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  • admin 13:50 on 16/12/2018  

    Dan McKellar will be the Viking’s coach. Photo: Melissa Adams Dan McKellar will be the Viking’s coach. Photo: Melissa Adams
    Nanjing Night Net

    Dan McKellar will be the Viking’s coach. Photo: Melissa Adams

    Dan McKellar will be the Viking’s coach. Photo: Melissa Adams

    The Brumbies hope to have most their squad play for the University of Canberra Vikings, but know some players could be transferred to other teams in the inaugural National Rugby Championship.The Vikings are one of nine teams in the NRC alongside four from NSW, two from Queensland and one each from Victoria and WA.The competition is a stepping stone between club and Super Rugby and will last 11 weeks from the end of August to the start of November.The Vikings – led by Brumbies assistant coach Dan McKellar – will play their four home games at Viking Park in Tuggeranong. The team’s licence will be shared by the Brumbies, the university and the Vikings club.Each NRC team will have 16 Super Rugby-contracted players in the squad, while the rest will be made up of players from clubs.Interim Brumbies chief executive Doug Edwards said how many Brumbies were allocated to rival teams would depend on injuries and the number of Wallabies representatives the NRC franchises have.”Based on last year when we had 10 or 11 Wallabies and a few injured players, we wouldn’t have had to shift anyone,” Edwards said.”If we do have to shift anyone away, we will identify a few key positions where we would move some players so they can all get game time.”It’s a huge opportunity for the local guys to be playing at the next level.”The Canberra first-grade competition will be finished before the NRC begins.The NRC replaces the Australian Rugby Championship, which started in 2007 before it was canned after one year due to financial losses of $5 million.”One of the real conditions put in place by the ARU is that each of the competing teams had to have a strong financial model,” Edwards said.”They’ve also done a deal with Foxtel to broadcast one game each week, so it’s a more robust competition.”It gives a great pathway for people in Canberra.”The other teams are Brisbane City, Queensland Country, North Harbour Rays, Sydney Stars, Greater Sydney Rams, NSW Country Breakers, Perth Spirit and Melbourne Rising.Australian Rugby Union chief executive Bill Pulver dismissed concerns players would be burnt out, with only a short break between the Super Rugby season starting in February and the end of the NRC in November.‘‘To think our elite season stops in July I think is nonsense. You would never design a season that way,’’ Pulver said.‘‘Our players go on holiday.”That doesn’t happen in any other country in the world.’’  

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

    Continue reading Brumbies to dominate University of Canberra Vikings squad for new competition
     
  • admin 13:50 on 16/12/2018  

    Denial: Hey Dad! star Robert Hughes. Photo: Janie BarrettThe court was left in little doubt as to how the prosecution viewed former television star Robert Hughes’ repeated denials.
    Nanjing Night Net

    After six hours of cross examination spanning two days in the Downing Centre District Court, prosecutor Gina O’Rourke let fly with one last stinging attack.

    “From Thursday last week till now you have continually lied to the ladies and gentlemen of the jury,” Ms O’Rourke said, the volume of her voice increasing.

    “No I have not,” the former Hey Dad! star replied.

    “You have lied, manufactured your evidence and distorted the truth to fit the shape of the Crown case,” she continued.

    “No, I have not,” he said.

    “You did exactly what these women have come forward and said you did.”

    “No, I did not.”

    It was the last exchange in a passage of evidence that took Hughes’ trial on 11 child sex charges into its fifth week.

    Earlier Ms O’Rourke repeatedly put it to the 65-year-old that he had a sexual interest towards females under 16 and that he acted on that interest on multiple occasions.

    He denied the allegation each time.

    The prosecutor also suggested to Hughes that he felt he was “entitled” to expose himself to young women who worked on Hey Dad! because he was “the star of the show”.

    “You got a thrill from exposing your genitals to them,” Ms O’Rourke said.

    “I did not,” Mr Hughes replied angrily.

    “You believed that because you were the star of the show you could do whatever you wanted,” Ms O’Rourke continued.

    “You are wrong,” he replied.

    Ms O’Rourke was referring to evidence earlier in the trial from three of the show’s former wardrobe staff who said the actor would deliberately sleep naked on a sofa bed knowing that he had asked them to come in and wake them.

    Hughes has denied this, saying that he always wore the dressing gown of his character in the show, Martin Kelly.

