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Thursday, 17 May, 2001, 07:02 GMT 08:02 UK
Prescott punch hits front pages

The papers are united in their choice of front page image - Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott punching an egg-throwing protester.

For the Daily Telegraph, the incident topped off a "wobbly Wednesday" for Labour, which saw Tony Blair harangued by a member of the public over cancer care and Jack Straw slow-handclapped by police.

"Well, well, well," declares The Sun, "who said this election was going to be boring?". Under the headline "Two Jabs" it says the brawling was shocking.

"Angry voters spoil Labour's big day," says The Independent adding that the party's manifesto launch was overshadowed by the protests.

The Daily Mail calls it a disastrous day when Labour finally met real voters.

Meaty manifesto

The Times considers the details of the Labour manifesto and concludes that it contains "plenty of meat".

But the paper predicts confrontation with public sector unions and Labour traditionalists after the prime minister made it clear that the private sector would play a much bigger role in delivering services.

The Guardian agrees that Mr Blair has shown an unabashed willingness to embrace the bogey of private sector management in the NHS.

The Financial Times reports that the Conservative Treasury spokesman, Oliver Letwin, has confirmed that he was the source of an FT story that the party wanted to cut taxes by 20bn by the year 2007.

Although Mr Letwin says the FT story was accurate, he makes it clear that the Tories are committed only to 8bn of cuts.

Aide begins life sentence

The life sentence given to the former royal aide, Jane Andrews, for the murder of her lover, Tom Cressman, attracts widespread coverage.

The Mirror describes Andrews as a person who could be prim and proper one moment, and a monster the next.

She is said to have attacked one former boyfriend with a pair of scissors, stalked another and lied to a third about being pregnant in order to blackmail him.

The Daily Star says Andrews' former employer, the Duchess of York, helped police to catch her by leaving voicemail messages urging her to talk to officers.

The Guardian charts the journey Andrews made from a humble background in Grimsby to high society, where she earned the nickname "Lady Jane".

Speedy advice

The Telegraph reveals the surprising advice that the best way for motorists to get more miles to the gallon is to put their foot down.

Researchers in Sweden have found that the most efficient driving style is to accelerate - without over-revving the engine - and move briskly through the gears.

Liverpool's thrilling treble

Finally, there is much celebration of Liverpool's extraordinary 5-4 victory over Spanish side Alaves in the Uefa Cup final.

"Treble Tops" is the headline in the Star, after the team's previous wins in the Worthington and FA Cups.

"The Best Cup Final Ever," thinks The Guardian.

The Daily Express describes the scoreline and the golden goal which decided the final as simply "unbelievable".

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