Ross Gigg Newcastle Mile: Shannonsablast trainer Darren Elder hopes for third time lucky

Louth Park trainer Darren Elder believes Shannonsablast is better placed third time around to change his luck in the Ross Gigg Newcastle Mile on Saturday night.

ON TRACK: Darren and Brad Elder with Shannonsablast.

Shannonsablast gained the coveted gate one for the group 3 feature on Monday and was an $8.50 shot with TAB Fixed Odds.

The gelding started from gate two last year but a flat tyre ruined his hopes and he finished last. In 2016, he had gate one but was unable to capitalise at the start and finishedsecond last.

Elder was confident of a better showing this year.

“He’s a lot better off themobile than what he used tobe, and [driver] Brad [Elder] will have him up there near the lead,” Elder said.“We’re happy with him. I think we’ve timed our run a bit better than previous years.”

Kevin Pizzuto’s Majordan (gate seven) was the $1.80 favourite. Ellalong trainer Michael Formosa’s Ultimate Art (eight) was $31. Morisset trainer Mark Callaghan’s Sir Major Stride (five) ($71) was the other Hunter hope.

“Majordan has been going really good,” Elder said.

“He gets off the gate quick and has been running good times, and Mick Formosa’s horse is a good horse. He’s been running really well without winning.

“Those are the two horses to beat on class.”

Shannonsablast has missed a place in his past three starts, all at Menangle.However, before that, the eight-year-old was a winner at Newcastle thenMenangle, where he clockeda career-best 1.51.1.

”He had a bit of a break and then first run back, the way they drove him, it’s taken him a while to come back from it,” Elder said of his start on April 14.

“It just knocked him around a bit.

“But he’s getting back there, and he worked really well this morning. We’re confident he’ll be up there in the hunt.”

Darren McCall’s fast-starter Bettor Bet Black won the past two Newcastle Mile’s but he is not returning this year. Elder, Formosaand Callaghan are chasinga breakthrough win for Hunter trainers in Newcastle’s feature event. The only joy for the Hunter in modern times as been Maitland trainer-owner Keith McDeed’s win with Medowie Prince in 1993.

Mum takes next step in deportation fight

A Brisbane-based Filipino woman is battling to stay in with her 8-year-old son, Giro.A Filipino woman trying to keep her family together will take the next step in her fight against deportation from .

Brisbane-based Bernadette Romulo will meet with government officials on Thursday as she tries to ensure she won’t have to leave behind her eight-year-old n-born son Giro.

Giro cannot leave with his mother if she is deported to the Philippines due to partial custody arrangements with his Filipino-n father.

“My boy cries himself to sleep every night and having nightmares, knowing we will soon be leaving him behind,” Ms Romulo wrote in a petition earlier this month.

She met with immigration officials on May 8, the day her bridging visa expired, fearing she and her overseas-born daughters – half-sisters to Giro – would be deported after 11 years living in .

But Ms Romulo, who originally arrived in on a 457 visa, was given some renewed hope with another bridging visa extension until this week.

More than 33,000 people have signed a change苏州桑拿 petition started by Ms Romulo titled ‘Peter Dutton: Please don’t tear my family apart’.

As part of the petition, Ms Romulo recorded a tearful plea begging the Home Affairs Minister to let her stay with her son.

She has told AAP her six years of fighting for permanent residency was all about staying together as a family.

“If we get deported, it doesn’t matter as much, as long as we can keep my son,” she said.

Mr Dutton’s office previously said he’s not handling the case and the matter is with Assistant Home Affairs Minister Alex Hawke.

Mr Hawke’s office says the case has already been comprehensively assessed by the department and the assistant minister only intervenes in a “relatively small number of cases”.

“Child custody matters are beyond the scope of this department and are addressed through the appropriate jurisdiction of family law,” it said in a statement.

Yulia Skripal hopes to return home one day

Yulia Skripal has spoken for the first time about being poisoned and her hope of returning home.Yulia Skripal survived an assassination attempt that UK authorities blame on Russia. But the daughter of one of Russia’s most famous spies says she wants to return to her country “in the longer term” despite the poisoning.

“The fact that a nerve agent was used to do this is shocking,” Skripal told Reuters in an exclusive statement. “My life has been turned upside down.”

