Linda Reynolds feels the lash after Scott Morrison says he was blindsided by rape allegation

It was supposed to be a week totally dominated by the arrival of the vaccine. Instead attention has been partially diverted by the revelation of an alleged 2019 rape in a minister’s Parliament House office — that Scott Morrison was not told about.

An angry Morrison on Tuesday publicly rebuked Defence Minister Linda Reynolds for failing to inform him, as he tried to contain the fallout from her former staffer Brittany Higgins’s explosive account.

Morrison told the House he only learned of the rape allegation early on Monday, shortly before the story was posted by Samantha Maiden on

He didn’t mince words. Asked whether it was acceptable that the Defence Minister hadn’t informed him or his office of a “reported serious crime”, he said: “It is not — and it shouldn’t happen again.”

Higgins says she was assaulted in March 2019 by a colleague, on the Minister’s couch, after she fell into a drunken sleep when the pair returned from a function. She woke up “mid-rape”, with the man on top of her.

After landing her “dream job” working for a minister, Brittany Higgins was allegedly raped inside Parliament House.(Supplied)

The alleged perpetrator was quickly sacked for the security breach, but the alleged rape only came out in Higgins’s discussions with Reynolds’s acting chief of staff Fiona Brown in subsequent days.

Reynolds, who was defence industry minister at the time, urged Higgins to go to the police. Higgins did speak to them but, concerned about her career, decided against lodging a complaint. She remained working for the government — later in Minister Michaelia Cash’s office — until early this year.

She has said in interviews this week she did not feel adequately supported through a horrific ordeal.

‘As the father of daughters’

Morrison’s handling of the issue changed markedly between Monday and Tuesday.

After saying on Monday he was deeply distressed by Higgins’s account, but obviously trying to keep the reaction low key, on Tuesday he was in full damage control, with a flurry of action.

He and Jenny had talked about the matter on Monday night, he said. “And she said to me, ‘You have to think about this as a father first. What would you want to happen if it were our girls?’

“Jenny has a way of clarifying things — always has.” So he’d reflected on that overnight, listening to what Brittany had said.

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Scott Morrison apologises to Liberal Party staffer Brittany Higgins

Casting his response as the father of girls evoked some immediate cynicism. That may or may not be the reaction among the public generally.

Morrison said he’d concluded that despite “the genuine good intentions” of all those who tried to provide support to Higgins, “by what she said last night, at the end of the day, she did not feel that way. And that is not OK.”

Cabinet had discussed the issue late Monday, as the magnitude of the extraordinary affair sank in.

The PM asked Western Australian Liberal backbencher Celia Hammond, a former vice-chancellor of Notre Dame University, “to identify ways that standards and expectations and practices can be further improved” in the parliamentary workplace.

He also asked Stephanie Foster, a deputy secretary of his department, to advise him on better processes “to support people when incidents of this nature arise”.

He was even open to Anthony Albanese’s proposal for an external review, by an “eminent Australian”, of Parliament House’s “workplace culture”. We’ll see whether that goes anywhere.

A flurry of ‘sorries’

There was also a flurry of “sorries” to Higgins, especially over her being called to a meeting in the very office, with its couch, where the alleged rape occurred.

In the Senate, Reynolds gave an unreserved apology. Reynolds said she thought at the time she and Brown were doing everything they could to support Higgins, but she’d clearly felt unsupported. “At all times, my intent and my aim were to empower Brittany and let her determine the course of her own situation,” she said.

Morrison apologised over the site of the meeting.

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Linda Reynolds ‘deeply regrets’ conducting meeting in her office

Controversy swirled around what and when the PM’s staff knew. Brown, who’d worked in the PM’s office before acting as Reynolds’s COS and later moved back, obviously knew everything. But, with the incident seemingly in the past, apparently she didn’t think to mention the rape allegation.

