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Archive for May, 2019

Tigers upbeat Rance will stay in AFL

Alex Rance will have unrestricted AFL free agency, meaning the Richmond defender is in an ideal bargaining position if he decides to test the market.


Rance had decided earlier this year to put off contract talks until the season is over, but the Tigers remain confident he will stay.

His unrestricted status was the most notable feature of the AFL free agency list, published on Tuesday afternoon.

A media report last week stated Fremantle were prepared to make a big offer to Rance, originally from WA and who made his first All-Australian team last year.

It was well known Rance would qualify for free agency later this year, but not that it would be unrestricted.

While a restricted free agent’s club can match any offers made to him, an unrestricted free agent can go where he wants.

“We were aware of Alex’s free agency status, and whether he’s restricted or unrestricted, it doesn’t change how the club approaches his contract,” said Richmond football manager Dan Richardson.

“He’s an important player for us, we’re in regular discussions with his management and understand Alex is very happy at Richmond.”

Richmond have reason to be upbeat about Rance staying.

There has been none of the rampant speculation that marked the months before Gary Ablett’s high-profile move from Geelong to Gold Coast in 2010.

There was similarly plenty of talk surrounding Lance Franklin (Hawthorn to Sydney), Brendon Goddard (St Kilda to Essendon) and James Frawley (Melbourne to Hawthorn) before their bumper free agency deals.

This year, there is a widespread belief Adelaide star Patrick Dangerfield, who is a restricted free agent, will try to move to Geelong at the end of the season.

Richmond captain Trent Cotchin and star onballer Dustin Martin have re-signed in the past few months, leaving Rance as the highest-profile Tiger yet to commit to a new deal.

(Transcript from World News Radio)


As Australia gears up for next month’s centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli, Turks have been commemorating the 100th year since their naval victory against the Allies.



As Kristina Kukolja reports, the Turks remember what they call the Battle of Canakkale as a great national victory.


(Click on audio tab to listen to this item)


The Last Post echoes over sacred land on the Gallipoli Peninsula.


Life has stopped on this day in Canakkale – the city that houses battlegrounds of the First World War.


It’s been 100 years since Turkish soldiers achieved the impossible – defending their land against the enormous armament of Allied forces that laid siege on Canakkale.


Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu addressed the large crowd gathered in the city’s main square.


He says the Battle of Canakkale resonates with every Turkish citizen.


(through translation) “There is not a single person of our great people who can’t trace a connection back to the Canakkale battle 100 years ago. There is a fallen soldier from Canakkale in each of our families. In each of our memories, there are the scars of Canakkale.”


The Allies’ plan was to capture Istanbul, the then capital of the Ottoman Empire.


For this, they had to first cross the Dardanelles – the channel that connects the Aegean Sea to the Sea of Marmara.


If warships could make their way through the channel, Istanbul would be captured.


The already-shrinking Ottoman Empire would then crumble indefinitely.


But it wasn’t to be.


Turks had laid mines in the Dardanelles.


Despite the Allies advancing well through the channel on the morning of March 18, the afternoon was disastrous.


Three British war ships were sunk, and the fourth severely damaged.


Around 700 Britons were killed.


Turks suffered 118 casualties from British fire.


Turkish historian Hatice Basarin, a Gallipoli expert, says the battle remains of profound importance for Turks.


“For Turkey, Canakkale means the start of a process that caused the final stage of the crumbling of the Ottoman Empire but also it’s the first step towards becoming an independent republic, a sovereign state. So, it’s the very beginning of the end, as well as the beginning of the very beginning of the Turkish Republic today. And as such, it’s rather important, it’s a landmark event, and I suppose it will remain so.”


The March 18 victory for the Turks marks the end of months of the Allied attempts to cross the channel.


One of the Turks seen as a hero in the naval battle is Corporal Seyit.


In the afternoon of March 18, 1915, all the redoubts went silent.


Even the mines weren’t doing so well.


There was an only one cannon standing in the Mecidiye Redoubt.


Its cannonball crane was broken.


Corporal Seyit lifted the 276 kilogram shell and fed it into the cannon, inflicting a huge wound on Britian’s Ocean battleship.


Seyit’s great grandson, Muhammed Ikar, works at the museum built for the Corporal in Havran, a small town in Turkey’s west.


He says his great grandfather’s story is one of bravery.


(through translation) “During the battle, Seyit said this is where hope is lost. But I’ll lift this shell by whispering a prayer I learned from my mother. There’s no one around except his friend Ali from Nigde. He recites the prayer, places his palms on the soil three times, and lifts the shell.”


When the naval operation failed, the Gallipoli Peninsula was invaded by land on the morning of April 25, Anzac Day.


Turkey’s attention now turns to the large-scale ceremonies planned for that day.


Australian Consul to Canakkale, Nicholas Sergi, says, like Australia, the battle was an important part of Turkey’s foundation narrative.


“This was the campaign where Mustafa Kemal Ataturk drew a line in the sand and became the colossal figure of history who went on to become the founding president of the Turkish republic and the modern Turkish state. So in a very real sense, this campaign is inextricably linked to each country’s sense of itself and the foundation of narrative of each country, as I said.”


