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O’Brien stars in McDonald Lawson’s shock upset over Paragon in minor semi-final

STAND OUT: McDonald Lawson’s Jamie O’Brien shows this ball he full face of the bat during his match-winning knock of 83 at Cahill Park on Saturday. Photo: Col Boyd 070315 FirstGrade 596McDonald Lawson all-rounder Jamie O’Brien has starred in his side’s shock upset of Paragon Hotel in their Mudgee District Cricket minor semi-final.
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Bulls veteran Greg Parker admitted before the clash his side was a “one-man band” referring to O’Brien, with his words proving prophetic in their 45-run victory at Cahill Park on Saturday.

O’Brien crafted a well-made 83 with the bat to be the rock of his side’s innings as others chipped in and held up an end on the way to a total of 140.

The all-rounder continued to show his worth to the side as he took 4-26 off 10 overs with the ball to help bundle Paragon out of the running for the 2014-15 first division title.

Parker said O’Brien amazingly continued to step up to the pressure of being the focal point of the side even in a must-win game.

“He’s one of the best cricketers in the town so it was great he was able to play well again for us,” Parker said.

“He scored pretty freely and he was able to get some pretty good support from the others who batted with him

“But we fielded pretty well when it was our time as well, so that kept the pressure up.”

With O’Brien setting the tone for his side at one end, Paragon off-spinner David Edwards worked wonders with the ball to wrap up the tail of the innings, finishing with 4-9 off three to ensure his side were not chasing even more.

McDonald Lawson got the start they were after when they secured their first wicket with just 15 on the board before Will Lindsay and skipper Steve Knight started to right the innings.

“I really didn’t think 140 was going to be enough,” Parker admitted.

“Steve and Will started to put on a pretty good partnership at the top of their order and I started to think it might have been slipping away from us a little then.

“But when we got them out, they were always going to be the key wickets, but we had to not get ahead of ourselves too much.”

Both Lindsay (32) and Knight (21) became victims of O’Brien as he broke through to stop the promising partnership at 46.

Wickets began to tumble with Paragon losing 8-28 as their chances of victory evaporated in front of their eyes with Seton Croake providing O’Brien with excellent support with the ball to finish with 3-7 off 10 overs with four maidens.

Paragon captain Knight was left to wonder what might have been from season 2014-15 but admitted his side did not make the most of the chances it created in its last game for the season.

“Credit to Jamie for how he batted for them, but we dropped him four times,” Knight said.

“Catches win matches, and I won’t lie it was a pretty disappointing finish for our season but we didn’t capitalise as well as we should have.”

Despite his side being bundled out in the first round of the finals, Knight said there were still plenty of positives for the side moving forward, the bowling of Guy Hammond being one.

“We’re a side that was put together pretty quickly at the start of the season so Will (Lindsay) and I got things going and I have not been able to question the effort from the guys all season,” he said.

“But a couple of results didn’t go our way, but I think most of the guys will be keen to have another crack next season.”

Knight warned Lawson and Woolpack to take the Bull’s lightly at their own peril, saying their disciplined bowling attack has the potential to take them to a shock grand final victory.

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Dragon Mitch Rein keen on match-up with Smith

Mitch Rein is relishing the chance to play a full game in the key role against the Melbourne Storm in the 2015 season opener. Picture: ROBERT PEET
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Dragons hooker Mitch Rein hopes to use a first-up test against the game’s best No 9 – Melbourne skipper Cameron Smith – to prove his days of sharing dummy-half duties are over.

Smith has been named to make an early return from an ankle injury to lead the Storm in their season-opener against the Dragons at Jubilee Oval on Monday night despite a limited preseason due to off-season surgery.

Rein was expected to again share dummy-half duties this year with veteran recruit Heath L’Estrange but, with four forwards named on the bench, Rein will need to go the distance against the Storm.

It won’t be the first time he’s done the journey and the 24-year-old is keen to make it a regular occurrence in 2015.

