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Comments Off on Swimming: Ash Delaney reunites with Grant Hackett for the world champs in Kazan

Swimming: Ash Delaney reunites with Grant Hackett for the world champs in Kazan

Swimming: Ash Delaney reunites with Grant Hackett for the world champs in Kazan

Role reversal: Ashley Delaney, a backstroker now also swimming freestyle. Photo: Simon Scluter.When Ashley Delaney made his first major national team, as a backstroker at the 2006 Commonwealth Games, team captain Grant Hackett was among the earliest to applaud. Yet although Hackett knew Delaney’s name, his time, and something of his joy, the veteran could not have imagined back then that, almost a decade later, both would be relay swimmers bound for next week’s world championships in Kazan, Russia.
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Delaney, reinvented as a versatile freestyler, is a member of a 4 x 100 metre squad missing injured superstar James Magnussen. Hackett, reborn as a mature-aged 4 x 200 metre swimmer after a seven-year retirement and some well-publicised personal difficulties, will be the oldest team member in Russia, with 100-metre breaststroke defending champion Christian Sprenger the middle peg between 35-year-old Hackett and Delaney, 29.

“I still look at him in awe,” says Delaney of the elder statesman. “He’s just a great guy, and a great swimmer. Now that he’s back on the team we’ve had chats and stuff, and it’s just been good to talk to him. He’s just got so much experience and respect around the team and he’s a good leader for the swimming team, as well.”

Delaney, as another of its senior citizens, is also in a different, happier, place these days. At this stage of the last Olympic cycle, the Beijing silver medallist was growing closer to needing a change after almost five years at the AIS; keen to return home to his family and friends in Melbourne.

The problem, as he now sees it, was in the timing. He returned late in 2011, leaving himself little chance to adjust to a new training regime before the 2012 Olympic trials. The cost was immense, with a shattered Delaney missing his first team since that 2006 debut. It was a difficult period for the swimming nut and aspiring coach/swim school owner, who nevertheless did his best to train through the London Games. “There was just a few times where I was …,” he trails off. When you didn’t have it in you? “Yeah.”

At that stage, Rio seemed even further away than the 13,214km Delaney still hopes to travel to a second Olympics next year. “Even some of my family of members asked ‘oh, do you think maybe that’s enough’?” he recalls, along with his reply that while his motivation remained intact, so did his ambitions to swim on. At the world championships in Barcelona the following year, Delaney won a silver medal in the medley relay, and swam a personal best en route to sixth in the 100 backstroke final. “So I knew that I still had my best swims in me.”

What came as a surprise, though, was the role Delaney’s freestyle would play. He had swum “a little bit of it” along the way, but never at nationals. Until last year, when the result for the long-time VIS scholarship-holder was an encouraging ninth. “So then this year I thought I might take it serious and try and sneak in for that relay, which I did, which was a little bit of a blessing in disguise, because my backstroke was a little bit off at that meet.”

Now, he wishes he had broadened his focus earlier in a career that has nevertheless brought a silver medal as a heat swimmer in the medley relay in Beijing Olympics, four medals – including three gold – at the Delhi Commonwealth Games, multiple national records and one Commonwealth mark.

“Definitely regretting that a little bit,” he laughs. “But in saying that it’s given me a little bit more excitement to my swimming, it’s given me something fresh to focus on. After doing the same thing year in, year out, racing the same races, to flip over onto my front has been something fresh. I was still motivated with my backstroke, but it’s sort of given me that little bit of a spark that I can actually do both strokes and be competitive as well.”

He hopes to make a second Olympic team in both disciplines next year, when Hackett will be the oldest, Sprenger next, and Delaney third in the seniority race if all goes to plan for the trio in Rio. ” It’s sort of tough, because people ask me about my age … (but) Geoff Huegill swam his best times at 32, 33, when he came back after he’d had a lot of time out of the water,” says the Sale-raised, Hawthorn-based swimmer.

“So I think if the motivation’s there and you’re doing the right training then you can still get the best out of yourself later on in life. And I started being serious about swimming quite late, at around 15, 16. You’ve got some kids who burn out around 18, 19, because they were winning age nationals from when they were 10. I only ever got a bronze medal at age nationals at age 18, so I feel like I’ve been hungry for a long time, and I still am.”