Higgins claimed Morrison’s principal private secretary, Yaron Finkelstein, had checked in on her welfare after last year’s ABC Four Corners program reporting ministerial sexual misbehaviour. There is no record of a phone conversation and Finkelstein cannot recall making any contact.

Morrison told Parliament his office only became aware of the rape allegations on February 12.

Morrison’s office said its involvement in the Higgins matter at the time had related only to the security breach.

Tuesday’s prime ministerial blitz included a lecture to the government parties meeting. “We must do better. We cannot have an environment where anyone feels unsafe in their workplace, or a young woman is left in a vulnerable situation,” Morrison told his troops.

The fallout from the cluster bomb

He’s not the first recent PM to denounce bad behaviour in this most privileged of workplaces. Remember Malcolm Turnbull’s “bonk ban”. And a number of women have highlighted conduct that would not be tolerated elsewhere.

The rape allegation, however, has shaken people because it takes things to another level — if proven, a criminal one.

Higgins, meanwhile, said in a statement that Morrison’s announcement of an investigation “into the culture in Parliament House is a welcomed first step, though it is long overdue”. She asked for her privacy to be respected and said she wouldn’t be making further comment.

The fallout from the cluster bomb she’d tossed — in media terms, a highly organised operation with a kit of information circulated to news organisations — has wounded Reynolds (who’s previously called out bad behaviour) and put the heat on Morrison.

Just maybe, it will prompt another step towards Parliament House becoming a workplace where the standards of behaviour demanded of occupants resemble those observed in the world outside.

But what will happen to the alleged rapist? That depends on whether Higgins lodges a formal complaint with the police, a course which remains open to her.

Michelle Grattan is a professorial fellow at the University of Canberra and chief political correspondent at The Conversation, where this article first appeared.

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Broncos lash NRL star Haas after arrest

Brisbane have slammed an “ashamed” Payne Haas for his latest off-field indiscretion after the NRL forward was arrested and charged with abusing and intimidating police.

The NSW Origin and Australian representative was arrested about 10pm on Saturday when he allegedly abused police officers in Tweed Heads.

The 21-year-old was detained by police and taken to Tweed Heads police station where he was charged with “with offensive language and intimidate police officer”.

He was granted conditional bail to appear at Tweed Heads local court on February 2, with the matter now being investigated by the NRL’s integrity unit.

The incident came after the Brisbane squad started their day with a training session on the Gold Coast.

While a rising star of the game, it won’t be the first time Haas has been summoned by the NRL’s behavioural watchdog.

Haas was fined $20,000 and suspended for the opening four rounds of the 2019 NRL season for failing to comply with an NRL integrity unit investigation over a matter involving members of his family.

Broncos CEO Paul White said in a statement on Sunday that Haas was “ashamed and extremely remorseful”.

“It’s disappointing and not acceptable – we do set the highest standards for the behaviour of our players, they understand that and Payne knows this is well short of those standards,” White said.

“Payne knows he has done the wrong thing and is prepared to take ownership of his actions.

“As a club, we will continue to work with Payne to ensure he understands what he must do to improve, and also ensure he continues to receive the support and education that he needs.”

The two-Test forward is one of rugby league’s most talented big men and has been named the Broncos’ best player the past two seasons.

A shining light of an otherwise historically bad 2020 season, Haas last week expressed his desire to help rejuvenate the side.

“The trust that Kev’s put in us; we know what talent we’ve got here and it’s a good chance for us to redeem ourselves and return to winning ways,” he said.

“You can see how the boys are training; it’s pretty competitive.

“The motivation here is to bring the club back to what it was and we have just left what happened last year right there and dusted.”

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Doctors lash WA’s hotel quarantine system as ‘voluntary’ after woman fled her accommodation

Doctors have described Western Australia’s hotel quarantine system as “voluntary” after a woman who posted on social media she would leave was later caught by police after fleeing her accommodation.

Jenny Maree D’ubios hadn’t completed mandatory 14-day quarantine after recently arriving from overseas when she absconded on Saturday morning.

