April, 2019

Sydney slip gives Victory title sniff … if City do them a Friday night favour

Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat settling into his seat at AAMI Park and barracking for Melbourne City?
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Don’t bet against it, particularly this Friday night when Victory’s cross-town rivals go head-to-head with league leaders Sydney FC.

Victory’s excellent performance in Gosford on Sunday, when goals from Besart Berisha, James Troisi and Berisha again in stoppage time gave Muscat’s men a 3-0 win, lifted them to within eight points of the Sky Blues.

The latter crashed for the first time this season going down 1-0 to their own city rivals, Western Sydney,  that loss giving the chasing pack the merest sniff that they might be able to close the gap.

Sydney has 47 points to Victory’s 39, with City third on 30, just ahead of Brisbane on goal difference, with Perth Glory two points back on 28, and  West Sydney, with 24,  rounding out the top six spots on the table.

Victory’s 3-0  scoreline didn’t flatter the visitors, who showed a spring in their step that was distinctly lacking just six days earlier when they had laboured to a goalless draw with Newcastle in the Hunter Valley.

City were themselves impressive when they flogged Wellington 5-1 on Saturday night in New Zealand and now that they have regained  their scoring touch they will fancy their chances of inflicting more misery on Sydney, a team they have yet to lose to this season  having drawn with them at the Olympic Stadium in December and beaten in the FFA Cup final in November.

“Not sure if I will be barracking for City but you would have to say they will give themselves a good chance of beating Sydney on Friday,” Muscat said  on Monday.

“If they take three points off them on the Friday and we beat Adelaide on the Saturday, then the gap is down to five.

“And the following week we go up there to play Sydney. Win that and the gap would be two points and anything might happen.”

There are, of course, a lot of ifs and buts in that scenario, but Sydney’s loss to the Wanderers and Victory’s recovery from its hiccup on Monday night at least provides some hope that there might be a final twist in the race for the Premier’s Plate.

Muscat was delighted with the effort of his team which could, had it taken all of its chances, had the game put to bed at the interval.

Instead it only  led through Berisha’s first-half goal and could not feel completely comfortable  until Troisi added a second.

The latter has been in good form all season and is now adding regular goals to the creativity he has shown in midfield.

Troisi was a member of the Socceroos Asian Cup-winning squad – he scored the extra time winner in the final – and is pressing hard for a recall to Ange Postecoglou’s squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers and the Confederations Cup.

“It was a very good performance by us. The Mariners were in good form and were confident but I thought we took control early and played well,” Muscat said.

“I thought we were very good physically and in the way we maintained our shape and structure, and our mentality was right for this game. When you combine all those things you get a really good performance like this.

“Troisi was very good without the ball as well as with it, and he is now adding that consistency to his game. I think there is still improvement to come from him.”

Victory defender Jason Geria said the players were pleased to have put that lacklustre effort against the Jets behind them.

“Our main focus was improving on our performance last week … this was a very positive [result] going into this weekend.

“We needed Sydney to drop points, and we need to focus on ourselves, it’s a cliche but it’s the truth. Berisha is getting back into scoring goals, which we love,” he said of the team’s talismanic striker, whose Sunday afternoon brace brought his tally to 16 goals for the season after 20 rounds.

Muscat continues to be linked with the vacant job at stricken Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers, who are also said to be targeting Craig Moore, his former Socceroo teammate and ex Rangers captain.

Muscat looked to deflect attention from  the speculation on Saturday when he straight-batted inquiries, insisting that he had not been contacted by the Glasgow club.

That did not, however, stop one of Scotland’s  biggest media outlets, the Daily Record, seizing on his comments to suggest that he had yet to rule himself out despite the fact that he was happy in Melbourne.

Geria, put on the spot about his coach’s abilities, was enthusiastic about the role Muscat has had on his career.

“For me he has been brilliant. He has really blossomed in that head coach role.”

Asked if he thought Muscat might go overseas at some point, Geria said: “He has all the qualities,” stressing, however,  that his boss would only go when it was the right time for him.