Yulia and her father Sergei Skripal, a former colonel in Russian military intelligence who betrayed dozens of agents to Britain’s MI6 foreign spy service, were found unconscious on a public bench in the British city of Salisbury on March 4.

Yulia Skripal, 33, was in a coma for 20 days.

“I woke to the news that we had both been poisoned,” Skripal said in her first media appearance since the poisoning. She contacted Reuters through the British police.

Skripal was speaking from a secret location in London as she is under the protection of the British state. She was discharged from Salisbury District Hospital about five weeks after the poisoning and has not been seen by the media until now.

“We are so lucky to have both survived this attempted assassination. Our recovery has been slow and extremely painful,” she said in her written English statement which was released on Wednesday.

“As I try to come to terms with the devastating changes thrust upon me both physically and emotionally, I take one day at a time and want to help care for my Dad till his full recovery. In the longer term, I hope to return home to my country.”

Skripal spoke in Russian and supplied a statement that she said she had written herself in both Russian and English. She signed both documents after making her statement.

She declined to answer questions after speaking to camera.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the Skripals were poisoned with Novichok, a deadly group of nerve agents developed by the Soviet military in the 1970s and 80s. May blames Russia for the poisoning.

It was the first known use of a military-grade nerve agent on European soil since World War Two. Allies in Europe and the US sided with May’s view and ordered the biggest expulsion of Russian diplomats since the height of the Cold War.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said he thought Yulia Skripal was speaking under duress.

“We have not seen her or heard from her,” he said when asked to comment on the story.

Russia’s ambassador in London, Alexander Yakovenko, has repeatedly demanded to see Yulia, who was a Russian citizen when she was poisoned.

“I’m grateful for the offers of assistance from the Russian embassy. But at the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services,” Skripal, who wore a light blue summer dress and bore a scar on her neck, said.

“Also, I want to reiterate what I said in my earlier statement, that no one speaks for me, or for my father but ourselves.”

Mystery surrounds the attack. The motive is unclear, as is the logic of using such an exotic nerve agent which has overt links to Russia’s Soviet past.

“I don’t want to describe the details but the clinical treatment was invasive, painful and depressing,” she said in Russian.

NRLCan the Newcastle Knights stop Sharks winger Valentine Holmes’ from causing havoc again on Sunday?

Valentine Holmes is back on the wing, back to his best form and back as a leading contender for a wing spot in the Queensland State of Origin side to be announced on Monday morning.

All of which spells trouble for the Newcastle Knights less than 24 hours earlier at Beanie for Brain Cancer Stadium.

No player has terrorised the Knights defence more than the Cronulla wingerin recent seasons.

While the Sharks have won their past six matches against the Knights including four of their past five in Newcastle, Holmes’ record is even more impressive.

Elusive: Sharks winger Valentine Holmes loves scoring tries against the Newcastle Knights. Picture: AAP

In his last five games against Newcastle, he has crossed for nine tries and will be looking to add to that impressive haul on Sunday.

READ MORE: Newcastle KnightsKnights coach Nathan Brown will be stressing the need for his defence to stay vigilant whenever the fleet-footed winger is around the ball but hewon’t be Brown’s only concern.

While they boast some individual brilliance that can hurt you, the Sharks are also the kings of the graft and can suffocate you out of games.

“They love grinding out wins,” Knights five-eighth Connor Watson said.

“They’ve got a great forward pack and a lot of older heads there who just know how to win footy games and we’ve seen that in the last couple of weeks.

“Even the younger guys that have come up to the fill the shoes [of the injured players] have done the same thing as the ones that were there before them.

“It’s a big challenge. I think for us, we just need to grit our teeth and get stuck in and have a real crack.”

Watson believes the Knights will need to chance their arm a little bit to pull off an upset.

“Every game you want to get in the grind and try to break down teams but I think when it comes down to it, you have to chance your arm and ice those opportunities that are there,” he said.

“We won’t be shying away from playing our attacking footy which we are doing a good job of. It’s just our defence where we really need to knuckle down.”

Significantly, the Knights are averaging slightly more points in attackthan the Sharks but are letting in eight points a game more.

Trump may impose tariffs on car imports

The Trump administration is considering a proposal to impose new tariffs on imported vehicles, invoking a national security law that was used to impose tariffs on aluminium and steel.

