Archives - April, 2019



13 Apr 19

When Lote Tuqiri received a text message from NSW Waratahs coach Daryl Gibson in November asking if he’d be interested in coming out of retirement for a cameo at the Brisbane Tens, the dual international was genuinely torn as to whether he should commit.
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“I was interested, but I didn’t give him a firm answer,” Tuqiri said. “We conversed over Christmas and New Year’s and I finally got over the line in convincing myself. I just didn’t know whether I was confident in myself getting it done and I finally came to that realisation only a couple of weeks ago.

“You don’t want to get back on the big stage and embarrass yourself.”

Tuqiri joins Chris Latham (Queensland Reds), Stephen Larkham and Andrew Walker (ACT Brumbies) and Morgan Turinui (Melbourne Rebels) in the old brigade of former Wallabies who will dust of the boots as wildcard players for the two-day tournament at Suncorp Stadium.

The 37-year-old – whose last professional football match came in 2014 for the South Sydney Rabbitohs – will line up in the sky blue of NSW after 89 appearances for the Waratahs between 2003 and 2009.

He is very happy about the unlimited interchange rule but firstly had to convince himself he would be in good enough physical shape to compete against a string of international stars.

“When you haven’t played for a while you have a bit of fear mixing it again with the young guys,” Tuqiri said. “When you’re playing you have that supreme confidence about yourself but when you’re coming in cold … it’s a different beast.

“I don’t know what to expect to be honest. I don’t know how teams are treating this. Maybe another selection trial for the Super Rugby season?”

Tuqiri threw down the gauntlet for Latham, saying he his former Wallabies teammate would be under the most pressure of the older heads coming back as marquee players.

“I’m expecting big things from Chris Latham actually,” Tuqiri said. “He has kept on top of his fitness and is looking quite fit. If there’s anyone that should have expectation on them of the older blokes, it’s Chris Latham and I’m sure he won’t disappoint.

“I’m obviously not as fast as I once was but I’ve still got the long legs. Off the field I’ll mix with the old crew and share war stories and everything else. I’m in there to enjoy myself and put a relaxing spin on the place.”

Gibson said Tuqiri’s inclusion would be beneficial for the younger members of the squad who will be in line to wear a NSW jersey for the first time.

“Lote brings loads of experience to the Waratahs playing group and it will be a good chance for our younger guys to take the field with someone who has played rugby at all levels,” Gibson said.

“Having the opportunity to learn from a playmaker like Lote will provide an added boost for the boys and a different type of preparation.”

The Waratahs squad is headlined by Israel Folau and will include three other players who featured for the Wallabies in 2016 in Tom Robertson, Tolu Latu and Taqele Naiyaravoro.

Fellow Wallabies Nick Phipps, Bernard Foley, Rob Horne, Michael Hooper, Sekope Kepu, Dean Mumm and Will Skelton have been rested for the inaugural two-day tournament that starts on February 11.

n Olympic sevens representatives Cam Clark, Pat McCutcheon and Con Foley have also been named in the 26-man squad.

Waratahs squad for the Brisbane Global Rugby Tens:

Israel Folau, Tolu Latu, Tom Robertson, Taqele Naiyaravoro, Paddy Ryan, Hugh Roach, Damien Fitzpatrick, Ned Hanigan, Ryan McCauley, Michael Wells, Rory O’Connor, Patrick McCutcheon, Brad Wilkin, Jamason Schultz, Matt Lucas, Jake Gordon, Mack Mason, Bryce Hegarty, David Horwitz, Andrew Deegan, Con Foley, Andrew Kellaway, Cam Clark, Harry Jones, Reece Robinson, Lote Tuqiri.  Stunning sporting comebacks

Lote Tuqiri has announced that he will join the likes of Andrew Walker and Stephen Larkham in coming out of retirement to contest the Brisbane 10s. But he is not the first professional athlete to make a stunning comeback or attempt a bizarre code switch.

Andrew Johns Johns attempted to make the switch to cricket in 2006/07 when he represented New South Wales in the Twenty20 Big Bash, a precursor to the current Big Bash League. It was largely a flop, with Johns finishing with nine runs across his two matches, but he has still played two more Twenty20 matches for NSW than Michael Clarke ever did.

Auckland Nines Retired rugby league stars coming out of retirement to contest the Auckland Nines has become an annual tradition. In the first year it was Steve Menzies and Brad Fittler, last year it was Jason Croker and this year it will be Ruben Wiki who takes to the field in the shortened form of the game.