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Comments Off on Wickers’ finals hopes hurt further by Crows

Wickers’ finals hopes hurt further by Crows

Wickers’ finals hopes hurt further by Crows

HARD FOUGHT: Jake Hart (Beaufort), Michael Griffin (Creswick) and Brendan Foster (Beaufort) battle for the ball on Saturday. Pictures: Kate Healy.BEAUFORT ‘S five-goals-to-none second half sank Creswick on Saturday.
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A slender three-point margin at half time blew out to a 34-point Crows victory in front of adisbelieving Wickers crowd at Doug Lindsay Reserve.

Creswick matched Beaufort quarter by quarter until half time and the Crows only managed slenderleads because of the home side’sinaccurate kicking.

The Wickers coped well in the muddy conditions for most of the first half, before losing the plot in a scorelessthird term.

The return of ruckman Josh McDermott tothe Graintech Crows’ line-up was evident. It freed Jake Garvey andJarrod Trigg, who had juggled McDermott’s spot the week before.

McDermott was one of four changes to the team before the clash. Branden Sternberg, Brendan

Foster and Mike Cachia replaced Michael Foster, Rohan Brown, James Blackburn and Zach Lockie.

But nothing comes without cost – especially winning.

Skipper Damien Day may be out for the rest ofthe season with a compound fracture to a finger and goal-sneak Jack Duke was hampered with anankle problem.

Duke kicked a spectacular goal off the ground in a rolling wrestling matchduringthebreakaway third term.

Kyle Orr kicked three majors for the Crows and combined with Brendan Foster in aslick play that snagged a great goal in thefirst term.

Foster also got on the scoreboard, along with Levi Cox, Lee Marshall, Joe Mason, Lachie Pfeifer,Aaron Bones and Jake Hart.

Best players for the Crows included Zac Marrow, Steven Lodge and Sternberg.

Joel Berry and Brennan Deppeler were among the bestfor Creswick. Others included Joel Antonio, LukeRobertson and Alex Code.

Beaufort coach Dale Power celebrated the win after a string of close losses to Gordon, Buninyong and Hepburn in recent weeks.

“It’s been tight, frustrating. But we have to play four competitive quarters every week because wedon’t have the scoring capacities to do otherwise. A couple of losses lately could have gone eitherway,” he said.

“That’s footy. We have to roll with the punches.”

Creswick coach Damian Lubeek blamed the loss –which leaves the team 10 points adrift of the Central Highlands Football League top eight with four games to play–on a mental fade-out by his players.

“After the game I told the group I don’t have the answer. The fitness work they’ve been doing isfantastic. The training is really good. It was just above the shoulderstoday. That’s a real disappointingthing,” Lubeek said.

Tim Rieniets

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Comments Off on Magpies begin to fly with successive wins

Magpies begin to fly with successive wins

Magpies begin to fly with successive wins

YOU BEAUTY: Clunes’ Jesse Baird celebrates a goal during Saturday’s 16-point victory over Rokewood-Corindhap. Picture: Kate Healy.
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CLUNEShas managed consecutive wins for the first time this season, after grindingout a 16-point victory over Rokewood-Corindhap.

In an intriguing affair between two inexperienced outfits, the Magpieseventually wore down their opponents to break away in the final term.

Until then, there was little between the two sides.

An even opening quarter saw Clunes lead by a solitary goal at the first change, whichwas reduced to just four points by half time.

Little changed in the third term, as the Magpies once again entered the final breakwith a six-point buffer.

Grasshoppers’ forward Aaron Clarke kicked truly in the opening minutes of the finalquarter to put his side in front, but Clunes quickly replied with a centre clearanceand goal.

From then on, the Magpies dominated.

In a game that was remarkably low-scoring until three quarter time, thingsquickly opened up for Clunes.

Suddenly it was able to find space in the forward line and hit the scoreboard, withJayden Hind (four goals) and Jesse Baird (three) proving a force in attack.

Joint-coach Jason Hill said his young side was able to find another gear in the last quarter.

“We carried the ball and broke the lines,” Hill said.

“At times we caught (the Grasshoppers) flat-footed on the rebound and I think that’swhere the difference was.

“We encouraged our quick runners and ball-users at three quarter time to tackle,tuck the ball under their wing and go with it.”

It was another missed opportunity for Rokewood-Corindhap, which performed wellin the midfield, but struggled to capitalise on its good work with scores.

Too often the Grasshoppers missed easy shots on goal or failed to hit targets in theirforward 50m.

Coach Michael Hynes described the result as “frustrating”.

“Our inability to use the football costs us week in, week out,” Hynes said.

