Channel 7 TV war, Cricket Australia, explosive twist, Australia vs India ODI

Channel 7’s war with Cricket Australia has intensified after the broadcaster went to Federal Court in its bid to prove it is being short-changed by the sport’s governing body.

The Daily Telegraph reports Seven wants access to emails and other communication between CA and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), believing CA altered its summer schedule because of India’s wishes.

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India and Australia are in the middle of a three-match one day international series, which started on Friday, and will play three T20s before a four-match Test series starting in Adelaide on December 17.

While Australia’s home Test series would normally start earlier in the summer, COVID-19 has caused havoc with the schedule, which CA said resulted in necessary changes being made.

White-ball games were originally scheduled to take place after Test series against Afghanistan and India, but the clash against Afghanistan was cancelled and the limited overs series against India were pushed forward to the start of the summer.

As reported by The Daily Telegraph, Seven has launched proceedings in the Federal Court as it attempts to argue these changes were the result of CA kowtowing to the all-powerful BCCI, rather than because of complications caused by coronavirus.

Channel 7 does not have the rights to broadcast limited overs matches, meaning the opening two ODIs against India have only been available to viewers with access to pay TV network Foxtel or subscriptions to sports streaming service Kayo.

Seven — which signed a $450 million deal in 2018 as it pinched the free-to-air TV rights from Channel 9 — is reportedly upset the change in schedule meant it was not given the opportunity to kick off the summer by showing the Test matches, which Foxtel also has broadcast rights for.

CA has regularly defended its position, confident it will deliver on its contractual obligations and provide the content promised to its broadcast partners.

Seven CEO James Warburton has previously called CA “the most incompetent administration I’ve ever worked with”, the bad blood stemming from concerns about the quality of players available for the BBL this summer.

As COVID-19 changed the sporting landscape across the globe, Seven chased a discounted deal and reports emerged the network might walk away from cricket altogether. Seven has already rejected a 20 per cent discount offered by CA to be spread over the course of the broadcast deal.

Huge audiences have tuned into Australia’s opening ODIs against India, as 585,000 viewers watched the second game in Sydney — making it the highest-rated one day match in subscription TV history, and the third most-watched sports event ever on subscription TV.

Fox Sports executive director Steve Crawley praised Cricket Australia’s scheduling in a statement on Monday, saying: “Beginning the summer with the white ball has proven to be a hugely successful formula for Cricket Australia.”

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How a twist of fate leads can result in sweet success

Every successful businessperson can tell you the decision that helped them turn the corner. For me, that moment came at a time when I was almost ready to turn my back on the business in which I’d invested years of emotion, time, and money. I established my company Twisted Healthy Treats 11 years ago after my husband and I came back home to Australia to start our family. We’d lived in England for 13 years and I had a wonderful job as a global project manager for the investment banking industry. I had a great job and I loved it but, as wonderful as it was, I never had a deep passion about what I was doing.

For as long as I can remember, what I really wanted to do was run a
business of my own. My father was, and still is, a serial entrepreneur and
businessman. When I was growing up, business was always part of my life. We’d
sit down at the dinner table and dad would talk to mum about what had happened
in business that day. From that, sprang my dream of having something like that
of my own.

We’d been back in Australia for about 18 months when one day I wanted to
get my daughter a treat on a hot summer afternoon. She was just a toddler and I
wanted something delicious, but I also wanted something healthy, too. I very
clearly remember walking down the aisle in the supermarket to the freezer aisle
and looking in vain for something I could give.

It was at that moment that I realised there was quite a wide space in
the Australian market for a product that could fit that bill, a healthy, zero
sugar, nutritious treat that kids, and maybe adults, would love. I’d seen
products like that in the United States when we’d been there on holiday. My
university degree is in food technology and at that moment I felt that the
strands of my life had finally started to come together. This was my business
idea and I set out to make it a reality.

