Manchester United returned to form after their weekend humbling at Anfield to claim a solid win in the first leg of their Europa League round of 16 tie against Real Betis. Arsenal, competing in the same stage of the competition, however, were held by a gritty Sporting Lisbon.

In tennis, former world No 1 Andy Murray overcame yet another three-setter to make it to the second round of the Indian Wells Masters, while Emma Raducanu also progressed despite an injury-played few weeks.

In cricket, Sri Lanka ripped through the New Zealand top order to leave the hosts in trouble on day two of the first Test. Sri Lanka can reach the World Test Championships final ahead of India if they win both the Tests against New Zealand.

Here’s a look at the key stories from international sporting events through the day for 10 March, 2023:

Fernando, Kumara lead Lankan charge

Sri Lanka’s bowlers ripped through the New Zealand top order, including snaring the key wicket of Kane Williamson, to leave the hosts in trouble at 162-5 after the second day of the first Test on Friday.

After posting a competitive 355 on the green Hagley Oval wicket in Christchurch, Sri Lanka gave New Zealand a soft start before gaining momentum.

A productive burst either side of the tea break from Asitha Fernando and Lahiru Kumara claimed Devon Conway, Williamson and Henry Nicholls as New Zealand slumped from 67 without loss to 76-3.

A pin-point Fernando yorker then dismissed opener Tom Latham for 67 before Kasun Rajitha accounted for Tom Blundell for seven.

Daryl Mitchell was on 40 at stumps with Michael Bracewell on nine, and although New Zealand were still 193 in arrears, Latham denied they were out of the contest.

Sri Lanka need to sweep the series to keep their World Test Championship hopes alive.

Their ambition was evident as they celebrated each wicket and every saved single.

Fernando, guilty of straying too often down the legside in his opening spell, came back to trap Conway lbw for 30.

Three overs later, Kumara captured the plum wicket of Williamson for one on the last ball before tea and then accounted for Nicholls for two soon after the resumption.

The Sri Lankans were jubilant with the wicket of Williamson, New Zealand’s most prolific run-scorer and the hero of the recent dramatic one-run victory over England.

With the tea break beckoning, he was seduced into attempting an uncharacteristic big cover drive but could not get the ball over Dimuth Karunaratne.

Nicholls, with a question mark over his Test future, had only faced six balls when a rash attempt to pull Kumara to the boundary saw him caught at mid-wicket.

Latham persevered to bring up his 27th half-century and looked well set until he was bowled by Fernando.

Sri Lanka had frustrated New Zealand from the start of the day when they resumed at 305-6 and added another 50 as they stretched the innings for a further 17 overs.

Overnight pair Dhananjaya de Silva and Rajitha clipped 11 off the opening over of the morning before skipper Tim Southee entered the attack and had De Silva caught behind for 46.

When the new ball became due, Matt Henry had Rajitha caught at mid-off for 22 and New Zealand sensed the end was near.

But Prabath Jayasuriya and Lahiru Kumara, while only adding five runs, lasted 38 deliveries for the ninth wicket.

Henry eventually had Jayasuriya caught behind for 13, leaving Kumara (13 not out) and Fernando (10) to add a further 19 runs off 26 deliveries for the final wicket.

For New Zealand, Southee finished with 5-64 and Henry 4-80.

Manchester United bounce back to beat Real Betis

Manchester United bounced back from a historic thrashing by Liverpool to beat Real Betis 4-1 in the first leg of their Europa League last 16 tie on Thursday.

United equalled their heaviest ever defeat and worst since 1931 in losing 7-0 at Anfield on Sunday.

Erik ten Hag responded by naming the same starting line-up and was rewarded with a return to form.

“You see how a team reacts after a setback,” said Ten Hag. “This is not the first time this season, I think you see five or six times we can reset and bounce back. This team has character so a big compliment to the team.”

Marcus Rashford smashed United into an early lead with his 26th goal of the season, but Betis levelled against the run of play when Ayoze Perez fired into the far corner.

It was two of United’s most fiercely criticised stars in recent days who made the difference after the break.

Antony curled a brilliant shot into the top corner before Bruno Fernandes, who Ten Hag named again as captain, headed in Luke Shaw’s corner.

“Bruno was brilliant today,” added Ten Hag. “He led the team from the first minute by his game in possession, making the rhythm of the game and scored a goal so I am happy.”

Wout Weghorst then netted just his second goal in 15 appearances for United by pouncing from close range six minutes from time.

Arsenal held at Sporting Lisbon

Current Premier League Arsenal leaders are left with work to do after they were held to a 2-2 draw away to Sporting Lisbon.

The English giants were forced to come from behind to salvage a draw in the Portuguese capital if the first leg of their round of 16 tie.

Despite going for a first league title in 19 years, Mikel Arteta named a strong side and William Saliba headed the visitors into the lead.

Sporting equalised shortly after in near identical fashion, with Goncalo Inacio heading home Marcus Edwards’ corner.

Former Tottenham midfielder Edwards then had a role in Sporting’s second as Paulinho reacted quickest to finish inside the area.

Arsenal were level just after the hour mark, though, when Granit Xhaka’s cross deflected off the unfortunate Hidemasa Morita and rebounded into his own net.

“Considering you concede two goals away from home and still escape with a draw you have to take some positives,” said Arsenal boss Arteta.

“But we gave them too much hope by giving the ball away in our own half too many times.”

Andy Murray survives another three-setter

Former world No 1 Andy Murray made it through another tough match on Thursday, rallying from a set down to beat Tomas Etcheverry and reach the second round of the Indian Wells WTA and ATP Masters 1000.

The Briton, who has made a habit of great escapes this year, needed three hours and 12 minutes to subdue the Argentinian 6-7 (5), 6-1, 6-4.

“Some of the matches I’ve played this year I haven’t deserved to win all of them,” said Murray, who won a five-setter lasting more than five hours at the Australian Open, and in Doha last month overcame eight match points in four matches before falling to Daniil Medvedev in the final.

Meanwhile, Britain’s 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu rallied from a break down in each set to beat Danka Kovinic 6-2, 6-3, avenging a 2022 Australian Open second-round loss to the Montenegrin as she continued her fightback from various ailments that have slowed her 2023 campaign.

“I’m happy I stuck in,” said Raducanu, who had shut down her 2022 season early with wrist trouble and hurt her ankle in her second match of 2023 in Auckland.

She pulled out of the WTA event in Austin last week with tonsillitis and withdrew from a pre-tournament exhibition here when her wrist trouble flared up.

But she said the litany of problems only made her more determined.

“I just love competing,” Raducanu said. “I think having something that you are going through kind of gives you in some ways more incentive.

“Like, ‘OK ‘I’ve got to be aggressive or dominate – there’s something to really cling onto and use.”

With text inputs from AFP

Updated through the day