Ignore the Coleraine form at your peril as Jennifer Lynn sco

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Your essential guide to Caulfield Cup day At carnival time they come from everywhere; it’s an added difficulty for punters trying to weigh up the formlines from Melbourne and Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.

But few spring winners emerge from benchmark races at a Sunday fixture at Coleraine in the western districts of Victoria.

So punters could have been forgiven for overlooking Jennifer Lynn in the opening event on Caulfield Cup day, the MyPunter南京夜网 Plate for three-year-old fillies.

To do so, of course, would have meant ignoring one rather obvious factor in the racebook: the name of D.K. Weir as the trainer of the daughter of High Chaparral.

Weir has proven over the past six years that nothing he sends to race shoud be discounted, even if its last start was at Coleraine.

Jennifer Lynn was not entirely friendless in the market – she was backed from an opening quote of $13 to $11 – and, under Sydney-based jockey Blake Shinn, riding a rare winner for the Victorian-based Weir stable, she swooped late to prevail over the equally fast-finishing Petition ($19) by a neck with another closer, Swampland ($18) the same distance away third.

The disappointment of the race was the heavily supported Gai Waterhouse-trained Sylpheed, who went off as a $1.95 favourite and, having raced prominently, faded to finish fourth under Damien Oliver, no doubt anxious to make the most of Caulfield Cup day as he is facing a suspension until Melbourne Cup eve following a reckless riding conviction on Wednesday.

Jennifer Lynn is likely now to be tried over further distances. Weir was not at the track for the first race, but stable racing manager Jeremy Rogers said the filly could go for the Wakeful Stakes and possibly the Oaks during the Flemington carnival.

“It’s a big jump in distance, 1400 to 2000 metres, but we will have to see how she comes out of this, ” Rogers said.

“Even though she only won at Coleraine the other day the form out of the race has been really good. The horse she beat there came out and won at Bendigo last week and I think they beat the third horse pretty easy.”

Shinn was delighted to have scored for Weir, for whom he sometimes rode as a young apprentice before he moved to Sydney.

“She got into a nice spot from the barrier, the speed was quite genuine which set it up for her, and she hit the line really well. She is going through the grades nicely. I am grateful for the opportunity to ride for Australia’s leading trainer.” The ultimate racing form guide with free tips, live odds and alerts for all racing.

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Godolphin’s Peacock takes Gothic Stakes

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Live Odds, Form and Alerts for all Racing John O’Shea was able to celebrate with Peacock at the end of Saturday’s Gothic Stakes, but Godolphin’s other two runners made excruciating viewing as he watched the replay.

It was the nature of the race where jockeys looked for cover and Peacock was the one that got clearest run after travelling on the back of the leader.

“He has done a good job to win, got the breaks and took them when they come,” O’Shea said. “He had covered down the side from that wind and then sprinted well.

“He didn’t want it another metre longer.”

Peacock drove through on the fence when the run presented itself and fended off a late charge from Violate to score by a short half head with favourite Acatour another half head away in third.

“We were just getting smashed by the wind down the side,” winning jockey Dwayne Dunn said. “He had cover and then sprinted quickly when he had too.”

Acatour had punched the breeze outside the lead but Blake Shinn was losing it as excuse for defeat.

“He was just all at sea the first time this way,” Shinn said. “He did know what to do and did well to fight on as he did.”

However there were plenty of runners, which had excuses as they were left searching for runs in the straight. Morton’s Fork and Trenchant were among them.

Craig Williams reported to O’Shea that “the only time I got clear was when I turned around to come back home”.

Brenton Avdulla said Trenchant got clear late but by that time was chance of being in the finish. O’Shea could afford to be philosophical.

“We have two horses there that have had a good track gallop for the Carbine Club Stakes,” O’Shea said. “The winner [Peacock] will probably stay at seven [furlongs, 1400m] and run in the Hilton Hotels and Resort Stakes on the final day at Flemington.”

Peacock’s win did have poignancy as he was a son of Lonhro and therefore a grandson of Octagonal, who died overnight at 24. The ultimate racing form guide with free tips, live odds and alerts for all racing.

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Eleonora wins Ethereal Stakes, the race named after her gran

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If ever there was an appropriate winner at Caulfield on Cup day it was the three-year-old New Zealand-trained filly Eleonora, partnered by Damien Oliver.

The $7 shot took out the Ethereal Stakes, one of the most significant Oaks trials every year.