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Angelina Jolie cries as she speaks about ‘difficult’ split from Brad Pitt

Angelina Jolie speaking to BBC World News’ Yalda Hakim in Cambodia. Photo: BBCThey went through a messy split and custody battle, but Angelina Jolie seems to be feeling more amicable towards her soon-to-be ex-husband, Brad Pitt.
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Speaking for the first time about their pending divorce to BBC World News’ Yalda Hakim in Cambodia, the actor, 41, was asked if she would like to comment about “an incident” that occurred in her marriage that led to their separation.

Promoting her fourth feature as director, First they killed my Father, she became emotional before responding: “I don’t want to say very much about that, except to say it was a very difficult time and…and we are a family and we will always be a family, and we will get through this time and hopefully be a stronger family for it.”

Pitt, 53, was investigated by the FBI over child abuse allegations involving their son, Maddox, that allegedly happened on a private plane, but he was later cleared.

The pair announced their shock split last September after 12 years together. They were married for two years. Jolie requested full custody, while Pitt requested joint custody of their six children: Maddox, 15, Pax, 13, Zahara, 11, Shiloh, 10, and twins Knox and Vivienne, 8.

When asked how she was coping, the Oscar winner said she was focusing her efforts on their children and hinted their custody battle might be nearing an end.

“Many people find themselves in this situation. My family…we’ve all being through a difficult time,” she started out.

“My focus is my children, our children, and my focus is finding this way through and as I said we are and forever will be a family and so that is my, that is how I am coping.

“I am coping with finding a way through to make sure that this somehow makes us stronger and closer.”

When she first wakes in the morning, Jolie said she just wants to “get through the day – it’s been a difficult few months”.

Elaborating further she gave a glimpse into life as a single mother taking care of six children.

“Right now I’m going through a moment when just everybody’s in my room. Two dogs, two hamsters and two children at the moment. It’s wonderful…But usually I just wake up trying to figure out who’s going to get dog out, who’s going to start the pancakes and did anybody brush their teeth,” she laughed again.

In five years’ time, she hopes her children (who will all be in their teens by then) will be away from the glare of the spotlight and enjoying the world.

“In five years’ time I would like to be travelling around the world visiting my children hoping that they’re just happy and doing really interesting things, and I imagine in many different parts of the world, and I’ll be supporting them.

“Everything I do I hope is that I represent something, and I represent the right things to my children, and give them the right sense of what they’re capable of, and the world as it should be seen. Not through the prism of Hollywood or through a certain kind of life, but really take them into the world, where they have a really good sense and become rounded people.”

Early last month, the estranged pair released a joint statement in which they agreed to seal all court documents pertaining to their divorce in order to protect their children.

“The parties and their counsel have signed agreements to preserve the privacy rights of their children and family by keeping all court documents confidential and engaging a private judge to make any necessary legal decisions and to facilitate the expeditious resolution of any remaining issues. The parents are committed to act as a united front to effectuate recovery and reunification,” the statement read.

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Esperance’s pre-polling opens with confusion

Regular local Liberal volunteers Jo and Jean Starcevich with Nationals volunteers Henry Webb and Colin de Grussa.Liberaland Nationalvolunteerswere told to pack up camp and move back to the street front, after allegedly disturbing local detectives as pre-polling places opened on Monday.
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Regular local Liberal volunteers Jo and Jean Starcevich were handing out how to vote cards at the Esperance Court House’s pre-polling station, and were surprised when a local electoral officer told them and two Nationals volunteersto move on.

According to the Electoral Commission regulation, volunteers atpre-polling stations arerequired to maintain asix-metre boundary from the location where voters cast their ballots.

Ms Starcevich said at previous elections when the polling was held at the Court Housethey were allowed to stand inside the building –maintaining six metres from the ballot box rather than the building itself.

However, according to the volunteer, the local electoralofficer said this wasn’t the case.

Nationals volunteer and upper house candidate for the agricultural region Colin de Grussa saidit seemed each electoralofficerinterpreted rules surrounding localpolling stations differently.

Mr de Grussa said both him and Nationals volunteer Henry Webb had attended a briefing through theElectoral Commission earlier in the year and fully understood the ruling aroundproximity to the polling station.

He also stated thatother than campaign signs and banners for the candidates there was no indication the Court House was a pre-polling location.

The only sign the Electoral Commission had up was small, on the door of the Court House and was put up by Mr de Grussa.

A spokesperson for the Electoral Commission said they understood there were concerns about noise affecting neighbouring tenancies.