President Donald Trump has pledged to revive American manufacturing and earlier this year criticised European auto imports and tariffs.

“There will be big news coming soon for our great American Autoworkers. After many decades of losing your jobs to other countries, you have waited long enough!” Trump said in a tweet.

The administration is considering launching a so-called ‘Section 232’ investigation into auto imports that could see tariffs of up to 25 per cent imposed on imports.

At a meeting with automakers at the White House on May 11, Trump told automakers he was planning to impose tariffs of 20 or 25 per cent on some imported vehicles, sources have told Reuters, specifically criticising German automakers for importing a large number of vehicles into the US.

Automakers think Trump might target the European Union and potentially Canada, Mexico and Japan.

The White House could opt to negotiate with individual countries about whether auto tariffs take effect. Trump would have to launch a probe before he could impose the tariffs.

John Bozzella, chief executive of Global Automakers, a trade group representing Toyota, Nissan Motor Co, Hyundai Motor Co and others, said tariffs on imported vehicles would hurt American consumers.

“The US auto industry is thriving and growing,” he said, noting 12 million cars and trucks were produced in the US last year.

“To our knowledge, no one is asking for this protection. This path leads inevitably to fewer choices and higher prices for cars and trucks in America.”

Trump has launched a series of trade actions, demanding China import more American goods, starting talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement and imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.

The US imported 8.3 million vehicles in 2017 worth $US192 billion, including 2.4 million from Mexico, 1.8 million from Canada, 1.7 million from Japan, 930,000 from South Korea and 500,000 from Germany, according to US government statistics.

At the same time, it exported nearly 2 million vehicles worldwide worth $US57 billion.

Cheika won’t naysay Naiyaravoro’s move

The Waratahs’ Taqele Naiyaravoro may be moving to England but he’s still in the Wallabies mix.Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has been an influential figure in the career of Taqele Naiyaravoro but he won’t try changing the wrecking-ball winger’s mind about a move overseas.

Naiyaravoro scored two tries in the NSW Waratahs’ hoodoo-busting win over the Highlanders last weekend, ending New Zealand’s 40-game stretch of Super Rugby dominance over n sides.

The rugby league convert worked shed 12kg in the pre-season and has boosted his hopes of a Wallabies recall with a string of eye-catching performances for NSW.

Former Waratahs coach Cheika knows Naiyaravoro’s talent well.

In 2014, he convinced the Fijian-born youngster to stop playing for Wests Tigers’ reserve grade team and start pursuing a rugby career at NSW.

Naiyaravoro remains a key figure in ‘s outside-back selection debate ahead of next month’s Test series against Ireland.

The 26-year-old will join English club Northampton later this year, ruining his hopes of being part of ‘s 2019 World Cup campaign.

“Players make decisions and that’s the way it goes,” Cheika said.

“I’ve got a long association with him.

“At this stage I haven’t (tried to persuade him to stay in ).”

Cheika will next week name his squad for the three-Test series against Ireland that starts on June 9.

“He’s definitely being looked at. He’s made a huge impact to the Waratahs,” he said of Naiyaravoro.

“It’s an area we’re very strong in. We’ve got a lot of competition on the wing.

“I certainly can’t complain about his form.

“He’s making breaks … scoring tries. He’s starting to learn about working a bit harder as well.

“If a player is standing out and they’re going overseas, it’d be crazy not to pick them and help the team now.”

Naiyaravoro has scored an n-best 10 tries this season for NSW, who trumped the Highlanders after testing the Crusaders and Blues in tight losses.

Cheika was pleased to see the end of a staggering trans-Tasman streak but is still craving “repeated strong performances” from all n franchises.

“The Reds are exactly the same. They had a strong performance against the Hurricanes and now they need to have that same intensity this weekend,” he said.

Roadhouse manager fined $20,000 in legal first for Fair Work Ombudsman

FINES: The United roadhouse on the Great Western Highway at Marangaroo. Photo: GOOGLE MAPSTHE former manager of a Great Western Highway roadhouse near Lithgow has been fined almost $20,000 for failing to pay government-funded parental leave to an employee.

The Fair Work Ombudsman finedKulpreet Singh,the former manager and part-owner of the United Petroleum roadhouse atMarrangaroo, $19,720 whileNoorpreet Pty Ltd -a company that includes Mr Singh as a director -has been penalised a further $98,700.