Pat Rafter Rafter made a shock comeback to Grand Slam tennis when he partnered with Lleyton Hewitt in doubles at the 2014 n Open. It was nine years after his last professional doubles match and the comeback was shortlived. The pair went down 6-4, 7-5 in their first round match and Rafter has made no more attempts at a comeback.

Michael Jordan The greatest basketballer on earth shocked the world when he announced he was leaving the sport to try his hand at baseball. While conspiracy theories swirl over why he made the switch, his baseball journey was shortlived and he returned to basketball after just one season in the Minor Leagues.

n swimmers Numerous n swimmers have attempted comebacks in recent years, with some more successful than others. Geoff Huegill and Grant Hackett both returned to the national team after long absences from the sport, although both had their Olympics dreams dashed. Ian Thorpe was another to attempt a comeback, but like the other two, he also failed to qualify for the Olympics and the comeback was aborted shortly after.

Diego Maradona

At the ripe old age of 53, reports emerged that Diego Maradona would be making a comeback with fifth-tier Argentinian side Deportivo Riestra in 2014. Unfortunately Maradona did not make his much hyped return, instead continuing in his existing role as a spiritual coach at the club.


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13 Apr 19

Sydney all-rounder Ashleigh Gardner will become just the second Indigenous woman to play cricket for her country and the first in 59 years when she debuts against New Zealand in February.
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Fresh from winning the women’s Big Bash League with the Sydney Sixers, Gardner follows in the footsteps of lightning quick bowler Faith Thomas (nee Coulthard) who in 1958 became the first Aboriginal woman to represent her country in the sporting arena.

Selectors simply couldn’t ignore the 19-year-old who pummeled 414 runs throughout the WBBL including an equal high 13 sixes, to go with her 10 wickets. They’ve picked her in the T20 squad for the home series against New Zealand, and the one-day international squad for the three-match tour of New Zealand that follows – an ideal platform to display her credentials for the Women’s World Cup later this year.

Much has changed in the time since Thomas travelled by ship to Britain to make her sole international appearance for , and the significance of her selection is not lost on Gardner.

“She has told me a couple of stories that she had to give up her nursing career to play for ,” Gardner said of her few meetings with Thomas.

“They obviously had to pay quite a lot of money to go overseas, that was one of the reasons why she stopped playing cricket because she couldn’t afford to travel overseas.

“She told me a story that she bowled out one of the best batsmen in the world, and snapped his middle stump. I think she was quite quick back in the day.”

Gardner was born to parents Katherine and James in Bankstown 19 years ago, some four decades after Thomas blazed her Indigenous sporting trail.

Katherine is of the Muruwari people, centred around Brewarrina in central north NSW while James’ ancestry is English.

Fittingly, Gardner will prepare for her impending n debut in Alice Springs next week at the Imparja Cup, an annual Indigenous cricket tournament.

She’s been told by the Southern Stars coaching staff to play as much cricket as possible in order to prepare for the T20 series against New Zealand, which begins on February 17 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

“The only time I get to really experience it [Aboriginal culture] is when I go up to Imparja Cup where we get to visit communities in Alice Springs,” Gardner said.

“Hopefully in the next couple of years I’ll be able to experience that a lot more.

“It’s a massive honour to be named in the [n] side. Not just my immediate family but the Indigenous community as a whole, it just sends a message I guess that there’s no barriers any more, there’s no stereotypes that Indigenous people can’t represent their country in any sport that they choose.

“Hopefully I’m seen as a role model to young Indigenous kids that if they put their mind to something, they can definitely achieve whatever they’re determined to achieve.