“We continually don’t take our opportunities in the forward line and turn the footyover. Our last month of footy has been really good, and our contested footy, but wecontinually cough the ball up and don’t kick goals when we’re having easy set shots.

“It’s very disappointing and frustrating.”

Forward Cauis Barrenger was excellent for the Emerald Grain Grasshoppers, kicking three goals,while the performance of Jake Weston was also a highlight.

For the Magpies,utility Nick Hind showcased his class,as did Josh Lee.

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Comments Off on Man dies in suspected stabbing murder in Cairns

Man dies in suspected stabbing murder in Cairns

Man dies in suspected stabbing murder in Cairns

A man in his 30s has died after a fight at a house in Cairns. Photo: Glen Hunt GTH Police are investigating a fatal stabbing.
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A 27-year-old man has been charged with murder following the alleged stabbing death of another man at a house in Cairns.

The 39-year-old alleged victim died at the scene about 9pm on Saturday night.

The 27-year-old, from Parramatta Park, is scheduled to face Cairns Magistrates Court on Monday.

EARLIER: A 27-year-old man is in custody after the suspected stabbing murder of another man during a house fight in Queensland’s far north overnight Saturday.

Police were called to a house in the central Cairns suburb of Parramatta Park about 9pm on Saturday where two men had been involved in a fight.

A man in his 30s suffered a stab wound to the chest.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

A 27-year-old man was taken into custody and is assisting police with their investigation.

A crime scene has been established at the house.

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Comments Off on Melbourne weather: City shivers through coldest morning in 18 years

Melbourne weather: City shivers through coldest morning in 18 years

Melbourne weather: City shivers through coldest morning in 18 years

Melbourne woke to frost today, the coldest July morning in 18 years. Photo: Rosanne Hood Melbourne woke to frost today, the coldest July morning in 18 years. Photo: Rosanne Hood
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Melbourne woke to frost today, the coldest July morning in 18 years. Photo: Rosanne Hood

Melbourne woke to frost today, the coldest July morning in 18 years. Photo: Rosanne Hood

Cold morning at Mt Buller, Sunday July 19, 2015. Photo: Andrew Railton

One is the loneliest number – and sometimes the coldest.

Melburnians have woken to a bone-numbing morning, the coldest morning in any month for more than 18 years, with the temperature in the city hovering at around one degree for an hour after 6am on Sunday.

The Bureau of Meteorology recorded a stinging one degree at 6.49am, falling further to 0.8 degrees at 7.26am, making it the coolest morning since August 5, 1997, when the temperature was a teeth-rattling 0.3 degrees.

Sunday morning was the coldest July morning since 1994. “The last time we had a zero in rounded figures in Melbourne was August 1997 … and it’s never happened since,” said Bureau senior forecaster Scott Williams.

The reason? On a winter’s night you need a blanket and last night Melbourne had no cloud cover to slide under. Last week’s aggressive, extended stretch of cold (which involved three cold fronts sweeping through the city) left a parting gift: dry air. “We have now had a night with no cloud, no wind and with this dry air … that’s what’s brought about this exceptionally cold morning.”

Sunday was coldest in Ballarat, with the temperature dropping to minus 4.9 degrees. “Ballarat reached the same temperature as Mount Buller and Mount Hotham,” Mr Williams said. “That’s quite exceptional.”

At Essendon Airport, temperatures dropped to minus 1.5 while in Rutherglen and Coldstream it was minus 4. But in the far west of the state, thin cloud cover prevented Horsham from dropping lower than 3 degrees and Hamilton recorded a low of just 4.8 degrees. ‘We had some cloud lingering in the far west of the state that stopped frost occurring out there … you can’t quite wear a T-shirt with 3 degrees but it’s a bit milder and it’d be about an average night for Horsham at this time of year.”

Today is expected to be sunny with a top of 13. “It’s going to be a lovely, sunny day,” said Mr Williams. “It will not feel particularly cold this afternoon because there is hardly any wind.”

Later in the week strong winds and mid-week showers are forecast but warmer nights are expected, with a Wednesday overnight forecast of a decent 11 degrees. “We are not going to get that really cold air mass,” said Mr Williams. “So a milder week after this very, very chilly series of nights.”

