Tech 3 Yamaha's Andrea Dovizioso concluded the opening day of MotoGP practice at Sepang within touching distance of the leading trio in Malaysia.

Dovizioso was fourth fastest overall in the dry morning session but opted to sit out FP2 in the afternoon, which was hit by a heavy rain shower.

The Italian ace was the leading non-factory rider on his YZR-M1 behind Dani Pedrosa, Casey Stoner and Jorge Lorenzo, ending FP1 just over 0.3s adrift of the trio with a best lap in a time of 2m 02.236s.

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"The track was very slippery this morning but I was pleased to finish fourth and my lap time was fast and competitive," he said.

"I could go faster at the end of the session even with a lot of laps on the rear tyre, so it is a promising start to the weekend.

"I wanted to try some important changes to the set-up of the bike this afternoon but the rain that fell before the start meant we couldn't do the work we had planned," Dovizioso added.

"The conditions were mixed, so it wasn't worth going out and taking any risks and we will have to wait to try the modifications tomorrow."