Good Week/Bad Week
We look at who flourished and flopped over the last week
Last Updated: 12/03/12 3:43pm
Fickle emotions joy and despair were once again felt in equal measure over the last seven sporting days, none more so than in Manchester, where the red half claimed bragging rights.
England's rugby union fortunes took an upward turn in Paris on Sunday afternoon, while the same sport, but different code, served up one of the shocks of the season as Widnes stunned Wigan.
British pair Bradley Wiggins and Justin Rose will have every right to wake up with sore heads on Monday morning after impressive wins, while Andy Murray and Tiger Woods must once again go back to the drawing board after falling short.
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The Premier League title race took another twist at the weekend as Manchester United returned to the top of the table for the first time since mid-October. The Red Devils capitalised on a slip-up from their City rivals at Swansea with victory over West Brom and are now favourites to land a 20th league title with 10 games remaining.
Stuart Lancaster did his claims for the full-time England managerial vacancy no harm whatsoever by masterminding a rare victory over France in Paris on Sunday. Tries from Manu Tuilagi, Ben Foden and Tom Croft, combined with some stoic late defending, saw England return across the Channel with a 24-22 victory in the RBS Six Nations - their first win in the French capital since 2008.
Bradley Wiggins celebrated one of the biggest road race successes of his career with a stunning victory at the Paris-Nice event. The Team Sky rider clinched the win by prevailing on the eighth and final stage and joined Tom Simpson as only the second Briton to triumph at the gruelling race.
England's Justin Rose warmed up for the Masters in style by landing the WGC-Cadillac Championship in dramatic fashion at TPC Blue Monster. In a tight and tense finish which saw Rory McIlroy once again threaten top honours, Rose calmly went under the radar to prevail by a single stroke. Bubba Watson was inches away from forcing a play-off, however his birdie attempt on the final hole drifted wide to hand Rose his fourth PGA Tour title.
Widnes Vikings produced the shock of the 2012 Stobart Super League season with a stunning 37-36 victory over the previously unbeaten Wigan Warriors on Sunday afternoon. The Vikings, who had lost their previous five fixtures upon their return to the top-flight, spectacularly turned the formbook on its head to leave Wigan boss Shaun Wane "absolutely gutted".
Britain's No.1 headed into the opening ATP Masters 1000 event in high spirits after victory over Novak Djokovic in Dubai two weeks previous, however he was brought crashing back down to earth with a shock defeat to world number 92 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in Indian Wells. Murray, who received a bye in the first round, slumped to a 6-4 6-2 defeat to his Spanish opponent in just one hour 40 minutes, making 34 unforced errors in the process.
With the 2012 London Olympics fast-approaching, one of Great Britain's gold medal hopes suffered a setback when she failed to defend her Pentathlon title at the World Indoor Championships. Sheffield athlete Jessica Ennis was forced to settle for silver after a poor effort in the long jump cost her dear. Rival Nataliya Dobrynska capitalised to strike gold.
Former world No.1 Tiger Woods faces a race against time to be fit for the upcoming Masters after limping out of the WGC-Cadillac Championship. The American, a four-time winner at Augusta, suffered an Achilles injury in Miami over the weekend and, after withdrawing 11 holes into the final round, now has just three weeks to rediscover his form and fitness ahead of the opening major of 2012.