    “Wasn’t there a blanket you could have worn?” Ms O’Rourke asked.

    “There was no bedding provided,” Hughes replied.

    “Couldn’t you have just set an alarm [to wake you up]?” Ms O’Rourke continued.

    “I could have,” he replied.

    “Mr Hughes, you are making it up as you go along,” she continued.

    “I’m not making it up,” the he replied, shaking his head in exasperation.

    It was one of at least 10 occasions that Ms O’Rourke accused Hughes of making up his evidence to cover up for what he had allegedly done.

    Hughes then moved into the somewhat calmer waters of re-examination by his lawyer, Greg Walsh, but the proceedings were cut short when Ms O’Rourke suffered a migrane.

    The trial continues.

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

    Continue reading Court told Hey Dad! star ‘got a thrill from exposing … genitals’
     
  • admin 13:50 on 16/12/2018  

    Walker, left, with co-stars Jordana Brewster and Vin Diesel in Fast & Furious 5 (2011).Full movies coverageMovie session times
    Nanjing Night Net

    As Fast & Furious 7 readies to resume production after the delay caused by Paul Walker’s death, details have emerged about how the filmmakers plan to continue with his character’s scenes in the movie.

    According to the New York Daily News, Australian director James Wan may draw on CGI, voice effects and similar-looking actors to replace the star, who died in a Los Angeles car crash in November.

    “They have hired four actors with bodies very similar to Paul’s physique and they will be used for movement and as a base,” an unnamed production source told the newspaper. “Paul’s face and voice will be used on top using CGI.”

    Another report indicates that Walker’s character, Brian O’Conner, will now retire in the movie rather than be killed off.

    The Hollywood Reporter says screenwriter Chris Morgan has been working on script revisions that include a fitting send-off for O’Conner using previously-filmed scenes.

    “Almost exactly half of his role was done,” a production source told the trade paper.

    Wan and his key cast, including Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez, will head to Abu Dhabi for additional filming from early April. Final scenes for the movie are said to have been shot in Atlanta, Georgia.

    It is not the the first time film and TV creatives have called on computer-generated imagery to replace actors who died during filming.

    When Oliver Reed died of a heart attack during a break while shooting Gladiator, his scenes were completed using CGI. Reed’s face was mapped onto a double’s head during post-production.

    A similar technique was tried when The Sopranos actress Nancy Marchand died from complications due to lung cancer during production of the series. But when the CGI mask did not look real enough, producers decided to kill off her character, Tony Soprano’s mother-in-law Livia, off-screen.

    And filmmakers digitally placed Brandon Lee’s face onto a stunt double’s head when he was killed in an accidental shooting towards the end of filming on The Crow.

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

    Continue reading Fast & Furious 7: Paul Walker’s scenes may be completed with CGI
     
  • admin 13:50 on 16/12/2018  

    The protein trap: it might make you lean, but will it make you live longer? Photo: craftvisionToo much saturated fat will clog your arteries, too much sugar will give you tooth decay, and both are to blame for your bulging waistline. Protein may keep you lean but not long-lived. And calories, oh well, you should definitely cut down on those if you want to live to an old age.
    Nanjing Night Net

    The advice and warnings surrounding diet and nutrition are so constant and often so contradictory it is hard to know what to believe.

    Should you follow the Atkins diet for lean muscles or fast for two days on the 5:2 diet to improve your brain function? Should you quit sugar or fat or both?

    These mixed messages stem, in part, from the methods scientists have used for decades to study the effect of nutrition on our health. For years research has primarily focused on the individual components of our diet – the protein, the fat, the carbohydrate or the total number of calories we consume – and their impact on obesity, ageing and other aspects of health.

    What has been missing from this approach is how nutrients interact with each other to influence our wellbeing.

    ”By definition, diet is a multi-dimensional thing”, says Steve Simpson, a biologist from the University of Sydney. ”We require dozens of different nutrients each in their appropriate amounts and balance if we’re to be happy and healthy.”

    For the past decade, Simpson and others have led the world in a new approach to analyse the relationship between diet, weight gain and other health problems such as diabetes and heart disease.

    Central to their thesis is the idea that it is the ratio of protein to fat to carbohydrates not just the individual nutrient that matters. This month they published the most compelling evidence to date that found, in mice, different nutrient ratios had profoundly different impacts on the body.

