Watch: Thai cave boys recount the moment two divers found them underground as they speak publicly for first time since rescue

Trapped in the recesses of a flooded cave in northern Thailand, the 12 boys and their soccer coach were trying to dig their way out when they heard voices in the darkness. Their coach quickly told everyone to be quiet.

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For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

"We weren't sure if it was for real," said 14-year-old Adul Samon. "So we stopped and listened. And it turned out to be true. I was shocked."

That stunning moment when two British divers found the missing soccer team was recounted by the boys overnight at their first news conference since the rescue that riveted the world.

The group, looking healthy after recuperating at a hospital, entered to applause from reporters and classmates and put on a quick demonstration of their ball-handling skills on a miniature soccer field set up in the hall where they met journalists from around the world.

The boys - dressed in green and white uniforms with a red wild boar, their team's nickname - then hugged their friends before taking seats up front with doctors and members of the Thai navy SEAL unit that helped rescue them. Others who helped them during their ordeal, which ended after more than two weeks when they were brought out of the cave last week, were also there.

In one poignant and emotional moment, a portrait was displayed of Saman Gunan, the former Thai navy SEAL diver who died in the rescue attempt, and the team members showed their gratitude and respect for him. One of the boys, Chanin Vibulrungruang, covered his eyes as if wiping away a tear.

The boys, whose ages range from 11 to 16, and their 25-year-old coach answered questions submitted by the media, including about the lessons they learned during their experience.

"I feel stronger, I have more patience, endurance, tolerance," said 13-year-old Mongkol Boonpiam.

Adul said, "This experience teaches me not to live life carelessly."

Several said they want to become professional soccer players, while four said they want to emulate the heroes who saved them.

"I want to be a navy SEAL because I want to help others," said one.

All said they want to apologise to their parents, most of whom they had not informed in advance about the trek to the cave after soccer practice.

"I know my mom is going to punish me and I am in big trouble with my mother," one of the boys said when asked what he expected to happen when he got home.

The Space-X founder has called a British diver a “pedo”, allegations that are without basis. Source: 1 NEWS

Doctors said the 13 were healthy in body and mind. They said the boys gained around 3 kilograms on average since they were rescued from the cave. They were said to have lost an average of 4 kilograms during the more than two weeks they were trapped in the cave.

The news conference was the first opportunity the members of the team had to speak directly to the media, though video of them in the hospital was released previously. Officials reviewed questions in advance to make certain none might cause damaging psychological effects.

The Wild Boars teammates had entered the Tham Luang cave on June 23 for what was to be a quick, relaxing excursion after soccer practice. But rain began falling while they were underground, and water filled the caverns, cutting off their escape.

The British divers found the group huddling on a spot of dry ground deep inside the cave on July 2, hungry but generally healthy. An international team of rescuers using diving equipment and pulleys extracted the 12 boys and their coach through the tight, flooded passageways in three separate missions last week.

Some of the boys were treated for minor infections during their hospital stay, but all 13 have been described as recovering well.

Following the news conference, about 30 relatives gathered at 13-year-old Duangpetch Promthep's house to welcome him home, clapping their hands and cheering.

Banphot Konkum, an uncle who has raised Duangpetch, was teary-eyed as he hugged his nephew.

Earlier, Banphot said he would have a renovated bedroom and gifts awaiting him.

"We'll do whatever he wants," he said. "If he wants anything, we'll buy it for him as a present, as we promised that when he gets out, whatever he wants, we'll do it for him."

The boys and their football coach were trapped for more than two weeks underground before being rescued. Source: Breakfast


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Princess Eugenie's wedding set to be less of a global spectacle than Prince Harry's, more of a family affair

It's time for another royal wedding at Windsor Castle — but this time it's less of a global TV spectacle and more of a family affair.

Despite large signs at the castle's ticket booth welcoming people to the wedding, many visitors seem unaware that Princess Eugenie, granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II, will marry tequila company executive James Brooksbank at 11pm tonight NZT.

Princess Eugenie is the 28-year-old daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson, and ninth in line for the throne. She has lived most of her life outside the media spotlight, and keeps a low profile compared to cousins Prince William and Prince Harry and their glamorous wives.

1 NEWS Europe Correspondent Joy Reid has the latest ahead of the big day in Windsor, England. Source: Breakfast

That's reflected in the souvenir shops that line the streets leading to the imposing castle. Royal wedding merchandise fill the windows — but they feature Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who also married at Windsor Castle in May in a spectacular, globally televised ceremony.

Snippets of the wedding will be shown on British TV, but only one channel, ITV, is planning to provide live coverage of the proceedings.

Princess Eugenie and Mr Brooksbank are following a precedent set by Prince Harry and Meghan by inviting 1,200 members of the public to the castle grounds for a better view of the festivities.

