Caught: Shirkers in disguise

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Tags: europe, cheating and police

German mum admits killing her babies

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Tags: Germany, court and baby

Swift is highest paid celeb: Forbes

US singer Taylor Swift has topped Forbes' list of 100 highest paid celebrities.

The magazine reported that the 26-year-old earned US$170 million (S$229 million) over the past year, most of which came from her 1989 World Tour.

Swift's takings from last June to this June is also the highest total of her career, doubling her previous record of US$80 million last year.

She also earned from endorsement deals with brands such as Diet Coke, Keds and Apple.

Swift beat out other music artists like Adele, Madonna, Rihanna, Katy Perry as well as her ex-boyfriend Calvin Harris.


Dory swims to new box-office records

The animated hit Finding Dory has surpassed blockbuster Captain America: Civil War as the biggest domestic US movie of this year.

The former - which features US talk show host Ellen DeGeneres voicing the titular character - has made an estimated US$423 million, while the latter raked in US$406.2 million.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Finding Dory is now the biggest movie of the year in North America and one of only 24 films in history to hit the US$400 million mark.


Pokemon Go mania plays out on Spotify

The release of the augmented-reality mobile app Pokémon Go has increased Spotify plays of the Japanese animated series' original theme song by 362 per cent.

According to Spotify's data, the tune was all the rage on the music streaming service last weekend.

Overall streams of Pokémon songs on Spotify have more than tripled. According to Business Insider, the top five most-streamed tracks on Spotify right now are also all Pokémon-related, such as Gotta Catch 'Em All and Pokerap.


Blink-182's California tops Billboard 200

Blink-182 have dethroned Canadian rapper Drake from the Billboard 200 albums chart, where the latter had spent nine weeks at the top with his fourth album, Views.

The US rock band - consisting of Mark Hoppus, 44, Travis Barker, 40, and Matt Skiba, 40 - scored their second No. 1 album in 15 years with their newly released offering, California.

According to Billboard, it sold 186,000 units in the week ending July 7.

Blink-182's previous No. 1 album was 2001's Take Off Your Pants And Jacket.


It's just maths. If you're not afraid of working hard, of being a candle that's burning on both ends, and you're still going, going, going… then you can't be denied.

- Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra on her work ethic and having a varied career for nearly two decades​

'He came 
to rob me, not kill me'

Cool-headed New Zealand shop owner calls gunman's bluff in viral video showing botched robbery

SURPRISED: Screengrabs from the video which show Mr Said Ahmed ignoring the gunman and serving a customer while a pistol was pointed at him.
SURPRISED: Screengrabs from the video which show Mr Said Ahmed ignoring the gunman and serving a customer while a pistol was pointed at him.
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SOUTH AFRICA RACES

Joy To Joy can romp home on the polytrack

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Marina Bay bumboat fire: "It was bizarre sight"

Boatman missing after river taxi fire near Esplanade

SMOKE: Plumes of black smoke could be seen around Marina Bay as fire blazed through the bumboat.

He was photographing the Singapore cityscape near the water's edge at the Esplanade when he noticed a bumboat slowly cruising towards him yesterday evening.

But something seemed amiss, said Mr Rodrigo Rivas, 33, a tourist from Mexico.

"I saw vapour coming out from the boat and I thought it was just those mist machines that they use to cool people off," Mr Rivas told The New Paper yesterday.

"It was only after a while that I realised it was smoke, and the boat was on fire.

"My only thought then was that I hoped no one was hurt."

A search operation is underway to find the man reported missing after jumping overboard sometime during the incident. TNP PHOTO: ISKANDAR ROSSALI

Mr Rivas said he looked on as flames soon engulfed the river taxi, which he first spotted at around 6.25pm.

A man, who was on board and believed to be its operator, was reported missing after jumping overboard sometime during the incident.

In videos taken by onlookers around the bay, bumboats can be seen approaching the boat that was on fire, but there were no sightings of the man who had jumped overboard.

TNP understands that he is the boat's captain.

Divers from the Singapore Civil Defence Force's Disaster and Rescue Team (Dart) were later sent out to find him.

He had not been found at press time. No one else was hurt.

During the incident, the thick black smoke from the boat rose high into the evening sky, setting a gloomy cast on the Singapore skyline.

Social media was abuzz with videos and photos of the blazing boat taken from skyscrapers in the area.

From the National Library, it looked like the Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay was on fire.

Mr Rivas said he first noticed the boat while taking photographs of the Marina Bay Sands.

After realising that the boat was aflame, he said he warned passers-by in the hope that someone would alert the authorities and firefighters.

"I didn't know what number to call and I just hoped someone around me did. It was worrying.

"By that time, it didn't seem like there was anyone on board," he said.

Other media outlets, however, quoted eyewitnesses who saw a man jump off the boat.

Mr Rivas, who was near the Outdoor Theatre, said: "It was a bizarre sight. The boat was on fire and it was just slowly drifting towards the shore where I was."

While the fire started out small, it grew bigger and engulfed the boat, which eventually drifted near the shore, he said.

An SCDF spokesman said they were alerted to the incident at 6.26pm.

Firefighters stationed on the river bank near the Esplanade put out the fire using two water jets.

Divers from Dart were later dispatched to search for the missing man.

