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Newspaper headlines: ‘Leaders clash’ and ‘shaky start for Farage’

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Last night’s head-to-head debate between Rishi Sunak and Sir Keir Starmer is poured over in detail.

Papers that are often sympathetic to the Conservatives praised the prime minister’s performance. “Fiery Rishi comes out swinging” says the Daily Mail. “Starmer on the ropes over tax” says the Daily Telegraph.

It highlights Mr Sunak’s claim that families will pay more under Labour, an accusation Sir Keir branded as “false”.

“Kapow!” is the headline in the Daily Express, which calls the attack line on tax a “knockout blow”.

The Daily Mirror is less sympathetic in its analysis: “Keir has stormer as Sunak gabbles”.

The Guardian’s sketch writer, John Crace, says the Tory leader “got snippy” and came across as “tetchy”. The “i” said the “angry TV clash” saw both leaders “falter under pressure”.

The Times points to a snap poll by YouGov, on who won the debate – with 51% of respondents backing Rishi Sunak and 49% Keir Starmer.

The paper’s columnist, Matthew Parris, summed up his opinion of both men’s performance: “Divided by little, united by not really knowing what to do next”.

A picture of Nigel Farage wincing as a milkshake flies towards his face features on several of the front pages.

The Metro calls the incident a “shaky start” for his election campaign. But it also quotes the chairman of Mr Farage’s Reform UK party, Richard Tice, as saying “the juvenile moron who threw a drink over Nigel just gained us hundreds of thousands more votes”.

The Sun says the woman accused of throwing the milkshake is a “Labour-backing OnlyFans model”.

The Financial Times leads on the fallout of the much larger Indian general election for prime minister, Narendra Modi. “Indian voters deliver shock to Modi – after ruling BJP fails to win majority”, is the paper’s headline.

Its editorial says the result will inspire a “hubristic” BJP into “more deliberative policymaking”. The Daily Telegraph’s analysis says the world may have reached “peak Modi”.

Images of tearful Second World War veterans marking the eightieth anniversary of D-Day on a trip to Normandy appear in several of the papers.

“Once more unto the beach” says the Sun. The paper reports that during a meeting at Buckingham Palace earlier this week, a 100-year-old veteran showed the King his dog tags, which are still bloodied from a gun shot wound he suffered.

The Daily Mirror quotes another man who took part in D-Day as saying: “If I had my time again, I would go again if necessary”.

And a few of the papers carry a health update on the cavalry horses that bolted through the streets of London six weeks ago.

Wounded horses are on the road to recovery”, reports the Times – alongside a picture of two of them nuzzling each other in a field.

The Daily Telegraph reports that three of the five animals are expected to be well enough to join the King’s Birthday Parade later this month.

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