Not only is Eleonora trained (by the Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman partnership) in the land of the long white cloud but she is a granddaughter of that grand New Zealand-trained staying mare Ethereal.

Ethereal sprung to prominence on this day in 2001 when she won the Caulfield Cup, following up with the Melbourne Cup 17 days later.

Eleonora may well have similar aspirations later in her career, but for now she is set to try and make her mark at Flemington in a different race, the VRC Oaks.

The daughter of NZ based stallion Makfi – a winner of the English 2000 Guineas in his racing days – showed plenty of staying potential in the 2000-metre Ethereal Stakes, scoring from Tiamo Grace, from the Darren Weir camp, with the Sydney-trained Savvan, trained by James Cummings, just keeping Moqueen, trained by his father Anthony, out of third spot.

Oliver said after the race: ” A trip won’t be a problem. She looks great going towards the Oaks.”

Forsman added: “She got a dream run through and for all the bad luck she had last time [when beaten at Flemington in the Edward Manifold Stakes] she got good luck today. The Oaks has been a long-term plan for her. We knew if she got in the race she would be hard to beat.”

The Baker/Forsman combination is no stranger to success on Caulfield Cup day, the Kiwi pair having sent out Mongolian Khan to win the big one 12 months ago.

Sydney horses have been sweeping all before them at the Caulfield carnival  and Palazzo Pubblico continued the trend in the third race on Caulfield Cup day, the listed Alinghi Stakes.

The $31 shot was well handled by heavyweight jockey Steven Arnold, who produced her fast and late to score by a short neck and three-quarters of a length from the well backed Aegean Sea, who firmed from an opening quote of $26 to start at $11, with the horse who won this race last year, Vezelay, third at $7.

The Clarry Connors-trained Aegean Sea, like the Matthew Smith-prepared  winner, is trained in Sydney, and both mares are stabled at Warwick Farm.

Their task was made easier with the late scratching at the barrier of the pre-race favourite Super Cash, who was suspected of being lame just before the runners entered the barriers.

Like Weir, the trainer of the first-race winner Jennifer Lynn, Smith was not on track but he may now fancy his chances of taking home more Victorian cash over the Flemington carnival, where there are some tempting targets for sprinting mares.

Arnold said he had planned to ride a patient race – he was 11th with just 400 metres of the 1100-metre journey remaining – and his tactics worked to perfection.

“She was good. She was quite fresh going to the stalls and she is first up,” he said.

“I was just really keen to get a bit of cover down the back and let her use her turn of foot late so that’s what we did.

“I probably got back a bit further than I wanted to, but that was the only place with cover … when I peeled out she really gave me a good kick. She’s been trialling good up there, trialling well sitting back, maybe it suited her a bit.”

Blake Shinn, on the runner-up, thought with an ounce of luck the placing might have been reversed.

“He [Connors] targeted this race and got a good black type result. I momentarily got held up at the 250, I think that cost her the race, but it was a very game effort.” The ultimate racing form guide with free tips, live odds and alerts for all racing.

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Chris Rogers says Shaun Marsh would be devastated if axed

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Shaun Marsh is a picture of concentration on the way to his century in Colombo. Photo: Eranga Jayawardena Australia’s Shaun Marsh watches his shot during the third day of their third test cricket match against Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Former Test opener Chris Rogers says Shaun Marsh could be forgiven for being devastated should he not retain his spot for the opening Test against South Africa.

Marsh, 33, has centuries in his past two Tests – spread eight months apart – and replaced Joe Burns at the top of the order for Australia’s most recent Test, against Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Burns, averaging 41.52 in 12 Tests, enjoyed a strong home campaign last summer and tour of New Zealand but lost his way in Sri Lanka.

Rogers said Marsh – having thumped 182 against the West Indies in Hobart last summer, then been axed for a returning Usman Khawaja – deserved to retain his spot after his ton in Colombo.

“I can’t see how you can drop Shaun. As good as Joe was last year, I think you have to show some form of consistency in your selection, and Shaun has got hundreds in his last two Test matches. It would be pretty devastating to have put those performances on and not be selected,” Rogers said.

“I think he is in the box seat. But the thing about Joe, they know what he is capable of, and it’s not like he is going back to the start of the queue. He would be almost the next one in if he wasn’t picked. I am a big fan of Joe’s, but I would think even he would probably understand … if it was the other way around, I am sure Joe would feel like he deserves a spot as well.”