    For instance, mice on high-protein, low-carbohydrate diets had reduced body fat and consumed less food overall, but the trade-off was they had shorter lifespans and poor heart health.

    Another group of mice that consumed a high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet were slightly rounder from an increase in body fat – up to 10 per cent more than high-protein diet mice – but they lived longer and had fewer age-related health problems.

    Mice on low protein, high fat diets fared the worst and died youngest.

    ”This is illustrative of how important it is to take account of the balance of nutrients,” says Simpson, the director of the Charles Perkins Centre.

    The mice study, which was published in the journal Cell Metabolism, supports earlier findings the group made in flies and is consistent with research in humans – increasing the proportion of protein in the diet will lead to weight loss.

    “If that’s really what matters for your health then the fact that over the long term this may cause chronic problem may be less critical,” he says.

    The team is still investigating why high amounts of protein shorten the life of mice, but they suspect one component, branched-chain amino acids, play an important role. Simpson’s collaborator, geriatric medicine researcher David Le Couteur, says the mice fed high carbohydrate/low protein meals had lower levels of these compounds circulating their body and lived about 50 weeks longer than high protein rodents.

    ”Branched-chain amino acids are good for building your muscles but at the cost of late life health,” he says.

    Mark Febbraio, a diabetes researcher from Baker IDI in Melbourne, says the evidence on the relationship between protein intake, body weight and a shorter lifespan, gathered from many species, is compelling. “Weight loss is not always the be all and end all.”

    The findings have helped counter the claims of some popular diets with little scientific basis including the ”paleo diet” where followers are encouraged to eat mostly fish, meat and vegetables like our hunter-gatherer ancestors, eschewing grains and dairy.

    “There’s this massive paleo movement which advocates a high fat, low carb diet. It results in weight loss but whether it’s a healthy diet is another thing,” says Febbraio.

    Simpson is quick to point out that the body of any species has different nutritional needs at different times of its life. While lots of protein shortened life span in some animals, the nutrient is critical for growth, repair and in pregnancy, he says.

    So how does an animal’s body ensure its owner eats the right balance of nutrients at the right time?

    What drives an animal’s internal appetite has been a major interest for Simpson and his team.

    “If you think about it logically the body is constantly making decisions about what to eat and when,” he says.

    It does this by taking into account what it needs, combining that information with the nutrients already circulating the body or stored in fat, muscles and other tissues. To encourage an animal to eat what the body needs, sophisticated internal appetite systems have evolved for each major nutrient – protein, fat and carbohydrates.

    ”The body doesn’t just mash it all up and count calories, it makes separate decisions and integrates them in the brain,” says Simpson.

    Investigations on a range of species such as slime mould, insects, fish and mice have shown that most organisms have the capacity to make separate decisions about which nutrient it needs over others. Time and time again, they find the dominant appetite is protein, making it the major driver of an animals’ total food intake.

    When mice reached a certain protein target they would stop eating, says Le Couteur. ”If they didn’t have enough protein they would overeat,” he says.

    After protein, the mice’s internal appetite favoured carbohydrates, followed by fat. While Simpson acknowledges that mice are not people, overeating on a low protein diet has been documented in human clinical trials and surveys.

    But if humans, like other species, have a biological imperative to eat a nutritionally balanced diet, principally driven by an appetite for protein, why are so many people overweight?

    Simpson suspects the answer may come from our early ancestral environment, where simple sugars and fats were rare. Their scarcity would have made them highly desirable to early humans, he says.

    But in a world where fatty, energy dense food is cheap and plentiful it is easy to over-indulge, especially if a person doesn’t eat enough protein to satisfy their body’s needs.

    ”Our physiology hasn’t kept up with the rate of change of our environment,” says Simpson.

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

    Continue reading Building blocks for healthy eating
     
  • admin 13:50 on 16/12/2018  

    Three years ago: Mining magnate Nathan Tinkler taking questions from Knights members concerned about the Knights privatisation deal. Photo: Jonathan Carroll Tinkler with his star recruit, coach Wayne Bennett. Photo: Darren Pateman
    Nanjing Night Net

    Star player Willie Mason said he has been paid on time but player managers say that several of his teammates have not. Photo: Simon de Peak

    Ultimate League: It’s not too late to sign up for our Fantasy NRL game 

    Here’s an idea for Nathan Tinkler: call another meeting with Knights members as he did when he was trying to wrest control of the club three years ago, and tell the same people who allowed him to sweep to power exactly where they stand.

