Review of the sporting year - March: Month-by-month guide to the stories that had us gripped in 2010


Another sporting year is coming to an end, and once again 2010 has delivered the goods. An Olympic Winter Games, a World Cup and so many other marvellous events have kept us enthralled for the past twelve months.

Relive some of those memories with Sportsmail's monthly guide to another year to remember.

 

March

1 Queens Park Rangers appointed Neil Warnock as their manager after agreeing compensation with Crystal Palace. Portsmouth were ordered to return to the High Court on March 2 after Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs challenged their voluntary administration. The Ospreys were cleared of fielding an ineligible player in the Heineken Cup.

2 A High Court judge ordered a hearing into whether the administration keeping Portsmouth afloat as a Premier League team was validly appointed. England beat Bangladesh by two wickets in their one-day international in Dhaka to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. The Republic of Ireland were beaten 2-0 by Brazil in their friendly at the Emirates Stadium.

3 England came from behind to beat Egypt 3-1 at Wembley in their last friendly before the announcement of Fabio Capello's preliminary World Cup squad, thanks to two goals from Peter Crouch. Leighton Baines debuted at left-back. Scotland beat the Czech Republic 1-0 in Craig Levein's first match in charge, Northern Ireland lost 1-0 in Albania and Wales were beaten 1-0 by Sweden. Leeds centre Keith Senior was charged by the Rugby Football League with breaching their operational rules following his public criticism of referee Richard Silverwood in the aftermath of the Rhinos' World Club Challenge defeat.

Eye for goal: Peter Crouch scores his second as England beat Egypt at Wembley

Eye for goal: Peter Crouch scores his second as England beat Egypt at Wembley

4 A proposal to introduce a play-off for the fourth Champions League place in the Premier League stalled after clubs voted against looking into the idea. An independent appeal committee dismissed Stade Francais prop David Attoub's appeal against a 70-week ban for making contact with the eye or eye area of Ulster's Stephen Ferris in a Heineken Cup clash on December 12. England bowler Ryan Sidebottom was forced to fly home from the tour of Bangladesh due to a thigh injury, with Tim Bresnan called up as his replacement in the Test squad.

5 Michael Owen was ruled out for the rest of the season with a hamstring injury he suffered in the Carling Cup final. Craig Kieswetter hit a maiden international century as England beat Bangladesh by 45 runs in their third one-day international in Chittagong to win the series 3-0. Leicester announced the departure of England flanker Lewis Moody to Bath on a three-year contract at the end of the season.

6 The International Football Association Board announced that goal-line technology would not be pursued in the future. Just minutes later, Birmingham's Liam Ridgewell was not awarded a goal despite his header in the FA Cup quarter-final against Portsmouth crossing the line. Pompey won the game 2-0 with a Frederic Piquionne brace, while Fulham and Tottenham drew 0-0 in the day's other last-eight clash. Manchester United returned to the top of the Barclays Premier League as Paul Scholes earned them a hard-fought 1-0 win at Wolves. Arsenal beat Burnley 3-1 while Bolton won 2-1 at relegation rivals West Ham.

7 Holders Chelsea were drawn to face Aston Villa in the semi-finals of the FA Cup. Chelsea defeated Stoke 2-0 to reach the last four while Villa beat Reading 4-2. Portsmouth, the 2008 winners, were drawn against either Fulham or Tottenham in the other semi. Mikel Arteta bagged a brace as Everton crushed Hull 5-1 in the day's only Barclays Premier League fixture. British tennis hit a new low with defeat by Lithuania in the Davis Cup. The meant Britain would have to beat Turkey in a relegation play-off in July to avoid dropping to Europe/Africa Zone Group III - the lowest tier of the competition.

The faces say it all: Captain John Lloyd and LTA coach Paul Annacone look on as Britain slump to a Davis Cup defeat against Lithuania

The faces say it all: Captain John Lloyd and LTA coach Paul Annacone look on as Britain slump to a Davis Cup defeat against Lithuania

8 World triple jump champion Phillips Idowu withdrew from the World Indoor Championships in Doha following the birth of his second child. Two Italian teams, Benetton Treviso and Aironi Rugby, joined the Magners League from next season. Rangers confirmed that principal shareholder Murray International Holdings had begun discussions with London-based property developer Andrew Ellis about a takeover of the Glasgow club.

9 Arsenal reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League by hammering Porto 5-0 at the Emirates Stadium to go through 6-2 on aggregate. Nicklas Bendtner, who had missed a sackful of chances against Burnley three days earlier, scored a hat-trick. Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson confirmed defender Wes Brown had been ruled out for four to six weeks. Wales captain Ryan Jones was ruled out of the RBS 6 Nations clash against Ireland in Dublin due to a calf muscle injury.

