Angus Brayshaw stunned by Gaff ‘assault’

Melbourne’s Angus Brayshaw believes the hit on his brother Andrew was equal to an assault.An emotional Angus Brayshaw says his younger brother was the victim of an “assault” that could have landed West Coast star Andrew Gaff in jail.

But the pair may yet become teammates with Melbourne co-captain Nathan Jones confident relationships will be repaired if AFL free agent Gaff lands at the Demons next season.

Gaff received an eight-week ban from the AFL tribunal on Tuesday night over the punch which broke the jaw of Fremantle rookie Andrew Brayshaw, the younger brother of Demons midfielder Angus.

His shocking brain-fade has created a potentially awkward situation for the Demons given they are favourites to snare the Eagles midfielder should he opt to exercise his rights as a restricted free agent at the end of the season.

Angus Brayshaw, who recently signed a four-year contract extension with the Demons, said the family had no intention to pursue criminal charges against Gaff.

But he expressed outrage about the incident.

“If this has happened at a nightclub or on the streets, it’s an assault,” Brayshaw told an AFL website podcast on Tuesday.

“You’re probably getting jailed for something like this, I would imagine … I just can’t believe honestly that it’s happened.

“People saying he would never do anything like this … the fact of the matter is I’m watching this thing and he’s squared up to him as far as I can see, he’s looking at him and then just absolutely ruined Andrew’s mouth with his fist.”

Jones earlier adopted a more conciliatory tone, saying he didn’t expect there to be any lingering awkwardness should Gaff become a Demon.

“I wouldn’t have thought so,” Jones said.

“Obviously initially, but water would go under the bridge and guys would be able to mend and build relationships from that.

“Obviously (Angus) was disappointed by the whole thing, worried about his brother’s health and those kind of things.

Jones did not believe Gaff had intended to make contact with Andrew Brayshaw’s head but said such acts needed to be stamped out of the game.

The veteran Demon is in favour of the AFL introducing a send-off rule in extreme cases although AFL chief Gillon McLachlan remains opposed.

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Cycling star Gerrans to retire this year

Australian cycling great Simon Gerrans has announced his retirement from the sport.Australian cycling star Simon Gerrans is going out when he believes the time is right, befitting his hard-earned reputation as the most meticulous of planners.

The 38-year-old from the Victorian country town of Mansfield has announced he will end his racing career at the end of this season.

In an open letter published by the BMC team, Gerrans said his passion for the sport is not what it used to be.

“I am really happy to be able to walk away on my own terms and feel that the end of this season is the right time to transition to a new phase in my life,” he said.

Gerrans will bow out as one of Australian cycling’s all-time greats, his achievements stacking up comfortably against those of Cadel Evans, Anna Meares, Phil Anderson, Robbie McEwen and Kathy Watt.

“The process of meticulously preparing for my objectives and working hard in training is what I loved about being a professional cyclist,” Gerrans said.

“What made the biggest victories of my career the most rewarding was knowing that I perfected the preparation.

“During the best years of my racing career, those times when I got my preparation just right, I was competitive in the biggest races, against the best cyclists in the world.”

He is the only Australian to have won two of cycling’s monuments, the five top one-day classics – Gerrans was the first Australian to win Milan-Sanremo in 2012 and repeated the feat by taking out Liege-Bastogne-Liege in 2014.

Indeed, 2014 was the pinnacle of his career – a near-perfect season where he also won the Australian road title, Adelaide’s Tour Down Under, two major one-day races in Canada and finished runner-up at the world road championships.

But weeks after being named Australia’s 2014 cyclist of the year, Gerrans crashed while racing his mountain bike and it wiped out the start of his 2015 season.

Gerrans was plagued by crashes and injury throughout 2015 and while he would win the 2016 Tour Down Under, the all-rounder would never regain the peak form of 2014.

Gerrans is one of seven Australian riders to wear the yellow jersey as race leader in the Tour de France and he is the only rider to win the Tour Down Under four times.