    In other words, tell them if he has enough money to continue to fund their club, or if he does not.

    Simple.

    Because, to be quite frank, this continual game of smoke-and-mirrors about the club’s financial state is becoming a little boring, if not insulting to those who trusted him in the first place.

    The dogs have been barking in Newcastle for many, many months about Tinkler and his tenuous ownership. You sense the rottweilers are about to be let off the chain, and the “Boganaire” is in their sights.

    The Knights have been at breaking point at so many times since their inception in 1988, and still won two premierships and produced a legion of Australian and Origin players.

    Yet the close of business on Tuesday looms as the most important deadline in their recent history.

    By then, Tinkler needs to show the Newcastle Knights Members Club he can produce a new $10.5 million bank guarantee by the end of the month, or the members will start the process of buying the club back for a dollar.

    That’s their right. Thank heavens for former chairman Robbie Tew for putting such a guarantee in place before handing the reins to the former billionaire.

    There are faint murmurs coming out of Newcastle that Tinkler will be able to find the money at the 11th hour, as he has done on numerous occasions since buying the club in 2011.

    And should that happen, the Knights – from chief executive Matt Gidley to chairman Paul Harragon to the players themselves – will say the club’s future was never in doubt.

    Move on, nothing to see here.

    “We have heard nothing at all to suggest there is a problem,” Gidley said last week. “Nathan has to renew the guarantee every year, so 10 days out from the deadline each year, we could conceivably have this sort of speculation about whether he is going to continue or not.

    “You’d rather it wasn’t blown up hysterically but that’s the reality and until Nathan meets the deadline, I guess we just have to put up with the speculation.”

    Speculation?

    One of Tinkler’s major financiers, Westpac, appointed external administrators at two of Tinkler’s companies late last week.

    Westpac took the extraordinary step of releasing a statement to assuage the fears of Knights fans concerned about the demise of their beloved club.

    “We have been in discussions with the Tinkler Group for quite some time about existing exposures with Westpac which includes a bank guarantee to support the Newcastle Knights,” a spokesman said in a statement.

    Speculation?

    Reports in The Newcastle Herald last week that some players had not been paid on time were dismissed by veteran prop Willie Mason.

    “I’m not sure where the little whispers are coming from,” Mason said. “It’s always like that when you lose, everyone tries to bring up crap. If you check everyone’s bank accounts, I’m pretty sure everyone’s getting paid.”

    Well, we checked with several player managers, who would have more of an idea than their clients if the players had been paid on time.

    We can tell you what they’ve told us before: some players were certainly not paid on time.

    It doesn’t matter if you are making $70,000 a season or $700,000. If you’re paying a mortgage or have a car repayment coming out on a certain day of the month, you need to be paid on time.

    The same player managers report there have been long delays with superannuation being paid for the past year. This is a complaint this column has heard before, and it does not happen at any other club.

    But not according to the Knights. Move on, nothing to see here.

    What about Tinkler’s dwindling fortune? Companies placed into receivership? His repossessed private jet? The selling off his horse racing and breeding operation, Patinak Farm?

    Speculation? Move on, nothing to see here.

    Tinkler, a former Muswellbrook sparkie, rode into Newcastle and said he was all about “community”. He delivered the most successful coach in history in Wayne Bennett, and a bulging salary cap of superstars.

    The good rugby league people of the Hunter were finally being handed a commodity they have never really had when it came to their footy team – certainty.

    But instead of galvanising the community, with each proud member falling in behind their team and knockabout owner, the new regime has polarised a staunch rugby league region.

    Fans buy The Newcastle Herald each day, slowly turn the page and wonder, “What next?”

    They have dealt with uncertainty before. They have survived contractual disputes, drug scandals, the sudden departure of their best player in Andrew Johns, and an ugly cleanout under former coach Brian Smith.

    But this is different.

    Tinkler has caused a serious disconnect between club and fan, and the chasm appears to be widening.

    The members want to know if Tinkler still cares like they do. If he still has the money to support them as he once assured. And, above all of that, they want the Boganaire to give them what he promised all along – certainty.

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

    Continue reading Boganaire no knight in shining armour
     
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