Marquez grabs pole as Dovizioso struggles at Phillip Island
Marc Marquez grabbed pole for the Australian Grand Prix as his title rival Andrea Dovizioso struggled in qualifying on Saturday.
Marquez left it late at Phillip Island, but his time of one minute, 28.386 seconds was enough to secure pole.
The Repsol Honda rider went top of the timesheets in the final seconds, although it always looked like being a happy session for the Spaniard.
His title rival â€“ Dovizioso â€“ battled outside the top 10 and could only qualify 11th fastest despite his late efforts.
Maverick Vinales (Movistar Yamaha) and Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3), who were both briefly top late in the session, will start second and third respectively.
The session was a huge boost to Marquez, winner at Phillip Island in 2015, as he chases his fourth championship.
Dovizioso came off during fourth practice, and the Ducati rider has left himself with work to do on Sunday.
While Valentino Rossi qualified seventh fastest, Jorge Lorenzo â€“ like Dovizioso â€“ will start further back.
Lorenzo, who was cleared after a huge crash during a wet third practice, will start 16th.
Andrea Iannone (Suzuki Ecstar), Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) make up the second row.
1. Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) 1:28.386
2. Maverick Vinales (Movistar Yamaha) +0.333s
3. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) +0.358s
4. Andrea Iannone (Suzuki Ecstar) +0.551s
5. Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) +0.578s
6. Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) +0.644s
7. Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha) +0.817s
8. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) +0.885s
9. Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) +0.935s
10. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) +1.043s