North Melbourne Kangaroos star Ben Cunnington successful at AFL tribunal

North Melbourne star Ben Cunnington is free to play Geelong on Sunday after successfully having his rough conduct charge downgraded at the AFL tribunal on Tuesday night.

After deliberating for more than 20 minutes, the jury decided that Cunnington’s bump on Adelaide’s Rory Laird during the Crows’ round four win over North at Marvel Stadium was a “glancing blow,” leading to the charge being downgraded from medium impact to low impact and a $2000 fine rather than a one-match suspension.

A medical report from Crows doctor Marc Cesana said that an assessment of Laird following the incident had found no areas of concern and that he returned to play.

Ben Cunnington and Rory Laird.Credit:Getty Images

North, via barrister Rob O’Neill, tendered evidence of Laird’s rotations from earlier in the season to show the time he spent off the ground following the collision was “for a short time and a typical time.”

However AFL lawyer Andrew Woods said the fact there had been no injury did not determine impact. He said there was an “immediate and hard” impact on Laird and that “the extent of force was more than low.”

Woods added that the manner in which Cunnington connected with Laird had the potential to cause injury.

As part of the defence, O’Neill showed the jury of Richard Loveridge, Jason Johnson, Shane Wakelin footage from a 2020 incident in which Port Adelaide’s Zak Butters collected St Kilda’s Paddy Ryder, who had clutched at his head following that hit. O’Neill said that if anything that was a more serious incident than the Cunnington-Laird one and yet was still only deemed low impact.

But Woods sought to distinguish that incident, saying it was very different to the one at hand.

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Port Adelaide eye Essendon Bombers star Zach Merrett

Port Adelaide have joined the queue of clubs interested in acquiring Essendon’s star midfielder and 2021 free agent Zach Merrett.

While Carlton are the club that has been most strongly linked to Merrett – an interest that was evident late last season before Merrett opted not to request a trade – industry sources have confirmed that the Power have registered an interest in Merrett, a restricted free agent this year.

More than one club has shown an interest in Zach Merrett.Credit:Getty Images

Melbourne are another club to have shown strong interest in Merrett, who would add run and ball use to a formidable ball-winning midfield.

The Demons, however, have a tight salary cap. They confirmed on Tuesday night that they had recontracted Clayton Oliver for another two years, while their emerging superstar Christian Petracca is a free agent in 2022 when he would be one of the most coveted players in the game. Oliver will be a free agent in 2023, at the end of his new deal.

Merrett also was on the radar of Collingwood last year, but the Magpies, who offloaded Adam Treloar and Jaidyn Stephenson during the trade period due to their salary-cap squeeze, would also have to find salary-cap room to make a serious bid.

Port Adelaide, despite being one of the flag favourites this year, expect to have salary-cap space heading into next year due to the unusual nature of their playing list, which has outstanding veterans such as Travis Boak and Robbie Gray, plus exceptional players under 22 leaded by Zak Butters, Connor Rozee and Xavier Duursma.

The Power have Gray, Steven Motlop, Tom Rockliff and Hamish Hartlett all coming out of contract this year and all on substantial contracts – a scenario that will allow Port to make room for an incoming free agent or recruit from another club, if they can attract one.

Merrett, 25, who hails from Cobden in western Victoria, would fit Port’s ideal age demographic, since few of the club’s elite players are in their mid 20s.

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Player agents push for young guns not to be signed until they are 17

The days of player managers signing rising stars as young as 15 are coming to an end as the agents themselves attempt to lead the biggest overhaul in their industry’s history.

The NRL and Rugby League Players Association is reviewing the Agent Accreditation Scheme amid concerns about the quality of service provided by some “six-and-a-half percenters” to their clients. There are more than 100 accredited managers, but most don’t have a single first-grader on their books.

Some of the leading managers – including Steve Gillis, David Riolo, Allan Gainey, David Rawlings and Mario Tartak – gathered at St George Leagues Club last Wednesday to discuss potential changes to the way they conduct business.

