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Chad's Award-winning performance

Written By Unknown on Sabtu, 26 Oktober 2013 | 16.41

Shamus Award, ridden by apprentice Chad Schofield, (rails) holds out a fast-finishing Happy Trails (outside), ridden by Dwayne Dunn. Picture: Michael Klein Source: Michael Klein / HeraldSun

TEENAGER Chad Schofield engineered a Group 1 boilover at Moonee Valley as Shamus Award today became the first maiden to win the Group 1 $3 million Cox Plate.

Carrying just 49.5kg, Shamus Award beat Happy Trails and Fiorente in a memorable running of the weight-for age classic.

The Danny O'Brien-trained galloper was the first maiden to contest the nation's weight-for-age championship since Oxberry Way ran last as a 200/1 bolt in Red Anchor's 1984 Cox Plate.

Winless after nine starts, Shamus Award ($22.60) took to one of racing's biggest stages to register his first win, going straight to the front in the 2040m race, sharing the lead at different times with fellow three-year-old Long John and then Fiorente before sprinting away in the straight to hold off Happy Trails, while Fiorente battled on well for third.

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Schofield himself created a piece of history, the 19-year-old becoming the youngest winner of the Moonee Valley feature since Brent Thomson won the 1975 Cox Plate aboard Fury's Order.

The Chris Waller-trained Fiorente finished brilliantly for fourth, as favourite It's A Dundeel couldn't overcome a disrupted preparation and one-time Melbourne Cup favourite Puissance De Lune fell away badly at the turn.

Cox Plate winner Shamus Award steals a decent break on his rivals as they motor down the home straight. Picture: Michael Klein Source: HeraldSun

Fiorente put in a massive Melbourne Cup run. He came from barrier 14 but got caught wide, with Blake Shinn forced to work the six-year-old extra hard to get into second, behind eventual winner Shamus Award.

The former European galloper held on remarkably well for third, and bookmakers reacted immediately, with the TAB slashing his price for the Melbourne Cup into $5.50 outright favouritism.

Puissance De Lune, once a $5.50 Melbourne Cup favourite, has blown to $19 for the race that stops a nation.

Jockey Chad Schofield gets a hug and kiss from mum Tiffany. Picture: Michael Klein Source: HeraldSun

1 $21 SHAMUS AWARD 49.5 (C Schofield)
2 $12 HAPPY TRAILS 59 (D Dunn)
3 $8 FIORENTE 59 (B Shinn)
4 $21 Foreteller 59 (C Newitt)
5 $18 Super Cool 57.5 (C W Brown)
6 $41 Side Glance 59 (Craig Williams)
7 $31 Seville 59 (J Bowman)
8 $4 fav It's A Dundeel 57.5 (J B Mc Donald)
9 $12 Green Moon 59 (B Prebble) and
10 Dead heat: $7 Long John 49.5 (K Mc Evoy), $41 Mull Of Killough 59 (S W Arnold)
12 $5.50 Puissance De Lune 59 (B Melham)
13 $31 Masked Marvel 59 (M Rodd)
14 $51 Rekindled Interest 59 (M Zahra) last

Scratched: Atlantic Jewel
Margins: 1/2 hd, lg nk.
Time: 2min 05.27sec (Last 600m 36.17).

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Early goal enough for Mariners win

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BULLISH Mariners coach Graham Arnold declared he had never seen his team in better early form after taking a first win for the season at the expense of Adelaide.

Central Coast's A-League title defence came to life Saturday night as Nick Fitzgerald's lone second-minute goal was the difference in a 1-0 victory.

Josep Gombau's Reds were true to their attack at all costs philosophy, but it played into the hands of Graham Arnold's savvy outfit at Bluetongue Stadium and Fitzgerald struck in just the second minute.

"I'm always happy when you make chances and we had enough chances to win three games of football tonight," Arnold said.

"This is the best start that we've had in the three years that I've been at the club - going into the fourth year.

"We do start slow and we're probably at about 50 per cent of where we will be in about another four, five weeks."

Mentioned as a potential Socceroos coach until Ange Postecoglou was appointed, Arnold added he was pleased the whole "charade" was over.

Adelaide again proved they will be terrific entertainment this season under Barcelona product Gombau, with a relentless press upfield despite the injury absence of hot striker Jeronimo Neumann.

"We play the way that we want to arrive (at) – we have the possession of the game," Gombau said, as his club's graveyard run in Gosford continued.

Yet Central Coast, coming off two draws, showed its hard-earned reign as champion won't be handed over easily. Arnold also expects last season's golden boot winner Daniel McBreen back in the selection frame for next weekend's derby against Newcastle after a stint in China.

Though Adelaide striker Sergio Cirio was allowed a shot on goal within the first minute, the Mariners got off to a stunning start thanks to a swift goal from recalled forward Fitzgerald.

The diminutive livewire found space on the right wing after a touch-on from Socceroos striker Mitchell Duke.

He cut back inside to roll a precise left-foot shot from just outside the box past The Great Wall of Adelaide – fringe Socceroos goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic – that rustled the far netting and gave his side a 1-0 lead in little more than 60 seconds.

Fitzgerald was completely unbothered in the lead-up as the Reds were caught napping on the break, a consistent theme of the first stanza.

Fitzgerald went within inches of a second goal in the 11th minute as gun playmaker Marcos Flores sent a rasping cross to the far post that his teammate could not quite locate with his outstretched feet.

Cirio and fellow Spaniard, the back-from-suspension midfielder Isaias Sanchez, were lively in trying to right the ship for Adelaide during an open first half and linked regularly down the left flank.

Yet Flores had another great look at goal in the 21st minute thanks to a sloppy turnover deep in defence from former Mariners centre-back Nigel Boogaard. The Argentine fired well over the bar from just outside the box.

Fabio Ferreira gave Reds striker Brent McGrath a sniff with a dangerous cross three minutes later, but towering Mariners central defender Zac Anderson made a decisive header away.

The 27th minute saw Flores release Mitchell Duke away down the right and the Socceroos striker rolled in an inviting cross that was desperately hacked away near the goal-line – only for a free-kick to be awarded just outside the box that Michael McGlinchey sent just over the bar.

Another marvellous, lunging ball from Flores set Duke loose on the right in the 35th minute. McGlinchey found himself with a decent sight on goal but pulled the shot left.

Cirio created space for another Adelaide shot in the 42nd minute but fired high at the end of a move again given life in midfield by Isaias.

Fitzgerald got another cracking chance in the 44th minute, after left-back Josh Rose delivered a neat ball straight to his feet that should have been buried. The forward was one-on-one with Galekovic and drilled a shot straight at the keeper, whose reflexes were good enough to slam the ball into the crossbar and away from danger.

Flores was given warm applause by the home crowd when replaced after 78 minutes, having given his former club – where he won the Johnny Warren Medal in 2011 – a tough night at the office.

Mile Sterjovski was his replacement and he made an immediate impact, firing a shot that hit the post and fell back to replacement striker Matt Simon, who somehow bounced his shot over the bar and missed another chance wide the following minute.

Cirio made a marvellous run into the box in the 88th minute, unable to find the net but winning a corner. It went to waste and despite a late flurry from both sides Fitzgerald's goal remained the difference. 

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Most important trades of 2013

Lance Franklin in his new colours. Picture: Phil Hillyard Source: Philip Hillyard / DailyTelegraph

SOME are already established superstars of the AFL, others are just making their way in the competition.

Over the past three weeks 35 players have found new homes via the AFL's free agency and trade period.

Some will go on to make a huge difference at their new club. Others may fade away into the AFL wilderness.

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This time 12 months ago, SuperFooty rated every trade -  in order of value to their new clubs – with Norm Smith medallist Brian Lake ranked at the top of the pile.



History says the Hawks got that one right.  Big time.

Twelve months on and we're doing it again, ranking every trade of the past few weeks – again in the order of value we think these players might be to their new clubs. Not necessarily how good we think that player is, but the significance of their new acquisition.

Did we get it right? Have your say below.

The coup of the trade and free agency period, Buddy's massive nine-year deal will ensure the Swans will remain a threat for the next however many years. And that's forgetting the off-field benefits the Swans will reap in marketing, etc.