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Comments Off on NRL: Rabbitohs overpower Dragons in SydneyPhotos

NRL: Rabbitohs overpower Dragons in SydneyPhotos

NRL: Rabbitohs overpower Dragons in SydneyPhotos

NRL: Rabbitohs overpower Dragons in Sydney | Photos Dragon Josh Dugan looks dejected after a Rabbitohs try during the teams’ clash on Saturday. Pictures: GETTY IMAGES
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Rabbitohs Ben Lowe, John Sutton,Tom Burgess, Luke Keary, Tim Grant and Bryson Goodwin celebrate after Keary scored a try. Pictures: GETTY IMAGES

Rabbitohs Adam Reynolds and Dylan Walker run to congratulate team-mate Alex Johnston as he celebrates scoring a try against the Dragons on Saturday.

The Rabbitohs celebrate after Adam Reynolds scored a try at the SCG on Saturday.

South Sydney’s Greg Inglis runs the ball during the Rabbitoh’s match against St George Illawarra Dragons on Saturday.

South Sydney Rabbitoh Adam Reynolds scores a try against the St George Illawarra Dragons.

Chris McQueen of the Rabbitohs stretches to regather a kick.

Greg Inglis of the Rabbitohs breaks away from the Dragons defence.

Luke Keary of the Rabbitohs is fended away by Jason Nightingale of the Dragons during the round 19 match in Sydney on Saturday.

Dragons Euan Aitken, Jack De Belin and Joel Thompson look dejected after a Rabbitohs try on Saturday.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

South Sydney Rabbitohs 24 forced St George Illawarra Dragons 8 into their sixth straight loss on Saturday night.

TweetFacebookTHE Rabbitohs have overpowereda determined St George Illawarra, scoring two late triesto secure out a 24-8 win in their Heritage Round match at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

It wasn’t a classic like the one they came to celebrate. Fifty years ago, 78,065 people crammed into a sunbathed SCG to see St George beat South Sydney 12-8 in the season decider. There was no chance of the crowd being matched either – 18,217 fans braved the cold and damp – but there was some synergy when Dragons fullback Josh Dugan’s 69th minute try left the Rabbitohs holding onto a 12-8 lead.

With Benji Marshall back in the side and the Dragons playing with plenty of intent, there seemed the potential for an upset. But the deal was sealed when Souths halfback Adam Reynolds regained his own grubber kick, which cannoned back off the post, and scored under the posts, and Luke Keary got across the line in the dying minutes.

It had been 8-4 and one try apiece after a tight first half. But an Alex Johnston try nearing the hour mark gave an eight-point buffer to the Rabbitohs from where they launched their late surge to extend the Dragons’ winless streak to six matches.

The match was delicately poised at the break after former Rabbitoh Justin Hunt scored a try for the Dragons with 90 seconds remaining.

It wasn’t the first time Hunt had crossed the line. In the fifth minute he slid past Greg Inglis, back from Origin duty, but the ball came loose as he reached the line. It was given a try on the field but overruled on video evidence.

Against the run of play three minutes later a dummy half run by Dylan Walker proved too much for the defence of Peter Mata’utia and Marshall, and Reynolds converted from the sideline to make it 6-0.

On 16 minutes Souths should have had their second – and probably a goanna celebration – when John Sutton made a break and offloaded to an unmarked Inglis. However, the star fullback took his eyes off the ball and spilled it cold with 35 metres of clear space and a try line ahead of him. Inglis was as stunned at his show of humanity as anyone at the ground.

The Dragons got their kicking game going later in the half but poor discipline left them on the wrong end of five straight penalties. Souths showed their opponents’ defence respect (Mitch Rein had made 31 tackles by half-time and went on to register a remarkable 52 tackles) when they took a penalty goal to make it 8-0, before Hunt got on the end of a brilliant Marshall over-the-top pass to score in the corner.

The second half began as 20 minutes of attrition before the Dragons broke. A short drop out from Marshall, aimed at trying to get the ball back and give the defence a breather after Dugan was tackled in-goal, backfired when Johnston wound up on the end of a neat backline move to score.

The try was unconverted but the eight-point gap looked pretty valuable after a rain shower and the minutes ticking down. Souths lost Cameron McInnes to an ankle injury midway through the half and not long later Dugan injected into the game and planted the ball down out wide to make it 12-8. However, Souths’ power game proved too much and late tries to Reynolds and Luke Keary ensured the points.

The Sydney Morning Herald

Comments Off on Kicking accuracy proves costly

Kicking accuracy proves costly

Kicking accuracy proves costly

DANGEROUS: Callum Hobbs booted four goals for Harrow-Balmoral.
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HARROW-BALMORAL wastoo strong for Natimuk United on Saturday and came away with a 41-point win.

