Biff’s not back: NRL warns players still face bans for punching

Posted April 20th, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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The NRL is adamant it has not “left the door open” for a proliferation of punching to return to the game after two players were fined rather than suspended for offences in round one under a shake-up to the judiciary system.
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Melbourne’s Will Chambers and Canberra’s Joseph Leilua were fined $1100 and $1350 respectively after pleading guilty to grade one contrary conduct charges from the weekend.

They were the first players to be hit in the hip pocket since the off-season judiciary revamp, which has been introduced as a way of players avoiding suspension for minor offences.

Former Test forward Anthony Watmough described Chambers’ attack from behind on Canterbury’s Sam Kasiano as an attempted “dog shot” but while the Storm centre was sent to the sin bin at Belmore Sportsground he escaped a ban. Leilua’s punch on North Queensland’s Gavin Cooper, meanwhile, was missed altogether by referees in Townsville, which irritated the veteran Cowboys forward.

Bulldogs front-rower Aiden Tolman said on Monday that the changes to the penalty system potentially left the game vulnerable to more punching if players knew they would only be fined and not suspended.

“The fine (for minor offences) I suppose was brought around after Issac Luke missed the (2014) grand final,” Tolman said.

“For players like that to miss a grand final for a grade one is a pretty big thing. They banned the punching for a reason and I suppose they’ll probably bring in another rule sooner or later to stop the punching coming back. They might get a grade two or they might not be able to pay the fine. I’m not too sure what they’ll do around that.

“I think it’s to stop guys who didn’t deserve the week in a big game to be able to pay the fine and get out. But I suppose it does leave the door open for those sort of things as well.”

The NRL insisted on Monday that its crackdown on punching – enforced since 2013 in a season that was marked by a notorious State of Origin altercation between Paul Gallen and Nate Myles – remained in place, and if anything had been strengthened.

“The game’s stance is clear – punching will not be tolerated. This has not changed and will not change,” an NRL spokesman said.

“In fact, the penalty for forcefully punching another player has increased, rather than decreased.

“If a player forcefully strikes a player, he can be charged with striking, which carries a 200-point base penalty. The base penalty for striking was 125 points in 2016.

“The sin bin also remains a strong deterrent for any team or player. Losing a player for 10 minutes can have an enormous impact on a team.”

Canterbury winger Brett Morris said the Chambers punch from behind was a bad look for the game.

“It was banned for a reason,” Morris said.

“It’s not a good sight (for) the game. While there are a lot of old-school blokes that don’t mind it, it’s not something you want the kids to see and try and repeat. It’s a shame it happened. It’s happened now and we can get over it.”

Meanwhile, Manly are staring at a further blow after a round-one defeat to Parramatta on Sunday, with forwards Martin Taupau and Addin Fonua-Blake facing sanctions for shoulder charges.

Both Taupau, who was the Sea Eagles’ enforcer-in-chief against the Eels, and Fonua-Blake stand to be rubbed out for three matches if they challenge the charges and lose and will be suspended for two games with early guilty pleas. Manly have until midday on Tuesday to make a decision. Compounding Manly’s early-season problems is a suspected fractured eye socket suffered by another prop, Lloyd Perrett.

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

Simona may not face life ban for betting after fronting NRL

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Tim Simona may escape a life ban from the sport for betting on matches after meeting with the NRL on Monday in an attempt to salvage what is left of his rugby league career.
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Simona still will be deregistered from the NRL, however Fairfax Media understands the door for a return to the game might not be shut completely with the governing body considering allowing him to apply for registration after a suspension of between two to four years.

Fairfax Media understands Simona made admissions about his gambling in a three-hour meeting at League Central on Monday, which was attended by his manager Isaac Moses and Rugby League Players Association boss Ian Prendergast.

It is understood the 25-year-old Simona opened up on his gambling addiction that has left him battling financially for some time, placing enormous pressure and stress that led to his decision to bet on rugby league.

Simona met with NRL integrity unit chief investigator Karyn Murphy, who asked the Tigers centre to provide further written information over the next few days to support his case.

Murphy will compile a report into the investigation and provide it to NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg and new chief operating officer Nick Weeks to make the final call on a punishment either later in the week or early next week.

The NRL had originally earmarked a life ban as the suitable sanction given the strength of the evidence they had compiled after a tip off from Simona’s former friend last year.

However the governing body has slightly softened its stance after meeting with Simona and is now weighing up whether to enforce an indefinite deregistration of between two to four years.

The NRL would require Simona to undergo education and prove he has overcome his gambling issues before even considering allowing him to return to the sport.

Given his age, an indefinite deregistration would still provide him the opportunity to return to the sport for a number of years.

The NRL has a gentleman’s agreement in place with the English Super League that will see both competitions enforce any suspensions imposed.

The Australian Rugby Union recently stepped in to stop Ben Barba from playing in the Brisbane Tens, however there was little they could do about him taking up a deal with Toulon.

It looks likely overseas rugby union would be the logical step for Simona, allowing him a platform to continue his sporting career and rehabilitation.

