10 most read stories for Wednesday, May 21

Here are the most read news stories today, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about tomorrow.
Chris Cairns. Photo / Richard Robinson
Chris Cairns. Photo / Richard Robinson

1. Mystery top cricketer gives ICC statement

A New Zealand cricketing great - in addition to current captain Brendon McCullum, Lou Vincent and Andre Adams - is among those to have spoken with the International Cricket Council Anti-Corruption and Security Unit.

The player, who requested anonymity, said: "I have had dealings with the ACSU to help other people." He said he had not been approached personally to fix a game.

The Herald understands a period under scrutiny is the Black Caps' 2008 tour to England, during which players may have been approached.

The latest revelation comes after the Herald revealed the player named as Player X in evidence to the international cricket inquiry is New Zealand legend Chris Cairns.

Watch: What next for Cairns?


2. One dead after shooting in West Auckland

One man is dead and another is in hospital with life-threatening injuries, following a shooting at Ranui in West Auckland this morning.

Police are speaking to two people who are believed to be associated to the incident.

They said they do not believe there is any further risk to public safety.

Watch a video from the scene in Massey here


Emergency services at an address in Luanda Rd, Ranui. Photo / Brett Phibbs

3. Wife's family: MH370 rumours untrue

Zaharie Ahmad Shah

The family of MH370 pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah have spoken for the first time in a bid to clear up "untrue" rumours about his involvement in the disappearance.

They claim he was happy and loved his family before he left to pilot the flight on March 8.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 disappeared with 239 passengers and crew on board.

4. Banks trial: Mona Dotcom backs her ex

Kim Dotcom. Photo / Greg Bowker

Mona and Kim Dotcom might not be together any more but their recollections of a lunch with ACT MP John Banks as he was campaigning to be Auckland mayor in 2010 mostly marry up.

In the High Court at Auckland today, Banks' lawyer suggested that was because Mrs Dotcom had been told what to say.

Mrs Dotcom, who was giving evidence at Banks' trial on a charge of filing a false election return, recalled Banks asking Mr Dotcom to split a $50,000 donation to the mayoralty bid and said Banks later confirmed he had received the money.

This mostly mirrored Mr Dotcom's evidence yesterday, except Mr Dotcom said his wife was not present when donations were discussed at the lunch.

Watch: Mona Dotcom arrives at High Court


5. Mansion plan for $4.2m hostel site

The boss of technology giant Compass Communications has bought an old backpacker hostel for $4.21 million, and wants to knock it down and build a mansion with a four-car garage, a pool and a tennis court.

Pentlands in Mt Eden was newly renovated when Englishman Karim Hussona and wife Erica bought the property at the end of last year for nearly twice its valuation of $2.35 million.

Built as a bungalow in 1921, the building has had 21 renovations since the 1940s. It became a boarding house in 1940, and was turned into a backpackers' hostel in 1989.

6. Apple no longer world's top brand

Three of the top 100 global brands - Google, KFC and Apple. Photo / AP, NZ Herald

US search engine Google has overtaken rival technology titan Apple as the world's top brand in terms of value, global market research agency Millward Brown said.

Google's brand value shot up 40 per cent in a year to $158.84 billion, Millward Brown said in its 2014 100 Top BrandZ report.

"Google has been extremely innovative this year with Google Glass, investments in artificial intelligence and a range of partnerships," said Benoit Tranzer, the head of Millward Brown France.

See the full list of the top 100 Global brands here:

7. Seat might have saved baby flung from car

The wreckage of the car the baby girl was in. Photo / Christine Cornege

The death of an unrestrained 12-week-old baby girl who was thrown from her mother's lap in a car accident has shocked a child advocacy group.

The baby died from her injuries at Starship children's hospital early yesterday.

Waikato district road policing manager Inspector Freda Grace said the most tragic aspect of the baby's death was its avoidability.

"Police staff located a car seat unused in the car's boot that possibly could have prevented the baby suffering the critical injuries," she said.

8. How fertility is far from finished at 40

As the rising abortion rate among women over 35 is blamed on their mistaken belief that they are 'past it', Julia Llewellyn Smith - who conceived in her mid-30s- finds out the truth about later pregnancy.

9. Huge great white shark tracked

Photo / Thinkstock

An enormous great white shark swimming along the eastern US coastline is arousing more curiosity than fear as scientists and the public follow her every observable move.

The 4.3-metre shark, nicknamed Katharine, surfaced near Key Largo, Florida, announcing her presence with a ping from a tracking device placed on her dorsal fin last year.

Weighing one tonne, Katharine is being followed by the website Ocearch, which is run by a group that tracks a number of sharks to learn more about their habits.

10. Warning for Kiwis headed to Thailand

Kiwis are being urged not to travel to some areas of Thailand and to be extremely careful in others after martial law was declared across the country.

The Thai military made the announcement yesterday as political unrest in which 20 people have died since November reached fever pitch.

Watch: Thailand gripped by political turmoil

- nzherald.co.nz, NZ Herald, APNZ, AFP, Daily Telegraph UK

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