Marsh tweaked his right hamstring while batting for Western Australia in their Matador Cup clash against Tasmania on Saturday but remained at the crease until he was dismissed for 70.

He has managed a modest 18 Tests since his debut in Sri Lanka in 2011, having been unable to establish a regular spot in the top order. He has averaged 40.22 overall, but this has lifted into the mid 40s in six Tests as an opener. While he is a clever strokemaker, his issue has been “nicking off” early in his innings, caught either in the slips or gully region. This will be an area the Proteas will look to exploit, with veteran Dale Steyn leading the charge.

Rogers, who blossomed as an opener later in his career, said Marsh could do likewise.

“You can always get better. His maturity may come later, as it has with a few of us. There is nothing to see why he can’t make this a winner. He certainly has the skills,” he said.

“Ideally, they (selectors) would want him to open against India. I dare say they would like some kind of consistency there as well.”

Marsh is a better player of spin than Burns, a major consideration heading into the tour of India from February. But team performance boss Pat Howard has signalled a horses-for-courses policy, meaning Marsh could still be seen as the most suited opener for sub-continental conditions should he struggle against pace this summer.

He has played three Tests against the Proteas, all in South Africa split over two tours, averaging 39.33, including 148 at No.4 in the order at Centurion two years ago. Paceman Vernon Philander has dismissed him three times and Steyn twice.

Rogers, an expert commentator on ABC Radio, said Khawaja would return to No.3 in the order. Khawaja also was dropped for the final Test in Sri Lanka because of his woes against spin, but he had been in superb touch at home last summer, averaging 152 in three innings against New Zealand before injury intervened and 100 in two innings on his return against the West Indies.

“The way he played last year, he looked world class. Obviously there were a couple of issues with spin (in Sri Lanka). He wasn’t on his own – there were a few of us that had that,” Rogers said.

“He would have learnt, too. I think here in Australia he is one of the best we have got.”

While Australia had been crowned the No.1 Test nation ahead of the Sri Lankan series, they were still a team in transition. The batting order has yet to be rubber-stamped, wicketkeeper Peter Nevill needs runs, while injuries have hindered the pace attack behind leaders Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood.

Rogers, who retired after last year’s Ashes series loss, said improvement would come.

“There are a lot of guys that haven’t played a lot of Test matches. I think after the last season there was a lot of expectation that the players that had come in were going to be the finished article, but they still have a long way in their own development,” he said.

“The hardest thing about international cricket is being consistent and that is probably one of the lessons you learn pretty hard straight away. They are going to get better as guys play more Test matches and more games together. There is still a fair bit to come. I think they’ll be much better over here and Starc hopefully is firing and Josh coming back in will make a big difference to what we have seen over the last month or so.

“It will be improved performances, definitely in Australia, but there is still a lot of questions and a lot of work to be done, and I think the guys even in the side would agree with that.”

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Canberra Raiders prop Paul Vaughan accepts St George Dragons

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Jay CronanCanberra Raiders prop Paul Vaughan will join the St George Illawarra Dragons after accepting a three-year deal.

The paperwork is expected to be finalised on Monday, with the representative front-rower signing a $1.75 million, three-year, flexible deal to become the latest Raider to switch to the Red V.

He’ll join former Raiders Josh Dugan, Joel Thompson and Josh McCrone at the Dragons, with Sam Williams, Josh Miller and Bronson Harrison other former Canberra players who’ve made the same switch in the recent past.

Vaughan, who was contracted to Canberra for the 2017 NRL season, was also courted by Newcastle, Parramatta and Gold Coast before the big bopper opted for the Dragons’ big-money offer.

He has played 85 games for the Raiders over the last four seasons since making his debut against the North Queensland Cowboys in 2013.

The front-rower slipped down the prop pecking order at the Raiders this season, with Canberra coach Ricky Stuart opting for Kangaroos debutant Shannon Boyd, Junior Paulo, Clay Priest and Joe Tapine as his big-man rotation instead.

Vaughan was dropped after the round-18 victory over the Cowboys and played three games for the Raiders’ NSW Cup affiliate Mounties, with Priest playing his way from the Mounties onto an NRL team.

He then earned a recall to the seniors for the 44-30 away win over the Manly Sea Eagles in round 25 after Paulo suffered a rib injury.