While discussions with stakeholders will continue, most of those in attendance felt the rule, which allows players to be managed from the age of 15, should be changed. Those in attendance felt a more appropriate age would be 17, stopping agents from speculatively signing as many players as possible in the hope of unearthing a superstar. By raising the limit, it was hoped young teens would enjoy their football with less pressure and expectation.

The managers also discussed ways to reduce the number of agents. That could come by charging a higher fee, perhaps as much as $10,000, before being granted accreditation, as well as making them go through a more rigorous process to prove they are qualified.

There was also discussion around putting an industry standard on how much agents can charge, possibly between 5 per cent and 7 per cent, given some players currently pay their managers well above market rates.

The role of player managers is finally under the microscope.Credit:Fairfax Media

The summit also discussed the need to ensure strict compliance with the rules. There are concerns some players were being represented by unaccredited agents, and there was scepticism about whether banned agents were continuing to work while supposedly serving suspensions.

The NRL has indicated agents won’t be able to have players and coaches on their books due to potential conflicts of interest. However, the agents believe this could lead to banned agents, or other unqualified mentors, overseeing the careers of one of the biggest stakeholder groups in the game.

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Simple Guide To Choosing Complementary Proteins

One of the main concerns for anyone chasing fitness goals on a vegetarian, vegan, or other plant-based diet is getting enough essential amino acids. They might phrase that concern as “getting enough protein,” but it’s actually all about aminos.

Here’s why: Not all proteins are the same! Animal proteins are a common source of “complete proteins,” which are proteins that contain all 9 amino acids that your body can’t produce on its own. These are labeled “essential” because you must acquire them from dietary sources.

On their own, nearly all plant-based proteins are incomplete because they lack one or more of these essential amino acids. However, despite what some people might tell you, this doesn’t mean they’re not worth eating! Getting all your essential amino acids can be as simple as pairing two or more plant-based sources of protein together. These are referred to as “complementary proteins.”

Use this chart to help create complementary proteins for any meal or snack. Then use the Recipe Database to find recipes to put those proteins on the menu! We’ve included 8 delicious chef-designed recipes below.

Building a meat-free meal with complete protein doesn’t have to be complicated, and it doesn’t require cooking. There are many plant-based protein powder options for your pre- and post-workout nutrition to supplement your meatless lifestyle.

Vegetarian Complete Protein Recipes

Rice + Beans: Chef Robert Irvine’s Vegetarian Burger

Rice + Lentils: Lentil Burgers with Mashed Avocado

Oats + Beans: Black Bean Burger

Rice + Chickpeas: Tangy Chickpea Burger

Wheat + Chickpeas: Vegetarian Hummus Wrap

Corn + Beans: Bean and Sweet Potato Salad

Corn + Beans: Spicy Vegan Freekeh Chili

Quinoa + Beans: Quinoa and Bean Chili

Tired of hunting for food that checks all your boxes? The Recipe Database has these recipes and hundreds more to match an immense variety of tastes, goals, and cravings.

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Get used to COVID-19 effects on investment earnings

Australia’s V-shaped economic recovery after the deep downturn of last year would likely moderate as delays in the roll-out of the vaccination program make the COVID-19 induced hangover more prolonged.

Some of our major export industries, including in-bound tourism and education services, would remain the doldrums for some time, with Australia likely to be one of the last developed countries in the world to completely vaccinate its population.

The risk of snap lockdowns and economic damage remains more likely until the population is vaccinated Credit:Bloomberg

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian warned this week said there needs to be more urgency with the vaccine rollout because Australia risks being left behind as the rest of the world re-opens.

“I know that some people don’t think there is a sense of urgency because we’re doing so well, but things can change very quickly and I don’t want to see our citizens left behind because the rest of the world starts trading with each other, starts travelling … I do have a sense of urgency about it,” Berejiklian said.

Business leaders are warning that overseas students, tourists and skilled workers could opt for other countries, such as Britain and the United States that intend to re-open their international borders in a matter of months, rather than coming to Australia.