A costly fourth quarter saw the Rams only boot two majors, compared with the Roos’ five.

The final score was 15.8 (98) to 7.15 (57).

Natimuk United coach Simon Brearley said it was not an attractive game from either side.

“We were super competitive though – the first time we played them, they beat us by 20 goals, this time around we were still in it at three-quarter time,” he said.

“We only had one less scoring shot than them, so if we didn’t waste opportunities in front of goals, it might have been closer.”

Brearley said there were 21 contributors to the side.

“Everyone played well,” he said.“Matt Lovel was sensational at centre half back -he has been great there all year.”

Callum Hobbs and Tyson Hogan performed well for the Roos.

Hobbs and Timothy Crick kicked four goals each.

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Comments Off on Kees too good in Pimpinio contest

Kees too good in Pimpinio contest

Kees too good in Pimpinio contest

EFFORT: Josh Beddison kicks six goals for Kalkee on Saturday.
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KALKEE showed why they are a top-two side after they smashed Pimpinio by 140 points at the weekend.

Only four points separated the two teams at the first change, but the Kees dominated the second quarter, booting nine goals to Pimpinio’s one.

Joshua Beddison and Steve Schultz both kicked a bag, contributing to the side’s win.

Pimpino coach Matthew Everett said he was disappointed with the lost.

“After the first quarter we were right in the game, but then concentration went out the window and our accountability dropped.

“Kalkee is a good side and when you give a good side an opportunity, they make you pay on the scoreboard.”

Everett said the Tigers failed to bounce back after a poor second quarter.

“The boys battled hard in the second half but that quarter had hurt us too much,” he said.

Hesaid Alex Hill andTodd O’Connor were among the side’s best.

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Comments Off on Smooth Saints blast Eagles

Smooth Saints blast Eagles

Smooth Saints blast Eagles

Smooth Saints blast Eagles OUT OF MY WAY: Koroit midfielder Taylor Mulraney bursts through a pack against North Warrnambool Eagles on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton
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IMPRESSIVE: Koroit ruckman Jeremy Hausler was one of the Saints’ best against North Warrnambool Eagles on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

EYES ON THE BALL: North Warrnambool Eagles forward Marcus Shaw leaps for the ball against Koroit on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

CENTIMETRE PERFECT: Koroit forward Will Couch celebrates his second quarter goal from the pocket against North Warrnambool Eagles with teammate James Gow. Picture: Amy Paton

TALL TIMBER: Ruckmen – Koroit’s Ethyn Zimmer and North Warrnambool Eagles’ Jordan Dillon – go head-to-head on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

HIGH FIVES: North Warrnambool Eagles’ Ben Fleming and Jordan Dillon celebrate a rare goal against Koroit on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

VERSATILE: North Warrnambool Eagles utility Ben Mugavin launches the ball forward against Koroit on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

FIERCE TACKLE: North Warrnambool Eagles’ Lachie Woodhams is tackled by Koroit skipper Isaac Templeton on Saturday. Picture: Amy Paton

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Comments Off on The Ashes 2015: Mitchell Marsh steps up to fill the all-rounder role

The Ashes 2015: Mitchell Marsh steps up to fill the all-rounder role

The Ashes 2015: Mitchell Marsh steps up to fill the all-rounder role

The Ashes 2015 scoreboardMarsh’s two crucial breakthroughsSpectator has players in stitches
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Poor old Shane Watson. Of all the days when an image of him posing shirtless in the Australian changerooms had to emerge, it was the day his successor Mitch Marsh took the two biggest England wickets on offer at Lord’s as Australia nudged closer to victory in the second Test. The kindest that could be said is that Australia’s old and new No 6s both flexed their muscles this day.

Shane Watson poses in the changeroom.

For Australia, it was a day of gains upon gains: a winning position reinforced, wickets for all bowlers, and in the last session a half-century for David Warner that may yet prove to be the loosening of a torrent. But the most gratifying development was Marsh’s brace. First, just before lunch, he bowled Ben Stokes for 87, breaking a three-hour yin and yang partnership with Alastair Cook. Then just before tea, he bowled Cook for 96. For six stoic hours, Cook had reprised his leviathan 2010-11 role as the man who never went away. Now he became the man who didn’t get there, not quite. Within 12 overs, England were all out.