The 25-year-old dropped back out of the side when Paulo returned for the qualifying final against the Cronulla Sharks, but returned to finish the season with the Raiders when Priest broke his ankle at training in the lead-up to their semi-final against the Wests Tigers.

With the Raiders boasting plenty of cover for the front row – with Sia Soliola, Jeff Lima, Jarrad Kennedy and former Canterbury Bulldog Makahesi Makatoa also in the prop wings – it’s believed the Raiders started shopping Vaughan around to other clubs.

Vaughan’s management then started looking for the best deal, with the Dragons coming to the party with their big offer.

He’ll slot straight into a Dragons front-row alongside the likes of Leeson Ah Mau, Mose Masoe and Russell Packer.

It’s believed the Dragons ticked a few boxes for Vaughan, not least of which was Wollongong’s close proximity to his home town – plus the Canberra product’s mum is a big Dragons fan.

Vaughan was tipped to be a future Origin prop and has played three City-Country Origins, as well as making the same number of appearances for Italy.

He opted against joining former Raiders captain Terry Campese at the Azzurri for their upcoming World Cup qualifiers – against Wales and Serbia over the next fortnight – instead focusing on finalising his future.

That future now lies with the Dragons. While he’ll be a big loss for the Raiders, they’re confident they have the depth to cover Vaughan without having to go back to the market.

Raiders recruitment manager Peter Mulholland told Fairfax Media earlier this month they had the depth to cover Vaughan’s loss.

“You don’t want to lose a player out of a side that’s got to second spot in the competition and one game off the grand final, it’s a bit hard, but sometimes you’ve got to move forward as well,” Mulholland said at the time.

“I think Ricky’s pretty comfortable with where we are with the roster. We’ll have some improvement with [English utility] Jordan Turner, Lachlan Croker will be back [from a knee reconstruction].

“We’ve had a really strong reserve-grade performance … that’s the sign of a good club and depth in a club. Our under-20s made the eight so it’s all looking good for depth and player progression and that’s what we’re about.”

The Raiders players are currently on holidays and will return for pre-season training in mid November.

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Australian captain Steve Smith to miss Twenty20 internationa

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 Gallo ImagesA congested international cricket schedule will mean Steve Smith will not lead Australia in three Twenty20 internationals against Sri Lanka in February.

At a time when the Australian Cricketers Association has increasing concerns about the sport’s calendar, Fairfax Media can reveal Smith will miss the matches in Melbourne, Geelong and Adelaide because they clash with Australia’s lead-in preparation for four Tests in India.

The tourists are understandably keen to maximise their preparation on the spinning decks of India, meaning the three Twenty20 games are likely to be without a handful of their biggest names, for Australia would also want T20 stars Mitchell Starc and David Warner to have the best possible preparation for the blue-chip Test series.

Australian team performance boss Pat Howard said Smith would miss the T20 series.

“He won’t be able to captain the T20s because of a clash in the schedule,” he said.

It’s not the first time Australia has prioritised an away Test series over home international T20s. If you think about post the Ashes [2013-14], we went to South Africa early and we played three T20s against England and … Josh Hazlewood debuted in that period,” Howard said.

Australia’s top cricketers want to represent their country on “every occasion” but a packed schedule means that is unlikely to occur.

The decision to rest frontline pacemen Starc and Hazlewood contributed greatly to Australia’s 5-0 one-day series loss to South Africa in the past month, with young replacements Chris Tremain, Joe Mennie and Dan Worrall finding their way at the elite level.

While the presence of Starc – who ultimately could not have gone because of a freak training accident – and Hazlewood may not have meant the tourists would have won, the scoreline would almost certainly have been far closer.

Cricket Australia’s high-performance team made the decision to rest the pair ahead of a busy home summer. Test series against South Africa and Pakistan and stand-alone one-day series against Pakistan and New Zealand initially await. Then comes an odd situation where the Australians will have three one-day matches in New Zealand from January 30, before returning home for three T20s against Sri Lanka.

While Australian Cricketers’ Association chief executive Alistair Nicholson did not want to comment specifically on the resting policy, he said players wanted a greater say in scheduling.

“The ACA is committed to getting the scheduling of international and domestic matches right, so we see the best players playing at the highest level on every occasion.  It is what the players want and it is what the fans expect,” he said.

“The players are genuine partners in the growth and success of cricket and should be afforded greater say in the formation of the schedule and the planning of the cricket calendar.”

