Ding Liren became China’s first world chess champion after beating Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi in Kazakhstan. Liren won the rapid-play tie-break after the 14 first-stage games ended 7-7.
Erling Haaland scored his 50th goal of the season as Manchester City climbed to the top of the Premier League for the first time in 10 weeks. Champions League-chasing Manchester United and Newcastle United both won on Sunday while Liverpool clinched a seven-goal thriller against Tottenham Hotspurs.
Carlos Alcaraz set up a last 16 revenge clash against Alexander Zverev while Iga Swiatek eased into the next round in Madrid.
Here’s a look at the key stories from international sporting events through the day for 1 May, 2023:
Ding Liren becomes world chess champion
Ding Liren became China’s first world chess champion on Sunday after a rapid-play tie-break victory over Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi in Kazakhstan.
Ding, 30, takes over as winner of the World Chess Championship from Norway’s Magnus Carlsen, who chose not to defend his title after a 10-year reign.
He and Nepomniachtchi had finished on seven points each after the 14 first-stage games played in the Kazakh capital, Astana.
Each had won three, with the other eight ending in draws.
For the tie-break stage of the match, also in Astana, the contenders had only 25 minutes to make their moves, plus an additional 10 seconds for each move played.
Ding clinched victory after winning the fourth of Sunday’s quick-fire games following three draws.
Both players reacted emotionally, with Nepomniachtchi getting up from the table quickly after shaking hands to concede defeat, and shaking hands again before leaving the hall.
Ding sat in front of the board, his face resting on one hand as he tried to compose himself.
“I’m quite relieved,” said Ding, in comments posted after the match by FIDE, the International Chess Federation.
“The moment Ian resigned the game was a very emotional moment. I couldn’t control my feelings. I know myself, I will cry and burst into tears. It was a tough tournament for me.”
He had held his nerve to come back from behind three times during the 14-match classical play series: each time Nepomniachtchi won a game to take the lead, Ding eventually levelled the score with a win of his own.
No Chinese player had ever previously won the competition, in which men and women can compete.
But China has dominated women’s tournaments since the 1990s and Ding’s triumph signalled the country’s rise as a major player on the global chess scene.
Ju Wenjun is the reigning world champion in women’s chess and will face compatriot Lei Tingjie in July to defend her title.
China also won the Chess Olympiad, the game’s most important international competition, in 2014 and 2018, with Ding playing a major role in his nation’s success on both occasions.
Man City back on top as Newcastle, Man Utd win
Erling Haaland scored his 50th goal of the season on Sunday as Manchester City beat Fulham to return to the Premier League summit, with Newcastle and Manchester United winning to close in on a top-four finish.
Liverpool maintained their unlikely pursuit of a Champions League place by beating Tottenham 4-3 in a thriller but Southampton and Leeds are staring into the abyss.
City’s 2-1 win at Craven Cottage left Pep Guardiola’s men a point clear of long-time leaders Arsenal, with a game in hand.
The defending champions, chasing their fifth Premier League title in six seasons, were ahead in the third minute when Haaland scored from the penalty spot after Julian Alvarez was fouled.
Haaland’s 34th Premier League goal of the season equals the competition record held by Andy Cole and Alan Shearer – set in the days of 42-game campaigns.
The Norwegian is the first player to reach a half-century of goals across all competitions in a single English top-flight season since 1931.
Fulham equalised in the 15th minute through Carlos Vinicius but Alvarez restored City’s lead nine minutes before half-time.
Treble-chasing City, on top for the first time in 10 weeks, have won their past eight league games and are unbeaten in their past 18 matches in all competitions.
Arsenal host struggling Chelsea on Tuesday, with City at home to West Ham the following day.
Callum Wilson came off the bench to score twice as third-placed Newcastle fought back to beat Southampton 3-1 and edge their opponents towards relegation.
The win keeps Newcastle two points ahead of Manchester United but Southampton are anchored at the foot of the table, six points from safety with just four games to play.
Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United edged in-form Aston Villa 1-0, courtesy of a first-half goal from Bruno Fernandes.
In the later kick-off, Liverpool hit managerless Tottenham with a three-goal blitz in the first 15 minutes but the visitors stormed back and Richarlison scored an improbable equaliser in the 93rd minute.
Just when it seemed that Spurs had grabbed a dramatic point Diogo Jota won the game, leaving the Reds in fifth spot, seven points behind fourth-placed Manchester United having played a game more.
Colombia midfielder Jefferson Lerma scored twice in four first-half minutes as Bournemouth moved 10 points clear of the relegation zone with a 4-1 home win over Leeds, who remain in deep trouble.
Alcaraz sets up Zverev clash in Madrid
World number two and defending champion Carlos Alcaraz on Sunday set up a Madrid Open last 16 duel with Alexander Zverev, the German rival who handed him a heartbreaking, reality-check defeat at Roland Garros last year.
Alcaraz defeated Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6-2, 7-5 in the Madrid third round as he continues his bid to win a 10th tour title before his 20th birthday.
The 19-year-old swept past Zverev in the Madrid final in 2022 for the loss of just four games.
However, just weeks later, the German claimed a four-set victory in the French Open quarter-finals. That was Zverev’s third win in the pair’s four meetings.
Two-time Madrid champion Zverev needed just 56 minutes earlier Sunday to dispose of France’s Hugo Grenier 6-1, 6-0 on the back of six breaks of serve and 26 winners.
Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina toppled world number seven Holger Rune 7-6 (7/1), 5-7, 7-6 (7/5).
World number one Iga Swiatek claimed she had endured a “tricky” afternoon despite easing to a straight-sets win over American left-hander Bernarda Pera to reach the last 16 of the women’s tournament in the Spanish capital.