The world champions have stormed back to imperious form in the World Cup and are unbeaten going into the last four showdown at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), where they will be out to end Australia’s bid for a fifth world crown.


From the start of December to early February, however, Australia simply dominated India, winning two and drawing two tests and then beating them comfortably in a tri-series match and World Cup warm-up.

“I think we’ll have a little edge over them with a few scars from the matches throughout the Summer, they didn’t beat us once,” Smith told reporters at the SCG on Tuesday.

“So I think that’s going to be playing on their mind a little bit.

“They’ve been here for a long time now, they’ve been able to get accustomed to the conditions, the bounce we’ve got here compared to back in India.

“Other than that, I just think we need to do what we can do well, to control that. If we do, I’ve no doubt it’s going to be a competitive game for us.”

Smith’s own spectacular form with the bat played a large part in Australia’s supremacy in the test arena, the 25-year-old scoring centuries in all four matches and 769 runs in total.

He has been less prolific in the World Cup, scoring 241 runs in six matches, but showed great maturity in his innings of 65 to help Australia to victory in the quarter-final against Pakistan.

Smith feels his elevation up the batting order to number three works well for the team, especially against spin-reliant sides from the sub-continent.

“I have always said I enjoy batting at three and with (Michael Clarke) at four we just like to take our time and knock the ball around,” he added.

“That will work well against India with their spinners bowling quite a few overs in the middle.

“We can knock them around and give our power-hitters the last 15 overs to come in and do what they did against Sri Lanka, I think that is our blue print to ideally perform.”

(Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

What is Tuberculosis?It is an infectious disease caused by the spread Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a bacteria that mainly affects the lungs.


Tuberculosis is the second most fatal disease in the world, behind HIV/AIDS.There are two states of the disease:Infection – when someone has the disease but it does not develop into something more seriousDisease – when the infection develops into a disease, which can happen anytime.Around 10 per cent of those who become infected will develop the disease How widespread is the disease?According to 2013 World Health Organization figures, 9 million people fell ill and 1.5 million died from tuberculosis. Over 95 per cent of cases were in developing countries.80 per cent of the disease is spread between 22 countries.In 2013, the South East Asia and Western Pacific Region accounted for 56 per cent of TB cases worldwide.In the same year, Africa had the highest ratio of infection people, with 281 people per 100,000 infected with the disease.In Australia, there are approximately 1,300 new cases of tuberculosis diagnosed each year


How is it transmitted?It is spread from person to person through tiny airborne droplets, such as if someone with the active untreated disease coughs or sneezes and those particles are passed into the mouths of others.Only those who progress to the second stage can transmit the disease.


How is tuberculosis treated?The treatment for tuberculosis is four antimicrobial drugs and frequent chest x-rays to monitor the disease.The patient must be in isolation until they are no longer considered infectious.For those who are only infected, they can undergo preventative treatment for the second stage.There is also a vaccine available for tuberculosis.


Who is at risk of the disease?Anyone who has had contact with someone with the disease.Those diagnosed with cancer or HIV/AIDS.Those with a chronic illness that affects the immune system.Those taking medications that affect the immune system.


What is World Tuberculosis Day?An international day to recognise the fight against tuberculosis and to gain greater support against the disease.The 24th of March was chosen because it is the date that Dr Robert Koch discovered the bacteria that causes tuberculosis.Dr Robert Koch was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine for this discovery.


Sources: World Health Organization, The Department of Health, NSW Health

The head of the corporate regulator says his organisation is under funded and penalties for corporate crime are as light as a feather.


Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) chairman Greg Medcraft has confirmed there will be another hit to to its funding in the 2015/16 federal budget.

“It’s already locked in, the forward estimates are showing a $15.8 million dollar cut to us,” he told ASIC’s annual forum.

The May 2014 budget flagged a cut of $120 million to ASIC’s funding over four years.

“It’s frankly quite clear that we’re very thinly resourced across the board and everyone from the day I first started the job has been saying ‘you don’t have enough money’,” Mr Medcraft said.

The head of the Abbott government’s financial system inquiry David Murray also slammed the cuts to the corporate regulator.

“You can’t do this and have a good police force, you just can’t do that,” he told the forum.

“You have to take what you’re asking ASIC to do and do an expert study of what is needed to do that job.”

The pair also bemoaned the weak penalties imposed for crimes exposed by ASIC.

Former National Australia Bank employee Lukas James Kamay was last week sentenced to seven years in jail for using market sensitive Australian Bureau of Statistics data to net $7 million.

“To us the penalty regime in ASIC is like being hit by a lettuce leaf, it’s just not strong enough,” Mr Murray said.

“The combination of a stronger penalty regime and the preparedness to enforce it, that’s a cultural issue, it’s a resourcing issue and it is underfunded, there is no question it is underfunded.”

Mr Medcraft said one of the things that came out of the financial system inquiry was that Australians want ASIC to be a more proactive and interventionist regulator.

“Actually a leaf is too heavy, it’s probably more a feather,” he said.

“Every time I look at penalties I just throw my hands up in horror at just how inadequate they are.”