But Howard said the players, through the Federation of International Cricketers Association and the ACA, were given input.

“FICA were at the meetings the ICC had in Cape Town last weekend and Alistair sits on those boards and they do submit information around schedules. I feel as though they have a voice,” he said.

“It is an international schedule. We have incredible amount of control over the domestic schedule and I see the ACA having their input but the international schedule, obviously, is far more complex and a lot of moving parts. I see they have a voice there, their input is brought in there, then we have to deal with the moving pieces out to 2023 which we do at the moment.”

CA’s need to adopt a resting policy comes not just because of players’ international commitments but also because of the individually lucrative domestic Twenty20 tournaments – namely the Indian Premier League – they take part in.

The delicate balance needed to be found in Australia’s schedule will form part of discussions over the memorandum of understanding, due to begin later this month.

Once the four Tests are completed in India in March, Australia will again have a busy year. There will be the reinstated Champions Trophy tournament in England in June, a potential trip to Bangladesh for Tests and one-day internationals in August, a one-day series in India in October and then a home Ashes campaign.

“The significance of the international contest is important to the playing group – every match should have relevance and context,” Nicholson said.

“This will be a point of discussion in the upcoming MOU – the players want to be able to play for their country on every occasion, so they should then have greater say on the scheduling.”

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David Warner vows to take the attack to South Africa’s pace

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Bring on South Africa: Australian Ashes hero David Warner. Photo: Brendan EspositoDavid Warner will fight fire with fire against South Africa’s powerful pace attack, promising to maintain the aggressive attitude that delivered him so much success in the Ashes.

The explosive opener, the leading run-scorer in this summer’s series, said he would continue to play his shots against the world No.1 team’s lethal pace trio of Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel.

“[I’ve] got to keep maintaining the confidence I have and trusting my game,” Warner said. “Trusting my game and going with my gut and not trying to cloud my mind with anything else bar positive cricket.”

Warner’s batting mentor, Trent Woodhill, had said earlier in the summer that his protege’s form had waned towards the end of Mickey Arthur’s reign as the coaching staff had curbed his natural attacking instincts.

The theory is supported by his career numbers, which show that Warner is at his best when he looks to score rather than occupy the crease.

In the five series where he has averaged above 40, he has scored at above 73 runs per 100 balls but in India he averaged 24 with a strike rate of 50 and in England his numbers were 23 and 61.

Warner has enjoyed success attacking the Proteas; his century at better than a run a ball last summer in Adelaide proof for him his bold strategy will work in South Africa.

“If I go too defensive with those guys it’s probably going to be tough for me,” Warner said. “I’ve got to play my shots as much as I can.”

Warner also wants his opening partner, Chris Rogers, to maintain the high scoring rate that was a feature of his centuries in Melbourne and Sydney.

“Different batting style but he scored both his hundreds at a strike rate of 75. I said you can do that all the time instead of striking at 30,” Warner said.

“But that’s him, having the intent. He was talking to us about not having enough runs on the board [and that] his spot may be up in question and he came out and played positive cricket and that’s the Chris Rogers that we know.”

Rogers, not known as a free-flowing strokeplayer, said: “I still don’t think people had seen the way I could actually bat and I wanted to show that. And fortunately I’ve been able to play a couple of big innings.”

Having overcome an attack led by James Anderson and Stuart Broad to be the leading run-scorer across the two Ashes series, Rogers is looking forward to the chance to face Steyn and co.

Despite his strong form, Rogers maintains his position in the Test side is not safe. “At my stage I have to score runs. They always push for the next big thing so I’ve got to keep doing well,” Rogers said. “And I enjoy playing under pressure so I’ve got to keep putting myself under pressure.”

The 36-year-old, who had to wait five-and-a-half years to shed the one-Test wonder tag, said his career now felt complete but would not be retiring any time soon.

“If I’d finished and not played international cricket I would have been quite disappointed so to get this opportunity and play it well I can finish cricket at some stage and say ‘I’ve done everything’ and that’s great to do,” Rogers said.

“People talk about retirement but what’s the point in retiring? This is amazing and I haven’t had this opportunity before so I might as well enjoy it while it lasts.”

That attitude was also apparent in his celebrations. Rogers missed the start of the public event at the Opera House after sleeping in.

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Plan on Panthers rising higher up mountain

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Sought-after: Jamal Idris will play for the Panthers in 2014. Photo: Steve ChristoFor the first few months of his tenure at Penrith, general manager Phil Gould was ridiculed about his fabled “five-year plan”.

