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June, 2019

Rebels make three changes for Hurricanes

Tom English is one of three back in the Melbourne Rebels starting line-up against the Hurricanes.The Melbourne Rebels have made three changes to the team’s starting line-up to take on the Hurricanes in their Good Friday clash at AAMI Park.
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Flanker Lopeti Timani, lock Matt Phillip and utility back Tom English return to the starting line-up, replacing Colby Fainga’a, Geoff Parling and winger Sefa Naivalu from the team that trounced the Sharks last round.

Wallaby prop Ben Daley has returned to the Rebels’ bench after overcoming a concussion injury suffered against the Waratahs, while Wallaby hooker Jordan Uelese is also included on the bench in place of Mahe Vailanu.

Back-rower Ross Haylett-Petty also returns to the bench but his Wallabies fullback brother, Dane, was again left out with lingering symptoms from his head knock against NSW.

REBELS: Jack Maddocks, Tom English, Reece Hodge, Billy Meakes, Marika Koroibete, Jack Debreczeni, Will Genia, Amanaki Mafi, Angus Cottrell, Lopeti Timani, Adam Coleman (capt), Matt Philip, Jermaine Ainsley, Anaru Rangi, Tetera Faulkner. Res: Jordan Uelese, Ben Daley, Sam Talakai, Ross Haylett-Petty, Colby Fainga’a, Richard Hardwick, Michael Ruru, Sefa Naivalu.

Australian Associated Press

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Knights wingers in Dragons’ shootout

Knights wingers in Dragons’ shootout Nathan Ross
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Ken Sio

TweetFacebookNewcastle Herald understands Nathan Ross and Ken Sio are involved in a personal duel to see who will partner centre Tautau Moga on the left edge against the Dragons at WIN Stadium .

Knights coach Nathan Brown is understood to have been disappointed with Ross’ contribution in the 38-8 loss to the Sydney Roosters and is toying with the idea of promoting Sio at his expense.

Read more:Knights on the verge of re-signing King

Tellingly, the two wingers alternated in the top squad during an opposed session at training on Wednesday with Ross slotting in at fullback in NSW Cup coach Simon Woolford’s side when Sio reverted to the wing outsideMoga.

Brown gave little away after the session but is expected to make a final decision between the two after Thursday’s training session.

Ross ran 12 times for 100 metres against the Roosters which is down on his usual input and copped criticism, some of it unfounded, for being out of position when Moga threw two no-look passes out over the sideline.

Complicating the issue for Brown is Sio has not been setting the world on fire on NSW Cup.

Brown did confirm he will go with four forwards on the bench against the Dragons and use co-captain Jamie Buhrer as a utility option if needed.

That rules out hooker Danny Leviand Jack Cogger’s chances of a call-up.

Backrower Aidan Guerra is carrying a leg cork from the loss to the Roosters but is not considered in any real doubt according to the coach.

“We are expecting him to be fine but we’ll see how it goes,”Brown said.

Meanwhile, Connor Watson is expected to be sidelined for the next six to eight weeks but won’t be having surgery on his injured shoulder, which popped out twicein the first half against the Roosters.

“These types of injuries, most clubs if they can go down the rehab path at this stage of the year they do that,”Brown said.

“Hopefully it rehabilitates well and he can come back in five or six weeks and it holds up for the rest of the season but only time will tell.

“It’s obviously disappointing for Connor but it gives Brock [Lamb] his chance.”

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OPINION: Another setback for the Empire Hotel site

TWO years after it bought the Empire Hotel site in Hunter Street for $2.8 million to build a high-rise tower with a component of “affordable housing”,the Maitland-Newcastle diocese of the Catholic Church has thrown in the towel, selling the site for a hefty $8.3 million, pocketing, on paper, a handy profit of $5.5 million in the process.
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The sale has not endeared the church to the Hunter Development Corporation –which sold it the land –or to some on Newcastle City Council, with Deputy Lord Mayor Declan Clausen attacking the diocese for taking an “outrageous” profit and leaving the site “empty and boarded”.

