. Catalans, who lost two games earlier this season in a weather-hit start, have now won three times in four Super League matches – enough to lift them to sixth. Meanwhile, Wigan Warriors went to the top of the table after beating Hull KR 30-16.  Wigan led 18-12 at the break, with a Jackson Hastings’ double and a Liam Farrell score to keep them just ahead following Ethan Ryan and Greg Minikin tries. Ryan Brierley added a try after half-time, but that was as good as it got for Rovers at 18-16 down. Sam Powell and Liam Marshall both scored tries to secure the points. Leeds Rhinos are second on the table, two points behind Wigan, after an 11-try 66-12 demolition of new team Toronto Wolfpack.

Schachmann wins Paris-Nice first stage

German Max Schachmann won the first stage of Paris-Nice in a four-man sprint finish in Plaisir on Sunday.  The Bora-Hansgrohe rider, 26, finished the 154km stage in three hours 32 minutes nine seconds, two seconds ahead of Team Sunweb’s Tiesj Benoot. Seven teams, including Team Ineos, withdrew before the race started because of the coronavirus outbreak. The second stage of the eight-day race

Max Schachmann wins the Paris-Nice first stage

takes the riders 166.5km from Chevreuse to Chalette-sur-Loing on Monday. Benoot and Deceuninck-Quick-Step’s Julian Alaphilippe attacked with about 30km of the first stage remaining, but Schachmann and Bahrain-McLaren’s Dylan Teuns joined them with less than 3km to go. Belgian Teuns finished third and Frenchman Alaphilippe fourth, 17 seconds ahead of the peloton. Ineos will not race until 23 March following the death of sporting director Nico Portal and the “very uncertain situation” around coronavirus.

Bahrain GP to go ahead without fans

The Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix will go ahead on March 22 without fans due to the coronavirus crisis, a blow to the Gulf Arab state’s important tourism sector. Bahrain, which is hosting the second round of the Formula One season at the Sakhir circuit outside Manama after Melbourne, has reported 83 cases of the virus, mostly linked to people who had travelled to Iran. “Bahrain has made the decision to hold this year’s (race) as a participants-only event,” organisers said on Sunday. “Convening a major sporting event, which is open to the public and allows thousands of international travellers and local fans to interact in close proximity would not be the right thing to do at the present time,” they added.  Bahrain is the second F1 race casualty of the virus. The Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai scheduled for April 19 has already been postponed.

For full reports on all the weekend sporting events go to: 

http://www.bbc.com/sporthttp://www.espn.comhttp://www.lequipe.frhttps://www.insidethegames.biz/http://www.reuters.com/news/sportswww.sports.yahoo.com,www.skysports.comwww.eurosport.frmidilibre.fr

Calendar Keynotes: 9-15 March

Monday, 9 March

Football: English Premier League –  Leicester City v Aston Villa.

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Winter Sports: BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (till 15 March).

Tuesday, 10 March

Football: Champions League round of 16 – RB Leipzig v Tottenham Hotspur (agg 1-0), Valencia v Atalanta (agg 1-4), Spanish La Liga – Eibar v Real Sociedad.

Tennis:BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Wednesday, 11 March

Football: Champions League round of 16 – Liverpool v Atletico Madrid (agg 0-1), Paris Saint Germain v Borussia Dortmund (agg 1-2), English Premier League – Manchester City v Arsenal, Scottish Premiership – St Mirren v Hearts, German Bundesliga – Borussia Monchen Gladbach v 1. FC Koln, SheBelieves Cup – England v Spain.

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Winter Sports: BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (till 15 March).

Thursday, 12 March

Football: Europa League round of 16 – Eintracht Frankfurt v FC Basel, Istanbul Basaksehir v FC Copenhagen, LASK v Manchester United, Sevilla v Roma, Inter Milan v Getafe, Olympiakos v Wolverhampton Wanderers, Rangers v Bayer 04 Leverkusen, VfL Wolfsburg v Shakhtar Donesk, SheBelieves Cup – USA v Japan.