I developed our first product, the twisted Healthy Treat yogurt. Our
business model was based on the Boost Juice concept pioneered by another
successful entrepreneur Janine Allis, who I admire greatly. I wanted to emulate
her success and I established a network of stores across the country.

But it wasn’t a success. I lost lots of money. Some stores were making
money, but others were losing money, a lot of money. The silver lining in that
for us was that we noticed that lots of customers liked to take the products
home to eat later as a dessert.

That gave us the idea for our first important transition in the
business. We converted a room behind our store in Bondi beach to a cold room
where we started to make the yogurt ourselves. It was basic but it passed all
the requirements for NSW Food and other authorities and we were able to make up
tubs of yogurt in the back of the shop. From that we began supplying the Harris
Farm chain of grocery stores across Sydney, giving the business a springboard
to another new direction.

As I said earlier, my inspiration for Twisted health treats came from a visit to the supermarket aisle. My best advice to other businesspeople would be to build a business you believe in and are passionate about.

Wellness has always been a part of our focus but at the same time I’m
not a mother who says you can’t have treats, or you can’t have chocolate, or
you can’t have ice cream. I’m someone who believes in balance. And it is fun to
share a frozen treat with your kids. But I also believe that you should be able
to do that without taking a toll on your health. And that is the reason I am in

Cass Spies, Founder, Twisted Healthy Treats

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South Australia’s coronavirus cluster probe has taken another twist — here’s what we know

South Australia’s coronavirus cluster remains a matter of intense investigation, as police, health authorities and the SA Government try to determine how the virus escaped quarantine.

The story has so far centred around Peppers medi-hotel and a suburban pizza bar.

Twenty-nine cases have now been included in the cluster, including two people initially thought to have contracted COVID-19 overseas, but later confirmed to have caught it while in quarantine.

Most of the cases so far are close contacts of a cleaner and two security guards at the hotel contracted the virus.

Until today, the cluster was believed to have started when the cleaner contracted and then passed on the virus.

But the story took another twist.

What do we know about the source?

For most of the past fortnight, authorities believed that a cleaner had picked up the virus up from a hard surface, before spreading it to two security guards at the hotel and more than a dozen members of her family.

But SA’s Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier today said that theory had changed after authorities scrutinised CCTV to determine “who was on what floor at what time”.

The Parafield cluster originated at the Peppers Waymouth Hotel, in Adelaide’s CBD.(ABC News: Brant Cumming)

Professor Spurrier said it was now believed one of the security guards, not the cleaner, may have been the first person to contract it within the hotel.

“At this stage we will have some working hypotheses about how we think both that initial security guard and then the couple who were the travellers in a room, became infected.

“But we may never be able to say 100 per cent because, of course, we’re reliant on going back to the history and looking at that footage.”

Did staff do anything wrong?

Police have looked over about 500 hours of CCTV vision from Peppers, and have provided still images to SA Health.

Professor Spurrier said the images showed that “nobody was in the wrong place at the wrong time” and that “no significant breaches” had been identified.

A policeman wearing a mask and cap stands behind a post
Police officers were outside Peppers Waymouth Hotel in Adelaide’s CBD on Tuesday afternoon.(ABC News: Michael Clements)

“All staff have worked in those hotels, really doing the absolute utmost, and really working to a very high standard,” she said.

“In addition to the CCTV footage, we’ve had to go through detailed staff lists and roster lists to see who was where at particular times.

What about the link to the pizza bar?

Authorities initially thought a Spanish national who contracted the virus had caught it after ordering take away from the Woodville Pizza Bar.

But they later accused the man of lying — police said he instead worked at the pizza bar alongside a co-worker who was one of the Peppers hotel security guards who had tested positive.

It is unclear whether that person is the same security guard as the one identified by Professor Spurrier today as the likely “index case”.

A police car sits outside of the Woodville Pizza Bar in Adelaide
One of the coronavirus cases worked at the Woodville Pizza Bar.(ABC News: Brant Cumming)

Adding to the confusion, the Spanish national himself worked a second job in the kitchen of another of Adelaide’s medi-hotels — the Stamford Plaza.