“In the last couple of years I’ve done 80 minutes a handful of times,” Rein said.

“With age comes a bit more experience. After sharing the hooking role in the past, I’d try to play 80-minute games the same way – getting carried away, trying to get in every tackle and every run.

“You just can’t sustain that amount of energy for 80 minutes so it’s just about being smart and managing yourself on the field if you want to play that full game.

“The more practice you get at it the better you get at being an 80-minute player.”

Smith was expected to be out of action until round four after carrying the ankle injury sustained during last year’s Origin series through the NRL season and Four Nations before undergoing surgery. It’s limited his time on the training paddock but Rein doesn’t think it will limit his impact on Monday.

“It doesn’t matter how much training or preparation he’s done in the off-season, he’s had ankle surgery and all the rest, but he always performs,” Rein said.

“He’s the best hooker in the world and we all know how good he is and how he controls the game so we’ll have our hands full.”

Coach Paul McGregor endorsed Rein as the club’s fittest man this week and said his early season form will have a big bearing on the Dragons’ style of play in the opening weeks.

“A lot will depend on Mitch’s form there in the next couple of weeks,” McGregor said.

“You take it one week at a time and you don’t know what you’re going to need week three or week four but for right now Mitch [playing 80 minutes] is what we need.”

Melbourne have won their past 10 season-openers and McGregor isn’t buying talk that they are a side on the wane.

“Everyone’s writing them off and saying they won’t make the eight but I find that very hard to believe.”

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Lawson Park thrash Woolpack to book berth in Mudgee and District Grand Final

TOP SHOT: Lawson Park’s Darren Snyder slashes this short ball through point on his way to top-scoring during his side’s 153-run victory over Woolpack Hotel at Victoria Park on Saturday. Photo: Col Boyd 070315/FirstGrade/0631
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Lawson Park have booked a berth in the Mudgee and District Cricket first division grand final after thumping Woolpack Hotel by 153 runs at Victoria Park on Saturday.

The final margin of victory was overshadowed somewhat by the lack of playing numbers for Woolpack in the qualifying semi-final, with only nine players available for selection.

Matters only became worse for captain Jacob Edmonds and his side when they lost Wade Barrow for the game, and most likely the rest of the season, after suffering a hamstring tear while fielding.

As a result, a ruthless Lawson Pack attack ripped through their opponents to dismiss them for 53 leaving Edmonds scratching his head, saying there was not many positive aspects he could take away from the game.

“We had nine in the end but when we finished with eight because Wade injured himself just as he set off to chase down a ball,” Edmonds said.

“So it was pretty disappointing really in the end, we bowled alright but it was pretty embarrassing really with how many people were there.

“It just shows how important the games are during the year because if things turned out differently we could have finished third and we might be out of the finals if that was the case.”

When asked he if could leave players out next week as a means of punishment, the Woolpack skipper said he would try to unite his squad so their season does not plunge into further depths.

“I’d love to spit the dummy, but I will have to swallow some pride and I am sure the guys that were there last weekend will be back (in the team) and they’ll have a crack,” he said.

Edmonds was the only Woolpack batsman to make it into double figures as his side attempted to chase down the 207 needed for victory and earn themselves a week off ahead of the grand final.

However, Lawson’s Jamie Golden continued the misery for his opponents collecting 5-17 off eight to help force them into a sudden-death clash against McDonald Lawson next weekend.

Earlier in the game, Lawson Hotel were able to put on a several handy partnerships, and while no batsman was able to raise his bat for a half-century the consistent effort down the order was crucial.

“The key for us was the partnerships that we managed to build throughout the innings and they all added up to a pretty big score for us and we thought about 200 was a pretty safe score to defend,” Synder said.

“We were confident with our bowling attack that we’d be able to defend that score, but Woolpack to their credit they bowled pretty tightly at times.”

Snyder, who top-scored for Lawson with 46, said if his side plays Woolpack again this season they expect them to be burning to make amends for their below-par effort on Saturday.