2. STEWART CRAMERI (Western Bulldogs)
The Western Bulldogs are on the up but have lacked power forwards – and goalkickers – to seriously contend. Crameri isn't that power forward but he'll ease the burden on Liam Jones and seems decent value for pick 26.

3. BEN McEVOY (Hawthorn)
Have the Hawks done it again? By plucking the 24-year-old in his prime, it allows Roughead to play forward while Hale supports the man mountain in the ruck. No-one saw it coming … the best kind of trade.

4. DALE THOMAS (Carlton)
The Blues were after outside run from the moment they lost to Sydney in their semi-final. Daisy comes with a decent price tag but he offers that run and has a decent bag of tricks, too. The only question is: Is the ankle going to be OK?

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5. NICK DAL SANTO (North Melbourne)

Dal Santo gets his chance to join a contender in a deal that seems a win for both his old club and his new one. North Melbourne's midfield now comprises Dal, Daniel Wells, Jack Ziebell, Brent Harvey, Andrew Swallow, Ryan Bastinac, Ben Cunnington … the list goes on

All eyes were on the Heath Shaw trade but it is 'Mummy' who may be the biggest win for the Giants. For just pick 35, his huge frame will protect his young midfielders and allow Jonathan Giles to stop copping the brunt each week.

7. EDDIE BETTS (Carlton)
With plenty of tall timber in the Crows' forward line, it was ground level that was the concern. Adelaide got its man with Eddie. A genuine goalkicker who should add 40-plus goals to Brenton Sanderson's forward line in 2014.

Eddie Betts with 11-month-old son Lewis at the Adelaide press conference talking about his move to the Crows from Carlton. Picture: Luke Hemer. Source: News Limited

8. BILLY LONGER (St Kilda)
When the Saints lost McEvoy, they knew they had to act. In Longer, they nabbed one of the few top-10 ruckman taken in recent drafts. If he can fulfil his potential, he could be a 10-year Saint and be a formidable pairing with Tom Hickey.

Shaw's ability is one thing, but someone of his profile turning his back on premiership contenders to choose the Giants was the real win for GWS. His leadership and ball use in defence will be huge for Leon Cameron's side.

10. SCOTT GUMBLETON (Fremantle)
'Gumby' has had his injury worries but at pick 55 Freo didn't sell the farm for the former Bomber. If he can string together some games with Matthew Pavlich next season, the Dockers will be a step closer towards that elusive flag.

11. PAUL CHAPMAN (Essendon)
Plenty left or the body packing up? Everyone knows what a fit Chappy adds - midfield grunt and polish in attack. His experience at the business end of a season could also be invaluable. The Bombers will be hoping his body stays sound.

12. TAYLOR ADAMS (Collingwood)
GWS footy manager Graeme Allan says Taylor Adams is as tough as they come and could one day captain the Pies. Quite the wrap for a kid who's played 31 games of league footy. Will slot into the strong Collingwood midfield nicely.

13. JOSH BRUCE (St Kilda)
St Kilda wanted to add defenders to its young list, and the Giants were reluctant to part with 21-year-old Bruce. The 196cm backman has obvious talent. Time will tell if the pick 48 the Saints handed over ends up being a bargain buy.

14. SHAUN HAMPSON (Richmond)
Hampson was stuck behind Matthew Kreuzer at Carlton. He is likely to support Ivan Maric at Punt Road, but that will allow Ty Vickery to play more permanently in attack. And that is where the Tigers may really win.

Bernie Vince to be a Demon Source: News Limited

15. BERNIE VINCE (Melbourne)
No-one can deny Vince's talent, but some have questioned his dedication at times. The Demons handed over pick 23 and will hope the 28-year-old can be that hardened body – with a touch of class - to guide his younger teammates they hope.

16. TRENT WEST (Brisbane)
When the Lions learned Billy Longer was off, they knew the support acts for Matthew Leuenberger were scarce. Trent West, for pick 41, was the perfect fit. A Cat since 2005, one would expect him to get plenty of game time under Justin Leppitsch.

17. SHANE SAVAGE (St Kilda)
Savage was a fringe player at the Hawks but should play 22 games at the Saints. Part of the mega-deal that saw Ben McEvoy leave the Saints, Savage has the chance to be a long-term player in the red, white and black.

18. JESSE WHITE (Collingwood)
White finished 2013 like a train and had a few clubs looking north. In the end, pick 44 was enough to ensure he ended up in black and white. His versatility will take some focus off Travis Cloke and give Nathan Buckley more options with Ben Reid and Quinten Lynch.

19. COLIN SYLVIA (Fremantle)
Sylvia has enormous ability but harnessing that and finding consistency has been an issue. Ross Lyon always seems to get the best from his players. Sylvia will be a handy addition in attack or rotating through Freo's A-Grade midfield.

Luke Delaney is hoping for more opportunities at St Kilda. Source: HeraldSun

20. LUKE DELANEY (St Kilda)
The Saints gained Delaney to complement the arrival of Bruce from the Giants. At the bargain basement price of pick 77 (a thank you from the Roos for the Saints letting Dal Santo come across as a free agent), Delaney will further stiffen Scott Watters' back six.

21. ELLIOTT YEO (West Coast)
Yeo really started to show signs in 2013 that he could be a player. Has good speed and can take a mark, so his assets will be put to good use on the open spaces of Subiaco.

22. SAM DOCHERTY (Carlton)
The Blues gained Thomas and Docherty's skills and ball use further complement a nice off-season for Mick Malthouse. Hasn't had a lot of senior exposure, but the Blues were willing to part with a second-rounder – a sign of how highly Docherty is thought at Visy Park.

Melbourne recruit Dom Tyson speaks to the media. Source: Getty Images

22. DOM TYSON (Melbourne)
Tyson was the no.3 pick in 2011 and the Demons believe if available this time around they'd have taken him with pick 2 - that's why they were willing to swap that selection with the Giants in order to gain the smooth-moving midfielder to Melbourne.

24. JARED POLEC (Port Adelaide)
Former no.5 draft pick managed just 16 matches in three seasons at the Lions, but one feels under development gurus Ken Hinkley and Alan Richardson he may blossom at Alberton. Could be the outside jet Port needs to top off their developing list.

25. PATRICK KARNEZIS (Collingwood)
It remains to be seen where Karnezis will play his best footy, but the Pies think he can develop into an "elite" third tall with the ability to play through the middle. Another former high draft pick who defected from the Gabba, could blossom at the Westpac Centre.

26. MATT WHITE (Port Adelaide)
Once a specialist sub at the Tigers, Port Adelaide is a fan of White's attacking run but also believes he will be able to develop as a run-with player. Not as big a name as Boak, Ebert or Gray but he'll be a handy addition to the Power midfield.

27. VIV MICHIE (Fremantle)
For pick 54, Michie may end up being the bargain of the trade period. The Docker wasn't getting a chance behind Fyfe, Mundy and co, so old pals Ross Lyon and Paul Roos did a deal to see the talented mid come home. Look for him to get good game time at the Demons.

28. JACKSON PAINE (Brisbane)
With the Lions planning for LAB (Life After Browny), they realised the need to bring in another tall forward. If former Pie Paine can rid himself of his shoulder issues, he has showed enough in glimpses to suggest he might be able to find a permanent spot in the Lions' forward half.

Andrejs Everitt has left the Swans for Carlton. Picture: Hillyard Philip Source: DailyTelegraph

The Blues were desperate to land a key forward. With Everitt, they landed a versatile runner who won't hold down a key post but might be able to fill a hole here and there. The Blues did give up pick 32 for the former Bulldog and Swan, and only time will tell if that will be a wise move.

30. SAM DARLEY (Western Bulldogs)
Another of the young GWS crew who wanted out, the Bulldogs pounced on the 20-year-old Tasmanianm who looks likely to work his way into the Doggies back six. Has only played 13 matches, but is a nice user and could be a long-term player at Whitten Oval.

31. SHAUN EDWARDS (Essendon)
If you listen to Andrew McLeod, you might think the Bombers had landed a clone of the man himself. "Beautiful skills" and "lightning quick" were among the superlatives McLeod used when gushing over Edwards to Crows recruiters. Will the Bombers see that develop in red and black?