Marsh’s wickets were as an all-rounder’s should be, few but select. Both came from the inside edge, but it would be wrong to think of them as flukes. A tall man as per the apparent Australian job specifications, he was able to take advantage of a hint of variable bounce at the Members’ End at Lord’s.

All-round effort: Mitchell Marsh took the crucial wickets but Australia’s bowlers hunted as a pack. Photo: Reuters

Stokes perished the way he plays, trying to force. Cook’s shot could not have been more out of character. He imposes himself by not trying to impose himself. A batsman without vanity, he plays the shots he knows he can – cut, on-drive, pull – and doesn’t play the ones he can’t. The cover drive is an example. He had hit only one previously in the innings, and although it went for four, that seemed to take even him by surprise. Now, fatally, he aimed another, at Marsh. Cook slumped to one knee; better than anyone, he knew what had been lost in that moment.

Shattered: Alastair Cook and his stumps. Photo: Reuters

Why? In six hours, even a man with his epic concentration span will make mistakes, and get away with them one day, but not the next, and the inside edge is cricket’s Russian roulette. But this might be called a forced error. The pressure had been compounding all innings, from the Australian score that never seemed to come nearer, Australian bowling that was controlled and unrelenting as it was not in Cardiff, and the periodic fall of wickets.

Cook had absorbed it as only he can. Somehow, he manages to project intensity and serenity simultaneously. Mitch Johnson struck him a painful blow on the elbow: he winced, waited, went on. Johnson chipped him, and Cook looked at him as if to ask why he bothered, and did as he did to any offering from Johnson that might have caused him grief, let it through to the keeper, and Johnson didn’t bother again.

But with a century in reach, perhaps a voice in the back of even his monkish mind identified Marsh not as a relieving bowler, but a relief for a batsman. That is how good attacks work, like partners in bridge, singly but in concert, dummy lead here, trump there. Really, there ought to be a column for assists on a cricket scorecard.

Australia’s bowling at Lord’s was a team affair. Mitch Starc made the instant breakthrough, unnerving England. Johnson wreaked two-over havoc. Only Johnson would take another wicket for the innings, the last, but that was not the point. Josh Hazlewood probed and pierced, Nathan Lyon would not be denied and then there was Marsh.

It would be disingenous to call his wickets turning points, because the day was always going in one direction, but they were affirming points. Necessarily, cricket on such a day is a game of waiting and watching, England’s batsmen for the rogue ball, Australia bowlers and fieldsmen for the merest chance. Two slipped by, one a catch by wicketkeeper Peter Nevill that DRS revealed to be impossible, the other a Cook pull shot so hard hit that Steve Smith found impossible to catch. But Australia’s advantage was too vast for these to affect the game.

One other catch was spilled this day, not affecting the outcome of the game, but with the potential to resonate down the series. Warner, still to break his duck, was missed by Adam Lyth in gully. Two hours later, he was 60 not out, and there was a sense that he was off the leash. Poor Lyth: in this match, he has bowled six balls, faced three, made no runs and dropped a catch. He cut a sorry figure, unlike Watto.

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Comments Off on British Open 2015: Tiger Woods backs Australian Jason Day to win The Open at St Andrews

British Open 2015: Tiger Woods backs Australian Jason Day to win The Open at St Andrews

British Open 2015: Tiger Woods backs Australian Jason Day to win The Open at St Andrews

Jason Day escaped with a one-under 71 after a tumultuous third day at the British Open. Photo: Mike EhrmannTwo-time champion at St Andrews, Tiger Woods, has backed Australian Jason Day to win his maiden major at The Open after finishing the second round three shots from the lead.
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The former world No.1 didn’t make the cut (+7), but the 39-year-old believes the Aussie is playing well enough to challenge for the Claret Jug on Monday.

The pair, who were grouped together, had a conversation on the way up the 18th hole in which Woods reflected on the specialness of the final hole at the home of golf.

“It’s one of the things I was talking about with Jason,” Woods said.

“We were coming up 18, I said, it’s the greatest walk in golf. He says, yeah, it’s nice when you have an eight-shot lead, too. I said, well, you just go ahead and go get that lead. He’s playing well enough to do it.

“But there’s a lot of guys who have a chance to win. This golf course is definitely gettable. The greens are soft and receptive, and if you’re driving it well and driving it long, this golf course is very much gettable.”