* DOB: 16/5/80

* Professional debut: 2004

* 33 professional wins

* First Australian to win Milan-Sanremo (2012), first Australian to win Liege-Bastogne-Liege (2014)

* Wore Tour de France yellow jersey for two days in 2013 – one of seven Australian riders to lead the Tour

* Stage wins in cycling’s three Grand Tours – Tour de France (2008 and ’13), Giro d’Italia (2009) and Vuelta a Espana (’09)

* Two-time Olympian (2008, ’12)

* Only four-time winner of the Tour Down Under (2006, ’12, ’14, ’16)

* Herald Sun Tour winner 2005, ’06

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US sanctions against Iran back in effect

Iran says sanctions reimposed by the United States will endanger ordinary Iranians like these.The first set of US sanctions against Iran that had been eased under the landmark nuclear accord have gone back into effect under an executive order signed by President Donald Trump, targeting financial transactions that involve US dollars, Iran’s automotive sector, the purchase of commercial planes and metals including gold.

US sanctions targeting Iran’s oil sector and central bank are to be reimposed in early November.

The stiff economic sanctions ratchet up pressure on the Islamic Republic despite statements of deep dismay from European allies, three months after Trump pulled the US out of the international accord limiting Iran’s nuclear activities.

Trump declared the landmark 2015 agreement had been “horrible,” leaving the Iranian government flush with cash to fuel conflict in the Middle East.

Iran accused the US of reneging on the nuclear agreement, signed by the Obama administration, and of causing recent Iranian economic unrest. European allies said they “deeply regret” the US action.

As the sanctions loomed Monday, Trump said in a statement, “We urge all nations to take such steps to make clear that the Iranian regime faces a choice: either change its threatening, destabilising behaviour and reintegrate with the global economy, or continue down a path of economic isolation.”

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran still can rely on China and Russia to keep its oil and banking sectors afloat. Speaking in a television interview, he also demanded compensation for decades of American “intervention” in the Islamic Republic.

Months of uncertainty surrounding the sanctions have already further hurt Iran’s economy. The country’s rial currency has tanked, and the downturn has sparked protests across the nation.

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Japan uni confirms cutting women’s marks

A Japanese medical school deliberately cut women’s entrance test scores for several years, a panel of lawyers hired by the school to investigate the issue says, calling it a “very serious” instance of discrimination.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has made a priority of creating a society “where women can shine”, but women in Japan still face an uphill battle in employment and face hurdles returning to work after childbirth, which contributes to a falling birthrate.

The alterations were uncovered in an internal investigation of a graft accusation this spring regarding the entrance exam for Tokyo Medical University, sparking protests and widespread anger following media reports last week.

Lawyers investigating bribery accusations in the admission of the son of a senior education ministry official said they concluded that his score and that of several other men were boosted “unfairly” – some by as much as 49 points.

They also concluded that scores were manipulated to give men more points than women and thus hold down the number of women admitted.

“This incident is really regrettable – by deceptive recruitment procedures, they sought to delude the test takers, their families, school officials and society as a whole,” lawyer Kenji Nakai told a news conference on Tuesday.

“Factors suggesting very serious discrimination against women was also part of it,” added Nakai, one of the external lawyers hired by the university to investigate the incident.

The investigation showed the scores of men – including those reappearing after failing once or twice – were raised a certain number of points. Those of all women, and men who had failed the test at least three times, were not, however.

The lawyers said they did not know how many women had been affected, but it appeared that women’s test scores had been affected going back at least a decade.

Reports of the incident appeared at the start of August, setting off a furore in Japan, spurring women to recount their own experiences of discrimination on social media with the hashtag, “It’s okay to be angry about sexism.”

Some referred to the potential costs exacted in a rapidly ageing society.

“I’m 29 and will probably never get married,” said one poster.

“Women are pitied if they don’t, but Japanese women who are married and working and have kids end up sleeping less than anybody in the world. To now hear that even our skills are suppressed makes me shake with rage.”

Another said, “I ignored my parents, who said women don’t belong in academia, and got into the best university in Japan. But in job interviews I’m told ‘If you were a man, we’d hire you right away.’

“My enemy wasn’t my parents, but all society itself.”