“We also understand that campaign workers are still able to hand out ballot material and are doing so,” a spokesperson stated.

Esperance Police senior sergeant Richard Moore said no official move on notices were issuedto local volunteers and declined further comment on the matter.

More than 30 early voting centres are open throughout the state to meet elector demand, which is expected to be high.

A list of locations is available on the Electoral Commission’s website 梧桐夜网elections.wa.gov419论坛or for the Esperance region –located onthe map below.

Postal vote applications can also be lodged directly via the website, with application forms also available at local post offices.

Assistance for electors is available via the elections helpline 13 63 06.

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‘Know where your kids are’: Firebugs light up multiple Illawarra blazes

Hooka CreekFirebugs have lit up multiple sites across the Illawarra, prompting authorities to warnparents:“know where your children are”.
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Much of Berkeley was shrouded in smoke Monday afternoon, as fire burnt throughmore than an acre of scrub near Fred Finch Park, by Hooka Creek.

Fire and Rescue NSW werecalled to the siteabout 1.15pm.

With the fire in difficult-to-reach terrain,firefighters went in on foot and used pumped creek water to extinguish the blaze over several hours.

“We’ve had a lot of rain thelast week, so due to thetracks being too wet, we’re not going to take the risk of bogging a [tank],” Warrawong station officer Jason Harvey told the Mercury.

“Everything is very green in there, hence thefire isstatic and there’sno threat to property–it’s just in an awkward spot for firefighters.”

Though the cause of the blaze remainsunder investigation, reports of children in the area, and repeated previous call-outs leave firefighters in no doubt as to the question of arson.

“We do come into this area quite frequently,” Mr Harvey said. “It has good security, the gates are locked quite regularly, but children on their pushbikes and those walking still manage to get in here and start fires … I’d say weekly.

“During the school holidays, it’s daily. it ties up a lot of resources.

“It comes down to supervision, and knowing where your children are and what they’re doing. That could prevent resources like this from being tied up.”

A Thirroul tanker and a Warrawong pumper attended Monday afternoon’s blaze.

It followed a fire at the bottom of a cliff at Kendalls Beach, Kiama, Monday morning.Homes on Gwinganna Avenue were left briefly exposed before the fire was extinguished.

Another blaze –also believed to be the result of arson – drew firefighters to Robertson Street at Port Kemba for much of the day on Sunday.

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‘Traffic already a major worry’

THE key access road into a proposed 428-lot residential sub-division in Thurgoona Park had the potential to provide further traffic headachesin the area.
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The claim was made by Bridget O’Connor from the Thurgoona Community Action Group during a packed community forum conducted by Albury Council on Monday night.

“This road will funnel all traffic into central Thurgoona which is already congested,”she said.

“We feel there is insufficient planning and infrastructure in place before the development starts.

“No master-plan exists for central Thurgoona and no measures are in place to cope with the increase in traffic and safety issues along Table Top Road and Thurgoona Drive.”

Developer Peter Bowen Homes has earmarked the road into the sub-division from Table Top Road be built about 150 metres south of the Ettamogah Road intersection near the Kinross Woolshed Hotel.

It will be the first major piece of infrastructure built as part of the project which is expected to be presented to Albury Council for approval in late March.

A temporary access road from Kerr Road to be created during the construction phase was also the subject of strong objection from Mrs O’Connor, who wished to see Kerr Road be further extended as a higher priority.

Mr Bowen was present at the forum, but his planning consultant, David Hunter from Habitat Planning, said former land owners, the Albury-Wodonga Corporation, had always identified a road be built in the area.

Mr Hunter said the preferred alignment had been settled on in consultation with NSW Crown Lands Department.

Another option further north had been ruled out because it crossed a lower lying section of Eight Mile Creek and a billabong which was a known habitat of the Sloane’s Froglet.

“We also avoid some of the larger trees,”Mr Hunter said.

Also, engineers had been consulted in the decision to install culverts under the road to mitigate flood concerns.

But another speaker, Arthur Latta, said a bridge was a better option.

The average lot size within the development would be 650 square metres and open space provision had been increased to 2.65 hectares since the initial application was lodged 12 months ago.

Eight old growth trees have also been earmarked for removal under the proposal.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.