Mr Brooksbank and Princess Eugenie have dated for many years. The couple says he got down on one knee and proposed in January during a trip to Nicaragua while the couple was visiting a spectacular lake next to a volcano.

FILE - In this Saturday, May 20, 2017 file photo, Britain's Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank arrive for the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark's Church in Englefield, England. Buckingham Palace said Sunday Oct. 7, 2018 there will be military fanfare and red velvet cake when Princess Eugenie marries drinks-company executive Jack Brooksbank on Friday in Windsor Castle's St. George's Chapel. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File)
Princess Eugenie marries drinks-company executive Jack Brooksbank on Friday in Windsor Castle's St. George's Chapel. Source: Associated Press

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California using Australian shark detection technology

An Australian company's shark detection technology has been selected for a pilot program aimed at keeping swimmers and surfers safe at some of California's iconic beaches.

Fremantle-based Smart Marine Systems deployed its Clever Buoy Technology at Newport Beach's Balboa Beach Pier this week.

The sonar-equipped buoy, part of a 60-day pilot program, alerts lifeguards to sharks through an app.

A triathlete was lucky to survive a great white shark attack while swimming 140 metres off a nearby beach in 2016 and last month a 13-year-old boy was critically injured by a great white while diving for lobsters at another southern California beach.

A shark fin (file picture). Source: 1 NEWS

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'Trump is on his hero's journey right now,' says Kanye West during free-styling White House meeting with US President

Declaring that his red "MAGA" hat makes him "feel like Superman," rapper Kanye West made a free-styling appearance in the Oval Office today.

The musician wore a Make America Great Again hat during the meeting. Source: Breakfast

Ahead of a private lunch, President Donald Trump and West spoke with reporters as they sat across from each other at the Resolute desk. West dominated the conversation with a series of monologues that touched on social policy, mental health, endorsement deals and his support for the president.

"Trump is on his hero's journey right now," West said, tossing out an expletive to describe himself.

West said that many people believe that, if you're black, you have to be a Democrat and said he was pressured not to wear his red "Make America Great Again" hat. But he said "this hat, it gives me power."

West credited Trump with preventing a war with North Korea and encouraged Trump to swap his usual Air Force One for a hydrogen-powered plane. West also argued that Trump deserved more respect, saying: "if he don't look good, we don't look good."

During one pause in West's comments, Trump said: "I tell you what that was pretty impressive." He also described West as a "smart cookie".

The rapper also spoke against stop-and-frisk policing policies, which Trump recently expressed support for. Trump said he was open to other ideas.

Trump recently tweeted praise for West, who closed a "Saturday Night Live" show wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat and delivering an unscripted pro-Trump message after the credits rolled.

West is married to reality television star Kim Kardashian West, who pushed Trump to grant a pardon for a drug offender this year.

West dominated the conversation with a series of monologues that touched on social policy, mental health, endorsement deals. Source: 1 NEWS


Space rocket carrying US and Russian astronauts forced to make emergency landing after malfunction

A booster rocket failed less than two minutes after launching an American and a Russian toward the International Space Station on today, forcing their emergency — but safe — landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan.

It was the latest in a recent series of failures for the troubled Russian space program, which is used by the US to carry its astronauts to the station.

NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Roscosmos' Alexei Ovchinin were subjected to heavy gravitational forces as their capsule automatically jettisoned from the Soyuz booster rocket and fell back to Earth at a sharper-than-normal angle and landed about 20 kilometres east of the city of Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan.

"Thank God the crew is alive," said Dmitry Peskov, the spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin, when it became clear that they had landed safely. He added that the president is receiving regular updates about the situation.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, who watched the launch at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome along with his Russian counterpart, tweeted that Hague and Ovchinin are in good condition. He added that a "thorough investigation into the cause of the incident will be conducted."

Hague, 43, and Ovchinin, 47, lifted off as scheduled from Baikonur. The astronauts were to dock at the International Space Station six hours after the launch and join an American, a Russian and a German currently aboard the station.

But the three-stage Soyuz booster suffered an unspecified failure of its second stage about two minutes after launching. Search and rescue teams were immediately scrambled to recover the crew, and paratroopers were dropped from a plane to reach the site quickly.

While the Russian space program has been dogged by a string of launch failures and other incidents in recent years, Today's mishap marked the program's first manned launch failure since September 1983, when a Soyuz exploded on the launch pad.

It was to be the first space mission for Hague, who joined NASA's astronaut corps in 2013. Ovchinin spent six months on the orbiting outpost in 2016.

The astronauts were flown by helicopter to Dzhezkazgan and then by plane to Baikonur. Russian officials said they may spend the night in Baikonur before being flown to Star City, Russia's space training center outside Moscow, the Tass news agency said.

Russian controllers told the space station astronauts that Hague and Ovchinin endured 6.7 times the force of gravity during their entry.

The pair reported a problem with the Russian rocket’s booster shortly after take-off. Source: BBC


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