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More bad injury news for GWS Giants

GWS have more injury woes with veterans Brett Deledio and Dawson Simpson likely out for the season.GWS veteran Brett Deledio and ruckman Dawson Simpson are likely to miss the rest of the AFL season, while small forward Toby Greene will be racing the clock to return before finals.

Deledio (calf), Simpson (ankle), Greene (hamstring) and Sam Taylor (hamstring) all suffered injuries during the Giants’ 105-point win over Carlton.

The expansion club’s biggest win of the year has proven their most costly.

GWS are yet to put a timeframe on Deledio’s latest calf setback, but fitness guru David Joyce admitted the club will be “pretty conservative” given the former Richmond star’s chronic calf problems.

“He’s had well documented issues with both calves in the past and unfortunately this just adds to that,” Joyce said.

Simpson will spend at least eight weeks on the sidelines because of a fractured ankle, meaning his 2018 campaign is over.

Greene and Taylor may not play again before September.

GWS are in ominous form, having won eight of their past nine games, but coach Leon Cameron is now forced to reshuffle his magnets yet again in what has been an injury-cursed campaign.

The Giants have also confirmed hard-running midfielder Tom Scully, who has been sidelined since round two because of a broken ankle, will play no further part in this season.

The good news for Cameron is that Tim Taranto (knee), Dylan Shiel (hamstring), Sam Reid (knee), Ryan Griffen (hamstring) are in the mix to return against Adelaide in Canberra on Saturday night.

The quartet is likely to be available, provided they get through the club’s main training session on Wednesday.

Deledio has managed a total of 16 games in his two seasons at the Giants.

The 31-year-old’s previous stint on the sidelines was almost three months. He hurt his hamstring in round six then tweaked his calf while recovering.

Greene, who also spent three months on the sidelines this year because of a foot injury, returned in round 17 and added plenty of potency, confidence and class in GWS’s forward line.

Taylor has impressed in defence during his maiden season, while Simpson’s absence will also create a giant hole for Cameron to fill.

Simpson has been a revelation since his round-14 recall, allowing ruckman Rory Lobb to spend more time in attack.

“He’s torn the ligaments on the inside of his ankle … because of the way the foot has fallen, he’s managed to fracture his ankle on the other side,” Joyce said.

“The big fella is in remarkable spirits considering what he’s been through.”

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Pettitt seeks netball fairytale ending

Susan Pettitt hopes to end her career on a high with the Giants eyeing off the Super Netball title.Retiring Diamond Susan Pettitt wants a fairytale ending to her stellar netball career and could enter the sport’s history books if she gets her wish.

Last month, 34-year-old Giants Super Netball star Pettitt announced her retirement from both domestic and international levels.

Pettitt’s career has spanned the three major netball competitions of the past 20 years.

One of Australia’s most consistent shooters, Pettitt has a chance to complete a unique Australian netball treble this month.

A winner with the Sydney Swifts in the Commonwealth Bank Trophy and the NSW Swifts in the ANZ Championship, Pettitt and her long standing teammate Kimberlee Green have the opportunity this year to become the first players to feature in title-winning teams in all three competitions.

By finishing minor premiers, the Giants have the chance to play all their finals matches at home.

“I would love to go out with a bang,” said Pettitt, who entered major domestic netball back in 2002.

“But not everyone gets that fairytale ending, so we’ve got to work on this week to try and get that home grand final.

“You put a lot of time and effort into training and preparation and things like that.

“To finish my 17 years as a winner would be pretty special.”

The Giants start their finals campaign on Saturday at home to West Coast Fever, the team they beat in the final round last Saturday.

They won the first three quarters but had their lead of 14 at the final change slashed to three by the end, as Fever outscored them 22-11 in the last term.

“I think in the final quarter we dropped off a bit and they came out firing knowing they had nothing to lose,” Pettitt said.

“We probably got a bit stationary with each other just trying to protect the lead and play it safe, as opposed to carrying on how we had the first three quarters.”

Pettitt, who has formed a formidable shooting partnership with England star Jo Harten, said her mindset hadn’t really changed since announcing her imminent departure from the game at elite level.