32. JAMES PODSIADLY (Adelaide)
With Taylor Walker (knee) and Josh Jenkins (leg) in rehab from serious injuries, Podsiadly's recruitment looks a smart move by Brenton Sanderson. He demands a good defender given his aerial prowess, and he'll take the focus off that pair as the Crows send in high balls in 2014.

Renowned for his nice long leg, Hunt will provide another big body in the GWS side in 2014 as Leon Cameron tries to further develop his young team. Has 198 games of AFL experience, so can pass on plenty to his teammates.

34. XAVIER ELLIS (Hawthorn)
Hard to know if Ellis' body will survive the rigours of AFL footy – he's said he'll hang 'em up if it doesn't – but Adam Simpson thinks his ball using ability is worth a punt. Could be of value in the open spaces at Subiaco.

35. KURT AYLETT (Essendon)
The man who came as part of the two-for-one deal with Edwards to the Bombers played one game in 2012 but has been troubled with injury. Is a good size at 188cm, and could offer the Bombers versatility.



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Eight Poms we love to hate

Written By Unknown on Jumat, 25 Oktober 2013 | 16.41

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STUART Broad is shaping as the great pantomime villain of this Ashes series on account of his actions in England a few months back. Here, we take a look at some of the other England tourists who have got under the skins of Australian audiences.

Which Ashes tourist got under your skin?

Chris Broad

Clearly, it runs in the family. Stuart's father was an obdurate opening batsman who played 25 Tests between 1984 and 1989. He scored a torpid 139 during the Bicentenary Test at the SCG and was bowled by Steve Waugh. Rather than accept his fate, Broad smashed the stumps with his bat. Australian fans of that era have never forgotten that particular dummy spit.

Ian Botham

Australia's antipathy for Botham was born out of envy for his outrageous all-round talents. Botham menaced Australia over a 36-Test span with 148 wickets at 27.65 and 1,673 runs (usually belted to all corners of the ground) at 29.35. Few will forget the 1981 Ashes, during which Botham's feats with bat and ball propelled England from 1-0 down in the series to an epic 3-1 triumph. But perhaps his most notable stoush with Australia occurred not on the field, but rather a carpark, when he scuffled with Ian Chappell in 1977.

John Snow

Snow had brushes with officialdom, umpires and opponents over the course of his controversial 49 Test career. But Australian audiences will most remember him for bowling bouncers at tail-enders – a tactic deemed unsportsmanlike in the 1970s – all of which came to a head at the SCG in 1970-71. After Terry Jenner ducked into a bouncer and retired hurt, a member of the crowd grabbed Snow while he was fielding on the fence. Captain Ray Illingworth took the unprecedented move of taking his players from the field until the field was cleared of debris and the crowd subdued.

Geoff Boycott

Strike-rates weren't statistically in vogue during Geoff Boycott's 108-Test career. And that's just as well, because Boycott's leaps from defence to attack were as infrequent as Yorkshire sunshine. Against Australia, he proved a dreary menace, scoring 2,945 runs at 47.50 from 38 Tests. Fortunately, Boycott proved far more entertaining as a commentator and columnist in later life.

Trevor Bailey

Trevor could bore for his country – and did. Whether scoring at a run-a-week, bowling negative lines down leg-side or lengthening his run-up to intentionally slow the over-rate, Bailey proved a constant source of infuriation for Australian cricketers and audiences. During the first Test to be televised in Australia, Bailey scored an agonising 50 in five hours and 57 minutes – capped by an uncharacteristic six off Ian Johnson.

Douglas Jardine

And, by extension, the England squad of 1932-33. Jardine's "leg theory" tactic was designed to blunt the effectiveness of Sir Donald Bradman, but it almost tore down diplomatic relations between Australia and England. The MCC was branded "unsportsmanlike" after a Harold Larwood bouncer fractured the skull of Australian batsman Bert Oldfield during the third Test at Adelaide. Jardine threatened to withdraw his team from the final two Tests unless the statement was retracted. It was, but only after the intervention of Australian prime minister Joseph Lyons.

WG Grace

Stuart Broad's refusal to walk at Trent Bridge has nothing on the good doctor. Grace was once bowled first ball in an exhibition match in England and defiantly stood his ground. "They've come to watch me bat, not you bowl," he reportedly told the bowler. He hardly endeared himself to the Australian public, either, whether by refusing to allow the opposition runners or arguing the point with umpires. Joe Darling once remarked: "We were all told not to trust the old man as he was out to win every time and was a great bluffer."

Phil Tufnell (honourable mention)

Decent with the ball, dreadful with the bat and (somehow) worse in the field, Tufnell was the kind of English cricketer that modern Australian audiences yearn for. Aussies weren't shy in pointing Tufnell's flaws out to him, most notably when one wag at the MCG bellowed: "Oi, Tufnell! Lend us your brain. We're building an idiot!" Tuffers will never rate among the more dastardly English villains of yore, but his pantomime status earns him an honourable mention on this list.

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Vettel fast as records tumble

Vettel reset his own lap record at the circuit in opening practice. Source: Saurabh Das / AP

SEBASTIAN Vettel continued his dominance in India by edging out Red Bull teammate Mark Webber for the quickest time Friday in the opening practice session for the Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix.

Vettel began his quest to seal a fourth successive F1 title by scorching a new lap record at 1min 26.68secs, surpassing his own record of 1:27.24 set at the inaugural race at the Buddh International Circuit in 2011.

The 26-year-old, enjoying a 90-point lead over his nearest challenger Fernando Alonso, only needs to finish in the top five in his Red Bull on Sunday to seal the title.

Vettel's Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber, who leaves F1 at the end of the season, was only narrowly slower as he came in second at 1:26.87.

Nico Rosberg of Mercedes was third at 1:26.89, followed by Romain Grosjean and Lewis Hamilton - all under the previous lap record - with McLaren's Jenson Button sixth and Felipe Massa seventh.

Vettel, who has won the last five races this season, romped home easily in India in 2011 and 2012 and is strong favourite to triumph again on Sunday. Anything higher than a sixth-place finish and Vettel will join compatriot Michael Schumacher and Juan Manuel Fangio of Argentina as the only drivers to win four consecutive F1 titles.

The only way Vettel can be denied is if he fails to score a point in the remaining four races - provided Ferrari's Alonso wins at least three of them and finishes second in the other.

Victories in the last four races in India, Abu Dhabi, America and Brazil would also put Vettel level with Schumacher's 2004 record of 13 wins in a single season.

Meantime, Alonso had a frustrating start to his weekend, completing just six laps before being forced into the pits with a gearbox issue and ending the morning with the 12th-fastest time.

The drivers had trouble gripping the smooth Noida surface, with Williams driver Pastor Maldonado and McLaren's

Sergio Perez both spinning out onto the grass at turn six before returning to the track without serious damage to their cars.

Hamilton found himself briefly in the gravel after failing to take turn one on his 12th lap of the session, while Marussia's Jules Bianchi and Paul Di Resta also spun off.

Tire supplier Pirelli has dropped the more durable hard compound tires for the Indian surface, instead opting for soft and medium options.

RESULTS - Free Practice 1, Indian Formula 1 Grand Prix (90 min)

Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1m26.683s
2 Mark Webber Red Bull 1m26.871s
3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m26.899s
4 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1m26.990s
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m27.227s
6 Jenson Button McLaren 1m27.335s
7 Sergio Perez McLaren 1m27.416s
8 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1m27.692s
9 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber 1m27.770s
10 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1m27.800s
11 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1m28.035s
12 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1m28.214s
13 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1m28.336s
14 Pastor Maldonado Williams 1m28.342s
15 Adrian Sutil Force India 1m28.468s
16 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 1m28.538s
17 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus 1m28.730s
18 James Calado Force India 1m29.197s
19 Giedo van der Garde Caterham 1m29.413s
20 Jules Bianchi Marussia 1m29.560s
21 Charles Pic Caterham 1m30.026s
22 Max Chilton Marussia 1m30.471s

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League tougher than union: Sonny

Sonny Bill Williams before the World Cup warm-up game between New Zealand and the Cook Islands at the Keepmoat Stadium in Doncaster, England. Source: Paul Thomas / Getty Images

SONNY Bill Williams has declared rugby league a tougher code than rugby union.

Sonny Bill Williams says rugby league is a tougher sport than rugby union. Do you agree?