While the man — who remains in hotel quarantine — has disputed information provided by authorities as “not fair” and inaccurate, SA Police Commissioner Grant Stevens today rejected that.

“I don’t think that there’s sufficient clarity about what he may be referring to,” he said.

Police have not given any details about the man’s motives.

What’s the current situation with the cluster?

Of the 29 active cases, one is in hospital in a stable condition, and about 4,300 people are in quarantine.

SA Premier Steven Marshall today announced urgent plans to overhaul the state’s medi-hotel system.

Those changes include moving all people who test positive to coronavirus into a separate medical facility, managed by SA Police and protective security officers.

Mr Marshall said staff working at that medical facility will not be allowed to work in any other high-risk environments.

South Australia will also ask National Cabinet to approve a new restriction on returning Australian travellers, which would prevent them flying to SA unless they have recorded a negative COVID-19 test first.

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Another twist in US election as Donald Trump stokes baseless fears of voter fraud

The unpredictable and chaotic US presidential election is approaching a fitting climax with a small number of crucial swing states holding the key to victory for Donald Trump or Joe Biden.

Both Mr Biden and Mr Trump clung to their chances of victory as they called an end to campaigning on Wednesday evening (AEDT).

However, by early on Thursday morning (AEDT) Mr Biden appeared to be taking a slim lead in the pivotal states of Wisconsin and Michigan. 

We expect and we believe we have already won Wisconsin,” Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon told reporters. 

“We expect to win Michigan. We expect the final results to be today.”

As Mr Biden’s campaign started to talk up his chances of victory, Mr Trump lashed out on Twitter – stoking fears that he will try to de-legitimise the result if he loses. 

“Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key states,” he wrote. 

“Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted. Very strange.”

Earlier, in a White House press conference, Mr Trump talked up his chances of victory while lashing out with baseless claims of voter fraud.

“This is a fraud on the American public,” the president said during his speech.

“This is an embarrassment to our country.”

The Biden campaign said Mr Trump’s comments were a “naked effort to take away the democratic rights of American citizens”.

“It was unprecedented because never before in our history has a president of the United States sought to strip Americans of their voice in a national election,” the Biden campaign said in a statement. 

“And it was incorrect because it will not happen. The counting will not stop. It will continue until every duly cast vote is counted.”

Adding to the tension was confusion over the reporting of key results by US media.

After polls closed Tuesday, Mr Trump and Mr Biden traded state for state – Mr Trump retaining the giant prizes of Florida and Texas, while Mr Biden kept Virginia and easily won New Hampshire, where Hillary Clinton only just eked out victory four years ago in her eventual loss to Mr Trump.

But as both sides held on to states they were expected to win, the number of remaining states yet to declare dwindled, pointing to an ever-tighter end game and growing potential for disputes to end up in the courts.

At times, US media organisations that analyse the data and pronounce winners added to the sense of uncertainty.

There was huge buzz over Fox News’ announcement that Mr Biden had won a crucial victory in the previously Trump-held state of Arizona.

However, It was hours before other US media were prepared to make the same call, although Mr Biden was eventually declared the consensus winner.

What seemed likely was that Americans would at least not see a landslide that Democrats had dreamed they might pull off if they could open with a win in Florida.

Instead, analysts said the tit-for-tat victories in states across the huge country could finally whittle down a final fight over just a handful of swing states – especially Pennsylvania.

However, Pennsylvania and Georgia were among the states where vote counting was going more slowly, complicated this year by the huge number of mail-in ballots.

Additional reporting by AFP

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How South Sydney Rabbitohs missed out on Penrith Panthers youngster Jarome Luai in twist of fate that benefited Cody Walker

“Mark Ellison has loved Jarome’s footy and backed it up with a few calls: ‘Can we get Luai?’

“Richo and Mark probably rang me about five or six times combined. Richo was really hot to trot.”

