Sports & Entertainment

CANNES, France - “Armageddon Time,” which premiered Thursday at the Cannes Film Festival, whisks the audience to the cusp of the Ronald Reagan presidency, exploring issues of race and privilege in American society with a star-studded cast that includes Anne Hathaway, Anthony Hopkins, Jeremy Strong and Jessica Chastain.     The film directed by James Gray is told through the view of young Paul Graff, played by Michael Banks Repeta. It tells the story of his friendship with Johnny, played by Jaylin Webb. Together, the two boys have high ambitions - but run up against unbending social structures.    “It’s very emotional for me, it’s my story in a way,” a tearful Gray said, to a standing ovation.     The 64-year-old director, who has had four other films in competition at the festival in past years, said it was the first time he had spoken to an audience there. Gray's latest movie, which is being distributed by Comcast Corp's...
LONDON - Marco Alonso scored a glorious equaliser to earn Chelsea a 1-1 home draw with Leicester City on Thursday and effectively seal third place in the Premier League ahead of the final round of fixtures. The draw lifted Chelsea to 71 points, 19 behind leaders Manchester City and three ahead of Tottenham Hotspur in fourth, but Chelsea's far superior goal difference means Spurs have no realistic chance of overtaking them. Leicester took the lead in the seventh minute when Kasper Schmeichel sent a sweeping long ball to Timothy Castagne, and his deflected pass fell into the path of James Maddison who advanced before curling a perfect shot past Edouard Mendy. Chelsea's 34th-minute equaliser was exquisite, Reece James lofting a diagonal ball into the box for Alonso to volley home, and though they completely dominated the game the hosts could not find the net again and had to be content with a draw. (Reporting...
LIVERPOOL, England - Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored five minutes from time to guarantee Everton’s Premier League survival as they rallied from two goals down to secure a thrilling 3-2 victory over Crystal Palace at a rocking Goodison Park on Thursday. Everton needed a win to ensure they continue their 68-year top-flight stay and Calvert-Lewin, who has been a peripheral figure this season due to injury, headed a Demarai Grey free-kick in at the Gwladys Street end to spark a pitch invasion from the delirious home fans. Jean-Philippe Mateta and Jordan Ayew, who perhaps should have had a red card moments earlier, scored first half goals for mid-table Palace, who were well on top, but Everton rallied in the second period thanks to goals from Michael Keane and Richarlison, before Calvert-Lewin’s winner. It will be huge relief for manager Frank Lampard and Everton’s vociferous fans, who provided another massive show of support ahead of the game...
TULSA, Oklahoma - Tiger Woods struggled mightily in the opening round of the PGA Championship on Thursday at Southern Hills Country Club where he played through significant discomfort over his closing holes and will have plenty of work to do to make the cut. Woods, in his second start since a February, 2021 car crash that nearly ended his career, looked good early but pushed his body to its limits and it cost him as he gritted his teeth in pain towards the end of his opening four-over-par 74. "Yeah, my leg is not feeling as good as I would like it to be," Woods told reporters after finishing his round nine shots behind clubhouse leader Rory McIlroy. "We'll start the recovery process and get after it tomorrow." Woods started on the back nine and his right leg was clearly troubling him by the time he got to the par-four seventh. He had a slight limp as he approached the green at his penultimate hole before grimacing and reaching for his bac...
TULSA, Oklahoma - Rory McIlroy has long been plagued by slow starts in the majors but put the issue behind him as he made a near flawless trip around Southern Hills to grab the early clubhouse lead at the PGA Championship on Thursday. Since winning the last of his four majors in 2014, slow starts at golf's biggest events have proven too difficult to overcome for McIlroy but the Northern Irishman flipped the script and appears to have rediscovered his mojo. McIlroy mixed seven birdies with two bogeys for a five-under-par 65 that marked his lowest opening round in a major since posting the same score en route to winning the 2011 U.S. Open. "It's just a matter of going out there and really sticking to your game plan, executing as well as you possibly can, and just sort of staying in your own little world," said McIlroy. "I did that really well today. It was nice to get off to that good start and sorta keep it going."...
LOS ANGELES - Pop singer Rihanna and rapper A$AP Rocky are new parents of a baby boy, according to a report on the TMZ website on Thursday. Rihanna, 34, gave birth on May 13 in Los Angeles, TMZ said, citing sources with knowledge of the matter. It is their first child. Representatives for the musicians did not respond to requests for comment. The couple announced Rihanna's pregnancy in January. The Barbados-born "Diamonds" singer, whose birth name is Robyn Fenty, has won nine Grammy awards and also developed the Fenty makeup and fashion lines. Rihanna and A$AP Rocky, 33, were friends for many years before they began dating. The rapper told GQ magazine in May 2021 that she was "the love of my life" and that he "absolutely" wanted to be a father. (Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Sandra Maler)...