WA police found her overnight at Rockingham Hospital, southwest of Perth.

She has been charged with failing to comply with a direction under the Emergency Management Act.

WA Acting Premier Roger Cook said D’ubios, who described her quarantine experience as “traumatic” on social media, had since returned a negative COVID-19 test result.

D’ubios on Facebook said she wanted a “non-toxic safe place to quarantine”, while also making several conspiracy theory claims.

Australian Medical Association WA president Dr Andrew Miller said the hotel quarantine system needed to be more “humane”, with fresh air available in order to prevent people from trying to flee.

He also wants a “transparent and open” explanation of how the state’s quarantine system is working following the incident.

“The quarantine seems to be a bit of a voluntary thing just now and the hospitals are overloaded,” Dr Miller told reporters on Sunday.

“We know there are going to be uncooperative people, we know mistakes are going to be made, but in my job we have to have systems in place that make up for that, otherwise people die.

“Now unfortunately that’s also the case with hotel quarantine … so there’s lots of work to be done because COVID is not taking the Christmas/New Year period off.”

D’ubios was refused bail in Perth Magistrates Court on Sunday, the ABC reported, and was remanded in custody until 4 January.

Mr Cook said the woman, who arrived in Perth from Madrid on 19 December, faced a maximum penalty of $50,000 or 12 months in prison.

While in hotel quarantine she had regular contact with an on-site medical, health and wellbeing team, he said, and was twice taken to Royal Perth Hospital for medical assistance.

Mr Cook said more than 20,000 travellers had been processed in the state’s hotel quarantine system without an incident until this point.

“Western Australia provided this woman with safe haven from a disease which has killed well over one million people worldwide,” he said.

“So the fact she would take advantage from that hospitality and … put herself and many other people at risk is quite unacceptable.”

Mr Cook also said the fact she had been initially assessed as “low-risk” would be reviewed, as well as the state’s current policy of not monitoring the social media accounts of people in hotel quarantine.

WA Health says the state recorded two new overseas-acquired cases – a man in his 40s and a woman in her 20s – in hotel quarantine on Sunday, following on from the six overseas-acquired coronavirus cases in hotel quarantine on Saturday.

Sunday’s two cases have taken number of active infections in the state to 13.

The total number of COVID-19 infections recorded in Western Australia is 855, with 832 people having recovered.

A total of 662 people visited coronavirus clinics in the state on Boxing Day.

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NSW travellers heading for Queensland warned as heavy rains lash northern areas

The NSW State Emergency Service has warned travellers heading to Queensland to keep safe and stay out of floodwater, as the Mid-North Coast and Northern Rivers region face continuing heavy rain.

NSW State Emergency Service Northern Zone spokesman David Rankin said it was a surprising turn of events, given the recent lifting of the NSW-Queensland border.

“Who could have imagined two weeks out from Christmas now the border has been opened and people are travelling through our great community it is raining to the extent that it is, with potential flooding putting travellers at risk.

“For tourists and locals alike, be mindful of where you are driving during these storms and rain. It is never a good idea to cross a flooded causeway.”


The NSW Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has issued a severe weather warning for the region, with heavy rain along the coast expected to ease later today, before worsening conditions tomorrow.

The BOM said rainfall could be increased by thunderstorms that could lead to dangerous flash flooding.

Senior meteorologist Adam Morgan said the rain had been heaviest overnight.

“Some of the highest totals we have seen have been since 9:00am yesterday have been 118 millimetres at Coffs Harbour Airport, 136 millimetres at Bowraville and 139 millimetres at Spicketts Creek.”

Emergency evacuation order at Sawtell

Mr Rankin said parts of Sawtell, south of Coffs Harbour could be inundated.

He said some residents with properties backing onto Middle Creek were being warned to move to higher ground.

“Our volunteers have been out doorknocking this morning six properties in Boronia Street that may need to evacuate if this weather continues as they are in low-lying areas,” he said.

Some homeowners in Coffs Harbour are sandbagging homes.