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A week after committing to return to the Roosters in 2014, Williams told The Telegraph in the UK that while rugby is a bigger sport, league exacts a harsher physical toll.

"Obviously rugby [union] is a bigger sport globally but I believe rugby league is a lot tougher," Williams said.

"In rugby I played in the backs with the pretty boys kicking stones out wide, doing our hair, and in rugby league I'm in the middle doing the hard yards."

Williams added that he was not interested in another European stint following his two years with French rugby club Toulon.

"I'm getting a bit too old for that and I'm pretty content with my home at the Roosters and, if I go back to rugby, my home at the Chiefs," he said.

"I'm a pretty simple man and although this weather is pretty tempting, I think I'll plan my future where it is a little bit warmer."

Williams missed the Kiwis' league World Cup triumph in 2008 after walking out on the Bulldogs to join Toulon.

He seemed destined to miss their title defence this year until an eleventh hour change of heart prompted New Zealand selectors to rush him into the squad after the original 24-man had been named.

Williams was approached to represent Samoa at the tournament, but said he was more than happy to represent the Kiwis.

"I'm proud of being half Samoan, my father is a pretty staunch Samoan but I grew up in New Zealand and I'm very proud to represent my country," he said.

With his immediate playing future settled, Williams said he was a content man away from the field.

"I think one of the biggest things I learned from the way I left rugby league in the first place was that life is not all about sport," he said.

"You finish at 32, 33 and you've still got your whole life to live. It was a big learning experience and it was really humbling as well. Now I'm very content with the man that I see in the mirror and the way I carry myself."

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FFA unveils Ange as Roos' new man

Written By Unknown on Rabu, 23 Oktober 2013 | 16.41

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AFTER 10 days of intense speculation, Football Federation Australia has got its man - on Wednesday afternoon unveiling Ange Postecoglou as the Socceroos new coach on a five-year deal.

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After several days of negotiations with Melbourne Victory, the terms of Postecoglou's release from the A-League's biggest club were agreed on Wednesday morning, despite some lingering feelings of angst from the Victory board.

That cleared the way for the FFA to unveil the popular figure at an afternoon media conference, giving Postecoglou time to plan for next month's friendly against Costa Rica, as he attempts to revitalise an ageing side on the back of demoralising defeats to Brazil and France.

And flanked by FFA chairman Frank Lowy and chief executive David Gallop, Postecoglou made clear that it would be his mission "for the next five years and hopefully more" to "restore pride in the Socceroos jersey".

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"Obviously it's a tremendous honour for me to be sitting here. I love a good challenge and this is certainly one of those," Postecoglou said.

"My hope is that we can restore pride in this country and in the Socceroos. I still think they are the flag bearers of football in this country. There's plenty of work to be done and day one will start for me on Monday. I'm enormously grateful to be extended this opportunity.

"I plan for the next five years and hopefully longer to put my heart and soul into it."

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And a clearly chuffed Lowy said he had "no doubt" Postecoglou was the right man for that challenge, with a five-year deal proof that plenty of faith has been placed in the A-League success story.

"We have the faith in him. We know that he's a good guy, he's the right person for us at this time in our development," Lowy said.

"I think in the last 10 years or so we've had international coaches. It was the time for them then. Now is the time for an Australian." 

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Gallop thanked the board for acting "so quickly" once a decision had been made to appoint an Australian coach.

But the CEO made clear that he believed nationality was irrelevant when it came to who the best man for the Socceroos job was.

"We have today a coach starting a journey who we believe can unite our players to play at the highest level. And unite our nation behind the Socceroos," Gallop said.

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"Our technical experts have said that he's the right man, and it's certainly a bonus that he's an Australian.

"We've seen that we've got a true leader and I want to extend my excitement at the appointment."

Postecoglou's first game at the helm has been scheduled for November 19 at Sydney Football Stadium, with his inaugural Socceroos squad expected to be named early next week. 

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But he will lead Victory into battle against his former club Brisbane Roar on Friday night at Etihad Stadium before turning his attention to the mission of leading Australia to the 2014 World Cup.

After tense and often heated negotiations between the A-League club and the game's governing body the breakthrough came late on Tuesday when Victory backtracked on its hardline stance and agreed to accept just $50,000 in "transition costs" after initially demanding $1 million.

Victory chairman Anthony Di Pietro confirmed on Wednesday morning that the club would not stand between Postecoglou and Australia's top job.

"The circumstances that Ange and the Club have been confronted with are complex and compelling no matter what perspective you take. That said, we have made it clear to Ange that we will not stand in the way of him accepting the biggest coaching role in this country," Mr Di Pietro said.

"However, we are disappointed with the process undertaken by the FFA, given the outcomes we tried to secure could never have been achieved within the timeframes offered, which ultimately forced us to accelerate our decision not to stand in Ange's way.

"Ange Postecoglou has had a profound impact on Melbourne Victory Football Club over the past 18 months and the club is extremely appreciative of everything he has implemented during his tenure.

"Ange's appointment as Socceroos coach is a fantastic endorsement for our club, its culture and the standards we strive to set. We thank Ange and he will certainly always be part of the Melbourne Victory family.

"This week's game becomes our focus and we can confirm that Ange will be the head coach on Friday, so we're looking forward to our members and fans coming out in force."

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Postecoglou, 48, flew to Sydney after Victory training Tuesday - which was the first time he broached the subject with his players - to meet Lowy and sign a deal that will take in the World Cup, the 2015 Asian Cup and beyond.

The Costa Rica friendly will launch Australia's countdown to the World Cup, although FFA has scrapped plans to play a second November friendly despite the temptation of playing a game in Melbourne. They had initially penciled in a double header with Ireland.

HAVE you checked out the Fox Football Podcast yet?

Episode one was a raging success and the latest addition to Fox Sports' football stable is back for its second edition.

Host Adam Peacock is joined this week by Simon Hill and Brenton Speed in the studio, and on the phone by Daniel Garb from London.

There's no shortage of fodder for the gang to discuss - from the incoming Socceroos' coach, to all things A-League, EPL and El Clasico - and none of our pundits are short of an opinion.

For your mid-week fix of football talk and fun - where else will you hear Simon Hill's Dutch accent - the Fox Football podcast is your place to go.

You can check it out here at the iTunes store, subscribe, and share your rating!

And if you're an Android user, you can find the pod on the iPP Podcast Player app.

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Ange's appointment: what they said

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IT'S among the biggest jobs in Australian sport, so how did the key personalities in Australian football react to the appointment of Ange Postecoglou as Socceroos job?

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- on Ange's appointment

Friday: Melbourne Victory v Brisbane, Fox Sports 1 HD, 7.30pm(EDT)

Saturday: Central Coast v Adelaide, 5.30pm; Sydney v Western Sydney, 7.30pm, FS1HD

Sunday: Wellington v Newcastle, 3pm, Perth v Melbourne Heart, 5pm, FS1HD

Kick Off on Friday night, 6.30, with special guest Michael Cockerill. 

Shootout on Sunday night, 7pm, with Craig Moore and Tony Popovic.


Sunday: El Clasico, Barcelona v Real Madrid, 2.55am, FS2HD

Monday: Atletico Madrid v Real Betis, 6.55am, FS3HD 

Saturday night: Crystal Palace v Arsenal, 10.30pm, FS1HD

Manchester United v Stoke, 12.50am, FS1 HD

Viewers' Choice: Norwich v Cardiff; Liverpool v West Bromwich Albion, Aston Villa v Everton. 

Southampton v Fulham, 3.30am, FS1HD

Sunday night/Monday morning: Sunderland v Newcastle, 12.30am, FS1HD 

Chelsea v Manchester City, 2.50am, FS1HD

Tottenham v Hull, 2.50am, FS2HD

Swansea v West Ham United, 2.50am, FS3HD

We have the faith in him. We know that he's a good guy. He's a good guy. He's the right person for us at this stage of our development. I think the last 10 years or so, we've had coaches from overseas. That was the time for that then. Now is the time for an Australian coach. This is a day that will be remembered for quite some time, and it has come to fruition. All I really want to do is wish him luck and hope that he succeeds the way he wants to succeed. His expectations of himself are very high. Of course we also expect it. But he has (those expectations) of himself.