The river taxi operator, Singapore River Cruise, could not be reached for comment.

When TNP visited the scene at about 7.15pm, the area between the Esplanade and Jubilee Bridge had been cordoned off. The charred and blackened top of the bumboat, which was still floating, was docked by the river.

Pogba not worth $177 million, says Richard Buxton

Other options available to Mourinho to fill United's midfield void

For a club that seemingly wants for nothing, Manchester United continue to demand everything.

Perennially fixated on being the best, their battle for supremacy knows no bounds.

Already boasting the biggest stadium, an elite manager and as many commercial partnerships as they have major honours, the quest for relevance is never-ending.

Across town, Manchester City are considered to be the "noisy neighbours" and richer than god, but United are hell-bent on both shouting louder than their local rivals and proving that they are a higher power in their own right.

Prestige has often triumphed over practicality at Old Trafford, dating back decades, and threatens to do so again in a summer where extravagance has been more than forthcoming with the arrival of Jose Mourinho, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and others.

Sir Matt Busby Way remains abuzz with talk of unfinished business, with Paul Pogba the object of affection.

The pang of regret that he was allowed to leave the club where his mercurial talents were honed for just £800,000 ($1.4m) in compensation is still raw, four years on.

It already ranks among some of history's worst business decisions, like Ron Wayne selling his shares in Apple for just US$1,077 ($1,451) or Decca Records passing up on The Beatles.

Or blowing £59.7m on Angel di Maria.

Smashing the world transfer record with a £100m bid for Pogba would see United's transfer megalomania plummet fresh depths.

Old Trafford remains littered with cautionary tales of why going bigger is not always better.

Shifting Juan Mata, who cost £37.1m, will be a priority for Mourinho as well, after he off-loaded the Spaniard to United a little over two years ago.

Such outlays, largely at the behest of executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, have resembled a 12-year-old throwing together a dream team on Fifa 16 far more than assembling a squad capable of challenging for the Premier League title.

Rhyme and reason have been largely conspicuous in their absence in the recruitment process of United in recent times.

A Pogba capture would follow the theme of luxury at a time when necessity is key in Mourinho's efforts to restore United back to the pinnacle of English and continental football.

COMPETITION

Current challengers for the Juventus midfielder's preferred role are both plentiful and capable - Ander Herrera, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Morgan Schneiderlin and Jesse Lingard spring to mind - before Henrikh Mkhitaryan's £26m arrival from Borussia Dortmund is even broached.

Competent alternatives are available at a fraction of the fee and far closer to home.

Dimitri Payet's £50m price tag would still be half of the figure that 23-year-old Pogba is set to command while any deal for N'Golo Kante, his France teammate and now an EPL winner, would come in at just over a third of the cost.

The argument that Pogba would deliver star quality also carries little merit on the back of a £200,000 per week outlay on Ibrahimovic.

At 34, the Swede striker will not inject bursts of pace on a whim but is still capable of inspired moments on the grand stage.

Pogba's eye-watering valuation should also have red flags flying from the Stretford End's rafters. Real Madrid have declined the chance to sign the player on financial grounds alone.

Even the current European champions, for whom money is no object, cannot see any logic in such largesse.

Re-signing Pogba would not see United usurp them as the world's biggest club - only the most gullible.


FACTFILE

Name: Paul Pogba


Born: March 15, 1993

Age: 23


Height: 1.93m

Weight: 80kg

Euro 2016 stats:

  • Games: 7
  • Goals: 1
  • Assists: 0
  • Shots: 16
  • On target: 7
  • Blocked: 3
  • Hit woodwork: 1

WHAT THE OTHERS SAY...

I think his style of football will suit the Premier League more than the Spanish league. So Pogba now coming into a league where it is tough, where he can show what he’s all about, I think is a perfect fit for him and for Man United.

— Former United player Paul Ince on Paul Pogba

Forget about France, I think he can be one of the best midfielders in history. He has the quality to do that.

— Former Arsenal player Thierry Henry

Want Payet? 
Prepare at least $65m 


French playmaker Dimitri Payet's impressive performances at Euro 2016 will cost potential suitors at least £50 million ($65m), David Gold, the co-chairman of the player's English Premier League club West Ham, told the BBC on Monday.

The 29-year-old Frenchman - who sparkled for the Hammers last season, scoring nine goals in 30 appearances - had a memorable Euro campaign, scoring some spectacular goals.

The image of him crying when he came off in the opening victory over Romania was one of the standout moments of the tournament.

Despite ending up on the losing side in the final against Portugal - his most notable contribution an early challenge on Cristiano Ronaldo that ended with the Portuguese superstar going off injured - he is bound to attract offers.

"Super clubs would come after a player of his ability," Gold told BBC Radio. "We wouldn't even listen to an offer less than £50m.

"The club need to keep the best players and don't welcome any offers for Payet. He's instrumental, he's important, the team are built round him. He's not for sale."

Gold said Payet had taken to London really well since joining from Ligue 1 outfit Marseille last year and got on really well with manager 
Slaven Bilic.

"You make him as happy as you can," said Gold, when asked how to ensure he stays.

"He has a great relationship with the manager. He's settled in London, as is his family and the fans adore him. We've done everything we possibly can." - AFP.

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