10 Manchester United beat AC Milan 4-0 with two goals from Wayne Rooney to seal a 7-2 aggregate win and a place in the quarter-finals. David Beckham made a cameo appearance from the bench for Milan. Meanwhile, Lyon knocked Real Madrid out of the competition. Portsmouth administrator Andrew Andronikou confirmed 85 of the club's employees have been made redundant, and said he was receiving 'enquiries on a daily basis' regarding a takeover. England bowler Graham Onions was ruled out of the first Test against Bangladesh with a back injury.

Italian Job: Rooney scores his second goal against AC Milan

Italian Job: Rooney scores his second goal against AC Milan

11 HM Revenue and Customs announced they had dropped their challenge to the validity of Portsmouth's appointment of an administrator. Liverpool lost 1-0 to Lille in their Europa League last 16 first leg tie in France. Fulham lost 3-1 to Juventus in their Europa League last 16 first leg tie in Turin.

12 Peter Storrie stepped down as chief executive of Portsmouth, but continued to be retained by the club as a consultant. Greg Clarke, the former chief executive of Cable and Wireless Communications plc, was appointed Football League chairman. Trainer Nicky Henderson confirmed Binocular would run in the Smurfit Kappa Champion Hurdle and be ridden by Tony McCoy.

13 Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) qualified on pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix with Felipe Massa (Ferrari) second and Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) third. Britain's Jessica Ennis won gold in the pentathlon at the World Indoor Championships in Doha. Dwain Chambers won gold in the 60 metres. Scotland and England drew 15-15 in their RBS 6 Nations Championship match at Murrayfield. Ireland beat Wales 27-12.

14 David Beckham suffered a torn Achilles tendon in AC Milan's 1-0 win over Chievo, ruling him out of the World Cup finals in South Africa. Ferrari's Fernando Alonso won the Bahrain Grand Prix, with his team-mate Felipe Massa second and McLaren's Lewis Hamilton third. France beat Italy 46-20 in their RBS 6 Nations Championship match at the Stade de France to remain on course for the Grand Slam.

Agony: David Beckham is assisted as he leaves the pitch during AC Milan's clash with Chievo

Agony: David Beckham is assisted as he leaves the pitch during AC Milan's clash with Chievo

15 Phil Brown was sacked as Hull manager. Chairman Adam Pearson later confirmed his five-man shortlist for a replacement did not include Alan Curbishley, who had been among the bookmakers' favourites. Liverpool beat Barclays Premier League basement club Portsmouth 4-1 with two goals from Fernando Torres and one apiece from Ryan Babel and Alberto Aquilani, the Italian's first for the club. Nadir Belhadj got Pompey's late consolation. Tottenham midfielder Tom Huddlestone signed a new contract to keep him at White Hart Lane until 2015.

16 Tiger Woods confirmed he was to make his comeback at The Masters in Augusta in April. Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage as Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan won 1-0 at Stamford Bridge and 3-1 on aggregate. England won the first Test against Bangladesh by 181 runs. Graeme Swann became the first England spinner since Jim Laker in 1956 to take 10 wickets in a Test.

17 Iain Dowie was appointed manager of Hull until the end of the season. The former Crystal Palace and QPR boss was given nine games to save Hull from relegation from the Barclays Premier League. Portsmouth's nine-point deduction for entering administration was confirmed by the Barclays Premier League. The Lawn Tennis Association announced John Lloyd's resignation as Great Britain Davis Cup captain, following the loss to Lithuania.

The ideal start: Fernando Alonso celebrates his win at the Bahrain Grand Prix

The ideal start: Fernando Alonso celebrates his win at the Bahrain Grand Prix

18 A goal by Clint Dempsey sealed a remarkable 4-1 win for Fulham over Juventus as the Cottagers went through to the last eight of the Europa League 5-4 on aggregate. Liverpool beat Lille 3-0 to go through 3-1 on aggregate. Owen Hargreaves returned to action for Manchester United for the first time in 18 months as the reserves beat Burnley 2-0. Liverpool disciplined Albert Riera for criticising manager Rafael Benitez and describing the club as a 'sinking ship'.

19 Imperial Commander, trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies and ridden by Paddy Brennan, won the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup. In the Champions League quarter-final draw, Arsenal were paired with 2006 final conquerors Barcelona. Manchester United were drawn to face 1999 final opponents Bayern Munich. Gareth Thomas was helped off injured as he was given a tough rugby league baptism for the Crusaders. The Wales rugby union legend was just half an hour into his Engage Super League debut for Crusaders when he was hurt in a heavy Catalans Dragons tackle and forced to leave the field.

