The Sports Matrix: Monday 2 May 2011

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The Independent Online

Boxing great Cooper dies at age of 76

Former heavyweight boxer Sir Henry Cooper passed away last night at the age of 76. A hugely popular figure inside and outside of the sport, the London-born fighter was renowned for his left hook and famously put down Cassius Clay in 1963.

Crushing win gives Celtic advantage

Celtic remained in pole position to win the title after thumping Dundee United 4-1. Gary Hooper, Beram Kayal, Kris Commons and Daryl Murphy all found the net to move them to within a point of leaders Rangers with a game in hand. MORE

Trump edges into lead over Higgins

Judd Trump leads John Higgins 10-7 ahead of today’s conclusion to the World Championship final. The 21-year-old was locked at 4-4 after the opening session but surged ahead in the evening, winning the last three frames. MORE

City a step closer to Champions League

Two goals in the opening 15 minutes helped Manchester City beat West Ham 2-1 as they opened a seven-point gap in the race for Champions League qualification. Nigel de Jong and Pablo Zabaleta scored for City, Demba Ba replying for the visitors. MORE

Warnock: Nothing makes me prouder

QPR manager Neil Warnock believes leading the club to the Premier League ranks among the best achievements in his career. “Of all my promotions,” he tells i, “None has made me prouder than this. I can’t wait until next season – the fans deserve it.” MORE

Revitalised Reds cruise to victory

Liverpool moved above Spurs into fifth place after easing to a 3-0 victory over Newcastle. A deflected effort from Maxi Rodriguez put the home side ahead on 10 minutes before Dirk Kuyt, from the penalty spot, and Luis Suarez confirmed the three points. MORE

Chopra century helps Warks home

Warwickshire’s Varun Chopra maintained his fine start to the season, scoring 115 from 100 balls as the hosts beat Leicestershire by nine runs in the Clydesdale Bank 40. The 23-year-old has already hit two double-centuries in the Championship. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

The match at Chelsea was turned into a nonsense by decisions which could have been effortlessly avoided. What was needed was a fourth official armed with technology and the power to correct the most outrageous mistakes. MORE

Ramsey sinks United to blow title race open again

Aaron Ramsey’s second half goal saw Arsenal to a 1-0 win over Manchester United which gives the Gunners and Chelsea renewed hope in the race for the Premier League title. United struggled against the home side, despite captain Cesc Fabregas being ruled out through injury. Both sides had penalty claims denied, Nemanja Vidic handling in the penalty area while Gaël Clichy brought down Michael Owen late on. United now sit three points above Chelsea ahead of the west Londoners’ trip to Old Trafford next Sunday. MORE

Wolves fail to capitalise in derby

Wolves remain in the relegation zone after drawing 1-1 with Midlands neighbours Birmingham at St Andrew’s. Steven Fletcher put the visitors ahead from the spot before Sebastian Larsson levelled for City, who had Craig Gardner was sent off. MORE

Supreme Saints power into final

Northampton reached their first final in 11 years after overcoming Perpignan 23-7. Tries from Ben Foden and Jon Clarke helped the hosts lead 20-7 at the interval, while Stephen Myler kicked 13 points. Guilhem Guirado went over for the French side. MORE