While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Aug 12

Sri Lanka's former defense secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa waves after he was nominated as a presidential candidate during the Sri Lanka People's Front party convention in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on Aug 11, 2019.
Sri Lanka's former defense secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa waves after he was nominated as a presidential candidate during the Sri Lanka People's Front party convention in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on Aug 11, 2019.PHOTO: REUTERS

Sri Lanka wartime defense chief Gotabaya Rajapaksa launches presidential bid

Sri Lanka's main opposition party named a hardline former defence chief as its presidential candidate on Sunday (Aug 11), seeking to capitalise on public clamor for a decisive leader after deadly Easter day bombings.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa, 70, served under his older brother, ex-president Mahinda Rajapaksa, and is widely seen as the frontrunner in a presidential election that must be held before Dec 9.

Gotabaya is immensely popular among Sri Lanka's powerful Sinhala Buddhist majority, who credit him with ending the island nation's 26-year-long civil war in 2009 and believe Colombo needs a seasoned hand after the April 21 Islamist bombings.


Epstein death anger soars, conspiracy theories swirl

Outrage and intrigue over the apparent suicide in prison of well-connected sex-trafficking accused Jeffrey Epstein soared Sunday (Aug 11) as lawmakers pushed for answers, including whether "criminal acts" played a role in his death.

Epstein's death in a high-security New York jail, just weeks after an earlier possible attempt on his own life, meant he should have been under close watch and has fueled anger and a conspiracy theory frenzy. PHOTO: REUTERS

Epstein, a convicted pedophile who hobnobbed with countless politicians and celebrities over the years, was found dead in his cell Saturday while awaiting trial on charges he trafficked underage teen girls for sex.

The discovery came a day after a court released documents in which an alleged victim of Epstein's claimed she was forced to have sex with well-known American political and business personalities. They have all denied the allegations.


Tesla electric car catches fire after hitting tow truck in Moscow

A demonstration of a front crash prevention test on a 2018 Tesla Model 3 at the IIHS-HLDI Vehicle Research Center in Ruckersville, Virginia, on July 22, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

A Tesla Model 3 electric car caught fire after crashing into a parked tow truck on a Moscow motorway late on Saturday (Aug 10), with the Tesla driver saying he had failed to see the vehicle with which he collided.

Asked in a video published on REN TV website if he was using an Autopilot self-driving system, driver Alexei Tretyakov said he was in a drive assistance mode in which he was still holding the steering wheel.

Tesla Inc has stood by safety claims for its Model 3 in the face of regulatory scrutiny, while documents showed the top US automotive safety watchdog issued at least five subpoenas since last year seeking information about crashes involving the company's vehicles.


Football: Rashford grabs brace as United put four past Lampard's Chelsea

Manchester United's English striker Marcus Rashford celebrates after scoring their third goal during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Chelsea at Old Trafford in Manchester, north west England, on Aug 11, 2019. PHOTO: AFP

Marcus Rashford struck twice as Manchester United opened their Premier League account with a resounding 4-0 win over Frank Lampard's Chelsea at Old Trafford on Sunday (Aug 11).

It was an awful start for the new Chelsea manager in his first league game on the bench for his old club as they struck the woodwork twice in the first half but paid for their defensive frailties.

Tammy Abraham crashed an early drive against the United bar but the hosts got in front with an 18th minute Rashford penalty after the England forward was pulled down by Kurt Zouma.


Tennis: Serena retires injured in Toronto final against Andreescu

In this photo taken on July 13, 2019, US player Serena Williams reacts after a point against Romania's Simona Halep during their women's singles final at the 2019 Wimbledon Championships. PHOTO: AFP

Serena Williams' first US Open tune-up ended in stunning fashion as the American retired with injury while trailing Canadian teenager Bianca Andreescu 3-1 in the Rogers Cup final on Sunday (Aug 11).

Williams, who hopes to chase a record-equalling 24th career Grand Slam title at the US Open, seemed fine on court but suddenly sat crying in her chair before deciding to retire 19 minutes into the match with a back injury.

"I'm sorry I couldn't do it today. I tried but I just couldn't do it," a tearful Williams, who struggled to get the words out, told the crowd.