Penrith, however, knew Luai was a keeper. When Mather raised Souths’ interest with former Panthers supremo Phil Gould, the message was clear: Don’t even entertain the thought of going elsewhere, we have big plans for him.

And so it has come to pass. Luai has turned into every bit the player the Panthers and Rabbitohs predicted he would become. The livewire five-eighth has brought out the best in not only himself but great mate and halves partner Nathan Cleary, who is widely tipped to take out the Dally M Medal.

Things have also worked out for Walker. A late bloomer who only made his NRL debut at the age of 26, Walker has been making up for lost time. His sublime form during the past six weeks has shot him back into State of Origin calculations.

It appears Walker’s past and future are inextricably linked to the Penrith halves. Walker made his Blues debut alongside Cleary and will face him and Luai on the weekend with a view to reuniting with the Penrith halfback at Origin level.

The Rabbitohs wanted Jahrome Luai (main), but staying at Penrith has worked out for him and his opposite number, Cody Walker (inset).Credit:NRL Photos, Getty

Luai cheekily suggested this week that it was time for the younger Panthers halves to show up their more season counterparts.

“We’ll have to wait and see,” Walker said with a grin when told about the comments. “I’m not into personal battles, it’s just about us going out there and doing the job. If we focus on one individual, the other side of the field will hurt you.

“We understand that they’ve got strike all over the park. Jarome Luai is in career-best form. He’s had a fantastic year and you’ve also got Stephen Crichton on that left edge, on the other side [Liam] Martin and Brent Naden and Nathan Cleary.

“If you focus on one particular area of their attack or their game, you miss out on stopping the other guys in their team.”

Walker is also acutely aware what Cleary is capable of.

“He’s obviously got a great kicking game, he’s got great energy,” Walker said. “He’s a great defender, he’s been a great leader of their side this year. He’s playing on the ball more than he has in previous years, that’s a big indicator to us where the ball is going to go.

“Off the field, he’s a great guy. I roomed with him in Origin. I only played one game with him – I don’t really know his game inside out, but he’s a great player. He’s had a fantastic year.”

So too has Luai, who never saw himself playing anywhere but at the foot of the mountains.

“The boy just loves the Penrith badge and I knew he didn’t want to be anywhere else,” Mather said.


“Jarome was very patient when James Maloney was there, he took on everything in the right way.

“Not once did he ever say he wanted to look elsewhere ever. He was very patient.

“He understood the process he had to go through to get to where he is now.”

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Joseph Suaalii saga takes twist as Sydney Roosters emerge as shock contender for South Sydney Rabbitohs teen star

Under the NRL rules, players are prohibited from making their first-grade debut until they are 18, meaning Suaalii wouldn’t be eligible until August 1 next year.

However, ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys has indicated the rule could be altered to ensure one of Australia’s most exciting young footballers isn’t lost to the code.


That change could now potentially benefit the Roosters, who could add Suaalii to an already star-studded backline if they can offload a player to free up the salary cap space required.

Given James Tedesco is considered the best fullback in the game – he is the reigning Dally M medalist and is also the NSW and Australian custodian – Suaalii could expect to begin his first-grade career on the wing of coach Trent Robinson’s side.

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Biden’s green power play adds a new twist to the Cold War with China

Mr Biden says his aim is to bring “global economic outlaws” to heel. Almost in the same breath he says the purpose of the border tax is to “hold China accountable”.

“We can no longer separate trade policy from our climate objectives. We must use every tool of American foreign policy to push the rest of the world,” says the Democrat text. The Sino-Western Cold War is about to take on a very different character.

Mr Biden’s original “build back better” manifesto was $US1.7 trillion over 10 years. It is now $US2 trillion over four years. The sedate waltz is skipping into a fast tarantella.

New age Gosplan, or masterpiece?