The curtailing of international travel has actually boosted our economy over the short-term as more of us travel and spend domestically. However, it is becoming clearer that it is going to take a long time for the economy to be operating at anything like pre-coronavirus levels.

With new variants of COVID-19 appearing against which the current vaccines are less efficient, it is likely that we are not going to be returning to normal any time soon.

Living with the disease, or the threat of outbreaks and their associated snap lockdowns, is something that we are going to have to learn to live with – particularly with investment returns.

Interest rates are likely to stay low for several years around the world as central banks do their utmost to stimulate their economies. Governments are also spending up big to support growth.

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A cheeky single from Burgoyne in the nervous 390s

Fletcher only touched the ball once in three matches and Tuck in one while Bartlett never dropped below two touches although he managed to play 75 games without recording a handball.

Bartlett said he had no issue with Burgoyne jumping from 392 to 393 pointing out that it’s always been one of the rules of the game and it was no different in reality to a player registering a game when injured in the first minute.

But the champion Tiger joked that ‘Boomer’ Harvey might see things differently if Burgoyne moved close to his 432-game record.

“‘Boomer’ might get a bit disappointed if he [Burgoyne] sits on the bench for 50 games straight and never plays,” Bartlett said.

“‘Boomer’ might say ‘hang on, that’s a bit much’ and ask for a recount.”

The Hawks have only used their sub once with Connor Downie making his debut in round one without actually taking the field, a game that he might look back on fondly if he joins Burgoyne in the nervous 390s in 20 years.

It’s worth Downie taking note that ‘Silk’ Burgoyne only had one touch on debut on 14 May, 2002, a game he played exactly two weeks after Downie was born.

Upside down town

While we are on statistical quirks anyone alive in the late ’70s and early ’80s will know how unusual it is to see the Western Bulldogs and Melbourne sitting in the top two spots on the ladder after a round of football.

Not only is it a new experience for Nathan Jones, who has not been part of a team sitting first or second on the ladder in his 298-game career until now, but according to AFL Tables this week is the first time since round 3, 1957 that the Dogs have sat on top and Melbourne second after a round of football.

The Demons won the flag that season, just saying.


Snake alert

Despite being slightly late to the party Snap Shot could not let the Good Friday experience of the Finley fourths – coached by none other than Geelong forward Tom Hawkins’ cousin Lachlan Hawkins – go through to the keeper just yet.

Their match, which kicked off a massive day against Deniliquin, halted when young Harry Daniel spotted a tiger snake taking up a dangerous space in the middle of the ground.

He told a teammate who told the umpire Matthew Boyd who halted the game, only for half the farmers in the Riverina to wander on to the ground to identify the type of snake they were dealing with.

Club president Ashley Haynes suspects the snake popped up from a sprinkler hole when the ground started vibrating as a game of footy got underway.

“He was relocated on the end of a shovel,” Haynes said.

The gatekeeper Barry Dawe is now checking all sprinklers before the match to ensure no snakes sneak in without paying with Hawkins unlikely to be directing the fourths to kick “long bombs to Snake” – Ron Barassi’s famous instructions for North players to look for Phil Baker – any time soon.

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A Taste of Ireland – The Irish Music & Dance Sensation

A Taste of Ireland – The Irish Music & Dance Sensation

A Taste of Ireland - The Irish Music & Dance SensationA Taste of Ireland - The Irish Music & Dance Sensation

A Taste of Ireland

Friday 25 June 2021

The Palms

Hot off its premiere New York City run in 2020 and with over 120 shows in 2019 across Australia and New Zealand ‘A Taste of Ireland – The Irish Music & Dance Sensation’ finally returns down under.

With revamped classics like ‘Danny Boy’ and ‘ Tell Me Ma’ the show’s live energetic blend of well-known tunes jaw-dropping acapella tap battles world-class dancing melodic folk music mash-ups and craic galore transports you through the story of Ireland’s tumultuous history complimented by stunning production and lighting.

Starring dancers from the West End’s Lord of the Dance Riverdance & Gaelforce Dance alongside a treasure trove of Irish Dancing World Champions ‘A Taste of Ireland’ delivers the very best talent in the nation.

