the labour leaderjeremy corbyn has insisted that uk must work through the united nations to find a political settlement in syria. the government loses a court bid to delay publication of its air pollution strategy until after the general election. new figures show a big rise in violent crime in england and wales, with knife crime at its highest level for six years. in a moment it will be time for sportsday but first a look at what else is coming up this evening on bbc news. we'll be bring you the latest on that security incident on whitehall and we'll be speaking to a former head of counter—terrorism at the ministry of defence. we'll hear from live theresa may, in the next few minutes, as she makes a speech in leeds as part of the general election campaign and her efforts to retain the keys to no 10. and our paper reviewers
joining me tonight are the political commentator lance price and caroline wheeler, who's political editor of the sunday express. that's at 10.1i0pm in the papers. that's all ahead on bbc news. now on bbc news it's time for sportsday. hello and welcome to sportsday — i'm mike bushell. dignified and courteous — not me, but unusually a boxing press conference, ahead of this weekend's big fight. in age, there are 1a years between anthonyjoshua and vladimir klitschko, but today they were face to face, ahead of wembley‘s showdown in front of 90,000 fans. they may be playing second fiddle in the title race, but the two manchester clubs city and united have the top four to battle for as they meet tonight at the ethiad. and could china's most famous sportsman be on course to knock out the defending champion at snooker‘s world championships? ding junhui leads mark selby
after the first day. thank you forjoining us. but first, to a boxing press conference with a difference. name calling was left to the politicians today, as anthony joshua and vladimir klitschko were full of respect for each other ahead of their world heavyweight title unification fight. joshua says victory at wembley on saturday would be a stepping stone to greatness while the ukrainian klitschko had a trick up his sleeve. 0lly foster was watching for us at wembley. we heard from wladimir klitschko and anthonyjoshua we heard from wladimir klitschko and anthony joshua ahead we heard from wladimir klitschko and anthonyjoshua ahead of their fight, they were given a grand reception
and entrance for their final post fight news conference. wladimir klitschko said it was very refreshing that there were none of those fun and games, the trash talking, the abuse, sometimes, the violent outbreaks you sometimes see in these news conferences before a fight. he said this is how it should be done and anthonyjoshua, you can tally was completely focused on the job in hand. he is the heavyweight champion of the worst, wladimir klitschko in a very strange position of being a challenger. now let's hear from both fighters. even though it's such an amazing event, i always try to strip everything back down to reality and focus on it, itjust me and him coming to blows and the best man will win. i'm still up very early in the morning and sleeping very late at night, working diligently with my coach to prepare myself and physically, but mentally to prepare for any battle.
that's why i enjoy the sport and take it seriously. april 29th is just another stepping stone towards greatness. i am a challenger again. i feel young, hungry, humble and totally obsessed with idea and my goal to raise my hands again as the winner of this fight. joshua says it's not complicated, he's just joshua says it's not complicated, he'sjust going to joshua says it's not complicated, he's just going to win. we have the weigh—in tomorrow at wembley arena, sports they will be live from wembley arena itself from 6:30pm and
then fight night around 10pm, the ring walk on saturday night. olly foster at isleworth in west london. it doesn't happen often, but there's a manchester derby on a thursday this evening as city and united meet at the etihad, with a champions league spot, the best these sides can hope for now. andy swiss is there for us. andy — pep guardiola and jose mourinho will presumably have had maybe higher expectations than just reaching the top four when they took charge last summer? that's right, it seems a long time ago since these two teams met at old trafford back in september. both with 100% record at the time. city won that much to everyone but we thought at the time there would be fighting for the title at this stage of the season rather than fighting for fourth spot. of course with fourth spot comes champions league qualifications so much at stake. united currently one point behind
city, if they win tonight, they would leapfrog city into fourth place. the first time they would have been in the top four since september. for both managers, it's now all about that champions league qualification. every game now is so important and it will happen until the last game. we saw the last game, crystal palace have become here. it was good at sta mford have become here. it was good at stamford bridge, anfield, at home against arsenal. it will be difficult and of course for everyone we have to play. game by game, try to win the points and of course, get into the champions league next season. if we finish fifth and they finish sixth, we are above them but it means nothing. if they finish third and we finish fourth, they are above us and we finish fourth, they are above us and it means a lot. this is not
about city, this is about objectives and fighting for objectives. we want to try to play champions league foot ball to try to play champions league football and we still have two doors open. united are in an impressive run of form you have to say, unbeaten in the last 23 league games. they have won the last three league games including against burnley at the weekend but they have a lot of injuries. zlatan ibrahimovic out for the rest of the season, marcos rojo and paul pogba injured. as far as city are concerned, they will be hoping to bounce back from the fa cup semifinal defeat against arsenal at the weekend. in some ways, more pressure on city because united still have the safety net of the