- on Victory's role

I understand. If I was in their position I would have been uptight about it. They've had him for a year and a half or thereabouts and of course it's the beginning of the season, and I thank the chairman Anthony (Di Pietro), the board, and the Melbourne Victory for finally releasing him to us. It was difficult for them to come to the decision but they came to the right decision because the country comes first.


- on Ange's appointment

It's an exciting day for Australian football, for the Socceroos, for the FFA. We know that the Socceroos are the team that represent this country in all its diversity and all its sporting passion. We have today a coach starting his journey who we believe can unite our players to perform at the highest level and unite our nation behind those players. Our technical experts and his own peers have indicated Ange is the right man for the job. But as the chairman has said it's certainly a bonus for us that he's an Australian. And he's on a mission with us to make this sport the most popular in the country.


- on getting the job

It's a tremendous honour to be sitting here. It would be remiss of me not to acknowledge that it's been a tough couple of weeks but I'm truly honoured to be given this position. I'd like to thank Frank Lowy and his board, David Gallop and his senior management for their faith in appointing me. And I'd like to think the Melbourne Victory board and particularly the chairman Anthony Di Pietro. They've been very supportive of me and I'll be eternally grateful for their decision to release me from my contract ... I've already been on the record as saying that when your country calls you answer it, and I found this too compelling for me personally and also as a challenge, to knock back at this stage.

- on Aussies v internationals

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I hope that I'm sitting here because I'm the best man for the job. I've seen the A-League grow over the years and I've got no doubt the likes of Graham Arnold and Tony Popovic are coaches of international standard. They work hard every week and you can see the growth of the A-League. I've tested myself every week and whatever pre-conceptions if I can break down a few - and I've said that when my tenure's up if we've got 10 A-League coaches going for the position I think that's fantastic. I've definitely been part of the growth of the game and particularly the last three years it's been acknowledged that part of that is the work of the coaches in the A-League. And it's been great to be a part of that. And it's been Australians that have been leading that. If there are those pre-conceptions, I'm happy to break them down but it's not what drives me.

- on the players

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Always I like to make sure I make informed decisions. I won't be going in there with any pre-conceptions. I've got my ideas about how I want the team to play. And I've got my ideas about the environment and structure, and I'm very big on that, and how the organisation's structured. But I'm not going in there with a target or a hit list of people, it's not the way I work. And sometimes people surprise you. My job is, I walk in there and I want to get the best out of every player that's available. I certainly don't discount anyone from that. But will there be changes? Of course there will. I've got my own way of doing things and along the way there'll be changes to personnel and the way we operate.

- on 2014 World Cup

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If it was about damage limitation, I probably wouldn't be sitting here to be honest. I think there's a challenge there. The World Cup is an exciting time and when it comes around, I know there's a lot of people who are excited about watching the national team play. Our goal between now and then is to make sure we restore some hope. I'm not discounting anything we do between now and then - every game is important, the game against Costa Rica is important. It's only a few weeks away but it's important ... I'm not looking to secure my reputation ... I'm here because I think I can improve our world standing and between now and the World Cup we've got a chance to do that and during the World Cup we've got a chance to do that.

- on 2015 Asian Cup

It's a great chance to host a major tournament and hopefully to do well. Our national team hasn't raised (major) silverware. It would be great for that to happen.

- on why now's the right time

I've had experience at this. Thirteen years ago I was interviewed for the Socceroos job when Frank Farina got it. I was one of four candidates, and to be totally honest I was praying I wouldn't get it because it was such an enormous task. I ended up getting the Young Socceroos job and what it did enable me to do was I was there with Farina in his early days and I saw how tough it was. You learn from that. You learn how to deal with things at that level. It's a different style of coaching but as I said I had seven years of it and I'm much better equipped today to handle that than I was 15 years ago. I learnt a lot in that time and my observation, and I had Graham Arnold with me for a lot of that time as well, I think both of us learnt a hell of a lot about international football in that time. Whether we were successful or not is for other people to judge but as a learning experience I've always said that was my PhD in coaching.

HAVE you checked out the Fox Football Podcast yet?

Episode one was a raging success and the latest addition to Fox Sports' football stable is back for its second edition.

Host Adam Peacock is joined this week by Simon Hill and Brenton Speed in the studio, and on the phone by Daniel Garb from London.

There's no shortage of fodder for the gang to discuss - from the incoming Socceroos' coach, to all things A-League, EPL and El Clasico - and none of our pundits are short of an opinion.

For your mid-week fix of football talk and fun - where else will you hear Simon Hill's Dutch accent - the Fox Football podcast is your place to go.

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And if you're an Android user, you can find the pod on the iPP Podcast Player app.

- on Australia's youth

Look I've got enormous belief in our young players. I mean a lot of the players who are currently there I've had something to do with. I've coached them there in my time as Young Socceroos coach, and a lot of the younger ones I've seen come through in the A-League, and I'm really excited about. The twofold challenge of the job is - in the short term to make sure we've got the best possible team but also I think we need to expose some of our young players to international football and find out who can and can't play at that level. I've never been let down by throwing young players in. You never really find out until you give them the opportunity. I'm planning to do that. We don't have a lot of games between now and the WOrld Cup but even a training camp is an opportunity to expose a young person to a different kind of football, to a different level of football. As I said, what I've always found out is they never let you down but sometimes they surprise you. I really believe we might be able to unearth one or two young players who can have a major impact on our side in the years to come.

- on negative perception of Socceroos

I've been a little bit frustrated with the language used about the Socceroos to do with players not being good enough, the leagues they play in not being good enough - that's never been what our national team's been about. Regardless of the state of the game, and the state of the game's been a lot worse than it is now, our national team has always been something that's taken priority and they've never taken a backward step. When I was growing up we were a part time league but when the national team played we watched them with pride. The language coming out was that they were ready to take on the world. I think that's really important, whether it's players or coaches. I don't know what it was, whether we were building people's hopes up and then not coming through and then paying a price for it. But I don't think that's what the national team's about. I really want the language coming out of the set-up to reflect that we love football and, more importantly, that we love our nation.


- on Ange's appointment

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I think the most important thing is that it's the best person for the job at the time. Just so people don't start screaming what about this and that around the world - what I'm saying is the appointment fits the cloth for around here in Australian football. I've said it before and I'll say it again: I don't personally think it would matter if we had Sir Alex Ferguson or Jose Mourinho for Brazil (2014 World Cup), I don't think we'll progress past the first round, but I say to Ange, prove me wrong and I'll be the first one to hold my hand up and say great, because that will benefit Australian football. I think right now, at this time, he's the best person for the job.

- on five year deal

It makes perfect sense. We've got the Asian Cup in 2015 and we've got the World Cup in Russia in 2018, which is what the contract is about. What they didn't stipulate is the payout clause. If it's a one-year payout clause, then technically it's a one-year deal. That would be very interesting to find out if we ever do find out the terms of that, but you've got to give a man an opportunity to build. Ange talked about not regenerating but to keep moving on. I think our golden generation is coming towards an end. Mark Schwarzer has said already he'd retire after Brazil. And there's always a turnover of players.

- on support staff

I think it's imperative for him to be able to pick his own staff. In this business, even at club level when coaches come in and they're forced to work with certain people, it's hard. You have to have people around you that you trust implicitly and I think that will be vital for Ange if he's to have success in the job.

- on the senior players

In the back of his mind he'll have things that he thinks but he'll want to go and see it for himself. There's nothing pre-determined in life, and especially in football. He's going to want to see if they're playing week in, week out at club level, what kind of condition they're in, and how they're gelling from a playing perspective and off the pitch as well. 

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Pies swap Shaw for Adams

Heath Shaw's move to GWS is confirmed. Source: News Limited

HEATH Shaw will play for GWS next year after the Giants agreed to a straight swap for Taylor Adams.

Five weeks after Shaw's preliminary final meltdown, he joins the Giants on a lucrative five-year contract.

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In exchange for the 28-year-old premiership defender, the Magpies receive Adams, a highly-rated 20-year-old midfielder.

Adams was taken at pick 13 in the 2011 draft and has been one of the Giants' shining lights in its first two AFL seasons.

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The Pies have now landed Adams, Jesse White and secured two picks in the top 10 in next month's national draft in a busy trade period that has seen Shaw and Dale Thomas (free agent) leave the club.