Shortly after his appointment in May 2011, he hurried then-coach Matt Elliott out the door, quickly followed by captain Petero Civoniceva. Then he moved on Michael Jennings to the Roosters and allowed Luke Lewis to join the Sharks.

The so-called five-year plan became so much of a punchline for how poorly the Panthers were supposedly being governed, it picked up its own hashtag on Twitter. Gould’s legion of detractors jumped all over it.

Then Gould missed out on signing Johnathan Thurston, and nobody will ever know just how close he was to securing an off-contract Todd Carney.

Some thought these to be a failure. Aware of the stench around their club not that long ago, Gould and others realised it was an achievement just to get Origin playmakers to the negotiation table.

So what about now? How does the club look today after two-and-a-half years into the five-year plan, which includes the shock signing of gun centre Jamal Idris after he was released from the Titans on Tuesday?

“He’s a massive signing for this area and this club and another sign of what a lot of people here have achieved,” Gould told Fairfax Media. “Has it happened quicker than I expected? It has to be honest. I sat back the other day and reflected on what we’ve done in the past two-and-a-half years, and it has happened very quickly. But the results in the next two or so years, and beyond that, will show what Penrith is all about. I’m extremely happy with how the club has evolved. Our aim from day one has been to make Panthers the strongest sporting franchise in the country. This is part of that evolution.”

Idris, 23, was granted a compassionate release from the final three years of his Titans deal to take up a three-year deal with the Panthers. “I made comment for Channel Nine last year prior to his serious leg injury about how well he was playing,” Gould said. “He’s a representative-class player. Whether he plays for NSW or Australia again comes down to Jamal himself and the commitment he makes. Last year, I saw how good Jamal Idris could be, never believing he would be playing for the Panthers.”

Notwithstanding the untold good that’s happened on the other side of Mulgoa Road at the once-financially crippled leagues club, the revolution at the football club under its 1991 premiership-winning coach should not be underestimated. They nearly made the top eight in 2013 after many consigned them to the wooden spoon.

Do they have a premiership-winning roster? Not yet, but they’re getting there.

Peter Wallace and Jamie Soward are confidence players who could do the job Penrith need. Then there’s Tyrone Peachey. They’re still kicking themselves at Cronulla for letting him go. Then there’s Kevin Naiqama, whose form for the Knights late last season illuminated his abundant natural ability. Then there’s Elijah Taylor, a signing from the Warriors, ripe for the biggest season of his career. Gould’s been telling anyone who listens about him for years. Then there’s Brent Kite, who played through heinous injury for Manly during their run to the grand final and would still be there if not for the salary cap. What excites the most at Penrith is what’s beneath these players, deeper still.

Premiership contenders might be too strong, but Penrith are much closer to the top of the mountain than some of the bigger, stronger clubs. For instance, Parramatta.

Why has Idris left? When he signed with the Titans for $1.8 million over five years in 2011, the Gold Coast were a different team. They had promised to make him a larger-than-life character away from footy, but financial problems stalled that. Gould also heard rumblings about Idris’ desire to come back to Sydney to be closer to his family.

The Idris signing is a horse trade with a swap with Brad Tighe a fundamental part of the deal.

“As tough a decision as it was for the Titans to release Jamal on compassionate grounds, I can tell you it was equally as tough to say goodbye to Brad Tighe,” Gould said. “He’s been one of my favourites since I got here. Not just a quality player but person. His work with the indigenous programs, and the mentoring of our young indigenous players, has been a wonderful contribution.”New Pennies Penrith’s key 2014 recruits

Brent Kite – Prop

The veteran  comes to Penrith with a point to prove after being squeezed out of the Sea Eagles. Will add some much needed experience to a young forward pack and provide a strong rotation with props Tim Grant and Sam McKendry, as he closes in on 300 NRL games.

Jamal Idris – Centre/utility

Prized signing who returns to Sydney after a two-season stint on the Gold Coast. Will give the Panthers some much needed strike out wide as he looks to find the destructive ball-running form which earned him one-off Test and NSW appearances while at Canterbury in 2010 and 2011.

Jamie Soward – Five-eighth

The much maligned pivot has a point to prove after a messy end to his seven season-stint at St George Illawarra. Will be looking to return to the form which saw him play three Origins for NSW in 2011 and become a key member of the Dragons 2010 premiership win.