Rugby League: Super League – Hull FC v Warrington Wolves.

Cricket: India v South Africa, ODI series, Dharamsala. Sri Lankan Board President’s XI v England, Colombo (till 15 March).

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Golf: USPGA Tour, The Players Championship, TPC Sawgrass, Florida (till 15 March).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Winter Sports: BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (till 15 March).

Friday,13 March

Football: Scottish Premiership – Motherwell v Aberdeen, French Ligue 1 – Lyon v Reims, Spanish La Liga – Real Madrid v Eibar, Italian Serie A – Hellas Verona v Napoli, Bologna v Juventus.

Rugby League: Super League – Salford Red Devils v Wigan Warriors.

Cricket: Australia v New Zealand, ODI series, Sydney, Sri Lankan Board President’s XI v England, Colombo (till 15 March).

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Golf: USPGA Tour, The Players Championship, TPC Sawgrass, Florida (till 15 March).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Horse Racing: Cheltenham Gold Cup, Cheltenham Racecourse.

Winter Sports: Winter Sports: BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (till 15 March), FIS Nordic Combined World Cup, Schonach, Germany (till 15 March).

Saturday, 14 March

Football:  English Premier League – Watford v Leicester City, Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal, Manchester City v Burnley, Newcastle United v Sheffield United, Aston Villa v Chelsea, Scottish Premiership – Hibernian v St Johnstone, French LIgue 1 – Montpellier v Marseille, Brest v Lille, Nantes v Nimes, Toulouse v Metz, Spanish La iIga – Valencia v Levante, Mallorca v Barcelona, Italian Serie A – all matches suspended till 3 April, German Bundesliga – Borussia Dortmund v FC Schalke 04, RB Leipzig v SC Freiburg, 1. FC Union Berlin v Bayern Munich.

Rugby Union:  Guinness Six Nations – Wales v Scotland, France v Ireland, Italy v England (postponed – coronavirus), Gallagher English Premiership –

Rugby League: Super League – Catalans Dragons v Leeds Rhinos.

Cricket: Australia v New Zealand, ODI series, Sydney, Sri Lankan Board President’s XI v England, Colombo (till 15 March).

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Golf: USPGA Tour, The Players Championship, TPC Sawgrass, Florida (till 15 March).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Winter Sports: FIS Alpine Skiing World Cup giant slalom, Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (till 15 March), FIS Nordic Combined World Cup, Schonach, Germany (till 15 March).

Sunday,15 March

Football Premier League –West Ham United v Wolverhampton Wanderers, Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United, Scottish Premiership – Rangers v Celtic, Livingston v Hearts, French Ligue 1 – Bordeaux v Rennes, Monaco v Saint-Etienne, Paris Saint Germain v Nice, Spanish La Liga – Real Sociedad v Osasuna, Athletic Bilbao v Atletico Madrid, Granada v Getafe, Sevilla v Real Betis, Italian Serie A – all matches suspended till 3 April, German Bundesliga – Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Monchengladbach. FC Augsburg v VfL Wolfsburg.

Rugby Union: Premiership Rugby Cup final – Sale v Harlequins.

Rugby League: Super League – Castleford Tigers v St Helens.

Cricket: India v South Africa, ODI series, Lucknow, Sri Lankan Board President’s XI v England, Colombo (final day).

Tennis: BNP Paribas Open, Indian Wells, California (postponed – coronavirus).

Golf: USPGA Tour, The Players Championship, TPC Sawgrass, Florida (final day).

Cycling: UCI World Tour – Paris-Nice (till 15 March).

Winter Sports: FIS Alpine Skiing World Cup slalom, Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, BMW IBU World Cup biathlon, Kontiolahti, Finland (final day),  FIS Nordic Combined World Cup, Schonach, Germany (final day).