“It’s only going to get bigger and better from here, they’ve put more money into Indigenous cricket, hopefully in the next couple of years you’ll see a lot more male and females hopefully representing their countries.”

squad: Meg Lanning (c), Kristen Beams, Alex Blackwell, Nicole Bolton (one-day series only), Lauren Cheatle, Rene Farrell, Ashleigh Gardner, Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry (one-day series only pending fitness), Megan Schutt, Molly Strano (Twenty20 series only), Elyse Villani, Amanda-Jade Wellington

v New Zealand T20s February 17: MCG, Melbourne, 2.05pm AEDT February 19: Kardinia Park, Geelong, 2.35pm AEDT February 22: Adelaide Oval, Adelaide, 2.05pm AEDT

v New Zealand ODIs February 26: Eden Park No.2, Auckland, 9am AEDT March 2: Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui, 9am AEDT  March 5: Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui, 9am AEDT


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13 Apr 19

Booligal Public School principal Linda Stewart with students in an earlier year. There is a steady stream of new students to the school, but not a steady stream of internet capability. It’s a long wait for 21 remote NSW schools caught in a Department of Education technology black hole that forces them to struggle with some of the slowest internet speeds in .
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At Booligal, the far west town Banjo Paterson made famous with his poem Hay, Hell and Booligal – it’s hell for the town’s seven enrolled children this year trying to be part of the webrevolution.

Parent Ali McLean has timed internet speeds at the school over the last three years, and the average is two to 3 megabitsper second. That’sslow.

Mrs McLean says the slow internet service from a Department of Education contract through Optus that uses the old interim satellite, means the schoolkids miss out on a number of major opportunities.

It isolates them from regional online discussions and virtual excursions. “It basically stops them from being able to access 21st century learning skills.” Ali McLean says.

“Due to the fact that 21 schools are locked into a contract that the Department of Education has with Optus, we are told we can’t escape until the contract runs out – somewhere around 2019.’’

Every Friday this year when school is on, the Booligal kids will hopin a bus and travel 80km to Hay, where the school kids enjoy high internet speeds and join in online class activities.

“We were told, by the Department it is a situation we basically have to live with.” Booligal will have seven students this year, down three on last year. But Ms McLean says there are many young families in the area with a good stream of students expected over the next decade.

Claire Butler of the Isolated Childrens and Parents Association, whose children attend Clare school, says she was alsotold security was an issue the 21 schools could not be migrated to the new Sky Muster system.

It is frustrating situation for Ali McLean and her two children she has at Booligal school. She has Sky Muster at home, with occasional drop outs, and an NBN tower in Booligal that delivers high-speed internet. But when her kids go to school, it is all backward technologydespite great facilities and a great teacher-principal.

In a response, the Department of Education said it could not bring in a new system until security over the internet for children using the system was finalised. NBN could not provide a new service andit was not cost-effective to go to a new contract at the moment.

The 21 remote public schools on slow internet are: Bald Blair, Booligal, Afterlee, Kellys Plains, Enngonia, Upper Coopers Creek, Clare, Empire Vale, Tulloona, Wattle Flat, Mallan, Louth, Naradhan, Wanaaring, Whian Whian, Macdonald Valley, Conargo, Tuntable Creek, Weilmoringle, North Star, Lord Howe Island.

The full response from the NSW Department of Education to the issue was:

“Students are provided with filtered internet access appropriate to their cohort as required by the Department’s Duty of Care obligations. Regardless of whether delivered through satellite or cable, the Department can only consider using internet service providers that have the technical capacity to support our enterprise grade network, secure connectivity, and safe browsing. This includes access to multicast protocols that allow our data to be used effectively and efficiently with our teaching software. Consumer grade products do not have these capabilities,’’ the Department of Education said in a response.

“’We are liaising with NBN and are aware that they are working towards meeting these requirements, but the service is currently focussed on providing domestic broadband services for domestic and commercial rural users. The technology to provide connectivity of similar bandwidth across urban and geographically isolated schools does not exist in a way that can be delivered within a feasible cost-benefit scenario.

“The Department monitors technological upgrades and market offerings and discusses its technical requirements with numerous vendors including NBN Co in an ongoing fashion.

“Elements of the hardware, software and network are continuously upgraded with major upgrades undertaken at the conclusion of existing contracts through formal procurement processes.”


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13 Apr 19

STEPPING UP: Former Wanderers hooker Phil Bradford will play in an all-Newcastle front row for the NSW under-20s on Saturday. Picture: Marina Neil NSW Waratahs general manager of rugby Tim Rapp has no doubts that Wanderers hooker and former n Schoolboy Phil Bradford has the toolsto take his game to the next level.
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Bradford will form an all Newcastle-bred front-row alongside Harry Johnson-Holmes and Harry Chapman when the NSW under-20s take on the Central West senior side in a trial at Mudgee on Saturday.

The hit-out, which is a curtain-raiser to the Waratahs versus Brumbies match, is the first of three trials before theopening Super 20s clash against the Western Force on February 25.