Jenny Snow in Coramba, north-west of Coffs Harbour, said her home got a lot of run-off during heavy rain.

Jenny Snow is a local resident preparing for the deluge.(ABC News)

“I am a bit nervous, but the trick is being prepared,” she said.

Mr Morgan said conditions would deteriorate over the weekend, with a flood watch for Northern NSW, including the Bellinger River.

“We are seeing an upper trough develop over the Coral Sea and that will come into towards south-east Queensland and NSW coast during Sunday and Monday, which is when we see another heavy burst of rain and it will be quite windy as well.”

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Schiff, Nadler Lash Out After Michael Flynn Pardon: ‘Crooked to the End’

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) lashed out following President Donald Trump’s full pardon of former national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn (retired).

“Donald Trump has repeatedly abused the pardon power to reward friends and protect those who covered up for him,” Schiff wrote on Twitter. “This time he pardons Michael Flynn, who lied to hide his dealings with the Russians. It’s no surprise that Trump would go out as he came in — Crooked to the end.”

In a separate statement, Nadler labeled Flynn’s pardon “undeserved, unprincipled, and one more stain on President Trump’s rapidly diminishing legacy.”

Earlier Wednesday, President Trump confirmed reports that he would grant a pardon to Flynn. In a tweet, the president congratulated his former top national security aide and his family. “I know you will now have a truly fantastic Thanksgiving!” he said.

Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to making false statements to the FBI regarding his contacts with then-Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak during President Trump’s transition. The longtime military man later withdrew his plea, after it was revealed the DOJ had withheld exculpatory evidence.

The pardon is the final step in a case defined by twists and turns over the last year after the Justice Department abruptly move to dismiss the case, insisting that Flynn should have never been interviewed by the FBI in the first place, only to have U.S. District Justice Emmet Sullivan refuse the request and appoint a former judge to argue against the federal government’s position.

In the months since, a three-judge panel’s decision ordering Sullivan to dismiss the case was overturned by the full appeals court, which sent the matter back to Sullivan. At a hearing in September, Flynn lawyer Sidney Powell told the judge that she had discussed the Flynn case with Trump but also said she did not want a pardon — presumably because she wanted him to be vindicated in the courts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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Strong Winds Lash Cayman Islands as Eta Regains Tropical Storm Strength

Strong winds battered palm trees in the Cayman Islands as Eta, which the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said had regained tropical-storm strength, approached on the morning of November 7. The NHC issued a Tropical Storm Warning for the Cayman Islands, parts of Cuba, northwest Bahamas, South Florida, and the Florida Keys. “Significant, life-threatening flash and river flooding will be possible in Cuba, along with landslides in areas of higher terrain,” the NHC said. “A tornado or two may occur Sunday evening and Sunday night over South Florida and the Keys,” they continued. The Cayman Islands, Jamaica, the Bahamas and South Florida were forecast to experience urban and flash flooding, the NHC said. Credit: @gonolesglp via Storyful

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Severe storms lash Queensland for a second day in a row

Large parts of New South Wales and Queensland have been pummelled by heavy hail and thunderstorms, with warnings of more wet weather to come after the “very dangerous” storms.

Late on Wednesday night, the Bureau of Meteorology issued severe thunderstorm warnings for Noosa and parts of Gympie and the Sunshine Coast council areas, with storm cells sweeping across the state set to bring damaging winds and heavy rainfall threatening flash flooding.

Other affected areas include Maroochydore, Nambour, Rainbow Beach, and areas to the west and northwest of Kingaroy.

Hail has pummelled parts of southeast Queensland this afternoon. (Supplied)
Queensland NSW severe storms October 28, 2020.
The dangerous storm cells are expected to stick around through until tomorrow. (Supplied)

Residents in northern NSW and south-east Queensland were buffeted throughout Wednesday by large hail stones, heavy rain and damaging winds.