Day finished the second round, which was delayed more than 10 hours because of the severe wind around St Andrews, three shots behind leader Dustin Johnson, equal with fellow Aussie Adam Scott at seven under.

The 27-year-old dropped two shots in the 32 minutes of play that was allowed before the players were called in, but he insists he didn’t allow himself to be bitter about the decision to resume play with wind gusts of up to 65 km per hour.

“I just can’t afford to get frustrated and stew over it,” Day said.

“I was explaining earlier, there’s another 36 holes to be played after this round. I really want to win a major so bad that I just can’t afford to let it frustrate me.

“I’ve just got to keep moving forward and take it hole by hole and get this done, and I played pretty solid, shot one under, which was good in that wind, but it’s over now, and I’ve got round three and round four to go.”

Despite England’s Daniel Brooks landing a hole in one at the 11th, Johnson showed that he will take some catching. Hole in one! Watch Daniel Brooks ace the 11th hole at St Andrews. #Boom#TheOpenhttps://t.co/DnjBCtwABY— The Open (@TheOpen) July 18, 2015

But the man on everyone’s lips leading into the tournament, Jordan Spieth, is still in the hunt despite being five shots behind the pace.

The pursuit of the grand slam is still alive for Spieth, who insists he’s not too far back to make a run at his third major of the year.

“Yeah, I believe I’m still in contention,” Spieth said.

“I still believe I can win this tournament. I need a really solid round tomorrow, though, because Dustin is not letting up. He’s the only one I can speak of, he and Hideki [Matsuyama] because I saw it first hand. Dustin is going to shoot a good round tomorrow with less wind, and I’m going to need to shoot a great round to really give myself a chance.

“To fall from two back to five back isn’t exactly what I wanted on a Friday, but it could have been worse, could have been better. It is what it is, and if I can shoot something like 10-under in the last two rounds, I think I’ll have a chance to win.”

THE LEADERBOARD -10 Dustin Johnson (US) -9 Danny Willett (ENG) -8 Paul Lawrie (SCO) -7 Adam Scott (AUS) -7 Jason Day (AUS) -7 Marc Warren (SCO) -7 Zach Johnson (US) -7 Robert Streb (US) -7 Louis Oosthuizen (RSA)

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-5 Steven Bowditch (AUS) -5 Geoff Ogilvy (AUS) -5 Jordan Spieth (US) -5 Justin Rose (ENG) -5 Sergio Garcia (ESP) -3 Matt Jones (AUS) -3 Greg Chalmers (AUS)

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Comments Off on Ashes 2015: video goes viral after woman misses chair and falls down

Ashes 2015: video goes viral after woman misses chair and falls down

Ashes 2015: video goes viral after woman misses chair and falls down

Marsh’s two crucial wicketsBaum: Marsh and Australia flex musclesAshes 2015 scoreboard
Nanjing Night Net

She was the maiden who bowled over the crowd after her embarrassing moment was captured on camera before thousands of cricket fans at the second Ashes Test at Lord’s.

As the Australian team dominated their English opponents, the woman made her way back to her seat. It was all happening late on day three! #Asheshttp://t.co/eoAMzikRUt— cricket南京夜网419论坛 (@CricketAus) July 18, 2015

Broadcaster Sky focused on her as she went to take her chair but missed it entirely, taking an undignified tumble to the amusement of her male companions.

Even the players on the field couldn’t conceal a chuckle with English part-time spinner Joe Root unable to complete his delivery as he was in fits of laughter.

It was the unfortunate woman who had the last laugh after she realised her fall had been broadcast on the big screen.

She got up and gave a curtsy to loud applause from the crowd.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Comments Off on Single-vehicle accident outside Cowra claims man’s life

Single-vehicle accident outside Cowra claims man’s life

Single-vehicle accident outside Cowra claims man’s life

A REPORT is being prepared for the coroner after a fatal single-motor vehicle crash in Cowra on Saturday night
Nanjing Night Net

About 8.45pm a 34-year-old man was driving his car east on Darbys Falls Road.

About 4km out of Cowra the vehicle has left the roadway, collided with a fence and continued into a paddock, flipping over.

The driver, who was the sole occupant, was thrown from the vehicle and located by a motorist who came across the crash.

The site of the accident on Saturday night.

Police attended and began first aid on the man.

Ambulance paramedics arrived and he was taken to Cowra District Hospital where he died a short time later.

Preliminary examinations of the crash site have been conducted by Forensic Services Group offices and inquiries into what caused the fatality are continuing.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.