"Taylor is a player a lot of clubs thought highly of when GWS picked him initially, and a player a lot of clubs were interested in when it became apparent this year that, for family reasons, he wanted to return to Victoria," Collingwood recruiting manager Derek Hine said.

"He comes to us with a deserved reputation for being strong in the contest, a talented stoppage player who has great endurance. Importantly, we feel there is a lot of development in his game still to emerge.

"All things being equal, Taylor should have a long and distinguished career in black and white."

Adams said he was "absolutely stoked" to get to Collingwood.

"The word was that it would happen but the clock was counting down and until it is done there is always doubt," Adams said.

"The Giants put two years into me and helped me enormously and with some really close friends at the club there will always be a part of me that wishes the club well.

"It was really a decision based on a desire to be closer to my family and friends and the idea of playing for a big club in Melbourne. I met the coaches and saw the facilities and knew then I wanted to be a part of it. I couldn't be happier."

After missing out Lance Franklin, the Giants have snared established stars Shaw and Shane Mumford and they will also secure Swans forward Jed Lamb - as well as having the top two draft picks.

GWS football manager Graeme Allan said Shaw's class and experience would be a huge benefit to the AFL's newest club.

"We see Heath as having plenty of good football ahead of him and he'll be able to provide leadership and support for our exciting young group and they will benefit enormously from his presence," Allan said.

"He has been a great Collingwood favourite for a number of years and we think somebody of his undoubted quality will be a tremendous asset for the club.

"We've now secured two premiership players, with almost 300 games experience during the trade period, while also holding the top two picks in next month's draft."

Magpies coach Nathan Buckley wished Shaw well at his new home.

"Heath brought passion and heart to everything he did at Collingwood. I hope he's proud of what he achieved here. He should be," Buckley said.

"Heath will always be a Collingwood premiership player and hopefully the opportunity to build something almost from the ground up with the Giants will see him recapture his best."

Earlier, Carlton best-and-fairest winner Heath Scotland has committed to playing on into his 16th season.

Carlton The Blues had given Scotland their approval to play next year but he had spend the past few weeks pondering retirement.

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The Herald Sun understands he will play in 2014, although the club is still working out the finer details of a one-year contract.

The 33-year-old battled with an ankle injury yet still played 20 games after missing Rounds 1 and 2 after a club-based suspension after a summer assault conviction.


But despite a quieter 2013 season after winning the Blues' best-and-fairest the previous season, he believes he has plenty to contribute.

The Blues are expected to secure Brisbane half-back Sam Docherty before Friday's trade deadline after offering the Lion pick 33.

Essendon yesterday lured a pair of unknown Greater Western Sydney teens for pick 48 but is destined to lose Scott Gumbleton for selection 58.

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The Dons lured highly-rated Giants half back Shaun Edwards and NSW zone selection Kurt Aylett, winning Edward's services despite interest from Adelaide.

But while the Dons have been able to bring two exciting kids onto their list, the lack of suitors for Scott Gumbleton is hurting them.

Ross sealed Tyson move

Giants poach another Swan

It means they might have to accept just pick 58 from Fremantle for a player once taken with the draft's second overall selection.

The Dockers are pushing Essendon to accept that pick, aware that with just mild interest from Port Adelaide they could get him in the November 27 pre-season draft.

The Dogs are holding firm on a straight swap of pick 26 for Stewart Crameri and believe they will get the deal done.

Essendon offered up Crameri and pick 66 to the Dogs in exchange for their picks 26 and 42, but if the Dons get pick 58 for Gumbleton might offer to swap that, rather than pick 66.

Meanwhile, the AFL finally ticked off on the last remnants of the Shane Savage-Ben McEvoy deal, meaning St Kilda has picks 3, 18, 19 and 25 after swapping pick 24 and 59 for Hawthorn's pick 19.

They still hope to hand over pick 25 for Brisbane's Billy Longer.

West Coast finally secured Brisbane's Elliot Yeo for pick 28, and are hoping to acquire Carlton's Josh Bootsma for pick 31.

GWS will acquire Sydney's Jed Lamb on a three-year deal, and should get ex-Cat Josh Hunt.

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Victory release Ange for Socceroos

Written By Unknown on Selasa, 22 Oktober 2013 | 16.41

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ANGE Postecoglou's reign as Socceroos coach will officially begin within hours after the stand-off between Football Federation Australia and Melbourne Victory over releasing their coach was finally resolved on Tuesday night.

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Victory agreed to release Postecoglou from the remainder of his contract until 2015 on Tuesday evening in a teleconference with FFA CEO David Gallop - though details still have to be agreed over what, if any, compensation is to be paid.

Once that is completed Postecoglou will be official unveiled as the successor to Holger Osieck.

Hours of often acrimonious talks ended with Victory's realisation that keeping Postecoglou against his will - the coach having made clear to the club that he was desperate to take the Socceroos job - would ultimately be counterproductive.

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Victory's agreement clears the way for Postecoglou to sign a contract with FFA once final details are agreed, before formally resigning from the Victory position he has held for the past 18 months. His first assignment will be a friendly, believed to be against Costa Rica, in Sydney on November 15.

Even as FFA prepared for Postecoglou's arrival by axing assistant national coach Robbie Hooker, Victory had initially refused to cede ground having warned the governing body that it would not release Postecoglou for much less than $1m.

FFA is desperate to avoid another hefty payout after it was forced to compensate Osieck $1 million of his $1.5 million salary. He was sacked last Saturday, after consecutive 6-0 drubbings to Brazil and France.

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It's believed that the other main candidate, Central Coast boss Graham Arnold, has privately offered any assistance he can to his long-term friend Postecoglou, based on his 10 years in the national team set-up.

It is also understood FFA is negotiating a payout with Hooker, who was hand-picked by Osieck in 2010. But first assistant Aurelio Vidmar will stay with FFA and could remain on Postecoglou's coaching staff.

Postecoglou will hand pick his assistants and it's believed that he wants Victory's conditioning guru, head of performance Peter Cklamovski, to join him in his Socceroos stable.

Gallop has instituted a complete review of the national team under its new head of department, former Socceroo Luke Casserley, suggesting that Hooker may not be the only departure.

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Victory had already started putting plans in place last week for Kevin Muscat to take over as interim coach for the rest of the season and he has already sounded out assistants.

While it was declared a three-horse race also including Central Coast's Graham Arnold and Western Sydney's Tony Popovic, Postecoglou was ultimately the man they were after and the only one chief executive David Gallop has interviewed.

FFA was desperate to finalise the appointment by Friday so Postecoglou can have the chance to select a squad for next month's two home friendlies.

The players' clubs have to be notified 14 days before the first game, which is likely to be on Thursday, November 14, and Postecoglou may pick an extended squad to bring in several fresh faces.

The Victory board is believed to have discussed the compensation matter last week and Postecoglou openly expressed his desire to lead the national team.

Victory players were oblivious to the manoeuvering behind the scenes with the 48-year-old taking training as per normal ahead of Friday's clash against his old side at Etihad Stadium

HAVE you checked out the Fox Football Podcast yet?

Episode one was a raging success and the latest addition to Fox Sports' football stable is back for its second edition.

Host Adam Peacock is joined this week by Simon Hill and Brenton Speed in the studio, and on the phone by Daniel Garb from London.

There's no shortage of fodder for the gang to discuss - from the incoming Socceroos' coach, to all things A-League, EPL and El Clasico - and none of our pundits are short of an opinion.

For your mid-week fix of football talk and fun - where else will you hear Simon Hill's Dutch accent - the Fox Football podcast is your place to go.

You can check it out here at the iTunes store, subscribe, and share your rating!

And if you're an Android user, you can find the pod on the iPP Podcast Player app.

The governing body's desperation to make the appointment this week was compounded by the fact that, after the upcoming friendlies, the Socceroos won't play again until the next FIFA international window in March.

Postecoglou's appointment caps a remarkable transformation for the man who was unemployable, following a seven-year spell coaching the Australian Joeys (Under 17s) and Young Socceroos (Under 20s) that drew criticism for poor results.

Postecoglou, capped four times by Australia, won two national titles with South Melbourne and most recently two more with Brisbane Roar.