“I always had it in my mind that this was going to be my last year and to finally let people know, it was emotional,” Pettitt said.

“But it was also kind of a relief that people then knew that was it and you can have fun with it.”

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Rugby Coup: Hunter in line to host women’s World Cup

PARTY TIME: The Wallaroos celebrate scoring a try against Ireland at the 2017 World Cup. Picture: APThe NSW Government has pledged $5 million to boost Australia’s bid to host a historic Women’s Rugby World Cup in Newcastle and the Hunter in 2021.

Rugby Australia is vying to bring the women’s World Cup to the southern hemisphere for the first time in the event’s history and has chosen Newcastle and the iconic wine-making region on its doorstep as the proposed host city.

The Berejiklian Government will announce on Wednesday that it will commit $5 million to a women’s World Cup on Australian shores should Rugby Australia secure the winning votes at a World Rugby Council meeting later this year.

“We are committed to attracting world class sporting events not only for Sydney but regional NSW. Securing the 2021 Women’s Rugby World Cup puts women’s sport front and centre in achieving our 10 World Cups in 10 years strategy,”NSW Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres said.

“This bid aligns with our commitment to foster the growth of women’s sport and follows on fromthe success of the Women’s Rugby League World Cup 2017 and the 2017 Women’s Ashes Series inNSW.”

The commitment comes on the back of a $300,000 pledge from the Federal Government to help Rugby Australia prepare the bid itself, which is due on Friday.

About 360 athletes from 11 countries would descend on the Newcastle and Hunter regionfor the event, which is projected to bring with it a $23 million boost to the NSW economy.

Australia will be going up against close friends and rivals New Zealand to host the event, plus France, England and Wales.

RA is also bidding for the men’s World Cup in 2027.RA are also bidding for the 2027 men’s Rugby World Cup, the third biggest sporting event in the world behind the FIFA World Cup and the Olympics. The World Cup was last held in the southern hemisphere in 2011, when the All Blacks beat France to claim the William Webb Ellis trophy on home soil.

RA is hoping its mix of a world-class stadium, a vibrant city-by-the-sea location and the chance to provide a bona fide athletes’ village experience in the Hunter Valley will prove the trump card. It is understood bid organisers want to break the attendance record of 23,000 set at the Women’s World Cup final in France in 2014. Matches would be played at Maitland Sportsground and Newcastle Sportsground No.2, with the finals to be held at the 33,000-capacity McDonald Jones Stadium.

The funding pledge comes two days after RA chief executive Raelene Castle told the NSW Parliament’s stadiums inquiry that Allianz Stadium facilities were “embarrassing” in a time when women’s sport was growing in popularity.

“…We have just moved to a format where double-headers are going to be very important. Our women’s Wallaroos team and our Wallabies team playing, particularly in a Bledisloe Cup against our counterparts there [at Allianz Stadium] … is almost impossible because there is not enough change room flexibility,” Castle said.

“When we have the Sydney 7s we have to use the cricket ground facilities and transport teams back and forward because we do not have the facilities to rotate them through. The facilities at Allianz are, both from a back of house, player, high performance perspective, not even world-class. In fact they are unacceptable.”

The past three years have seen an explosion in opportunities for top-level female athletes in Australia, from the professionalisation of women’s sevens rugby, the advent of the AFLWand major improvements to competitions and pay in the more established women’s sports of netball, cricket and football. The NRL will also launch a four-team Women’s Premiership this year.

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Carly McBride murder: boyfriend Sayle Newson committed to stand trialVIDEO

ACCUSED: Sayle Kenneth Newson, now 41, is accused of murdering his girlfriend of about eight weeks, mother-of-two Carly Dawn McBride, 31, and dumping her body at Owens Gap, west of Scone, on September 30, 2014. He was committed for trial on Wednesday.

MUAY Thai kickboxer SayleKenneth Newson has been committed to stand trial for the murder of his girlfriend of about eight weeks, mother-of-two Carly Dawn McBride.