The FWO found Mr Singh had deprived an Indian employee of her government-funded parental leavepay by falsely claiming he had paid the moneyto the employee’s husband.

The penalties, imposed in the Federal Circuit Court, are the result of the FWO’s first legal action against an employer for failing to transfer Paid Parental Leave funds to an employee.

The employee had worked as a chef at the roadhouse on a 487 skilled regional employer nomination visa. She is now an n citizen.

After the employee had a child, the Department of Human Services (DHS) transferred $11,538 to Noorpreet in April 2015 for the company to transfer to her.

The employee was entitled to the funds under the Government’s Paid Parental Leave scheme.

After making several unsuccessful requests to Mr Singh, the employee complained to the DHS that her employer had not paid her the funds.

The DHS was not able to resolve the matter and referred it to the Fair Work Ombudsman.

When the Fair Work Ombudsman investigated, Mr Singh provided a Fair Work inspector with a false document purporting to show that he paid the parental leave funds in cash to the employee’s husband in May 2015.

After the Fair Work Ombudsman challenged the veracity of the document and repeatedly demanded payment, Mr Singh and Noorpreet eventually paid the parental leave funds to the employee in October 2015.

In court, Mr Singh and Noorpreet admitted committing a contravention of thePaid Parental Leave Act 2010, as well as a number of contraventions of record-keeping and pay slip laws under the Fair Work Act.

Judge Nick Nicholls said that Singh had engaged in a “deliberate deception”.

Judge Nicholls said Singh had “lied” and that the failure to transfer the parental leave pay was “an express and active intervention” to deprive the employee of her payments.

“Mr Singh was, to be blunt, well and truly caught out by the FWO, perpetrating a deliberate falsehood in relation to the false payment record,” Judge Nicholls said.

Judge Nicholls found that Singh had not displayed any true remorse and that some of the excuses he made for not paying the paid Parental Leave pay to the employee sooner were “absurd”.

In setting the penalties, Judge Nicholls said the possibility of Mr Singh goingbankrupt“cannot weigh in Mr Singh’s favour in relation to the assessment of deterrence”.

“Even if this were to be a consequence of the penalty order, it is not a sufficient reason to not set the penalty at the otherwise ‘appropriate’ level,” Judge Nicholls said.

Judge Nicholls also said that it was important to set a penalty that signals disapproval of the conduct and serves as a general deterrent to others in the hospitality industry.

Lithgow Mercury

North Queensland feral pig hunt sparks online furore

This is the photo of Hill MP Shane Knuth and Bob Katter at a pig hunt in North Queensland that sparked furor from southern city dwellers.

A WAR of words has erupted between city-slickers and rural Queenslanders after a photograph of a social feral pig hunt went viral online.

Hill MP Shane Knuth posted a photo of himself and Kennedy MP Bob Katter with a mound of dead pigs at theCurrajah Hotel in Innisfail at the weekend and the response was immediate.

While North Queenslanders, who see pig hunting not only as a right of passage but a necessity on the land, praised the event, outraged southerners voiced their disgust, accusing the hunters of “murder”.

They called the hunters vile, disgusting and horrible and said the pigs should be left alone.

Instead of shooting them, it was suggested that they could all be relocated to a fence in agricultural property, somewhere.

Mr Knuth said 99.9 per cent of the protesters did not live in rural and regional Queensland and queried their stance as environmentalists.

“They’re not friends of the environment and they’re backers of the feral pig over the native flora and fauna and agriculture industry,” Mr Knuth said.

“It’s great to see the pig hunting enthusiasts in their own time and own expense eliminating ‘sgreatest enviornmentaldisasters.

“Back in 2007 there was a recorded 20 million pigs, now we’re up to 24 million and they’re becoming unstoppable.

“Years ago Icalled for a bounty to give the pig hunters incentivesto hunt the pigs as they do this in their own time and expense.

“Not only that they contribute many dollars to the local community on vehicles, fuel, outdoor gear and equipment. Local pig hunters need permits to access national park because they’re becoming a breeding frenzy and uncontrollable.”

Currajah Hotel owner Julie Doherty was bemused at the attention and said she had received a phone call from a woman in Adelaide who was scathing of the hunt.

It was the third time they have hosted a pig hunt and said it was an annual event.