Michael Ford (45) and Cameron Cox (28) chipped in for the victors as Woolpack spread the spoils around in their attack, but were unable to stop the flow of runs with less than a full team in the field.

With many players in the Lawson Park side tasting defeat in last year’s decider under a different banner they are keen to cap an excellent 2014-15 season with the trophy with Snyder saying none of his side are taking anything for granted as they await their grand final opponents.

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Tassie role is ideal for Hawks

HAWTHORN does not need to hold its community camp in Tasmania, chief executive Stuart Fox says, but the club believes it is the best way to maximise its partnership with the state.
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Fox was speaking a few days after the club wrapped up its 13th community camp in the state, which followed its NAB Challenge match against Collingwood.

The club’s deal with the government states that there must be some involvement at the community level, however it does not say it has to be as a camp.

Fox said it was entirely up to the club how long it stayed in the state and how many activities it took part in.

‘‘We take the community camp quite seriously in terms of our responsibility, and the evidence of that is that we still do three full days of community work on camp, when most clubs are now doing one or two days,’’ Fox said.

‘‘When we plan it out at the start of the year, we try to better what we did the previous year, and with that comes a huge logistical program of trying to get an entire team across a state.

‘‘That presents challenges, as you have training, diets and everything that goes with looking after elite athletes when you are rolling the program out, but we do take it seriously and this year was evident of that.’’

Fox admitted the club could easily take the camp to other areas of the country, but said Tasmania was the most appropriate.

‘‘This year we tried to touch the whole state and we ask the boys to do it and they always do it with little complaint and they are happy to do it, as they do feel that responsibility to the community.

‘‘Most of the boys come up to us and tell us their interest when it comes to community work, and we set them up to do what they are passionate about.

‘‘The feedback I get is that it is certainly not a chore and the boys really do enjoy it.’’

Fox also said that they camp was a great way to introduce the first-year players to the state and help them understand its importance to the Hawks.

From a player’s point of view, premiership skipper Luke Hodge says he and his teammates took the responsibility that comes with the camp seriously.

‘‘I’m a country boy myself and I see that in the Tassie people that when you don’t see many footballers or get many clinics, the kids do take notice of what you say and are really appreciative of you going down there.

‘‘The one thing you do love as a footballer player is when you do go to a community like Tasmania and they are all rapt to see you and really listen to you speak.

‘‘Our footy club is huge in making sure we appreciate our fans and what they do for us players.’’

Josh Gibson with Oliver Greatbatch, 4, and Lucy Greatbatch, 7, of Launceston, at the Starlight Foundation AMF bowling day at Kings Meadows. Picture: GEOFF ROBSON

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Hospital, Pioneer House share record tally for Mudgee Classic Golf Day

It was not only the ceremonial cheques that were bigger than usual when proceeds of the 2015 Moolarben Coal Celebrity Golf Classic were presented last week.This year’s Classic has raised the highest amount in the event’s history.
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The event raised $23,000 profit after expenses, which was divided between Mudgee District Hospital and Pioneer House, who both received $10,000, with $1000 going to the Mudgee Men’s Shed for running the barbecue, and $2000 going to Mudgee Junior Golf.

Ken Sutcliffe and Peter Sterling are the major supporters and drivers behind the event. Mr Sutcliffe stipulates that the event must support Pioneer House and Mr Sterling that Mudgee Hospital is the other beneficiary.

Money raised must be used in the Mudgee region.

Pioneer House CEO/Director of Nursing Fran Trisley said they will use their share to directly benefit residents and improve their quality of life.

Mudgee/Gulgong Health Services Manager Judith Ford said their donation will go to a foundation to fund further training of staff and expand and improve certain services.

Event Founder Peter Mayson said that organisers are not going to rest on their laurels after the most successful staging of the day, particularly because they’re closing in on another milestone.

“It was the highest amount we’ve ever raised, so that’s our benchmark into the future and we’re going to try and beat it each year,” he said.

