Blocker Roach: Rabbitohs in a cracker

South Sydney boast quality finishers on the flanks, where the game could be decided, among them Lote Tuqiri. Picture: GETTY IMAGES Reni Maitua (left) looks set to play hooker in place of Canterbury’s injured captain Michael Ennis. Picture: GETTY IMAGES


A month ago who would have been brave enough to put their money on Canterbury getting to a grand final, let alone winning the premiership?

I thought a Roosters-Rabbitohs decider was almost inevitable.

But what makes rugby league great is its unpredictable nature.

I’m backing South Sydney to get the job done on Sunday but if I’ve learnt anything over the past few weeks, it’s that you can’t count your chickens until the final siren sounds.

The Bunnies pulled off another come-from-behind victory over the boys from Bondi last week.

They are deserved favourites for the big game, but I can’t help wondering if they spent their tickets a week early.

The Rabbitohs stuck it to the Roosters and now they have to do it all again against the Bulldogs.

Some people are building this game as a battle of the big men.

There’s no doubt Sam Burgess and James Graham are two quality forwards, and both teams have strong packs.

But I believe the game will be won or lost on the outside.

South Sydney have a couple of quality finishers in the likes of Dylan Walker and try-scoring machine Alex Johnston.

Don’t forget “old man river” Lote Tuqiri on the other side of the field.

Michael Maguire needs to be commended for making a tough call and dropping Nathan Merritt to allow these younger guys an opportunity.

It also sends a message to the players that none of them are guaranteed a spot from week to week.

I get the feeling the Rabbitohs have more points in them than the Bulldogs.

Their Achilles heel could be at dummy half.

Whoever wears the No 9 jumper will have big shoes to fill.

I know both teams are missing their regular hookers but I think Issac Luke is harder to replace than Michael Ennis.

Luke provides so much to South Sydney in attack and seems to get the team rolling forward when the rest of the players are flat.

He is so often the man who lifts the players around him when the chips are down.

Don’t get me wrong, Ennis is a great player, but I get the feeling he will be easier to replace than Luke.

Des Hasler has a big decision to make in regards to the hooker position.

In my opinion you shouldn’t weaken one position to strengthen another.

The Dogs moved Josh Reynolds to dummy half in place of Ennis earlier in the year and it worked OK, but Reynolds needs to be at five-eighth for 80 minutes on Sunday.

They would be better off bringing in a specialist hooker to replace Ennis.

Reni Maitua looks like he will get the job and Des needs to put absolute faith in the replacement rake.

But you can’t question anything Des does.

His record is outstanding and you would be a fool to write off any team he is in charge of.

As far as bandwagon support goes, it’s safe to say a lot of people are jumping on South Sydney.

The Rabbitohs have been through some tough times and are shooting for their first premiership in 43 years.

Whichever side of the fence you sit on, Sunday’s game is going to be a cracker.

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Changes to rep cricket

subThere have been some significant changes made to the senior and junior draws of the 2014-15 representative cricket season.

No longer will all teams play each other in the Western Premier League (WPL), Mitchell’s President Cup competition is spread over three rounds and a final, and the Under 16s Mitchell competition will see the inclusion of Dubbo and Lachlan for the first time.

Mitchell Cricket Council secretary Carl Sharpe said the changes were as a result of the lack of strength for the Macquarie and Lachlan Valley representative sides.

“Lachlan and Macquarie have combined for their representative cricket,” Sharpe said.

“The Under 16s competition will be run like the Western Premier League competition.

“Lachlan and Macquarie will be known as the Valleys for the representative matches.

“I think it is a good thing and will work out very well.”

The Mitchell draws for senior and junior cricket were released late last month while the WPL was signed off earlier this week.

In the major change to the WPL, not every team plays each other.

In the past two seasons, every team in Mitchell, Lachlan and Macquarie cricket councils have played each other with the top two taking part in the final.

This season the four main Mitchell teams will play each other in conjunction with the President’s Cup, while Dubbo, Parkes and Cowra will play in a three-way round robin tournament.

The top two Mitchell sides will advance to the semi-finals where they will meet the top two “Valleys” sides.

Winner of those respective semi-final matches play in the WPL final on February 1.