Memories are made of this: Paddy Brennan celebrates after winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup on Imperial Commander

Memories are made of this: Paddy Brennan celebrates after winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup on Imperial Commander

20 France beat England 12-10 to complete the Grand Slam in the RBS 6 Nations Championship. Ireland went down 23-20 to Scotland at Croke Park, while Wales were 33-10 winners over Italy. Robin Soderling beat Andy Murray 6-1 7-6 (7/4) in the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open. BBC boxing commentator Harry Carpenter died aged 84. He had a minor heart attack in 2009.

21 Manchester United came from a goal down against Liverpool to win 2-1 at Old Trafford and go top of the Barclays Premier League, while Chelsea drew 1-1 at Blackburn. Kenny Miller scored the only goal of the game as nine-man Rangers won the Co-operative Insurance Cup final against St Mirren. Welshman Rhys Davies captured his first European Tour title with a two-shot win at the Hassan Trophy in Morocco.

22 Football Association chief executive Ian Watmore resigned from the role which he only undertook in 2009. The Premier League announced they were to fine struggling Portsmouth over a number of rule breaches during the season, understood to be the late payment of wages to playing staff and of outstanding transfer cash. Ian Bell struck the 10th Test century of his career as England established a slender 21-run lead over Bangladesh at stumps on day three of the second Test.

23 The Football Association appointed chief operating officer Alex Horne as their acting chief executive following the resignation of Ian Watmore. Wolves beat fellow relegation strugglers West Ham 3-1 at Upton Park thanks to goals from Kevin Doyle, Ronald Zubar and Matt Jarvis. Tottenham confirmed they had reached an agreement with Internacional for Brazilian midfielder Sandro to join the London club, subject to the player passing a medical.

24 Tottenham beat Fulham 3-1 at White Hart Lane to reach the semi-finals of the FA Cup. The RFU insisted that Martin Johnson would remain in charge of the England team at the 2011 World Cup following the disappointing performance during the Six Nations. Captain Alastair Cook struck a measured 109 not out to help England defeat Bangladesh by nine wickets in the second Test. The victory in Mirpur saw the tourists wrap up a 2-0 series success.

25 Tony Mowbray was sacked as Celtic manager following the humiliating 4-0 loss at St Mirren. Neil Lennon took charge until the end of the season. UEFA president Michel Platini announced he was to run for re-election. Saracens confirmed the signing of England wing David Strettle from Harlequins.

Magnifique: France players celebrate after clinching the Grand Slam

Magnifique: France players celebrate after clinching the Grand Slam

26 Tottenham confirmed the signing of Brazil midfielder Sandro from Internacional after the 21-year-old passed a medical. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini was charged with improper conduct by the Football Association following his touchline clash with Everton counterpart David Moyes at Eastlands on March 24. Victoria Police confirmed that Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton had his Mercedes road car impounded and was expected to be charged on a summons with improper use of a vehicle following an incident in Melbourne on March 25.

27 Manchester United stayed top of the Premier League with a 4-0 win at Bolton while Chelsea thumped Aston Villa 7-1. Gianfranco Zola said he would consider his future as West Ham manager following his team's 1-0 home loss to Stoke. Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) took pole position for the Australian Grand Prix with Mark Webber (Red Bull) second and Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) third.

28 Former England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson was appointed to lead the Ivory Coast at the summer's World Cup. McLaren's Jenson Button won the Australian Grand Prix, with the Renault of Robert Kubica finishing second with Ferrari's Felipe Massa third. Ed Clancy won gold in the men's omnium at the Track Cycling World Championships in Copenhagen.

Aussie Rules: Jenson Button enjoyed his weekend in Melbourne

Aussie Rules: Jenson Button enjoyed his weekend in Melbourne

29 Gianfranco Zola said he was 'determined to carry on' as West Ham manager. Manchester City moved up to fifth in the Barclays Premier League with a 3-0 win over Wigan as Carlos Tevez scored a second-half hat-trick following the sending off of Gary Caldwell. England forward Sam Burgess scored his first try in the National Rugby League to help South Sydney break their duck with a 30-8 win over Cronulla Sharks.

30 A late goal from Ivica Olic saw Bayern Munich beat Manchester United 2-1 in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final at Allianz Arena, and the Red Devils woes were compounded as Wayne Rooney limps off in injury time. UEFA banned Chelsea's Didier Drogba for two European matches following his sending off against Inter Milan. Team Sky were named among the 22 teams in the 2010 Tour de France line-up.

31 Arsenal battled back from two goals down to draw 2-2 against 10-man Barcelona in their Champions League quarter-final first leg at Emirates stadium. Cesc Fabregas feared his season was over after suffering a suspected broken leg after scoring the 85th-minute equaliser from the penalty spot against Barca, who were simply brilliant on the night. Everton midfielder Dan Gosling was ruled out for nine months with a knee injury.

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