A severe thunderstorm warning was in place for Caboolture, north of Brisbane and dangerous hail stones were lashing parts of Caloundra and Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast on Wednesday afternoon.

The Bureau of Meteorology earlier warned of an “immediate threat” from destructive winds of greater than 125km/h sweeping through those areas as several storm cells created havoc.

Energex was working overnight to restore power after more than 1500 homes in the Moreton Bay region, 1200 homes in the Sunshine Coast area, close to 2000 homes in the Logan City, Scenic Rim region, and in excess of 1000 properties in Brisbane were impacted by outages.

Queensland SES received more than 70 calls for assistance across the south-east.

Residents in Biddeston near Toowoomba had their yards blanketed with such a thick layer of hail it almost appeared as if it had snowed, while huge bolts of lightning were seen striking near homes in Greenbank.

A hail stone that fell at Gatton, in the the Lockyer Valley. (Supplied)
Lightning strikes a home at Greenbank. (Supplied)

Heavy rain has flooded roads.

Tuesday’s storms saw 72mm of rain fall across Brisbane in just a few hours.

“There’s the threat of damaging winds, flash flooding but also large hail,” meteorologist from Weatherzone Britt Butschke told

Queensland NSW severe storms October 28, 2020.
The dangerous storm cells have already wreaked havoc across the two states this afternoon. (Supplied)

The BoM advised on Wednesday night that the worst had passed for NSW after severe thunderstorms hit large areas in northern and western regions on Wednesday afternoon.

The BoM had warned the hazardous storm cells could bring large hailstones, damaging winds, heavy rain and flash flooding through until Thursday morning.

Warnings are now cancelled for people in Northern Rivers, Mid North Coast, Hunter, Central Tablelands, North West Slopes and Plains and Northern Tablelands forecast districts.

Heavy rain and hail the size of golf balls has been reported in Kootingal and Tamworth.

Hail almost appears to blanket grass in a Tamworth front yard like snow.
Hail almost appears to blanket grass in a Tamworth front yard like snow. (Facebook)

– Reported with Weatherzone and Bureau of Meteorology

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Wild storms lash south-east Queensland, leaving thousands without power

A person has been struck by a tree during wild storms which have brought destructive winds, lightning and heavy rain to south-east Queensland.

Critical care paramedics took the patient to Brisbane’s Princess Alexandra Hospital in a serious but stable condition, the Queensland Ambulance service said.

By Sunday evening, the severe storms had eased but the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) warned they were likely to reform.

“The situation is being closely monitored and further detailed warnings will be issued as necessary,” the BOM said.

As the clean up began, about 25,000 homes across the region were still without power.

Energex said power remained cut to about 4,440 homes in Brisbane, 8,700 homes in Ipswich and 11,075 homes in Redland.


Another 10,000 Ergon customers in regional Queensland were understood to have lost electricity.

At one point during the height of the storm, Energex was reporting about 33,000 homes were without power after 209 powerlines were brought down.

The SES has reminded people to prepare their properties for storm season.(Supplied: SES)

An Energex spokesman said the damage to the network was so bad some customers in Redland Bay, Mt Crosby and the Bay Islands may not have power restored until Monday.

In Chuwar, SES crews were busy helping clean to up trees and debris. The storm flung a trampoline into a power pole with so much force it bent the frame.

About 78,000 lightning strikes were recorded across south-east Queensland during the storms, and hailstones up to 5cm in diameter pummelled Brisbane’s western and southern suburbs.

Hailstones are seen next to a measuring tape, showing them to be about four or five centres across.
Hail has fallen across Brisbane, which is being hit by severe storms.(Supplied: Nick Hertzwig)

At Cornubia, in Logan, a tree was destroyed by lightning.

Resident Tori Bradley told the ABC the lightning strike had shaken her entire house.

“My ears are still ringing,” she said.

