Monthly Archives:June 2019

The hallowed turf where rugby grew its roots

admin post on June 6th, 2019
Posted in 苏州皮肤管理中心

Ex-Harlequins prop Brown is the Director of Sport at the esteemed Rugby School and spends much of his working week on the idyllic surroundings of The Close, an eight acre expanse of playing fields flanked by the school’s imposing neo-Gothic chapel and the battlemented skyline of School House.

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It was there in 1823 in a game then named football, but more closely resembled a mob fracas, that a pupil named William Webb Ellis caught the ball and, rather than retreat and attempt a kick at goal, ran with it – breaking the ‘rules’ and planting a seed that would grow into modern-day rugby.

That is the romantic version anyway and, whether Webb Ellis knew exactly what he’s started or not, is why no visit to this year’s World Cup would be complete without spending a little time in the sport’s spiritual home.

When French club Racing Metro were in England for a European Cup match this season their players made a pilgrimage to Rugby School and a few tears were shed.

“They were taken by the history here,” Brown told Reuters on a bitingly cold early Spring day in the Midlands as some of his under 14 players went through their routines in replica long flannels, white shirts and red caps while being filmed for a documentary to be shown during the World Cup.

“They took a little bit of the grass. That was extraordinary because you had some of the world’s best players in one place, Jamie Roberts, Mike Phillips, a whole variety of players.

“Manu Tuilagi also came to visit and was really moved.”

They visited the Chapel building where former headmaster Thomas Arnold in the early 19th Century used to indoctrinate his pupils in the morals of muscular Christianity.

Arnold’s ideals of athletic chivalry were romanticized by author Thomas Hughes in the pages of ‘Tom Brown’s School Days’ — a novel that inspired Pierre de Coubertin’s vision of the Modern Olympics — and were exported across the old Empire.

A simple plaque celebrates the connection between Rugby School and the Olympics, one of many interesting artefacts that can be found when strolling around the grounds of one of England’s oldest independent schools.

PRIZE EXHIBITS

But for rugby enthusiasts, no visit to what some regard as the spiritual home of the sport is complete without dropping into the small museum lovingly managed by the school’s official archivist Rusty MacLean.

Amongst his prize exhibits are the first set of written rules for rugby union, then simply known as football, penned by a committee of boys knows as the Big Side Levee in 1845.

There were 37 rules in all and many are still recognisable today, such as offside, knock on and fair catch (mark).

Some are plain curious.

“A player having touched the ball straight for a tree, and touched the tree with it, may drop from either side of it if he can…” states Rule 18.

A “try” in those early days was the process whereby after a touch down a player was permitted to kick at goal.

If the kick failed no points were scored, hence the necessity to kick the ball, usually a pig’s bladder covered in leather in those days and rounder than the modern ball, over the bar to avoid the massed ranks of junior boys blocking the goal.

“It was a very different game then. You could have over 300 boys on the pitch, teams could be of very different sizes,” MacLean said, pointing to an 1839 drawing of a match between School House (75 players) and the Rest (225 players) with Thomas Arnold and Dowager Queen Adelaide watching on.

“Matches could last six or seven days, no games clothes, you just played in jackets, waistcoats, breeches and boots… it was fairly fluid shall we say.”

Rugby School began the tradition of handing out “caps”, playing in matching kit — School House wore white shirts and shorts later adopted by England and the British Lions — and halftime intervals.

On the ceiling of MacLean’s museum there is a cart-like contraption known as the “death cart” which was used to trundle injured players off The Close.

The nearest this year’s multi-million pound World Cup will get to Brown’s office will be 25 miles away in Leicester, one of the host grounds, but the spirit of the tournament has its roots firmly entrenched at Rugby School.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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Indian community pushes for inclusion in Adelaide Anzac march

admin post on June 6th, 2019
Posted in 苏州皮肤管理中心

The shores of Gallipoli saw slouch hats shoulder to shoulder with Sikh turbans.

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What were then the British Indian forces played a pivotal role with the Allies in the First World War, particularly at Gallipoli.

But former Indian Army officer Vikram Madan wondered why there was so little public awareness.

“The Indian Army played a very important role at Gallipoli,” he said. “In fact they were the first troops to land alongside Anzacs. [So] why aren’t we anywhere on the scene? Why is this subject so neglected?”

For many years it was believed that about 5,000 Indian troops served at Gallipoli, with about 1,600 killed.

Military historian Peter Stanley said his recent research at the National Archives of India showed the degree of Indian involvement was higher than initially thought.

“Why aren’t we anywhere on the scene? Why is this subject so neglected?”

“There was just a brigade of mountain artillery which fought with the Australians and a brigade of infantry,” he said. “A total of about 16,000 men, including many mule drivers because the Indian forces provided all the transport for the allied troops on Gallipoli.”