For its part, the church has pointed to a combination of difficulties that it says combined to kill the project, some of which are directly related to the promised“affordable housing”.

This is important because governments, fearing that everyday workers are being priced out of city centres, have offered variousincentives to organisations providing officially defined “affordable housing”.

The church says that in the past few years it has successfully provided 74 affordable housing dwellings in suburban Hunter region surroundings, but that the state of the Newcastle CBD property market is such that the high-rise tower it was planning for the Empire site could not be built as a feasible economic proposition.

Having struggled to attract builder interest to the site, the church says it wasrushed with offers as soon as developers learned the land was for sale.

A few things are at play here. To start with, the Newcastle CBD property market has risendramatically in the past few years.

But more importantly, there is nothing obliging the new owner to buildaffordable housing. Yes, the approved tower has been granted some concessions on the basis of anaffordable housing component, but Bloc will likely negotiate a slightly altered DA, and finance the project based on higher sales prices than would have beenthe case with more thanhalf the building dedicated to affordable housing.

Hopefully, this will mean a building on this long-troubled site, sooner rather than later. As far as the finger pointing between the church, the council and HDC are concerned, only those involved will know the true state of those negotiations.

Either way, the church’s failure must inevitably put more pressure on HDC to succeed with its own affordable housing proposal on the rail corridor at Merewether Street.

ISSUE: 38,760.

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Govt introduces private healthcare reforms

Health Minister Greg Hunt says private health insurance reforms will secure the future of Australia.A suite of private health insurance reforms will help Australia maintain a strong and competitive private sector and protect the health system, Health Minister Greg Hunt says.
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The government introduced a series of reforms to parliament on Wednesday that includes allowing discounts for hospital coverage for people under 30, increasing the strength of the health insurance ombudsman and letting private health insurers cover travel and accommodation costs for rural and regional Australians attending health services.

“These reforms will therefore help strengthen the viability of the private health system by addressing concerns about affordability, complexity and lack of transparency of private health insurance,” Mr Hunt said.

The legislation would also allow private health insurance providers to increase customer excesses in exchange for lowering premiums for the first time since 2001.

The increased excess would be $750 for singles or $1500 for couples and families.

“Importantly customers can choose, and I emphasise choose, a higher excess in return for lower premium costs,” he said.

Australian Associated Press

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A-League: Kanta in line for new role as Merrick looks to tap into game smarts

TRADING PLACES: Jets coach Ernie Merrick is considering moving Ben Kantarovski to the heart of defence for the clash against Melbourne City at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday. Picture: Jonathan CarrollJETS boss Ernie Merrick has likened Ben Kantarovski to having an on-field coach.
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The defensive midfielder is a natural leader. Although only recently turned 26, he is one of the most experienced players in the A-League. He made his debut aged 16, has been to two under-20 World Cups, captaining Australia at one, and is the climbing towards 200 games.

On the pitch,he is forever barking instructions from the base of midfield, pulling players in to shape, urging them to make runs or track back.

And it is thatgame smarts that Merrick plans to tap into.

Kantarovski trained in the heart of defence on Wednesday and is likely to start there alongside Nikolai Topor-Stanley against Melbourne City at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday.

After conceding 25 goals in 22 games, the Jets have been opened up by Adelaide and Wellington. The Reds netted five goals. Phoenix went goalless, but they created 23 chances.

Ben Kantarovski says @NewcastleJetsFC remain positive ahed of clash with @[email protected]@newcastleheraldpic.twitter南京夜网/Whm2e0fP3m

— James Gardiner (@JamesGardiner42) March 28, 2018Listen to the thud. @NewcastleJetsFC South Americans hit the woodwork. @[email protected]南京夜网/H1h1uTBhbx

— James Gardiner (@JamesGardiner42) March 28, 2018Count the passes. I get 25. @NewcastleJetsFC in game mode ahead of possible finals dress rehearsal against @[email protected]@newcastleheraldpic.twitter南京夜网/78zQIcPCpX

— James Gardiner (@JamesGardiner42) March 28, 2018TweetFacebook Ben KantarovskiPictures: Fairfax photo library, AAP

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