His contract termination will solve the Tigers’ salary cap problem and won’t require the club to shed a player given his contract will be taken off the books for 2017.

Simona faced allegations that he arranged bets to be placed on opposition players he was marking to score tries against the Wests Tigers last season.

It is believed the alleged betting activity was made up of numerous minor bets, revolving around the opposition tryscorers in Tigers matches in 2016.

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

F-35A Joint Strike Fighter is introduced to the Hunter at RAAF Base Amberley

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In sight but no sound: first look at F-35As bound for Hunter | photos, video PROUD PILOTS: Wing Commander Andrew Jackson and Squadron Leader David Bell in front of Wing Commander Jackson’s F-35A Joint Strike Fighter “001”. Pictures: Max Mason-Hubers
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COMBAT READY: Williamtown RAAF Commander Air Combat Group, Zed Robertson, describes the F35-A to a mixed Queensland and Hunter audience at Amberley.

Secuirty patrol one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

MPs Kate Washington, Meryl Swanson, Sharon Claydon and Tim Crakanthorp and Commander Air Combat Group Williamtown Zed Roberton listen to F-35 pilots Wing Commander Andrew Jackson and Squadron Leader David Bell. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Commander, Air Combat Group Williamtown, Zed Roberton speaks to media at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson speaks to media at t F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

One Nation Senator Brian Burston in conversation with Air Commodore Craig Heap. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Amberley Air Base, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF, explains a delay in departure to passengers waiting at Williamtown RAAF base. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson (Amberley Air Base) speaks to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commander Ken Robinson speaks to media at t F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 pilots Squadron Leader David Bell (L) and Wing Commander Andrew Jackson (R) speak to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 pilots Squadron Leader David Bell (L) and Wing Commander Andrew Jackson (R) speak to reporters beside one of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Port Stephens MP Kate Washington. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp alights from an RAAF Wedgetail aircraft. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Craig Heap, Senior ADF officer at Williamtown RAAF at an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Amberley Air Base, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Security guard and dog shelter from the sun under the wing of one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Security guard and dog shelter from the sun under the wing of one of the newly arrived F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets at a press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

TweetFacebook F-35As on display at Amberley – Pictures: Max Mason-HubersA selection of photographs from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet press event at RAAF Base Amberley, QLD. Picture: Max Mason-HubersA GROUP of Hunter MPs and community representatives flewto RAAF Base Amberley base on Monday for an up-close look at an F-35A Joint Strike Fighter –the futuristic jetbound for RAAF Base Williamtown from December 2018.

Two of the long-awaited and controversial strike fighters made theirAustralian debut on Friday at the Australian International Airshow at Avalon airport at Geelong.

The RAAF had originally announced that the jetswould circleover Newcastle on Sunday, en route to Amberley, but concerns over lightning meant this trip was cancelled.

The Newcastle invitees assembled at Williamtown at 8am on Monday, expecting to fly to Amberley in a C-130 Hercules, and to be there before the F-35As, which were flying from Geelong.

But a problem with the first plane meant leaving later in a plane with fewer seats –an E-7A Wedgetail– so some of the invitees had to stay behind. When the Newcastle group arrived the two F-35As were already parked up –one on display, one in a hangar –meaning it was a visual inspection only, with a perimeter barrier and a guard dog to ensure no-one came too close.

Despite these limitations, all who made the tripsaid they were glad the RAAF had reached out to them and the community, and that the visit to Amberley was worthwhile, even if those who were worried about aircraft noise didn’t get to hear the plane in action.

The head of the Amberley base, Air Commodore Ken Robinson, said the federal government had approved the purchase of 72 aircraft, together with weapons and support materiel.

Air Commodore Robinson said the first public flight of the F-35A at Avalon was “quite an extraordinary moment” and there was a definite “mood of excitement” at the airshow.

He said it was “usually decades between celebratory drinks” when it comes to acquiring new fighter aircraft –and it was definitely time for a celebratory drink.

Military personnel guard the the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Air Commodore Zed Roberton of Williamtown RAAF described the F35-A as “the world’s greatest 5th generation aircraft”, and he thanked the plane’s manufacturers, Lockheed Martin, and its other “US partners”.

Asked about the cost controversyover the F-35A, Air Commodore Robinson said its “unit costs continued to reduce”, and the average cost of an Australian plane off the production line was now $US90 million ($119 million at current exchange rates).

The two planes that had flown to Australia had been used for training purposes since December 2014. They were going back to Luke Air Force Base in Phoenix, Arizona, where more Australian pilots were being trained.

ARRIVAL: Port Stephens MP Kate Washington looks across to the F-35A on the tarmac, followed by Sue Birch of Medowie and Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp.

The two Australian pilots who brought their planes across are Wing Commander Andrew “Jacko” Jackson, 39, and Squadron Leader David Bell, 37, both of Williamtown base.

Wing Commander Jackson had been at Williamtown from 1999 until his posting to Arizona in 2014, and Squadron Leader Bell, a test pilot, had been at Williamtown for more than six years.