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Under 17s now part of local junior cricket

At the Parkes District Junior Cricket Association (PDJCA) selection meeting held last Monday evening, it was moved that cricketers in the Under 17 age bracket be invited to register in the Under 16 competition in an effort to augment numbers.

With this in mind, there is an opportunity for Under 17 players to register from 4pm to 5.30pm today at Woodward Oval.

Association Secretary Greg Morrissey will be on hand to accept the Under 17 registrations and to catch up with any other late registrations for the Under 10, 12 and 14 competitions as well as any five to eight year old players interested in the in2cricket scheme.

Cost to register is as follows:

$80 for Under 16/17s; $65 for 14s; $45 for 12s; $20 for 10s and $65 for in2cricket.

A family maximum fee for involvement in all competitions is set at $120.

The selection meeting was attended by 15 enthusiastic delegates to form three teams at Under 14 level, three Under 12 teams, and four Under 10 teams.

The competition will also include teams from Forbes when the season begins.

Teams will be in action on Saturday, October 11, and will be published in the Champion Post on Friday, October 10.

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A setback? Or an opportunity?

Bathurst Regional Council’s decision to refuse a development application for ago-kart track at the former Alec Lamberton soccer field at Kelso is a story about noise.

The application was knocked back because of concerns about the impact of the track’s noise on the neighbouring Scots School and residential areas.

And the reason councillors were aware of these concerns is because residents made noise about their worries.

And that’s how local government – the tier of government closest to the people it serves – should work.

While this is a setback for the Bathurst Kart Club, which looks like it will have to go back to the drawing board to find itself a location for a facility where it can race, it could also be ablessing in disguise.

Could this lead to the club and council looking seriously at the Mount Panorama precinct as the location for the proposed track?

It certainly seems an obvious choice.

First, it is the home of Australia’s most famous motorsport circuit. Second, with plans to develop a second track in the vicinity, the future of the region’s most famous piece of infrastructure has never been brighter.

The pending completion of the new multi-million dollar harness racing facility between College Road and the Vale Road, in the shadows of the famous mountain, adds another sporting dimension to the area.

Then there is the Vale Road bike park which is being developed behind Mount Panorama and, when open, is set to take the sport of cycling to new levels in the region.

A sporting precinct is slowly coming together on and around the mount, so why shouldn’t the go-kart club become the next addition?

After all, in a city of good sports, it makes sense to have so many of them so close together.

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Police call for more stabbing witnesses

Detectives investigating a fatal stabbing in Port Macquarie last month have appealed for more witnesses to come forward.

Emergencyservices were called to Horton Street just after 1.30am on Sunday, September 21, where they found a man with stab wounds to the chest.

It’s alleged four men were involved in a fight outside a nearby bank before the stabbing.

The 25-year-old victim was taken to hospital but \died a short time later.

Mid North Coast Local Area Command detectives and the State Crime Command’s Homicide Squad launched an investigation into the incident.

Two teenagers – a 16-year-old boy and an 18-year-old man – were arrested and charged over the alleged murder.

Strike Force Semple was established by local detectives as inquiries continue.

Anyone who witnessed the altercation or who was near Horton Street that morning is urged to contact Port Macquarie Police Station on 65830199 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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Track needs new location

Bathurst Regional Council is working with the Bathurst Kart Club to find a suitable location for a proposed go-kart track.An application to build a go-kart track at the former Alec Lamberton soccer field at Kelso has hit a brick wall because of noise concerns.

Bathurst Regional Council is now working with the Bathurst Kart Club to find a more suitable location.

There are several venues under consideration where noise is less of a problem than it was at the soccer field, which backs onto The Scots School and a residential area.

The proposed track could host up to 12 race meetings a year.

A spokesperson for Bathurst Regional Council said a period of community consultation will begin after race week.

The initial development was dealt with under delegated authority.

It was determined there was insufficient information regarding the noise impact of the development to give consent to its construction.

Once a suitable location can be found, the Bathurst Kart Club will be required to submit a new development application.

The karting proposal at Alec Lamberton field met with considerable opposition from residents on the White Rock Road.

Eight submissions were received while the development application was on public exhibition.

The 4.5-hectare site under consideration, on the corner of Lee and Littlebourne streets, iscouncil-owned land.

The type of facility proposed by the Bathurst Kart Club would include an 820-metre asphalt go- kart track which would be open to the public every day from 9am to 5pm.