“Our goal for next year is to bring our total to $100,000 for the history of the event.

“Next year will be our fifth year and we need to raise about $18,000 to get to our target.”

Mr Mayson said that the support of title sponsors Moolarben Coal was a huge part of the success of the 2015 event because they helped take care of a lot of expenses.

Moolarben Community Relations Co-ordinator Scott Fittler said that this was the first year of a multi-year agreement sponsoring the event which they were all to happy to support.

“We’re very interested in supporting local, not-for-profit events which benefit the community and this one has already been successful at doing just that,” he said.

The event’s gold sponsors were The Property Shop, Ross Granata Motors, TLE, Mudgee Golf Club, and Accident & Health International.

Mr Mayson thanked volunteer event organisers Genevieve Palmer and Mary Sparkes and Mr Sutcliffe passed on his acknowledgement of the work of Mr Mayson.

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Ulan West helping to get Mudgee Public School students on the moe

Mudgee Public School Special Education Unit’s innovative bike program, supported by the operators at Glencore’s Ulan West, is an example of how many spokes on a wheel, working together, roll top ideas into action.
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The catalyst for this program is Mudgee’s Ready Set Go inclusive therapy program.

It is a community driven program whose main focus is to help children with therapy needs to be more included in their community whether that is at home, in early childhood settings, at school, on the sports field or in any leisure activity that interests them.

Jane Roberts from Smart Move Physiotherapy as part of Ready Set Go, said the program responded to the children and their families’ requests to have a fun leisure activity that they could enjoy together safely.

“Bike riding offers obvious physical benefits and the opportunity it also provides as a platform for life skills, social skills and general academic education is enormous,” she said.

“Mudgee Public School’s enthusiasm to provide this bike education as well as Mudgee’s increasing investment in safe bike paths has meant the option for these children to ride together with their family and friends is on track.”

Glencore’s Ulan Coal operations put their energy and expertise into gear to help make the program a reality.

Ben Gregory, an operator at Glencore’s Ulan West Operations, has worked with personnel at Ulan Coal Mine to purchase the modified bikes and will help to set up the school bike course.

Hi Vis have developed mini road signs especially for the bike program and supplied the witches hats for training, making this a combined community success.

“The expertise of Mudgee Cycling’s Carl Holleman is very much appreciated as he maps out a bike program for the children’s’ enjoyment and education,” Ms Roberts added.

“Riding a bike is a simple pleasure for many, a significant challenge for some, with enormous benefits for all.”

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Remember the club’s grand history

IT’S hard to see the damagefrom Bendigo Spirit coachBernie Harrower’s comments on the club board in the wake of Sunday’s WNBL grand final loss being repaired.
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The comments were strong,pointed andfinally made public a rift which has been simmering below the surface for a while now.

It’s unfortunate such issues were brought to light so soon after the finish of the grand final – perhaps later in the week would have been a better time but that’s history now.

Clearly, Bernie Harrower and the Bendigo Spirit board have fallen out and from this point it’s hard to see both surviving.

While it’s up to both parties to sort that out we can only hope everyone respects what’s most important – the rich club history built through the past eight years and the glory times of the past three seasons.

This is a great Bendigo story and it’s vital the role everyone has played in writing its chapters is recognised and reputations are not diminished by what’s sure to be an emotional and heated week.

At the end of the day it’s the club that must prosper above all else.

Let’s hope everyone remembers that – regardless of the outcomes.

Rod Case, editor

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A-mazing tribute to the Anzacs

A CHANCE to get lost within Anzac history can be found in a crop at Hagley.
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The Rupertswood Maze saw carloads of people, map in hand, racing through the sorghum field throughout the weekend.

Among those to explore the maze was Brooks High School teacher Sarah Shimmin and her family.

Mrs Shimmin said the living creation, sculpted into the shape of a poppy, was an ideal chance to value-add to her teaching.

‘‘I thought I would come out and have a look,’’ she said.