Mr Newson, represented by solicitor Mark Ramsland, appeared in Newcastle Local Court via audio visual link from jail on Wednesday where he was committed to face a trial for the murder of Ms McBride, 31.

He will next appear in Sydney Supreme Court on September 7 where he will be arraigned and formally plead not guilty to murder.

Mr Newson’s co-accused, James Anthony Cunneen, now 27, had the murder charge against him dropped on Wednesday.In its place, prosecutors laid a charge of accessory after the fact to murder.

Detectives had alleged Mr Cunneen engaged in a joint criminal enterprise with Mr Newson to murder Ms McBride, but now say her former boyfriend is solely responsible for her murder while Mr Cunneen helped dump Ms McBride’s body.

DPP trial advocate Kristy Mulley said it was hoped Mr Cunneen’s matter would ultimately be heard in the Supreme Court alongside Mr Newson.

However, while that application was being determined, Mr Cunneen was committed for trial to Newcastle District Court on August 23.

Outside court, Ms McBride’s parents,Lorraine Williams and Steve McBride, said while the development in Mr Cunneen’s matter had come as a surprise, they were pleased the matter was moving swiftly and praised detectives and the DPP for their tireless work.

Carly McBride’s parents, Lorraine Williams and Steve McBride, speak outside Newcastle courthouse after Sayle Newson was committed for trial and James Cunneen had the murder charge against him dropped. (Turn phone sideways) pic.twitter南京夜网/4Fq0ZiHIdR

— Sam Rigney (@SamRigney) August 8, 2018For the full story about the circumstantial case against Sayle Kenneth Newson read tomorrow’s Newcastle Herald.

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Soccer: Jets edge minnows to break FFA Cup duck

GOAL: Nikolai Topor-Stanley pokes hoe the winner for the Jets. Picture: AAPIT was far from convincing, but the Newcastle Jets are through to the FFA Cup round of 16 for the first time after they edged past minnows GoldCoast Knights at Cbus Stadium on Tuesday night.

They will meet Melbourne City in Melbourne in the next round. The Hunter’s other representative will be at home to Victorian powerhouse Bentleigh Greens.

A Nikolai Topor-Stanley toe-poke from a goalmouth scramble in the 11thminute proved the difference on the Gold Coast.

The home side played above their third-tier status and threatened numerous times on the break.

And if not for sharp work by Jets keeper Glen Moss, the visitors would have been looking at another early Cup exit, following a 1-0 defeat to Adelaide last year and losses to Melbourne Victory and Perth (twice).

Travel-weary after arriving in the Gold Coast on Monday from Spain where they had played three games in six days, the Jets lacked their normal penetration and speed in transition.

The Knights sat deep in a 4-1-4 formation and hit on the counter attack.

Soccer: Jets edge minnows to break FFA Cup duck TweetFacebook Newcastle Jets 1 Gold Coast Knights 0Pictures: AAPThe Jets had 61 per cent of possession, but Moss was the busier of the keepers.

Dimi Petratos tested Knights shotstopper Josh Langdon a couple of times from distance, while his young brother Kosta and replacement Angus Thurgate struck the woodwork.

The Jets were without suspended striker Roy O’Donovan, captain Nigel Boogaard and Ronny Vargas.

Steve Ugarkovic got through a power of work, Lachlan Jackson was strong in the air and Dimi Petratos pushed and probed.

The home sidenearly stunned the Jets in the fourth minute when Morgan Saunders burst into the box and forced a brilliant save fromMoss.

The Kiwi also had to be alert to tip a thunderbolt from Justyn McKay over the bar in the 35th.

For the Jets, Kosta Petratos hit the crossbar with a stinging shot from the edge of the box in the 24thminute andDimi had a dipping freekick tipped over the bar in the 43rd.

In other matches, Victorian Premier League club Bentleigh Greens upset Wellington Phoenix 1-0,Devonport accounted for Northcote City 3-1, Wanderers pipped Darwin Hellenic,Melbourne Victory accounted for Perth Glory 1-0 and Melbourne City beat Brisbane Roar 1-0 in extra-time.