europa league. if they win that, they qualify for the champions league regardless of where they finished domestically. city don't have that. so much for both teams to play for. the mancunian derby always an emotional night and kick—off is at 8pm. the bbc understands that former newcastle united winger, sylvain marveaux, is one of four people arrested as part of an hmrc investigation into suspected income tax and national insurance fraud. marveaux joined newcastle from french club rennes in 2011, and made 39 appearances for the magpies, scoring one goal. he is currently with another french side lorient. the 18—month ban given to burnley midfielderjoey barton, for breaching gambling rules has come under scrutiny today. the football association says it's the shortest possible suspension it could have given to the player
under its current rules but his club manager says the punishment handed down to barton, who has admitted he is addicted to gambling, is too harsh. 0ne one of the things i thought of was eric cantona kicking someone. but we must make it clear, we all know the rules, don't gamble on football, and he knows that. but when you think that the fa made it clear there was no intent for anything other than his own personal gambling, and they made that clear, nothing about trying to change games or any of that or can sort, nothing like that, 18 months seems a long time to be in lieu some of the things i have seen in game. sepp blatter, the former president of fifa has been questioned as part of ongoing investigations into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 world cups. french prosecutors have been
speaking to blatter, as they look into the awarding of the world cups to russia and qatar. le monde newspaper reports that prosecutors are looking into allegations of corruption and that blatter was spoken to "as a witness". the latest from the world snooker championship now and the first semifinal between defending champion mark selby and the man he beat in last year's final ding junhui — and ding leads 5—3 after the first session. but it was selby who had the early momentum in the match playing shots like this to take a 3—2 lead. but it was ding who managed to re—group and ended strongly winning the final three frames — the last of which was a century of 110. they will resume tomorrow at 10am. john higgins faces barry hawkins in this evening's session. after her win in stuttgart yesterday in her first match since her doping suspension, maria sharapova has won again — against another russian, ekaterina makarova. the former world no1 won the first set 7—5, the third successive set she has won in her comeback. and she went on to comfortably win the second, 6—1 to clinch her place in the next round.
johanna konta is out of the event though after she was beaten by anastasija sevastova. the british number one, who was the sixth seed for the tournament, was defeated in straight sets by the latvian who is ranked 26th in the world. 6-3, 7-5. andy murray is into the quarterfinals in barcelona after a straight sets victory over feliciano lopez. the world number one's return from elbow injury didn't go to plan in monte carlo but here he was back on track in spain. he will make the first set 6—4 and broke lopez's serve in the final game. murray marches on but there was defeat for britain's dan evans in barcelona. he lost in straight sets to dominic thiem of austria. ireland have moved another significant step closer to receiving test status in cricket.
the icc have been discussing allowing the country to compete in the longer form at a meeting in dubai today. patrick gearey has more. in the past, to be a test playing nation, you had to be noted by two other members of the icc. that barrier has now been got rid of. ireland could apply and then be judged on how good your national side is, the state of your first class cricket, finances and your ground is quality. ireland feel they meet that criteria with a couple of twea ks meet that criteria with a couple of tweaks and they are cautiously optimistic, in their words, that they would be accepted by the icc. they will now put that forward when membership committee. ireland has made huge strides. it was thought of asa made huge strides. it was thought of as a banned foreign game at one stage and they played primarily in english county competitions. in 2007, they had a big international breakthrough by beating pakistan and
then a famous victory against england. talented irish cricketers like eoin morgan have decided to switch sides to play for england so they could play at the elite end of they could play at the elite end of the sport. this could now be the beginning of all that changed. the american golfer lexi thompson was moved to tears as she discussed — in her words — the ‘nightmare‘ penalty which cost her a major title. thompson was leading the ana last month, when she received a four—stroke penalty for playing her ball from the wrong place and then signing an incorrect scorecard. the controversy only came about after a tv viewer contacted officials to inform them of the infringement. the incident has since led to a rule change. that's one of my favourite tournaments and it's always a dream of mine tojust tournaments and it's always a dream of mine to just see myself... i worked my whole life to have my name
on major championship trophies, especially that one, that's a very special week for me with all the history behind it. i played amazing that week, i don't think i've ever played any better. just for that to happen, it was just, played any better. just for that to happen, it wasjust, kind of a nightmare. that's all from sportsday. there'll be more sport here on bbc news throughout the evening. the headlines at 6.30pm — a 27—year—old man is arrested in whitehall by armed officers after an intelligence—led operation. several knives were discovered at the scene. the foreign secretary, boris johnson, says britain could take military action against the syrian
without a vote in parliament. the government loses a court bid to delay publication of its air pollution strategy until after the general election. the united states says it will try to pressurise north korea into dismantling its nuclear and ballistic weapons programmes by using diplomatic means and by tightening economic sanctions. china has called it a positive move, but as our correspondent wyre davies reports, tension on the peninsula remains high. not a sign of rapprochement between two countries on the brink of war but a crude attempt at parody this week in hong kong.