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Dovizioso on the front row: “We’re ready to fight”

In the Ducati corner: Dovizioso prepares his final stand from the front row – as Marquez starts seventh

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) may be 33 points off Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) in the Championship, but the Ducati rider dusts himself off for a last stand from the front row of the grid – and Marquez starts seventh. After five wins already this year and becoming the first Ducati rider to score this big since Casey Stoner, Dovizioso is ready for the final showdown – and thinks they’ve set themselves up for it perfectly.

Dovi: "Great result and I have better a feeling"

“We approached the weekend perfectly. Yesterday and even more today,” says the Italian. “I’m happy with the work we’ve done. In the wet we proved we are competitive but I was worried about the dry conditions like today. But the feeling was good from the beginning and every time we tried a new setup, it worked better. I was able to push a lot in qualifying and set a really good laptime, and I’m so happy about it.”

Only 0.024 off the pole lap set by Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team), it was certainly something to be happy about. His win at the venue last year is yet another boost as ‘DesmoDovi’ aims squarely at repeating the feat last year – and he says he’s ready for what could be the final round in the ring.

Highlights: Pedrosa takes pole in electric Sepang qualifying

“In FP4 I confirmed really good pace for the race with the used tyre,” explains the Italian. “I think I ride the bike in a really good way for the characteristics of the track and the heat. We have a minimum of three or four riders with good pace, so first we have to wait and see the conditions, but our target was to be ready in the wet or the dry. The goal is to get 25 points. We’re ready to fight.”

He will have to, and it remains a long shot – check out Marquez’ chance at the crown here – but anything can happen in motorcycle racing. The race gets underway at 15:00 (GMT +8).

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