Experience one of the most prominent Irish Dance shows in the world today. With all new sets costumes tunes and effects we promise you haven’t seen anything like this year’s show! With tours lined up in the USA Canada and the UK don’t miss your chance to see ‘A Taste of Ireland’ in 2021.

It’s truly ‘Celtic-for this decade’.

❊ When & Where ❊

Date: Friday 25th June 2021

❊ Venue ❊

 The Palms at Crown  Events 22
⊜ 8 Whiteman Street Southbank | Map

The Palms at Crown8 Whiteman Street, Southbank, , 3006

✆ Event: | Venue: Ticket Bookings: 1300 795 012

Book Online Here

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❊ Be Social ❊

❊ Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update ❊

As Victoria takes action to stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), events may be cancelled at short notice. Please confirm details before making plans | Disclaimer

❊ Web Links ❊

A Taste of Ireland – The Irish Music & Dance Sensation

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Central Coast beaches closed due to dangerous surf

Several beaches along the NSW coast have been closed today due to dangerous surf conditions.

Strong currents, large swell and flash rips have prompted more than 10 beaches on the Central Coast to be shut today.

Soldiers Beach, North Entrance Beach, The Entrance Beach, Toowoon Bay, Shelly Beach, Wamberal Beach, Terrigal Beach, North Avoca Beach, Copacabana Beach, Macmasters Beach and Killcare Beach have all been closed to the public.

The closures come after the Bureau of Meteorology issued a warning earlier today for hazardous surf conditions along the Hunter Coast, Sydney Coast, Illawarra Coast, Batemans Coast and Eden Coast.

Surfers, swimmers and rock fishers have been warned to avoid the rough waters today and follow the advice of lifeguards.

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Brisbane VR company Next World scores Joe Biden-backed US contract

Brisbane-based virtual-reality training company Next World has made the major leap to the United States with a contract with the University of the District of Columbia.

Next World offers virtual reality training modules, which allows workers to get training in a range of scenarios without having to visit potentially dangerous sites beforehand.

Next World founder and CEO Michael O’Reilly.

Next World founder and CEO Michael O’Reilly.

The university has introduced a new course, Critical Infrastructure, designed in collaboration with Next World and using its technology, as part of the Biden Administration’s Build Back Better economic and infrastructure mandate.

Next World founder and CEO Michael O’Reilly said they were thrilled with the US contract, as they saw the country as a major growth market.

“When it comes to the technology sector, the US is the place to be, so we’re really pleased to get our foot in the door there,” Mr O’Reilly said.

“In the US we’re very focused on getting affiliations with universities, so we hope UDC will be the first of many, because safety training in the US is often through universities and colleges, so that is a natural fit for us.”

University of the District of Columbia professor Anthony Mazza said they had worked directly with Next World to bring the course together.

“Next World is a key player in our ground-breaking new course which specifically aligns with the Biden Administration’s economic incentive to roll out a workforce development plan to address critical infrastructure issues in the United States,” he said.

Former deputy labour secretary and head of Biden transition team Chris Lu personally signed off on UDC’s course with Next World, as part of the Build Back Better program, designed to address the US’s crumbling public infrastructure.

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Prime Minister Scott Morrison under fire on Q+A for comments relating to women’s march and democracy

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has come under fire on Q+A from youth influencer Yasmin Poole for refusing to attend the women’s March4Justice in Canberra this week and for his labelling of the event as a “triumph” for democracy.

Mr Morrison made the comments on Monday in Parliament, and also drew a comparison between the demonstrations in Australia and those in Myanmar, where hundreds of people have now been killed by the junta, by saying it was a triumph that the Australian protesters could march without being “met by bullets”.

Ms Poole said she was “furious” at the comments and that the PM lacked “backbone” for not attending the march.

“I think it’s a fundamental flaw in our democracy if young women can’t go to Parliament and not be raped,” Ms Poole said, alluding to an allegation made by Brittany Higgins.