Illiteracy meant few Indians were able to send letters home recording their feats, but Professor Stanley said friendships forged with Anzacs like John Simpson Kirkpatrick allowed accounts of their deeds to survive

“They formed particularly close bonds with individual Australians and perhaps the best-known Australian is John Simpson Kirkpatrick, the man who went down in history as ‘Simpson and the donkey’,” he said. “He lived not with his own unit – the third field ambulance – but with the Indian mule drivers of the mountain artillery.

“He lived in the mule camp with them, he shared rations with them and he left of the 19th of May to bring casualties down and of course was killed on that day.”

General Madan served with India’s Gurkha Regiment for 40 years before migrating to Australia.

He’s been leading the charge to raise the profile of India’s role at Gallipoli in his home state of South Australia.

Adelaide’s Anzac day march is arguably the most traditional in Australia – open only to Australian veterans or their direct descendants.

General Madan has been campaigning to open up the march to acknowledge other nations that fought alongside Australia in the Great War.

He said the 17 Indian veterans who were members of the state’s Indian Defence Veterans Association may not have direct ties to Gallipoli, but that shouldn’t inhibit their right to see their nation represented.

“We are few but it all matters to us to be part of this big celebration of…our achievement, really,” he said.

Bill Denny, the chair of RSL South Australia’s Anzac Day Committee, said special effort had been made to preserve the integrity of Adelaide’s Anzac march compared with those elsewhere.

“We are few but it all matters to us to be part of this big celebration.”

“It’s a balance between wanting to honour the work of these Allies a hundred years ago – somehow representing them – and not compromising what’s been in place here for a hundred years,” he said. “It is very difficult because the other states, their marches are more along the lines of pageants and parades – ours is very clearly a commemorative march.”

Mr Denny said the Anzac Day Committee had come up with a compromise, which will allow representatives of all Australia’s allies to join the march for the four years of the Anzac centenary.

“There were a number of allies. Of course we had New Zealand, we had the French empire, the Indian, British Indian empire, the Russian empire and Newfoundland.

“Over the years those states have changed and the current nation states are India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, Canada representing Newfoundland, New Zealand of course, the United Kingdom and Ireland, and Russia.”

The opportunity to march has delighted Indian veterans like Lieutenant Colonel Jitender Passan.

“In the last year, I remember there was the dawn service observed in Delhi itself, of Anzac spirit. So this Anzac spirit is not only Australia and New Zealand, it’s all the allied forces, that’s what it symbolises and embodies.”

A former Lieutenant Commander with India’s submarine fleet, Akhilesh Verma, said the decision was a mark of acceptance.

“We have adopted this country as our own now so we would like to integrate with it, and marching in Anzac is one way of integrating with it and feeling for the cause.”

Dr Mylapanahalli Shivashankaraiah is a former Indian Army major who is now a doctor at the outback town of Port Augusta.

He and his wife, Anupama Shivashankaraiah, will travel 300 kilometres to march.

“So many of my patients are veterans and all the time they’ve been asking me as to why I’m not marching with them. And already so many of my patients they actually want to come to Adelaide because we will be marching here in Adelaide, and they want to take part with me.”

“We have adopted this country as our own now so we would like to integrate with it, and marching in Anzac is one way of integrating with it and feeling for the cause.”

“We’ve been attending the Anzac marches for the last 10 years, we’ve just gone there and watched people march [and] this year I’ll be able to march,” Ms Shivashankaraiah said.

Veterans’ Affairs Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith applauded the RSL’s Anzac Day Committee for striking a balance that acknowledges allies for the centenary period but preserves the integrity of the Adelaide march beyond that.

“We acknowledge the service of our Indian comrades during that campaign. I’m pleased that the RSL has also acknowledged that, and they’ll be included on Anzac day during the March.”

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Armstrong scenario regrettable: WADA chief

admin post on June 6th, 2019
Posted in 苏州皮肤管理中心

The director general of the World Anti-Doping Agency is disappointed Lance Armstrong has not apologised for costly and time-consuming lawsuits before the former cycling champion admitted using performance-enhancing drugs.

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In an interview at The Associated Press on Tuesday (Wednesday AEST), David Howman said professional soccer clubs should coordinate efforts with FIFA and continental confederations.

He also said WADA policies would not prohibit mixed martial arts star Anderson Silva from competing in taekwondo at next year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Armstrong was given a lifetime ban from elite sport in 2012 and admitted the following year his denials had been lies. He was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.

“He was able to beat the system in ways and means where others were complicit and others understood what he was trying to do. And I’m not just talking about his team. There was a healthy disrespect for the rules. I don’t think that will happen again,” Howman said.

“We spent a lot of time, a lot of money. We fended off a lot of legal action (that was) all for nothing. And we’re not going to be compensated. We haven’t even been apologised to, and that’s regrettable.”

Howman was in New York to announce a collaboration between WADA and the Partnership for Clean Competition that includes $US6 million ($A7.78 million) in research funds, of which $1.5 million will be matched by the International Olympic Committee.