A tree recently struck by lighting is snapped with the trunk debarked and split and the branches lying nearby
Tori Bradley’s ears were left ringing when lightning struck this large tree and caused her house at Cornubia to shake.(Supplied: Tori Bradley)

Earlier on Sunday afternoon, the BOM had issued a severe storm warning for the Ipswich, Logan, Somerset, Scenic Rim, Lockyer Valley, Gold Coast, Redland City and Brisbane City council areas.


BOM meteorologist Michael Gray said Monday would be a drier day, but Tuesday was likely to bring another burst of wet weather anywhere between Townsville and the New South Wales border.

“There’s an upper low developing over New South Wales, which is going to bring more of those over the next few days,” he said.

A queue of vehicles sits behind trees and branches that have fallen across a two-lane highway
The eastbound lanes of the Warrego Highway have been blocked near Ipswich.(Supplied: Andrew Flett)

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Dally M debacle could force change to future votes as Raiders lash out at Wighton ‘disrespect’

That partly explains why the NRL was so angry when it learnt of The Daily Telegraph blunder. That anger was compounded by the fact the story that broke the embargo was critical of the voting system that saw Wighton knock off favourite Nathan Cleary for the game’s highest individual honour.

It’s the second time in as many years a News Corp publication has published the winner of the Dally M award before the announcement, with The Courier Mail releasing a story that referenced James Tedesco as the 2019 winner up to 30 minutes before the award was presented.

Deserved winner … Jack WightonCredit:Getty

Staff at The Daily Telegraph had to sign non-disclosure agreements so they could see results after midday to prepare a liftout for the next day’s newspaper. However, the NRL will not pursue legal action because the mistake was deemed to be the result of human error on behalf of a Telegraph staff member rather than an act of deliberate sabotage.

The mistake has overshadowed Wighton’s achievement, with coach Ricky Stuart telling the Herald on Tuesday: “I think it’s totally disrespectful to any award winner who has to put up with such negativity.

“This is a wonderful achievement and he’s done it through a lot of consistency and hard work. He’s a wonderful example of what happens when you commit and work hard. Winning a Dally M puts Jack into a very elite category.”


The NRL was so desperate for Wighton to attend the awards night, NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo had phoned Raiders boss Don Furner multiple times last week to strongly encourage the Raiders five-eighth to travel to Sydney from the nation’s capital.

Abdo even called Furner the morning after Canberra’s season-ending loss to the Storm last weekend, with Wighton later agreeing to leave the team’s end-of-season celebrations to attend the Dally M broadcast event.

Penrith were reluctant for Ivan and Nathan Cleary to attend during grand final week, knocking back a request from the NRL for the pair to undergo a COVID test in Redfern before attending the event.

Instead the Clearys were tested by the team doctor after Saturday night’s win against the Rabbitohs. Abdo and ARLC chairman Peter V’landys also had tests before being granted permission to be in close proximity to the players.

Wighton, who isn’t one of the five finalists for the RLPA Players’ Champion award voted by his peers, even admitted he thought Cleary would be crowned the game’s best on Monday night.

Canberra coach Ricky Stuart said the headlines surrounding Jack Wighton winning the Dally M ahead of Nathan Cleary were "disrespectful".

Canberra coach Ricky Stuart said the headlines surrounding Jack Wighton winning the Dally M ahead of Nathan Cleary were “disrespectful”.Credit:NRL Photos

But the Raiders said the latest award capped a brilliant two years for Wighton who had turned his career around since narrowly avoiding jail for his well-publicised drunken attack on bystanders in the nation’s capital.

“It’s absolute just reward for Jack and it’s no surprise certain sections of the Sydney media could not accept it, but we’re used to it down here,” Furner said.

“Jack’s career could have gone one way or the other a couple of years ago. But the turnaround has been there for all to see. He’s a country boy at heart and has the wonderful support of his partner Monisha.”

“He didn’t pick the results on Monday night. I remember there was the same conjecture from some members of the Sydney media when a Roosters forward [Waerea-Hargreaves] missed out the Clive Churchill. We actually find it disrespectful to Jack. Good on him. He absolutely deserves it.”