‘‘The centenary of Anzac is part of the grade 9 curriculum … it’s a chance to have a day out and do some research on the side.’’

A series of 10 information posts are planted throughout the maze, each giving participants information about the Anzacs and clues for a secret word.

Maze owner Anna Clark said she had been surprised by the amount of exposure their creation received.

Mrs Clark said the maze not only gained attention from Australian media, but its image was being broadcast across the world.

‘‘BBC World used it for their front page on the web, since then it’s gone everywhere,’’ she said.

Mrs Clark said she believed it was picked up due to international interest about the Anzac centenary and was featured in other countries such as Singapore and Israel.

For more information about the maze, go to www.ruperts

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Trevor Shimmin, Emily Lewandowski-Timson, Charlotte Masters, 2, and Sarah Shimmin, all of Launceston, enjoy the Rupertswood Farm Maze. Picture: MARK JESSER

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Charity money promised by ‘inspirational’ health app developer Belle Gibson not handed over

A social media entrepreneur who shot to fame off the back of her cancer survival story failed to hand over thousands of fundraising dollars promised to charities. 
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Melbourne businesswoman Belle Gibson, founder of food and health app The Whole Pantry, solicited donations from a loyal following of 200,000 people in the name of at least five charities that have no record of receiving money from her.

The 26-year-old’s popular recipe app, which costs $3.79, has been downloaded 300,000 times and is being developed as one of the first apps for the soon-to-be-released Apple Watch. Her debut cook book The Whole Pantry, published by Penguin in Australia last year, will soon hit shelves in the United States and Britain.

Immediately after questions from Fairfax Media late last week about her fundraising activities, Ms Gibson promised donations to some organisations that have not been paid since she hosted a fundraiser in 2013. She blamed her company’s “cash flow” problems for the 15-month delay.

Ms Gibson has publicly claimed to have given away 25 per cent of her company’s profits and in her book writes that “a large part of everything” earned is donated to various causes. Last year she said $300,000 had already been given to charity but now says these contributions were never made because app sales were not as high as forecast. Ms Gibson was unable to provide a list of organisations that have received money or say how much has been donated to date.

She launched her business and her app off her story as a young mother diagnosed with terminal brain cancer who rejected conventional medicine and is healing herself with a healthy diet and lifestyle.

The popular app developer gives nutrition advice online and says she has helped countless people dump conventional medicine to treat ailments including cancer.

Ms Gibson has run two campaigns purporting to raise money for five charities, but Fairfax Media has confirmed that none has a record of receiving a donation. Four of the organisations, including Melbourne’s Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, had no knowledge fundraising drives had taken place.

In the first fundraiser, in December 2013, Ms Gibson hosted an exclusive event in St Kilda to raise money for three charities.

Melbourne-based charity One Girl, which runs education programs in Sierra Leone, was promoted as one of the fundraiser’s beneficiaries but said repeated attempts to contact The Whole Pantry about the promised donation more than a year after the event had been unsuccessful. Chief executive Chantelle Baxter confirmed Ms Gibson donated $1000 following questions from Fairfax Media.

In May, Ms Gibson ran a second fundraiser pledging to donate proceeds from app sales to two charities working in south-east Asia, in which she praised her supporters for raising a further $5000 for the cause.

“Don’t forget – for every app downloaded until this Sunday, your purchase goes straight to The 2h Project and the Bumi Sehat Foundation to prevent maternal and infant deaths,” she said on social media during the campaign.

Ms Gibson now says the week-long campaign raised $2800 and that she felt it was not enough to divide between the two organisations. The money, she claimed, was “allocated” to the Bumi Sehat Foundation.

A spokeswoman for the Bumi Sehat Foundation said: “I can say with confidence that we have never received a donation from Belle Gibson”.

Neither Ms Gibson nor her companies are lawfully registered as fundraisers. Consumer Affairs Victoria said organisations found to misrepresent fundraising events could be in breach of criminal and consumer law. Companies face penalties of up to $28,000, while individuals risk 12 months’ jail and a $14,000 fine.