All talk of a fracking ban has been dropped in the final text, wisely if the Democrats wish to win the battleground states of Ohio and Pennsylvania, where the Utica-Marcellus shale basin has fired a rust-bowl revival. Mr Biden’s core advisers are Obama veterans who oversaw America’s transformation from the world’s biggest energy importer into an oil and gas hyperpower. They are proud of it.

There will be tougher methane rules and no new permits on federal land but otherwise natural gas will be cosseted as a post-coal “bridge fuel”. Helima Croft, from RBC, says support for gas will be carried out quietly “under the radar”. Exports of US liquefied natural gas (LNG) will remain a foreign policy tool, chiefly to break Gazprom’s pricing power in Europe.

Gas companies have discovered to their delight that they might do nicely under a president Biden after all. “The plan is a masterpiece,” says LNG pioneer Charif Souki.

Oil will fare less well. The Democrats will not attack it. They let it wither on the vine. America will be electrified instead with up to 200,000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines along existing rail and highway routes, with 500,000 charging stations for electric cars by 2030.

What could have been set in motion along free market principles will instead be structured with greater clumsiness by the central planners if Biden wins. What is clear is that the global energy order may soon be unrecognisable.

A proto-Manhattan Project will seek to drive down the cost of grid-scale energy storage tenfold. There will be a push for fuel cells in trucking, and synthetic green fuel for aviation.

Mr Biden’s new age Gosplan is not to my taste. Should the Democrats be pledging to install 500 million solar panels and 60,000 wind turbines over the next four years? Is such dirigiste planning the American way?

The laissez-faire way is to set a carbon price that ratchets up predictably, letting Schumpeterian competition find its own answers. All former chairmen of the Federal Reserve and a cast of economists of all ideological stripes have backed HR 763, a bipartisan House bill for a carbon tax and dividend. It starts at $US15 a tonne and ratchets up $US10 every year until CO2 emissions are almost eliminated. The money raised is rotated back into people’s pockets. The higher the carbon price, the bigger the cheque, and the poor do best.

Joe Biden with Xi Jinping in 2015: The Sino-Western Cold War is about to take on a very different character.Credit:AP

Needless to say, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s variant in Europe aims to siphon off its carbon tax to fund the Commission’s apparatus. The EU seems to have learnt little from the gilets jaunes and the sociology of revolt.

America’s Republicans have only themselves to blame for abandoning the field over the last four years. What could have been set in motion along free market principles will instead be structured with greater clumsiness by the central planners if Mr Biden wins.

What is clear is that the global energy order may soon be unrecognisable. Climate denialism in the White House has given political cover to coal burners and tree slashers everywhere, whether Mr Xi’s China or Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro. “Trump has been holding back the dam. If the US switches sides, it changes everything,” said Kingsmill Bond from Carbon Tracker.

Silk Road an ecological dead-end


The cost of abusing the global commons will become punitive for a lot of countries, but Mr Biden’s howitzer is aimed at Xi Jinping. China released more CO2 and methane last year than the US, the EU and Japan combined, and is adding an extra coal plant every two weeks in breach of promises.

Greenpeace says Beijing has let rip even since the warnings from UN scientists that CO2 danger thresholds are lower than originally thought and that we have just a decade to head off runaway global warming. China currently has 94GW of coal power in development, on top of 30GW added last year.

Mr Biden specifically accuses the Xi regime of using the Silk Road to finance “billions of dollars of dirty fossil fuel energy projects across Asia and beyond”, mostly in places where it would already be cheaper to build renewables.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance says the levelled cost of utility-scale solar has already dropped, in parts of Asia and the Middle East, below the running costs of existing coal plants. The Silk Road is an ecological dead-end.

The prospect of parallel carbon border taxes in the world’s two biggest markets makes this a dangerous game for China. Xi Jinping must calculate that the economic and commercial costs of pushing an obsolete agenda may soon be much greater than any conceivable gain.

China would surely do better to double down on its own formidable leadership across swathes of green technology. If he does not, the world trading system may soon become a very hostile place.

The Daily Telegraph, London

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