While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Dec 6 edition

China arrests ex-security chief Zhou over corruption, leaking secrets

China’s former security chief Zhou Yongkang has been arrested and expelled from the Communist Party, state media said Saturday, paving the way for the prosecution of the highest-ranking Chinese figure in more than three decades.

Zhou – who retired from China’s all-powerful Politburo Standing Committee (PSC) in 2012 – has been placed under a judicial probe over corruption offences, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

Zhou “leaked the party’s and the country’s secrets,” Xinhua said, adding that the once-influential official was found to have “accepted a large amount of money and properties personally and through his family”.

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New Nasa spaceship nails debut test flight

A US spaceship designed to one day fly astronauts to Mars made a near-bullseye splashdown in the Pacific Ocean on Friday, wrapping up a flawless, unmanned debut test flight around Earth.

“It’s hard to have a better day than today,” Nasa’s Orion capsule program manager Mark Geyer told reporters after landing.

The cone-shaped capsule blasted off aboard a Delta 4 Heavy rocket, the biggest in the US fleet, just after dawn from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Three hours later, it reached peak altitude of 5,800km above the planet, a prelude to the most challenging part of the flight, a 32,000kmh dive back to Earth.

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Swimming: Manaudou sprint king as world records hit 12

Florent Manaudou hammered home his status as king of the sprints as he set a new world record in winning the 50m freestyle at the World Short-Course Swimming Championships on Friday.

The gargantuan Frenchman was not alone in setting a new global mark at the Hamad Aquatic Centre with a double strike from Katinka Hosszu and new records by the Netherlands and Denmark in the women's 4x100m freestyle relay and 4x50 medley respectively.

It brings to 12 the number of world records set after three days of the five-day event.

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Golf: Woods fights fever and form to shoot par

Tiger Woods shook off the effects of a fever as he played the front nine in even par in Friday's second round of the Hero World Challenge.

Woods, who shot an opening five-over-par 77 on Thursday in his first competition since August, had already sweated through his grey shirt as he stood on the first tee after politely declining to shake sponsors' hands because he was afraid he was contagious.

The tournament host, whose foundation benefits from the 18-player event, promptly striped his tee shot, knocked his approach five feet from the cup and made birdie.

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Sam Smith, Beyonce lead Grammys with five nods each

British soul-pop artist Sam Smith (above, right) and R&B star Beyonce led artists with five Grammy nominations each on Friday, the Recording Academy announced via social media.

Smith, 22, picked up five nods including the top awards Record of the Year for his song Stay With Me and the coveted Best New Artist award, alongside Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, British pop-rockers Bastille, country singer Brandy Clark and California sister trio Haim.

Record of the Year nominees also include Taylor Swift’s (above, left) Shake it Off, Meghan Trainor’s catchy summer anthem All About That Bass, Iggy Azalea and Charli XCX’s Fancy and Sia’s Chandelier.

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