The submission indicated there would be up to 12 race meetings a year, three or four of those to be run during school holidays.

Each meeting would feature between 80 and 100 competitors.

White Rock Road resident Edwald Lehner, who opposed the development, said he felt a location near Mount Panorama would be a much better option.

He felt noise pollution was a far bigger problem than claimed in the statement of environmental effects.

Mr Lehner said the impact of the continuous announcements on the public address system had not been taken into account, and he suggested councillors should attend a meeting at a go-kart facility before making a decision.

Councillor Jess Jennings also thought establishing the track at Mount Panorama was a goodidea.

Cr Jennings said it seemed like common sense and good town planning to have all motor racing related activities at Mount Panorama, however, he said he understood members of the Bathurst Kart Club did not want to build their facility on the mountain.

“The second track development might take too long for them. I believe there are also commercial considerations,” Cr Jennings said.

He added that there would, however, be some prestige to be able to offer people the opportunity to race go-karts at Mount Panorama.

“When it comes to developing the second track at Mount Panorama, I believe it should have that facility built in,” Cr Jennings said.

“In the future this will be quite the sporting precinct. Anything that goes round in circles will be up there.

“From a planning perspective it would be good to have an area earmarked for all that kind of activity.”

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Principal proves we can all “reach for the sky”

REACH FOR THE STARS: Rob Wallace, Tom Curtis, Graham Tink, Peter Patullo and Mike Lewis with their support team, Liz Curtis and Sandra Patullo.ILLAROO Road Public School principal Graham Tink didn’t really believe he was “fit enough” to tackle the 4000km ride for autism when he set off on September 1.

The journey began at Bathers Beach, Fremantle in Western Australia and ended successfully at Illaroo Road Public School on September 30.

The principal, along with Tom Curtis, Mike Lewis, Peter Patullo and Rob Wallace were greeted on their return with cheers from students and adults parading balloons and posters.

Mr Tink said he was ecstatic about completing the ride.

“It has been a wonderful opportunity for all of us,” Mr Tink said.

Illaroo Road’s Public School’s motto is ‘Reach for the sky’ and Mr Tink wanted to set an example to all children to believe that the sky is the limit.

“It was on my bucket list to ride across Australia and to reach for the sky and I did that,” he said.

“At the beginning of the challenge, I wasn’t fit enough or fast enough.

“There was a time where I wanted to pull out because my legs were just so sore but I knew I couldn’t because of the kids.

“I just had so much support,” Mr Tink said.

He said the ride offered many sightseeing opportunities and was a platform to build courage and strength against adversity.

“It is something that I will never forget,” Mr Tink said.

The bike ride’s aim was to raise $1 for every kilometre. The money raised will go towards autism and to help fund Illaroo Road Public School’s PE and performing arts programs.

Donations can still be made by visiting this website. https://give.everydayhero苏州美甲美睫培训学校/au/the-crossing

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Hewitts to dominate in Canola Cup final at Eugowra

Connections of Heat 4 winner, Holm Three would have been pleased with strapper Blake Hewitt after he drew marble 3 and will start from gate 2 for the $20,000 Canola Cup next Monday afternoon. Under the watchful eye of HRNSW Steward Travis Quirk, Blake Hewitt is pictured about to select the number. subThe Hewitt family will provide three of the finalists for Monday’s $20,000 Canola Cup being staged by the Eugowra Harness Racing Club as part of the Carnival of Cups concept promoted by Harness Racing New South Wales.

Tom and Angela Hewitt raised their family in Crookwell and their sons Mark, David and Bernie have all been highly successful in the sport.

Their daughter Jenna is also heavily involved in harness racing through her son Dennis Picker who has made his mark in the sport and only recently earned his biggest thrill, winning a Breeders Crown Final in Victoria.

Along with Goulburn’s Neil Day, Bernie Hewitt has been a dominant figure since the inception of the Canola Cup back in 1999, winning a number of finals during the past 14 years.

Bernie will certainly be hoping that history repeats itself when he lines up for yet another final, this time partnering the Bob Boyd and Deidre Masters owned gelding Kenny Dee Dee.

In 2011, the trio won the Eugowra feature with a full brother, namely Bobby Dee Dee but on that occasion Bernie had four runners in the Final and it was his son-in-law Mat Rue who took the winning drive.