Ms Gibson said money from the two fundraisers “sat with the company finances, which were a mess”. She also said The Whole Pantry was running at a loss and that profit margins had been overestimated.

“We have not yet donated the naive, yet confident amount of $300,000, considering the very quickly [arising] issues with cash flow versus growth, providing content, managing external expectations,” she said.

Confirmed donations from Ms Gibson and her business total about $7000.

“It was with nothing but good intention that we publicised that a percentage of profit from the app will be donated to charity. The intentions always were and still are to give back. The execution of this has obviously been flawed.”

She said she intended to support the nominated causes “when the cash-flow management is stabilised”.

A spokeswoman for one of the charities said: “You don’t take charitable funds and put it into the cash flow of your own business”.

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Kurt Goldman pays tribute to Guy Walter after Faust takes out Canberra Cup

Jockey Sam Clipperton and trainer Kurt Goldman after winning the Canberra Cup on Black Opal Stakes day at Thoroughbred Park. Photo: Matt BedfordGary Moore wins Black Opal Stakes with TakedownMatthew Dale wins three, including Canberra GuineasSydney trainer Peter Snowden wins National SprintDale aims three runners for Country ChampionshipsHighlights from fashions on the field at Black Opal Stakes Day
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Goulburn trainer Kurt Goldman enjoyed the biggest win of his young career, taking the knowledge instilled in him by the late Guy Walter to collect the $200,000 Canberra Cup (2000m).

Jockey Sam Clipperton timed his run aboard Faust ($22.70) to perfection to overhaul the Gai Waterhouse-trained Queenstown and hit the line in front of Burbero and World Wide at Thoroughbred Park on Sunday.

Walter won last year’s Cup with Jacquinot Bay before he tragically died suddenly of a heart attack in May.

Goldman moved to Goulburn from Kembla Grange about 12 months ago to replace Danny Williams as the trainer for former Wallaby Alan Cardy at his state-of-the-art facility.

It was there the 29-year-old got to know Walter, observing his habits and taking the experienced trainer’s advice.

“The last month that Guy was still with us he was very influential because I had just moved to Goulburn, he helped me a lot,” Goldman said.

“Quite often I would go and sit with him in the middle of the track in Goulburn watching his horses work and I’d be watching mine.

“I believe I train a little bit like Guy.

“Guy to me was a very patient trainer, you’d always see him thinking.

“His biggest piece of advice was to be patient with the horses and not expect things to happen straight away.”

It was the second Canberra Cup win in the past three years for the ownership syndicate, who also had success with Court Connection trained by Williams in 2013.

Goldman started off on his own as an owner/trainer out of Kembla Grange five years ago, a second and a third on Magic Millions day on the Gold Coast helping him build his clientele.

“I wasn’t interested in training for other people,” Goldman said.

“I believed in myself and I wanted to prove to people what I could do without having owners a part of it.

“From where I was in my career, joining Alan Cardy was a chance to get some better-quality horses without finding the horses myself.”

He may have found a beauty in Faust.

Despite concerns about a lack of preparation ahead of the Canberra Cup, the five-year-old showed a clean pair of heels in the back straight to record its sixth win from 26 starts.

“At this stage the horse will probably go to the Albury Cup in a few weeks’ time,” Goldman said.

“This horse loves the wet and I’ve strongly advised the owners that we should set this horse on a campaign to Queensland in the winter carnival.

“That’s still in the back of my mind.

“I haven’t got time to spell him and bring him back, I have to be mindful of how much racing he has before going there.”

Clipperton said he was pleased to have helped Goldman take out the biggest win of his career.

“He’s been a good friend and he’s been a great supporter of mine over the years, so it’s good he gets a big win on the board under his name,” Clipperton said.

“Faust never gives in, he’d been building to a win and Kurt presented the horse in perfect order.”

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