- Virat Kohli rediscovered his scoring touch to smash 73 off 54 balls and lead Royal Challengers Bangalore to an eight-wicket win over table toppers Gujarat Titans on Thursday, keeping his side's playoff hopes alive. Set a target of 169 to win their final league game, Kohli opened the innings again and smashed eight fours and two sixes to give Bangalore a platform to chase down the total and move up to fourth place. Kohli has had a poor season by his standards, which includes three ducks in the tournament. The knock was only his second fifty in 14 IPL innings, even as he crossed the 7,000-run mark for the franchise. "I was disappointed that I haven't done much for my team and that is what bothers me. Today was a game where I was able to create an impact for the team," said Kohli. "I have worked really hard. Before this game, I batted non-stop in the nets for 90 minutes. I came in very free and relaxed." Bangalo...
By Mimosa Spencer CANNES, France - "Mariupolis 2," a documentary showing a close-up view of life under bombardment in Ukraine, debuted at the Cannes Film Festival Thursday with an emotional tribute to slain director Mantas Kvedaravicius by his fiancée. "It's an honor to present Mantas' recent work. It's great the festival honors his legacy and his work as a filmmaker and anthropologist," said Hanna Bilobrova, fighting back tears. Kvedaravicius, 45, was killed in April in Mariupol, where he was filming with Bilobrova, who co-directed the project. "We were determined to show it," said festival President Thierry Fremaux, noting the organizers were "very firm" in opposing the war. Fremaux pointed to a badge on his chest that carried an anti-war message, saying, "I think everyone shares this position, except [Vladimir] Putin." The war has loomed over the festival, which has banned official Russian dele...
By Julien Pretot PARIS - Defending champion Novak Djokovic and 13-times winnner Rafael Nadal are on a quarter-final collision course at the French Open following the draw on Thursday. World number one Djokovic, back on the Grand Slam scene after being deported from Melbourne ahead of the Australian Open following his decision not to have a COVID-19 vaccination, will start his campaign against Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka. He was drawn in the toughest half of the draw with Nadal as well as in-form Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz and world number three Alexander Zverev, who could clash in the last eight. The French Open will operate at full capacity for the first time in three years after the last two tournaments were disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. "It's amazing to see all the fans who have already come here for the qualifications," said Djokovic, who attended the draw ceremony at Roland Garros....
By Amy Tennery NEW YORK - After reaching a landmark agreement for equal pay, sponsor dollars could be the next major boost for the United States' four-times World Cup champion women's team. The U.S. national men's and women's soccer team players will receive equal prize money, including at World Cups, after they agreed collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) with the U.S. Soccer Federation on Wednesday. The deal could inspire sponsors that may have previously looked past the four-times Olympic gold medal winners who routinely outperform their male counterparts. "In the short term, there's going to be additional dollars going into the sport and women's sport in general," said Adam Holt, SVP Business Development, FanAI. "From a longer-term perspective... this extra revenue and extra money that's going in is only going to benefit the sport as it continues to grow with more money going into the grassroots."...
By Alan Baldwin BARCELONA - Ferrari's Carlos Sainz raised questions on Thursday about the long-term health implications of Formula One's latest generation of cars. The Spaniard said he was feeling the pain of having to race with a stiffer suspension to counter the bouncing, or 'porpoising', that some teams are experiencing due to aerodynamic rules introduced this season. Asked at the Spanish Grand Prix how the cars might handle around Monaco next week, Sainz called for a broader debate. "More than Monaco ... it's how much of a toll a driver should be paying for his back and his health in a Formula One career with this kind of car philosophy?," he told reporters. "I think we need to open the debate more than anything. "I think the regulations are great. They're doing exactly what we needed for racing. But do we need to run as stiff for our necks and back as we are having to run lately? Sainz, who c...
- Real Madrid have reached a 360 million euro ($380.95 million) agreement with Sixth Street that will allow the U.S.-based investment firm to host events at the renovated Santiago Bernabeu stadium, the LaLiga club said on Thursday. The Spanish champions, who won a record-extending 35th LaLiga title in April, said the partnership included Legends, a premium experiences company that caters to sports and live venue organisations. Sixth Street, which has more than $60 billion of assets under management, has experience in infrastructure and sports. It has invested a majority stake in Legends. The agreement, which the club said would allow for multiple events to be hosted at the stadium throughout the year, was ratified at a meeting of Real's board of directors on Wednesday. "As part of the long-term partnership, Real Madrid will receive approximately 360 million euros to be invested across any of the club's activities," Real Madr...
By Marie-Louise Gumuchian LONDON - Rapper Dave, chart-topper Ed Sheeran and music star Shakira were among the winners at the Ivors in London on Thursday, the annual awards honouring songwriters and screen composers. Dave beat the likes of singers Adele, Sheeran and Raye as well as band Coldplay to be crowned songwriter of the year while the Ivor Novello award for best album went to Laura Mvula's critically-acclaimed "Pink Noise". "I'm just genuinely happy to be here amongst people I respect," Mvula told on the red carpet before the ceremony. "These are the people that don't get shouts enough." Shakira was recognised with the special international award at the event organised by the UK-based Ivors Academy. "There's so much talent out there and I'm glad that today there's so many platforms that new songwriters and new creators are taking advantage of," she told reporters. "When I started my career...