This year, there was 15 nominated team, with a total of 42 entrants, including five females. The youngest participant was eight-years-old.

Participants had between 10am Thursday and the weigh in on Saturday to hunt for pigs on land where they had obtained permission in the area.

A total of 92 pigs weighing in at3.7 tonnes were eliminated, with the biggest boar weighing 107.5kg and the largest sow 75.5kg.

Mr Knuth said he was proud to support the pig hunt as a measure to protect the environment.

“There was over three tonnes of pigs eliminated and this will save our native birds, cassowaries, hundreds if not thousands of turtles and hundreds of tonnes of crops.

“It must be acknowledged that these pigs can carry the panama TR4 and have the potential to destroy the $600 million banana industry.”

North Queensland Register

Glenn Maxwell eyeing subcontinent Test nod

Glenn Maxwell is hoping for a spot in the A side for the upcoming tour of India.Glenn Maxwell says he’s entering a critical phase of his career as he aims to finally lock down a spot in ‘s Test side under new coach Justin Langer.

The mercurial allrounder is eyeing off an A tour of India in August as an opportunity to put his name forward for Test selection.

will play Tests against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates later this year, with the tour likely to be held in September or October.

Langer has forecast that the preceding A tour will act as a batting audition for the Pakistan series with spots up for grabs in the absence of suspended trio Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft.

Each of Maxwell’s seven career Tests have been played in the subcontinent.

The 29-year-old scored his maiden Test century during last year’s tour of India before also taking part in the tour of Bangladesh.

“From a personal point of view, this is a big part of my career where there are some opportunities in all three teams to really solidify my position for hopefully the rest of my career and really make a stand to take a spot and make it my own,” Maxwell told SEN radio on Wednesday.

“With the Test side, I’m looking at Dubai later in the year where I can really make one of those batting positions my own and (then) hopefully play my first Test on n soil and really hold my spot from there.

“There is obviously a bit of work to do in India for an A tournament in August which I’m hoping to be on and put some big numbers up while I’m there.”

Maxwell, who averages 41.07 in first-class cricket, was overlooked during the summer Ashes series despite scoring a career-best 278 for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield.

The innings earned high praise at the time from Langer, who lauded Maxwell’s improved temperament and suggested he should be in the mix for Test selection.

Maxwell will link up with ‘s one-day squad this weekend when they gather for a pre-tour camp in Brisbane.

play five ODIs in England next month before heading to Zimbabwe for a Twenty20 tri-series also involving Pakistan, with Maxwell named in both squads.

Guide dog puppies begging for homes

Guide Dogs needs “puppy raisers” to provide loving homes and training for 200 dogs.Hundreds of homes are needed for Labrador puppies to help prepare them for their work as guide dogs.

Guide Dogs is calling out for “puppy raisers” to provide loving homes and basic training for 200 dogs for a year.

“We rely very heavily on the generosity of the volunteer community to act as puppy raisers,” Guide Dogs Victoria chief executive Karen Hayes told AAP.

“Its’ a very important role in terms of laying the foundation for a successful career for our beautiful puppies as guide dogs.”

Guide Dogs covers the cost of all equipment and food for the puppies, who are placed with puppy raisers when they are just eight weeks old.

Ideally, puppy raisers will have a fenced yard and are advised not to leave their dogs unattended for more than three hours at a time.

“You also have to be disciplined with the puppy, so no feeding under the table or sleeping on the bed,” Ms Hayes said.

With trainee puppies having the same legal rights as working guide dogs, puppy raisers can take their four-legged friends to work, restaurants, and on public transport.

“What we want them to do when they are out there with puppy raisers is for them to socialise themselves in lots of different environments,” Ms Hayes said.

After a year, the puppies return to Guide Dogs for six months of formal training before they are matched with an owner who is vision impaired or blind.

And while it can be hard to say goodbye after a year, Ms Hayes has some advice.

“What we like to think is it’s not about giving them back, you are giving them forward and enabling them to go on and really change someone’s life, which is something the family should be very proud of,” she said.

“What a lot of people do is they bring the dog back and invariably they get another dog.”

There are about 800 working guide dogs across .

Their working lives usually last between nine-and-11 years and in that time they cover about 9000km with their vision-impaired owner.

Potential puppy raisers can find out more at: www.guidedogsaustralia苏州楼凤.au