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Marsh, Khawaja impress in Ryobi

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USMAN Khawaja and Shaun Marsh have both pressed their claims for selection in Australia's top-six ahead of next month's first Ashes Test with the pair once again scoring heavily in the Ryobi Cup.

Marsh's 119 earned him the player of the match award but his century was unable to help Western Australia end their limited overs campaign with a flourish as competition leaders Queensland eased to a 34-run win on the Duckworth-Lewis method.

The winning margin was likely to be far greater but for late rain as Queensland reached 3-145 off 29.5 overs, in pursuit of Western Australia's 9-212 off 46 overs.

Khawaja struck a comfortable 88 off 95 balls for a fourth half-century in six innings, to take his season tally to 322 runs at an average of 64.

Earlier, Marsh had little support and was forced to watch from the other end as West Australian wickets fell at regular intervals, before being the last man to fall.

Only all-rounder Hilton Cartwright (35) offered Marsh support and the pair put on 74 for the sixth wicket.

Marsh's knock on the compact North Sydney Oval included 12 fours and five sixes, and he has now accrued 304 runs at 76.

Former Test opener Simon Katich was out for six in the final outing of a four-match stint for the Warriors.

All five members of the Queensland bowling attack took wickets with Matthew Gale collecting the best figures (2-36).

The win saw Queensland shore up top spot and secure their place in Sunday's final at North Sydney Oval against either NSW or Victoria, with the pair to meet in a preliminary final on Thursday.

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Nick D'Arcy retires from the pool

Nick D'Arcy has retired from swiming. Source: AFP

CONTROVERSIAL Olympic swimmer Nick D'Arcy has retired from the sport.

D'Arcy, 26, has slipped out of competitive swimming, quietly announcing his intentions to pursue his medical career.

"It's been an honour and a privilege to represent my country over the past eight years," D'Arcy wrote on social network site, Facebook, tonight.

"My career wouldn't have been possible without the fantastic support of my friends, family and incredible girlfriend."

D'Arcy, from the Sunshine Coast, was suspended from the 2008 Beijing Olympics team after he was charged following a brawl with former swimmer Simon Crowley in March, 2008.

D'Arcy pleaded guilty to one charge of recklessly inflicting grievous bodily harm and was given a 14-month suspended sentence. D'Arcy was later sued by Crowley and he declared bankruptcy.

D'Arcy made a spirited comeback to qualify for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi and the 2012 London Olympics.

However, D'Arcy failed to produce his best form in the 200m butterfly in both events and missed out on finals.

He enjoyed some international success, defeating Olympic great Michael Phelps in the 200m butterfly at the Santa Clara International Grand Prix in June 2011.

D'Arcy trailed Phelps for most of the race, until the Queenslander pipped the Olympic champion on the wall, clocking 1:55.39. He beat Phelps by 0.01sec.

D'Arcy will pursue his medical career in Brisbane.

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Bailey in line for Test debut

Written By Unknown on Senin, 21 Oktober 2013 | 16.42

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FORMER Australian coach Mickey Arthur believes George Bailey could next month land the Test debut that has been a decade in the making.

Bailey, Australia's stand-in one-day captain, has become a statistical enigma who averaged just 18.28 in the Sheffield Shield competition last year, but has become a 50-over powerhouse for his country.

Bailey's record for Australia in the one-day game is exceptional - 1281 runs at an average of 51.24 at a strike rate of 88.52.

Arthur believes this confidence can flow into the first-class arena to improve a first-class career record (5936 runs at 38.29) which is solid but not spectacular.

There are many precedents for batsman getting a Test call-up on the back of one-day form and Bailey has scored 85, 92 not out and 43 in the current one-day series against India.

Australia has one vacancy in its top order for next month's Gabba Test, at No 6, and Bailey is jostling with a large group of players including Shaun Marsh, Usman Khawaja and Phillip Hughes.

Arthur revealed Bailey was watched closely by the national selectors last season with a view to taking him on the Ashes tour but his numbers did not warrant selection.

"I would like to see some experience at six,'' Arthur said.

"I would not mind seeing George get a go there. But you want to see guys scoring runs in Shield cricket. I just know the comfort we had when Mike Hussey was going well at No 6.

"We looked at George for the Ashes tour but he averaged 19 in Shield cricket last season, albeit batting in Hobart.

"We want to take an experienced batsman to England and we really looked at David Hussey, Bailey and Adam Voges. Chris Rogers got the nod because he scored three Shield hundreds.

"Voges averaged 25 and Hussey 23 ... had one of them averaged even 35 they could have made it.

"But it would have looked terrible if we had picked a guy for the Ashes who averaged 19 for the domestic season.

"But I am really enjoying watching George bat in the one-day game in India because he has worked very hard and deserves his success.''

Marsh is also in strong early-season form in the Ryobi Cup for Western Australia and received favourable reports from an off-season Australia A tour of South Africa.

Australia's selectors have never lost interest in him despite his torturous run of hamstring injuries and occasional off-field indiscretions and a Test average of 27 from seven matches.

He has long been regarded as among the sweetest timers of the ball in Australia but a first-class average of 35 in a career spanning 13 years is well beneath a pass for a player of such promise.

Australia's bowling line-up for the first Test is likely to see Mitchell Johnson back in the Test XI supporting Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle with Nathan Lyon handling the spinning duties.

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Implications for Botha decision

Johan Botha's fate over his suspect bowling action could have a far-reaching impact. Source: Philip Hillyard / News Limited

LEGENDARY spinner Muttiah Muralitharan risks a tumultuous farewell visit to Australia if South African Johan Botha is rubbed out of cricket for an illegal action.

The fallout from any Botha ban tomorrow by Cricket Australia would be swift and bitter. Focus would sharpen on Melbourne Renegades marquee spinner Muralitharan and other bowlers on domestic lists with contentious actions.

Crucially, umpires are this season reporting suspect actions as a collective rather than individually.A CA rule change for suspect actions requires just one mention rather than three to trigger a report from umpires and possible three-month ban.

Botha was an instant casualty in South Australia's Ryobi Cup season opener against Victoria on October 4 while results of biomechanical analysis on his action are scheduled for release tomorrow.

Umpires have been hesitant to rock the boat at international level following Darrell Hair's persecution for calling Muralitharan for throwing in the 1995 Melbourne Boxing Day Test between Australia and Sri Lanka.

Yet domestic umpires may note national chairman of selectors John Inverarity's assertion that the doosra is difficult to bowl legally.

The Advertiser understands that Botha's stock ball has been the subject of biomechanical analysis. However it would be a massive call to outlaw an off-spinner with a modest first-class record who may marginally infringe on 15 per cent straightening permitted once every 18 balls. All bowlers will be fair game.

The other Botha delivery that has caught attention is a 'knuckle ball' variation delivered from the front of the hand – similar to a delivery once bowled by Australian mystery spinner Jack Iverson. Botha has taught this ball, affectionately named 'Jeff' to Test spinner Nathan Lyon.

Five-Test spinner Botha has not bowled the doosra since being cited for the second time at international level in a one-day clash against Australia in Port Elizabeth during 2009. Murali was encouraged to shelve his doosra in 2004 by officials - the iconic 800-wicket Test off-spinner risks another run-in with Australian umpires in light of Botha's treatment.

Don't expect SA officials to remain submissive if skipper Botha is ruled out of the Strikers' Big Bash League and Redbacks' Sheffield Shield campaign.

Renegades allrounder Marlon Samuels was labelled a cheat by former Brisbane Heat, now Australian coach Darren Lehmann, last season for appearing to throw the ball. The West Indian is wise not to tempt fate and return this season to the BBL.

Regardless, Botha is a deeply religious man, principled and shattered at any suggestion of deceit having moved his family to Adelaide.

If Botha receives a minimum three-month ban it will make him a cricket outcast and threaten lucrative Australian and international contracts.

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Winterbottom: I can pass Whincup

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BATHURST champion Mark Winterbottom has lit the fuse for an explosive Gold Coast 600, labelling V8 Supercars heavweights Triple Eight Racing "arrogant" and declaring he's ready to take the championship lead from arch rival Jamie Whincup.

This weekend's Surfers Paradise endurance round could have major championship implications with Holden gun Whincup leading the standings 114 points ahead of Triple Eight teammate Craig Lowndes with Winterbottom (142 behind) further back.