By Julien Pretot PARIS - Richard Gasquet's own expectations of shining at Roland Garros are so low that he has already lined up a job as a pundit for French TV at this year's claycourt major, where the local hopefuls are geared up for another dire collective performance. With French number one Gael Monfils having pulled out injured last week, there will be no seeded players from the home nation in both the men's and the women's draw in Paris - a first since 1980. The number of seeds was increased from 16 to 32 back in 2001. "It is true that French tennis is not doing well," said Pierre-Hughes Herbert, who was knocked out in the first round of the qualifications this week. "There's got to be a reaction." Last year only three Frenchmen survived their opening matches before being eliminated in the second round -- their worst collective performance since tennis turned professional in 1968....
ATHENS - Vangelis, the Greek composer whose rousing electronic theme music for the Oscar-winning "Chariots of Fire" was one of the best-known film scores of the 1980s, has died at the age of 79, the Athens News Agency said on Thursday. Citing an announcemet from his lawyers' office, ANA said Vagelis died late on Tuesday, without giving a cause of death. (Reporting by Karolina Tagaris;Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)...
- Olympic 100m and 200m champion Elaine Thompson-Herah has withdrawn from this weekend's Birmingham Diamond League meet after she experienced discomfort in training, her management agency said on Thursday. Jamaican Thompson-Herah was set to run in the 100m in an eagerly awaited contest along with Tokyo bronze medallist and compatriot Shericka Jackson and Britain's Dina Asher-Smith who won 100m silver at the 2019 world championships. Thompson-Herah had a stellar 2021 where she also won the 4x100m relay gold in Tokyo, and she came within 0.05 seconds of Florence Griffith Joyner's 100m world record at a Diamond League meeting. (Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis)...
GENOA, Italy - Italian rider Stefano Oldani grabbed his maiden professional career victory after winning stage 12 of the Giro d'Italia, a 186-kilometre ride from Parma to Genoa, the longest stage of the race, on Thursday. Italian duo Oldani and Lorenzo Rota, alongside Dutchman Gijs Leemreize, all of whom had never won a WorldTour event before, pulled clear of the chasing pack on the third of three category three climbs on the stage. Unchallenged, the trio sized each other up as the stage reached the streets of Genoa, with Leemreize making his move first, before Oldani had too much power, taking the win for his team Alpecin–Fenix ahead of Rota in second. "It wasn't so easy to manage the race, but it looks like I managed it," Oldani told Eurosport. "I know Lorenzo (Rota) well and knew he would be fast, but I had just enough to do it. "I worked really, really hard for this. It seems like magic that I've done it."...
By Alan Baldwin BARCELONA - Carlos Sainz has yet to step up as a Formula One winner but Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix is a chance for the Ferrari driver to end his 146-race wait in front of a home crowd and as the season enters a new phase. Sainz has a winning car, with team mate Charles Leclerc taking two of five races so far and leading the championship, and will have a full house cheering him on after two pandemic-hit years. The 27-year-old has always scored at the Circuit de Catalunya, where overtaking can be a challenge, and the last time Ferrari won there it was with a Spanish driver -- Fernando Alonso in 2013. Two times world champion Alonso, now with Renault-owned Alpine, remains the only Spanish F1 driver to have won at home. "The goal, as in every other race weekend, is to extract the maximum out of our car and try to win the Grand Prix," said Sainz, who has been on the podium three times thi...
- Formula One statistics for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya, round six of the 22-race season. Lap distance: 4.675 km. Total distance: 308.424 km (66 laps) 2021 pole position: Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 2021 race winner: Hamilton Start time: 1300 GMT (1500 local) SPAIN The Circuit de Catalunya is celebrating its 32nd year as host of what will be the 52nd world championship Spanish GP. Hamilton has won six times in Spain (2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021), a record he shares with Michael Schumacher, but a sixth in a row for the seven times world champion looks unlikely. Other past winners are Sebastian Vettel (2011), Fernando Alonso (2006, 2013) and Max Verstappen (2016). Verstappen is one of four drivers to have taken his first F1 win in Spain. The winner at the Circuit de Catalunya has started on pole...
- Britain's Mark Cavendish said on Thursday that he wants to continue racing for two more years, with another appearance at the Tour de France on his radar. Cavendish admitted at the end of 2020 that he was considering retirement, but enjoyed a remarkable return to form last year, sprinting to four stage wins at the Tour de France to equal the record of 34 set by Belgian great Eddy Merckx. The 36-year-old Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl racer, who ensured a winning return to the Giro d'Italia as he sprinted to victory on stage three in Hungary last week, feels fit enough to keep going. "I want to extend my career for at least another two years," Cavendish told Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport. "It's not just that I want to keep cycling, I feel I can be competitive for at least another two years. Maybe more, but two years should certainly be possible." Dutchman Fabio Jakobsen is in line to be QuickStep's sprinter...