Bradford, who has a part of the Wanderers side which went down 37-28 to Hamilton in the Newcastle first-grade grand final last year, has joined former Two Blues coach Todd Louden at West Harbour and trains three sessions a week with the NSW 20s.

“The biggest thing for Phil is just getting used to the consistency of the training,” said Rapp, who is from Singleton and played for the Newcastle Wildfires.“The challenge for these kids to move out of Newcastle or rural NSW, wherever it may be, is not that easy. He has the football ability, no doubt.It is a matter of getting allthe off-field stuff organised and his time-management right and looking after himself in a new environment.”

Johnson-Holmes, who moved to Sydney last season and plays for Sydney University, has been one of the stars in the pre-season.

“We have thrown him into a few Waratahs sessions and he has held hisown,” Rapp said. “He did full contact, scrummaging, lineout, fitness, the whole lot. “

Chapman, who went to The Kings School and plays for Randwick, earned a late call-up to the n under-20s last year.

“He and Harry Johnson-Holmes should be the pillars of the scrum going to the championships,” Rapp said.

Former Wanderers fly-half Greg Thompson is the NSW 20s backs coach.

The Super-20s consists of one round, with top two teams to meet in the final after which ann squad will be picked for the World Championship in Georgia in June.

NSW has remodeled its junior talent identification process which begins with the under 15s Junior Gold Cup.In the under 16s, players are selected in either the NSW Schools, NSW Country or Sydney sides. The three sides play one another in trials before two NSW sides will be picked to play at the revamped National U16s championship.

“We have a lot more opportunity to identify players from all backgrounds and regions right across the state now,” Rapp said.


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13 Apr 19

OPINION: We’ll miss the man who wore thongs and trousers to the Bogey Hole | POLL, PHOTOS Scot MacDonald in thongs and trousers at the Bogey Hole. Pictures: Jonathan Carroll.
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TweetFacebookHerald on Monday as saying she wants to end Novocastrian “negativity”.

The thing is, one person’s negativity is another person’s positivity. Who decides what’s negative?

Sometimes when this correspondent writes anews story, a person being interviewed will say: “Is the story going to be positive?”.

“Positive for who?”, wereply.

How do you define what’s positive anyhow? Some might say that having citizens stand up for their rights, speak their mind and criticise, question and challenge governments,public officials, corporations, bullies and anyone in power is a positive thing.

But some politicians appear to want the people to be obedient, compliant stooges. We’re not saying Catherine thinks this. But if Novocastrians want to be “negative” about stuff they don’t like, that’s their choice. This isn’t China, North Korea, Russia or Saudi Arabia.

Vladmir Putin is a master of propaganda. He’s also known for murder and mayhem.

If Catherine is a politician worth her salt, she’ll accept criticism and respond constructively, hopefully withpassion. If she makes her argument well, some critics might even change their positions.

It’s been interesting to watch the hyper-sensitive Donald Trump berate and denigrate journalists in the US who write critical articles about him.

We’ve seen the same thing happen here, even at a local level. It’s not uncommon for politicians and senior bureaucrats to become dictatorial, autocratic and domineering.

Some of them panic like scared little children when anyone criticises them in the media.

They appear to want total control and domination. They probably have total control over everyone else in their life. Not being able to control pesky journos and activists hurts their fragile egos and stokes their inner rage. Or does it just upset their inner child? (You know, daddy didn’t love them and mummy didn’t hug them).

If only everyone was like the sycophantic acolytes and propagandists that surround them, hey?

Mind you, some journos can fall under the manipulative control of pollies and others in power. They get fed “exclusives”, which sometimes leads to an informal, unspoken arrangement that these same journos won’t publish stories that criticise their sources. You know the drill – don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

It’s a cunning and devious way to stifle dissent. This is turning into a bit of a rant, isn’t it?

Anyhow, our point is, we urge citizens to express themselves. And we urge journos to report without fear or favour. And maybe Catherine could lay off on the positive psychology stuff.

Geez, now we’re feeling a bit self-righteous. Politicians must know that feeling pretty well.

Double NegativeWe just read Scot MacDonald’s last press release as the Hunter’s parliamentary secretary.

“I also urge the Hunter Labor MPs to move beyond their approach of negativity and protest,” he said.

No Scot, noooooooooo.

[email protected]苏州夜总会招聘.au


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