“I am angry that any young woman that desires or aspires to go into politics now will have to think twice.

“That is appalling and that is a shame on our democracy.

“So to think that the Prime Minister couldn’t have the backbone to even get out there and speak to all the protesters, dozens of women wearing black in mourning, to think he could hide away in his office and make those kind of statements, is something that sits so wrong with me because my work, the majority of my work, has been encouraging young women to put their hands up and run [for office], and I had to think will they be safe.”


Ms Poole attended the rally in Canberra and said it was laying down a marker against “violent misogyny” in Australia.

“Mourning the stories of Brittany [Higgins], the stories of the women that stepped forward, some that even are not around to tell their story now,” she said.

She then questioned why no parliamentarian had been removed from their job over Ms Higgins’s rape allegation. Defence Minister Linda Reynolds has apologised for calling Ms Higgins a “lying cow”, saying she “she did not mean it in the sense it may have been understood”.

“The one person that no longer works in parliament is Brittany Higgins,” Ms Poole said.

“Why on earth has no politician that was involved in this been fired or had to leave?

“That’s an example of one brave woman stepping forward and you see how those in power close ranks

“The lying cow comment, the looking to the background of her partner, even the comment of trial by media.

“These are all putting the onus back on survivors and punishing survivors.”

Former NRL player turned mental health advocate Joe Williams said he was not surprised that this was an issue, and also called for change.

He cited historical abuse of Indigenous women as his reasoning.

“We need to start to listen and collectively as a country do better.

“We need to stop men raping women.”

Legal process leaves sexual assault victims broken

While Mr Morrison’s comments drew ire, the episode was dedicated to the issue of consent and sexual assault.

Saxon Mullins opened the show by speaking about the issue of consent.

Her own five-year case against defendant Luke Lazarus saw a jury and a series of judges find that Ms Mullins did not consent to sex, but the legal sticking point was whether Mr Lazarus knew she was not consenting.

She featured during the show in a segment also involving Vince Hurley, a police officer with 30 years’ experience.

Mr Hurley spoke of how difficult the criminal justice system could be for those who make complaints of sexual assault.


“It’s a brutal process,” Mr Hurley said, adding that he felt during his years of service that several victims were “failed”.

“People might not agree, but there are excellent police officers,” he said.

“But the reality is, as Saxon well knows, you’re sitting in that witness box alone and your reputation is being carved up and I hate to say it, there’s only two types of justice, those that can afford it and those that can’t.

“The victim will have to get in the witness box and give them evidence and you can prepare that victim, take them into the court beforehand, explain the process and explain the legal jargon, once they’re in their witness box they’re on their own and there’s nothing you can do sitting back at the court going, ‘This poor individual is being carved up’.”

Asked if she felt reporting sexual assault to the police was worthwhile, Ms Mullins said it was tough to do so and a personal decision.

“It’s really personal to every survivor what they see as justice,” she said.

“Some people might not even consider going to the police or going through the court system.

“It’s about judging what each survivor feels is justice. But if someone asks me is it worth going through the police in process, the court process, I don’t know that I can be a massive advocate for it because like you said it’s a brutal system.”

NSW Police Commissioner’s app a ‘terrible’ idea


The panel also turned its attention to the consent app suggested on Thursday by NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller.

School principal Briony Scott said the app might have the opposite effect to the one desired, and could see offenders coerce victims to give consent via a swipe.

“My fear is it might protect men,” she said.

“Can you imagine the barriers that are already facing young women in establishing sexual assault and rape, let alone if you were coerced into agreeing with the app? It might produce the counter effect.”

Broadcaster Yumi Stynes said the Commissioner’s idea “stinks”.

“It’s a terrible idea. Anybody who has ever been assaulted or even been sort of edged and pushed into something knows it’s a bad idea,” she said.

“If you can be coerced into sex, you can easily be coerced into ticking a box or swiping on an app.

“By kind of intimating you can swipe and then that’s solved and you can go ahead and it’s a free for all, that’s a pretty dangerous idea.”

Watch the full episode of Q+A on iview.

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