Howman said WADA policies would not prohibit Silva from competing in Rio in taekwondo because his failed drug tests did not come under the WADA code. Silva tested positive for steroids in January before a UFC fight. He has insisted he is clean.

Silva has been temporarily suspended by UFC and could be further sanctioned by the Nevada Athletic Commission, a ban the UFC would respect.

He and Brazilian taekwondo officials are planning a news conference on Wednesday about his hopes of participating in his home country’s Olympics next year, which the national federation has called a “wonderful possibility.”

Howman said the decision on whether Silva could take part in the 2016 Games would need to come from taekwondo’s international governing body.

Positive tests in soccer have been rare, in part Howman said because not enough testing is conducted.

“They will say they don’t fail tests because they’re all doping free,” he said, saying international governing bodies must coordinate with national federations and leagues.

“They need to be dovetailed, so there is a consistency and a profile built up of players that is across all these particular programs.”

He anticipates golf will be improving for the 2016 Olympics because “the PGA Tour is developing a program that will be Olympic standard to ensure that the golfers who are on the tour can compete in Rio.”

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Hundreds turn out to farewell Scott

admin post on June 6th, 2019
Posted in 苏州皮肤管理中心

It’s the picturesque NSW rural property where Stephanie Scott was supposed to begin married life less than two weeks ago.

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Instead, it’s become the scene of the beloved teacher’s final goodbye.

On Wednesday hundreds of mourners joined Ms Scott’s family in a tree-ringed paddock just north of Eugowra in NSW’s central west for an emotional private funeral.

Ms Scott, allegedly murdered six days before her wedding day, was remembered as a free-spirited and loveable soul.

Standing in front of a white coffin topped with red and orange flowers, her sister Kim lovingly recalled a girl with a knack for fashion who enjoyed playing pranks as a child.

“She never cared what other people thought of her,” she said.

“She had an easy way about her. It meant that she could get on with anyone.”

Ms Scott’s impact was earlier reflected in a traffic jam that snaked its way back towards Eugowra as hundreds of people arrived to pay their respects.

The 26-year-old was allegedly murdered on Easter Sunday by a cleaner at Leeton High School where she taught English and drama.

The school’s vice captain, Grace Green, fondly recalled days spent hanging around the drama room with Ms Scott, who made sure her students were always laughing.

“Ms Scott always knew how to brighten our day,” she said.

Sun later peaked through the clouds as Ms Scott’s father, Robert, dressed in a black shirt and bright yellow tie, took to the microphone alongside wife Merrilyn to deliver a personal tribute.

And there it remained as the man Ms Scott was to marry, Aaron Leeson-Woolley, helped lift her coffin into a waiting hearse and dozens of yellow balloons were released into the sky.

“It was a service that she would love to have,” said Leeton mayor Paul Maytom, who made the drive from the Riverina town along with many others.

“It brought a lot of laughs. It certainly made people feel better.”

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Labor making tax policy on the run: Hockey

admin post on June 6th, 2019
Posted in 苏州皮肤管理中心

Treasurer Joe Hockey is sceptical of Labor’s attempt to tackle the superannuation tax concessions of wealthy retirees, accusing it of making a “mess of it” in government.

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Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has unveiled a suite of changes to the way super is taxed that would add around $14 billion to the budget bottom line over a decade.

In response, Mr Hockey said he was prepared to look at the detail of Labor’s proposal even though the “proper process” was the government’s tax white paper.

“Mr Shorten is making it up as he goes along,” he told reporters in Melbourne on Wednesday.

Labor wants to impose a 15 per cent tax on the superannuation accounts of retired Australians who earn more than $75,000 in a year, ending their tax-free status.

This is lower than the $100,000 proposed by Labor when it was in government.

“The budget has deteriorated remarkably under Joe Hockey’s watch, so we’ve had to consider measures that went further than previously,” shadow treasurer Chris Bowen told the National Press Club.

Labor also wants to reduce the income threshold for the 30 per cent high-income superannuation charge from $300,000 to $250,000.

Based on Parliamentary Budget Office’s costings, 110,000 people would be affected by dropping the threshold.

Almost 70,000 retirees would be hit by the earnings tax on superannuation and removing the 10 per cent tax concession on defined benefits over $75,000 a year.

Mr Shorten believes the changes strike a balance between “putting some speed limits on the out-of-control concession system at the top end” and ensuring certainty.

The superannuation industry welcomed the policy announcement but said any changes should be considered as part of the broader tax discussion initiated by the government.

Superannuation should be above politics and any changes needed wide public support, Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia chief executive Pauline Vamos said.

Mr Bowen said a Labor government would lift compulsory superannuation contributions to 12 per cent, but is waiting for the May 12 budget before announcing a specific timetable.

“We want to see Australians get to a 12 per cent … more quickly than the government’s disgracefully slow timetable (of 2025),” he said.

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