Swiatek, warming up for the defence of her French Open title, claimed a 6-3, 6-2 win for a sixth consecutive victory on clay this season.
Swiatek next faces 16th seed Ekaterina Alexandrova who came from a set down to see off Zheng Qinwen of China.
Also progressing to the fourth round was world number three Jessica Pegula, who clinched a gruelling 6-4, 7-6 (7/2) victory over Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic.
Pegula, 29, made the final in Madrid in 2022 where she lost to Ons Jabeur. She will now tackle Italy’s Martina Trevisan on Monday for a quarter-final spot.
Results in the Madrid ATP/WTA 1000 tournament on Sunday (x denotes seeding; players representing Russia and Belarus are banned from competing under the name or flag of their countries):
Carlos Alcaraz (ESP x1) bt Grigor Dimitrov (BUL x26) 6-2, 7-5
Alexander Zverev (GER x13) bt Hugo Grenier (FRA) 6-1, 6-0
Karen Khachanov (x10) bt Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP x20) 7-5, 4-6, 6-3
Andrey Rublev (x5) bt Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN x28) 6-2, 7-5
Jaume Munar (ESP) bt Matteo Arnaldi (ITA) 3-6, 6-3, 6-1
Daniel Altmaier (GER) bt Yannick Hanfmann (GER) 7-6 (7/3), 6-3
Borna Coric (CRO x17) bt Hubert Hurkacz (POL x12) 7-6 (7/3), 6-3
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (ESP x29) bt Holger Rune (DEN x6) 7-6 (7/1), 5-7, 7-6 (7/5)
Iga Swiatek (POL x1) bt Bernarda Pera (USA x28) 6-3, 6-2
Ekaterina Alexandrova (x16) bt Zheng Qinwen (CHN x22) 5-7, 6-4, 6-2
Barbora Krejcikova (CZE x11) bt Wang Xiyu (CHN) 6-4, 6-1
Petra Martic (CRO x27) bt Anna Kalinskaya 6-3, 4-6, 6-3
Jessica Pegula (USA x3) bt Marie Bouzkova (CZE x29) 6-4, 7-6 (7/2)
Martina Trevisan (ITA x18) bt Alycia Parks (USA) 7-6 (7/3), 6-1
Veronika Kudermetova (x12) bt Anastasia Potapova (x21) 7-6 (7/3), 5-7, 6-3
Daria Kasatkina (x8) bt Lesia Tsurenko (UKR) 6-4, 6-2
Atletico close in on Real Madrid
Atletico Madrid moved back within two points of second-placed Real Madrid in La Liga after surviving a Real Valladolid comeback in a 5-2 victory on Sunday.
Goals from Nahuel Molina, Jose Maria Gimenez and Alvaro Morata had visitors Atletico 3-0 ahead inside 38 minutes.
Valladolid hit back through a Cyle Larin penalty and Sergio Escudero’s goal, but Atletico sealed victory thanks to Joaquin Fernandez’s late own goal and an injury-time strike from Memphis Depay.
Atletico have little to play for in La Liga, sitting 13 points behind leaders Barcelona and 13 clear of fifth-placed Villarreal.
But Diego Simeone’s men are finishing the season strongly and aiming to take second from Real.
They have won eight of their last nine league games, with the only blip a 1-0 loss at Barca.
Earlier on Sunday, Valencia’s bid to avoid slipping out of La Liga for the first time since 1987 suffered another blow with a 2-1 loss at fellow strugglers Cadiz.
Valencia are now only two points and one place above the drop zone, although Espanyol’s 1-0 win over Getafe prevented the six-time Spanish champions from falling into the bottom three.
Cadiz moved above Valencia with their win and sit four points clear of danger.
against Villarreal in midweek.
Villarreal gave their slim hopes of qualifying for the Champions League a boost with a 3-1 victory over Celta Vigo to move within five points of fourth-placed Real Sociedad.
Betis were beaten 4-0 by Barcelona at the Camp Nou on Saturday as the Catalan giants maintained their 11-point lead over Real Madrid at the top of the table with six games to play.
Espanyol ended a dreadful run of seven defeats and one draw in eight games thanks to Joselu’s first-half penalty against Getafe.
Perez leads Red Bull 1-2 in Baku
Sergio Perez won Sunday’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix with teammate Max Verstappen in second to ram home Red Bull’s supremacy over the rest of the Formula One grid.
Ferrari’s pole-sitter Charles Leclerc completed the podium, a respectable third.
Red Bull’s roll through 2023 after four races now reads four wins plus Saturday’s sprint, three poles, and three 1-2s.
Verstappen leads the drivers’ championship by just six points ahead of the fifth round of the record 23-race season in Miami.
Perez’ engineer told him on the team radio he was the “king of the streets” and with justification as five of his six F1 wins - not counting Saturday’s sprint - have come on street circuits, twice in Baku alongside victories in Saudi Arabia, Monaco and Singapore.
The popular Perez, who believes he can really challenge Verstappen for the title, said: “It really worked out today for us (me), we managed to keep the pressure on Max. I think it was very close between us, we pushed to the maximum, we both hit the wall a few times but we (I) managed to keep him under control.”
Fernando Alonso only narrowly missed out on a fourth consecutive podium, the 41-year-old Spaniard finishing fourth in the Aston Martin ahead of Carlos Sainz in the other Ferrari.
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton was in sixth ahead of Lance Stroll in the second Aston Martin.
George Russell, who secured the point for the fastest lap, was ninth for Mercedes with Yuki Tsunoda’s Alpha Tauri rounding out the top 10.
With text inputs from AFP
Updated through the day