Riding high on confidence after his breakthrough Mount Panorama win, Winterbottom said his Ford Performance Racing team now had the belief to knock off their dominant Holden rivals who he expected to come out firing after being trumped at Bathurst.

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"From a team point of view, the Triple Eight guys are quite arrogant in how they approach their racing," he said.

"To get beaten by our team, and purely beaten in a straight out battle, that does more for our team than it does for them.

"The (FPR) team's pumped, I'm pumped. Everyone's walking around with a strut and swagger. We've got that confidence that you can't buy.

"We've got an incredible group of people and we've had some really good results but until we won Bathurst it was always people saying 'they've got good results but not the big one. They don't go well under pressure'.

"Now they can say what they want but we've won Bathurst. It credits all our other wins.

"It'll serve us well for the championship. We needed that good result.

"Whether it wins it or not, who knows, but it'll do a lot for our team."

Four-time series champion Whincup was gracious in defeat at Bathurst but said he wasn't worried about Winterbottom closing in on his championship lead.

"Yes (Winterbottom will think he can catch me) but whether it's possible or not is another thing," he said.

"I'm sure he'll come out on cloud nine feeling like he's invincible for the rest of the year.

"Without doubt you feel fairly invincible after Bathurst but good on him. He deserved it. Him and his crew did a good job."

Surfers Paradise has been a happy hunting ground for Winterbottom.

He won races on the Glitter Strip in 2009 and 2011 and will team up with the experienced Steve Richards again after their Bathurst triumph.

"When you look at the year, Gold Coast is one of the best rounds for us. We've always done well there," Winterbottom said.

"If you could pick any round throughout the year where you thought you'd go well at it was always Gold Coast. History shows how strong we've been here.

"A good round there will get us within 100 points of them (Whincup). It's going to be pretty tight towards the end of the year.

"It's massively important for the championship. A lot can go wrong but if you get it right it's going to reward you massively. It's a game-changer."

Practice is Friday with the 300km races to be contested on Saturday and Sunday.

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Shattered Marquez blames team

Written By Unknown on Minggu, 20 Oktober 2013 | 16.42

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A SHATTERED Marc Marquez last night blamed his team for the black flag disqualification that allowed Australian MotoGP winner Jorge Lorenzo to eat into his championship lead.

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In a day of high drama at Phillip Island, Marquez was controversially disqualified after he failed to pit at the required time.

A pit-board error by the powerhouse Honda team meant the Spaniard made his compulsory pit-stop to change bikes one lap too late.

He was running second at the time and pushing for the lead when the black flag came out.

Marquez's 43-point buffer at the top of the championship standings has been cut to 18 with just two rounds remaining.

"I am disappointed - the plan with the team it was a big mistake," Marquez said.

"We thought it was possible to go in the lap 10 but it is a big confusion.

"I just followed what the team said in the pit wall.

"When they say go in, I go in – but it was too late."

Jorge Lorenzo of Spain leads Marc Marquez at Phillip Island. Source: AFP

Safety concerns meant the MotoGP was reduced from 27 laps to 19 with the provision of a mandatory bike change.

Tyre supplier Bridgestone said before the race that they were unable to guarantee the safety of their rear slick tyres beyond 10 laps because of the newly resurfaced track.

It was the first time in MotoGP history that such a ruling has been made when the conditions were dry.

Marquez said the shocking mistake would fuel the team's fire as the championship moves to Japan.

"We thought it was possible to go in in that lap," he said.

"We will learn from that and forget about it.

"Now we look to Japan."

The 20-year-old maintained he was still in the box to win the world title.

"The championship is very long," he said.

"We know we're still in a good way, so we will keep like that."

Marquez shared a few bumps with Lorezno  during the race when the younger Spaniard re-joined the field from pit lane.

"I think it was impossible to avoid a collision," Lorenzo said.

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Jeong surge secures Perth win

South Korea's Jin Jeong wins the Perth International. Source: GREG WOOD / AFP

KOREAN young gun Jin Jeong has claimed the biggest win of his short career after taking out the ISPS HANDA Perth International.

Jeong, 23, edged out England's Ross Fisher in a playoff to claim the title in front of a packed gallery at the 18th hole at Lake Karrinyup.

Fisher missed a four-metre par putt on the first playoff hole, leaving Jeong with a one-metre uphill putt, which he duly holed to snare the trophy.

Jeong will now hold a European Tour card for the next two years after earning an exemption, while the result was enough to propel Fisher into the top 60 of the Race to Dubai standings.

Jeong began the day just one shot off the pace before a double-bogey at the first hole threatened to derail his round early.

But the youngster refused to be rattled, snaring five birdies for the rest of the round – including a chip-in at the 12th – to seal his place in the playoff.

WA's Brody Ninyette held the lead for much of the day only to lose his way on the back nine.

The 26-year-old from Busselton opened up a three-shot advantage at one point, before bogeys at 13, 16 and 18 to finish even for the day and two strokes behind the leaders.

Fellow Aussie Dimitrios Papadatos and England's Danny Willett also finished in a tie for third.

World No.21 Dustin Johnson shot the best round of the day with a 66, but finished well off the pace at -4 for the tournament after a disappointing showing on Friday and Saturday.

Johnson said he was happy with his final round and already has his eye on returning next year.

"I played better today – I putted a little better," he said.

"I've really enjoyed my time here.

"I like the golf course and it's definitely a place I would come back to."

Defending champion Bo Van Pelt never got going today and failed to mount a serious charge, finishing at -3 after a round of 73.

WA's Brett Rumford was another who was unable make an impact, following up his blazing Saturday round of 65 with a 72 to finish three strokes back.

There was late drama at the 18th towards the end of the day when a female spectator was felled by an errant approach shot from Northern Ireland's Michael Hoey.

JIN JEONG (Korea) -10 – won in playoff
Ross Fisher (England) -10
Brody Ninyette (Australia) -8
Dimitrios Papadatos (Australia) -8
Danny Willett (England) -8
Brett Rumford (Australia) -7
Joel Sjoholm (Sweden) -6
Richard Finch (England) -6
JB Hansen (Denmark) -6

Follow Chris Robinson on Twitter: @CJKRobinson

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Pies set to secure No. 6 pick

Jesse White is heading to Collingwood. Source: PAUL MILLER / AAP

COLLINGWOOD is poised to pull off a first-round draft pick bonanza for a second year running.

Despite playing in a preliminary final last year, the Pies managed to have three first-round picks which saw them gain Brodie Grundy, Ben Kennedy and Tim Broomhead.



After some manoeuvring over the weekend, they again have improved their position dramatically for next month's national draft.

In a three-way deal which is likely to be finalised today, the Pies have netted the No.6 pick in the draft from West Coast in exchange for No.11 and also secured Sydney's Jesse White.

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Collingwood will also send No.31 to the Eagles while Sydney will receive West Coast's pick 44 which sends White to the Westpac Centre. The Pies will also give up pick 49.

West Coast will then on-trade No.31 to Brisbane in exchange for young defender Elliot Yeo.



The No.11 pick was awarded to Collingwood as compensation for losing free agent Dale Thomas to Carlton.

This means the Pies could go to next month's national draft with the No.6 and No.10 picks.

And should the Heath Shaw trade to Greater Western Sydney result in a straight swap for young midfielder Taylor Adams, he would represent the sixth first-rounder given he was taken at No.13 in the 2011 national draft.

It's an impressive result for Nathan Buckley who has moved quickly to rejuvenate his list after a disappointing end to the season.

Veterans Darren Jolly and Alan Didak were given their marching orders while the troublesome Shaw was helped out the door despite having two years to run on a contract.

White, who almost went to Adelaide last year as part of the Kurt Tippett deal, is coming off a career-best season and will help ease the load on key forward Travis Cloke.

The Pies are also considering snaring young Brisbane forwad Patrick Karnezis, who was also a first-round draft pick back in 2010, for a late pick before Friday's trade deadline.

Despite Shaw indicating his desire to move to GWS a week ago on a five year $3.5 million deal, the two clubs are still a long way apart.

Collingwood maintains it should be a straight swap for Adams while the Giants want an exchange of draft picks as well to sweeten the deal.

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