Brad and his father David Hewitt have qualified two runners for the Canola Cup with Luksam and Holm Three scoring impressive wins in their respective heats last weekend.

Brad trains Luksam for part owner Belinda McCarthy so he will be obliged to drive that horse on Monday.

Holm Three is trained by David who may take the reins in the final although he does have the option of putting another of his three sons aboard.

Whoever takes the plumb drive will certainly have the pressure on them after Brad drove the horse a treat to qualify.

Holm Three was quickly installed as the favourite for the final after drawing barrier two.

But this year’s Canola Cup field appears to be possibly the most even in the rich race’s history and it will come down to luck in running.

The opening event on what should be a mammoth day of racing is scheduled for 1.14pm.

A full preview of the meeting including selections will appear in Monday’s edition of the Champion Post.

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Dine on Peking Duk at Setts

AUSTRALIAN electronic duo Peking Duk promise to deliver a show that is “out of this world” for Mildura fans tonight.

Return: Electronic music stars Peking Duk, pictured at the end of their Splendour In The Grass set, will perform at The Setts in October.

The band’s performance at The Settsis expected to attract large crowds and be an unofficial continuation of their huge party of a tour that finished up at the end ofAugust.

DJs Adam Hyde and Reuben Styles are hoping it will go off with a bang, as will support acts DJ Benson and Mildura’s own WZRDKID.

Hyde told Sunraysia Daily this week, their Mildura performance was one of the shows featured in the jam-packed schedule heading towards the new year.

It is another massive win for the Mildura live music scene, with the triple j favourites likely to attract a sizeable crowd after the success of May’s One Night Stand concert.

“The tour was awesome; it was our first tour that we actually hired our own venues, such as the Corner Hotel in Melbourne and the Art Factory in Sydney, which was a whole new experience for us,” Hyde said.

“We got to bring our own guests to support us, it was like one huge party and we are actually a bit sad it’s over.”

Since their release of their Passion Pit bootleg remix, in May 2012, the duo has released two singles, both of which have hit number one on the ARIA Club Chart and featured in the Australian Single Charts.

Much of the Canberra-bred duo’s recent success hails from new dance floor staple High, featuring Nicole Millar, which has been ARIA certified double platinum.

Their most notable festival performances include Falls Festival, Big Day Out, Parklife Music Festival and, of course, the recent and very successful Splendour in the GrassFestival.

The set at Byron Bay’s Splendour in the Grass took the duo’s music and live performance reputation to new heights.

“We spent a lot of time, money and effort on our set at splendour, including guestperformances by 360, The Kite String Triangle and a few more,” Hyde said.

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Video explores rare patch of Berry rainforest

A GROUP of Shoalhaven residents recently collaborated on a project to raise the profile of a small rainforest remnant near Berry.

The result is a short video using footage originally taken by Berry’s Kim Dove in 2006 of a number of local ecologists including the late Anders Bofelt.

The video highlights the rarity of the Berry rainforest, a dry lowland sub-tropical rainforest, which was once much more extensive in the Illawarra Shoalhaven than it is today.

Lowland rainforests in particular were largely cleared from the district and the few small, isolated remnants play an important role as ‘stepping-stones’ of habitat across a broader landscape for a range of native fauna dealing with pressures of urban and rural development, pest weeds and animals, fire and the impacts of climate change.

The Berry rainforest featured in the video occurs on a site that was proposed for development in the 1990s. However, major opposition from the Shoalhaven community led to the plans for the development being dropped.

I2S Partnership Facilitator, David Rush, said “the Berry rainforest contains over 100 different native plant species and trees such as the Olivers Sassafras (Cinnamomum oliveri) found here are at the southern limit of their distribution in NSW”.

“Of the 29 plant species commonly found in Illawarra Sub-tropical Rainforest, listed under the Threatened Species Conservation Act as an Endangered Ecological Community, at least 18 of them are found in this site”, added Mr Rush.

Volunteer Landcare efforts to remove weeds and rubbish and manage fire and stock over the last two decades has helped return the site back to a high conservation value rainforest.

For a copy of the video, contact David Rush on 4429 4453 or, view the video online at: http://www.youtube苏州美甲美睫培训学校/


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