FFA Cup round of 16: Melbourne City v Jets, Avondale v Devonport, Adelaide Comets v Heidelberg, Broadmeadow Magic v Bentleigh Greens, Apia Leichhardt v Melbourne Victory, Lions (Brisbane) v Adelaide United, Cairns v Sydney FC, Bonnyrigg v Western Sydney.

Meanwhile, Central Coast have confirmed that sprint kingUsain Bolt will link with the club this month.

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Going gaga for Queen

WILL THEY DO THE FANDANGO?: Michael King, as Buddy, Brett Edman (Brit) and Nicolette Black (Oz) in We Will Rock You. Photo: Luke KynastonWRITER Ben Elton’s talents as a comedian are evident in the laugh-raising script he put together for We Will Rock You, a lively musical which uses the songs of British rock band Queen to tell a future-set story about people living in a world where live music is banned and has been replaced by computer-generated music.

While that might seem to be an unlikely subject for a musical, We Will Rock You has been a hit worldwide, with its inaugural London production running for 12 years after it opened in 2002 and more than 16 million people seeing it in global professional productions. And, with staging rights being offered to community theatre companies since late 2017, the musical is wowing more full houses.

Newcastle’s Metropolitan Players is staging the show at the Civic Theatre from August 22 to September 1, and its reputation led to many people eagerly auditioning. The cast of 40 includes well-known performers and rising young players. Three-times CONDA winning director Julie Black has been impressed by their work at rehearsals.

We Will Rock You makes clever use of the Queen songs. Killer Queen, for example, is delivered by a character bearing that name who rules planet Earth, renamed iPlanet, 300 years into the future. Killer Queen is the head of an organisation, Globalsoft Corporation, which forces everyone to conform to its demands. The planet’s children, known as Ga Ga Kids, as well as the adults, watch the same movies, listen to computer-generated music, wear the same clothes and have the same thoughts and opinions, and sing about their lives in Radio Ga Ga. But there is disquiet, with one male student, Galileo, who is just finishing his course, declaring to his classmates, in a song, I Want to Break Free. And he, and a similarly troubled girl, Scaramouche, become involved with people known as Bohemians, who want to restore real music.

Wendy Ratcliffe, who plays Killer Queen, notes that she let a computer program take over her body and is now trying to remake the world in her image by forcing other people to have a similar transformation. Dain Watts, as her police commander, Khashoggi, sees him as a man obsessed with power, and hopes that one day he will be the top dog.

Bec Kynaston, is the sarcastic and cynical Scaramouche (whose name is in the lyrics of the Queen song Bohemian Rhapsody), and points to her sarcasm being a defence measure, and that she wants to fall in love.

We Will Rock You has performances in its two-week season on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 8pm, Saturday matinees at 2pm, and a 2pm show on August 26. Tickets $66.30, concession, student, junior $56.10.

THEATRE REVIEWNewcastle University Revue: Stranger DegreesBrennan Room, University Callaghan CampusThursday at 12pm and 6pm (final shows)WHILE there is some loss of time in the sketches in this revue, no real time is lost in its staging, with 25 amusing sequences and songs in a 65-minute running time. And while the 13 performers look largely at university issues, outsiders will also find themselves laughing almost continually.

Sketches on various subjects are interspersed with segments of stories that are spread across the running time. One series, Chosen Ones, has two university students trying to cope with issues at the institution after it has been taken over by a strange team led by a horsefaced creature called Hippocrampus. The problem of finding car parks at the university venues is dismissed as they approach what is referred to as “the tower of a thousand parking spaces” and they are later transformed into talking cars called Manuel and Otto. Another series of short scenes has a character called Law Abiding Citizen Man trying to do the right thing when faced by problems such as parking in the light rail area. And the Seven Deadly Sins appear in a sketch as members of a marketing company.

O’Loughlin’s Gap YearCOMEDIAN Fiona O’Loughlin, who won this year’s Australian television series I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!, will present her popular new show, Gap Year, at Newcastle City Hal on Friday, at 8pm. The show will look at her recent experiences, including her treatment in a medical institution. Tickets, $39, student/concession $36, can be bought through Ticketek.

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