Describing the plane, the pair said it flew at Mach 1.6, or almost2000 kilometres per hour. But it was the “situational awareness” that the pilots had in their helmets, which gave them 360 degree vision without having to move, and the weaponry, that set it apart, rather than outright speed.

Queensland media at Amberley on Monday were keen to talk up the potential for F-35As to be at the Ipswich base, but Wing Commander Jackson said: “We’ve had a long association with Newcastle, it’s a fantastic place to live, and it’s been the home of the fighters for a long time and that is going to continue into the future.”

Williamtown base commander Air Commodore Craig Heap said the RAAF was working closely with the community both on the preparations for the F-35A and the firefighting foam contamination problems.

Air Commodore Heap said Williamtown’s runway extensions meant the F-35A would be able to take off without its afterburners –the main noise concern with the plane.

The Labor federal member for Paterson, Meryl Swanson, said the visit had been worthwhile but she and the members of the Williamtown Advisory Group and the Community Reference Group who had made the trip were disappointed that they did not get to hear the plane.

One Nation Senator Brian Burston said noise was a secondary concern given how much Williamtown did for the defence of the nation

University of Newcastle criticised for reporting of sexual assault complaints

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“DEFINITELY MORE HAS HAPPENED”: University of Newcastle women’s convener Lucinda Iacono. Picture: Simone De PeakThe ‘red zone’: O-week a danger time for female university students
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THE University of Newcastle has been criticised for disclosing “the bare minimum”about itssexual assaultand harassment complaints, and offering a “one-size-fits-all”processfor victims, following 14 official complaints in the past three years.

The allegations, madeby the advocacy group End Rape on Campus Australia, stem from the group’s submission to the Australian Human Rights Commission and five years of data from freedom-of-information requests.

Ofalmost600 official complaints of sexual assault and harassment made toAustralian universities in the past five years, 14 were atthe University of Newcastle between2014 and2016.

Following five complaints of sexual assault or harassment at the university in 2016, two students were expelled, two were excluded from accommodation, one was suspended, one was referred forthe university’s “ethics training” andonestudent waswarned.

There were sixcomplaints at the universityin 2015, resulting in asuspension, three students being excluded from accommodation, four being referred for ethics training, and four warnings.

Afterthree complaints in 2014, three students were referred for ethics training. The university didn’t discloseany data from2012 or 2013.

“Newcastle did comply, but they gave the absolute bare minimum. Other universities included full reports of thesecases, and detailed descriptions of what the complaints were. Newcastle gave very basic, summary data,” Nina Funnell,co-author of the End Rape on Campus report, said.

“It’s disappointing that their records areincomplete, anddon’t even distinguish between sexual assault and sexual harassment.”

In a statement to theNewcastle Herald,the university said, “the University of Newcastle has no tolerance for sexual assault or harassment”.

The universityreports itssexualcomplaintsin“aggregated form”, a spokesperson said, toprotect the confidentiality of those involved.

The university said it encouragesstudents to report criminal matters to the police, and thediscloseddata for 2012 and 2013doesn’t includecomplaints where the victimrequested no actionby the university.

“Last year the University of Newcastlehas partnered with Universities Australia and other universities across Australian in a national campaign –‘Respect. Now. Always.’–to prevent sexual assault and harassment,” the spokesperson said.

MORE TO BE DONE: Nina Funnell is a co-author of the End Rape On Campus Australia report, ‘Connecting the dots: Understanding Sexual Assault in University Communities’.

While avictimmight expect a legal outcome against their rapistto take two years, Ms Funnell, co-author of theEnd Rape on Campus report, said it was “concerning” that a “Student Complaints” section of the universitywebsiteadvises“discuss your concerns directly with the person involved and attempt to resolve the matter”.

Another section, headed “Complaints Process: our three-tier resolution model”, says, “we encourage you to informally resolve your concern or issue at the lowest level possible”.

“It’s a one-size-fits-all resolution model that is entirely inappropriate for a victim –to tell them to informally reconcile with the offender,” Ms Funnell said.

“The universityshould have invested the time, money and effort to devise a more informed, trauma-appropriate resolution model. It’s not like they haven’t beengetting complaints.”

The university said itsstudent complaints portal is for allegations ofacademic and non-academic misconduct, and thosewithsexual assault and harassment complaints are encouragedto tell staff, the Dean of Students andon-campus doctors.

TheHeraldwas directed to a “Campus Care” section of the universitywebsite, withadvice for victims of inappropriate and threatening behaviour, and lists ofcontacts.

But a link for “advice and support for victims of sexual assault” didn’t work.

The university women’s convener, Lucinda Iacono, said the 14 sexual complaints to the university in the pastthree years didn’t represent the scale of the problem.

“I could name more women who’ve come to me. The rate of women reporting these issues is low, and definitely more has happened,” Ms Iacono said.

“There’s a plethora of things, from people saying things [to victims] that are inappropriate, to people doing things. It’s important to recognise it isn’t always someone pulling a woman into the bushes.”

The End Rape on Campus report is one of 1845submissions toaHuman Rights Commission survey.

The survey is supportedby Universities Australia, includingNewcastle.