Wighton held on by one vote to win the Dally M from Parramatta’s Clint Gutherson with Cleary a further point behind.

The five-eighth was rested from the final regular-season game and quipped he would have been filthy with Stuart had he lost.

The Dally M judges

  • Andrew Johns
  • Andrew Ryan
  • Anthony Minichiello
  • Ben Ikin
  • Ben Galea
  • Billy Moore
  • Brett Kimmorley
  • Corey Parker
  • Dallas Johnson
  • Darren Lockyer
  • Dene Halatau
  • Gary Belcher
  • Greg Alexander
  • Jimmy Smith
  • Johnathan Thurston
  • Justin Hodges
  • Luke Lewis
  • Mark Geyer
  • Matt Elliott
  • Nathan Hindmarsh
  • Paul Whatuira
  • Petero Civoniceva
  • Ryan Girdler
  • Sam Thaiday
  • Scott Sattler
  • Steve Menzies
  • Steve Roach
  • Tony Puletua
  • Wally Lewis

“Sticky would have been barred,” Wighton said. “Never did I dream I’d be in this position wearing the medal around my neck.”

Wighton will enjoy some down time with his family before entering the Blues bubble on Friday, something he was never going to pass up.

“I’ve missed enough opportunities in my life through being silly and sometimes making the wrong decision,” Wighton said. “It wasn’t an option. I’m taking every opportunity I get from now on and not let one slip again.”


Wighton could not pick the winner of the Grand Final, said Melbourne and Cameron Smith were last Friday “on as different level” while Nathan Cleary and the Panthers were in outstanding touch.

“Nathan is exceptional, and it’s only when you’re sitting in there [at the Dally Ms] you get reminded how old he is, he’s 22, and to be leading a bunch of young men around like he is at the Panthers, and to be doing it with so much class, it’s unreal,” Wighton said. “He’s a superstar of the game and he has a massive future.”

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Heavy rain, winds to lash Tasmania as low-pressure system heads for state’s north-west

Wild weather is expected to hit Tasmania’s north and east in the next 24 hours, with heavy rain and high winds expected.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Debbie Tabor said it would be “wet, wet, wet”.

“We’ve got a low pressure system coming down from Victoria that moves near King Island tomorrow … [bringing] a lot of rain, particularly in the north and the east, as that low becomes almost stationary near the north-west corner of Tasmania.”

She said the north and east could expect between 30 and 60mm, with 10 to 12mm elsewhere and high falls of around 80 to 90mm in parts of the north-west and north-east.

Several flood warnings have already been issued for rivers around the state, and Ms Tabor said she expected more.


The bureau has warned there is a risk of flash flooding and river rises as soils and catchments were already very wet across much of the state’s north.

Strong winds of 50 to 60 kilometres per hour are also expected tomorrow, with gusts of 100kph.

Ms Tabor said it was unusual to have both heavy rain and strong winds.

“It’s a springtime pattern, so we do get these low pressure systems from the mainland moving over the state, that’s not uncommon, what is unusual is the combining of the heavy rainfall and the strong winds,” she said.

She said wet and windy weather would still be lingering on Friday, but should mostly clear up by the weekend.

“The rain continues [on Friday with] further good falls into the west and even another 10 to 20mm in the north-east,” she said.

“We’re not out of the woods on Friday, certainly on the weekend it’s improving.

The worst of the weather is expected on Thursday.(ABC News: Chris Gillette)

Mhairi Revie from the State Emergency Service (SES) warned motorists to be vigilant, especially in the busy school holiday period.

“It is likely that there will be water on and around roads, and drivers also need to be cautious of debris on roads,” she said.

The SES said people should:

  • Supervise children closely
  • Check that family and neighbours are aware of warnings
  • Manage pets and livestock
  • Secure outdoor items, including furniture and play equipment
  • Be prepared in case of power outages
  • Beware of damaged trees and powerlines and take care when driving

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