Peter Wallace – Halfback

The former NSW Origin playmaker returns to Penrith after six seasons at Brisbane and a starring role for Scotland in the Bravehearts’ world cup campaign.  A good combination with Soward will form an integral part of any potential success for Penrith.

Kevin Naiqama – Wing/fullback

The former Knight is reunited with his brother Wes at Penrith. Debuted for Newcastle in 2010 but was limited to only 15 NRL games because of the presence of Darius Boyd, Akuila Uate and James McManus. Will be hoping to finally cement a regular spot at the Panthers.

Tyrone Peachey – Back-rower

Dynamic forward who made his mark in seven  games for Cronulla last year. Stuck behind a log-jam of back-rowers at the Sharks, makes the switch to Penrith with the intention of establishing himself as a first-grader. Has fancy footwork and good ball skills.

Elijah Taylor – Back-rower

Reunites with Ivan Cleary at the Panthers having spent time under the Penrith coach at the Warriors, where he starred in the Kiwis’ run to the grand final in 2011. Spent some time at hooker last year but is more comfortable in the back row.

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NAB, ANZ the big losers in super switching

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National Australia Bank and ANZ have suffered the biggest losses from members switching among the large retail superannuation fund providers.

A survey by research firm Roy Morgan found that of all super products switched between managers in the year to June 2013, NAB lost a net 3.1 per cent of products, while ANZ lost 2 per cent.

Among the large retail funds, Commonwealth Bank was the biggest winner, attracting a net 3.1 per cent of products. Westpac won 1.7 per cent of retirement products switched from rival funds.

Super fund members have been able to select the manager of their retirement savings since July 2005, prompting many to choose the fund that best suits their needs.

NAB said it had attractive products and was working hard to meet clients’ needs.

The losses suffered by the two banks come despite findings by Roy Morgan that AMP, the listed wealth manager, had the most dissatisfied customers. The percentage of AMP super customers who were satisfied with their fund’s performance fell to 36.8 per cent in 2012-13 from 42.1 per cent the previous year. The satisfaction rating compares with 47.8 per cent of CBA customers who were happy with the performance of their fund, and 49.6 per cent of members of industry funds as a whole who said they were satisfied with their scheme’s performance.

AMP experienced only a 0.5 per cent net loss of super products that were switched in 2012-13.

There was a stronger correlation between satisfaction of self-managed fund members and switching activity, suggesting the do-it-yourself sector is on course to maintain its fast growth pace.

Roy Morgan found that 71.7 per cent of self-managed super scheme trustees were satisfied with the performance of their fund, up from 67.2 per cent the year before.

Last year, DIY schemes attracted a net 9 per cent of all super products that were switched, making them by far the biggest beneficiary of the switching regime.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Xiamen Sauna Net.

Leviathan signs $1.3b deal for West Bank

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News of the contract comes as Woodside continues to negotiate the purchase of a 30 per cent stake in the Leviathan field. Photo: Michele MossopThe Leviathan gas venture in Israel, which Woodside Petroleum is negotiating to join, has sealed its first gas sales contract, a $US1.2 billion ($1.3 billion) deal to sell gas to the Palestine Power Generation Company.

The gas will be used at a power station that the power generation company plans to build near Jenin in the northern West Bank, a Palestinian-controlled region. It represents less than 1 per cent of the total volume of gas thought to be held in the Leviathan field, Israel’s biggest discovery.

News of the contract comes as Woodside continues to negotiate the purchase of a 30 per cent stake in the Leviathan field.

Completion of the transaction was first delayed by uncertainty over Israel’s gas export policy, and then by changing expectations about how the export project would be structured.

The contract with the power generation company involves 4.75 billion cubic metres of gas, to be delivered once the domestic gas project at Leviathan starts production. Deliveries will continue for 20 years or whenever the sales volume has been reached.

Pricing is linked to Brent crude prices and includes a floor price, according to Delek Group, one of the Israeli partners in the Noble Energy-led Leviathan venture.

The Leviathan project has yet to be approved for development, but analysts are expecting supply to the domestic market to start in about 2017, with gas exports to commence later. The field has about 19 trillion cubic feet of gas, or 538 billion cubic metres.

A Woodside spokeswoman said last week that engagement with stakeholders was “ongoing” as the company sought to finalise its entry into the Leviathan venture.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Xiamen Sauna Net.