THE SIDELINE EYE with Sports Editor Denis Howard

19-08-2019 by admin

Denis HowardIs it just me or are top sportspeople getting paid too much money?

It is the only reason I can come up with as to why, firstly Adam Scott and now Bernard Tomic, have withdrawn their availability to represent Australia at the Rio Olympics.

Scott said he would not be available to play golf for Australia due to wanting to spend time with his family.

Usually I could say fair enough, but not in this case.

Scott said his decision was made as a result of “an extremely busy playing schedule around the time of the Olympics and other commitments, both personal and professional.”

Making himself unavailable because he is too busy is un-Australian.

Here is an idea, miss a tournament in the lead up to the Olympics and go and see family then.

Compared to many players on the US PGA tour, Scott’s schedule is miniscule.

He picks the tournaments he wants to play and for people who work normal jobs, you would hardly call it busy.

This year Scott has played nine tournaments, including last weekend’s Players Championship, adding up to just more than 30 days of play.

Yes, he has practice rounds and sponsor days which add to that total, but he is playing golf!

I know a few people, including myself, who would love to be too busy playing golf.

Scott is loath to miss a tournament in the lead up to Rio because he gets paid in those, unlike the Olympics.

He has amassed more than $5 million just in prize money this year which does not include appearance fees and sponsorship dollars.

Using a busy schedule as an excuse is pretty weak.

Scott was an Australian I would have liked to see representing the country at the Games, Bernard Tomic less so.

Not assured of even being selected, Tomic announced he will not be available for the Australian team as he will be playing a tiny ATP Tour event in Los Cabos, Mexico.

The World No 22’s possible selection in the Aussie team came under scrutiny after he deliberately lost a match point in Madrid before saying he did not care because he was worth $10 million.

Making himself unavailable seems to be a pre-emptive move before Tennis Australia could leave him out of the team.

There was no certainty Tomic would not be selected, but I must say I am not disappointed with the result.

Sure the guy has plenty of skill, but if his talent ever comes close to the size of his apparent ego he will be a world beater.

When representing Australia in Davis Cup, Tomic’s record of 16 wins and just four losses is exemplary.

His decision to not be available appears to be a childish stunt to try and show who has the power.

Tomic, like Scott, claims his busy schedule was the determining factor in his unavailability.

And like Scott, Tomic determines his own schedule.

These guys, who make a fantastic living off their chosen sports, might like to take a minute and think about the poor athletes who have busted a gut for four years trying to make the Olympics on very little money, and only just missed out.

Personally, I would have no issue if neither athlete represented Australia again.

Look at our own Scott Westcott who had to battle for 16 years to make his Olympic dream come true.

It is athletes like him who I will be cheering on in the future, not those who place no value on representing the Green and Gold.

I can’t wait to hear all the stories of how hard our Aussie athletes had to fight to make the Olympic Games.

They are the ones with true Australian spirit.

– – – – –

As I do every year, I would like to wish everyone a happy St Totteringham’s Day.

It did not look like Arsenal fans were going to be able to celebrate this year with Spurs two points ahead going into the final round.

Tottenham played relegated Newcastle and were expected to win.

In the biggest choke since Greg Norman at the 1996 Masters, Spurs lost 5-1 to a Newcastle side who played the final third of the match with 10 men.

It has now been 21 years since Arsenal ended a season lower on the table than their North London rivals.

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Suzy had to have a bike licence to marry into the family!

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Suzy Mill has a choice of motor bikes. Suzy Mill from Parkes is lucky enough to have her choice of motorbikes to ride.

Between her and her husband Scott, they have several motorbikes, old and new, but these two are definitely Suzy’s.

The only dilemna is which one to ride?

Starting with the vintage bike – it’s a 1949 BSA B33 500cc that Scott rebuilt in 1996.

They were living in a caravan at the time and that’s exactly where Scott built the bike.

He used to wheel it in front of the television and work on the bike.

He even rebuilt a motor for his car in the caravan too.

It just goes to show what can be done with what little you have.

The engine came out of a midget race car that Scott used to drive around the paddocks as a youngster.

“It was the fastest racing Midget in the Central West in the 1950s and we bought it in the 80s,” Scott said.

“The BSA was a really common bike in the 5s. Lots of farmers had them”.

When Scott rebuilt the motor he fitted modified heads, custom cams and a bigger carburettor and ran the bike on methanol for that bit of extra punch.

In a way, that’s how Suzy ended up with it.

It was always Scott’s motorbike until on a bike run with Scott on the BSA and Suzy on the “slow bike”, they decided to swap bikes.

Suzy literally took off and Scott couldn’t keep up so it’s affectionately become Suzy’s bike.

On rides, Suzy would always be asked about the fast bike and she’d typically say “it’s a red bike”, point towards Scott and say “that’s my husband, ask him all about it”.

Scott and Suzy would like to especially thank “Nan and Pop”, Scott’s late mum Ruth and dad Alex, for their support, inspiration and knowledge, particularly in those early builds.

Suzy wasn’t always a motorbike enthusiast. That came when she first met Scott.

The story goes that she couldn’t marry into the Mill family until she could ride and get a bike licence so she learnt to ride on a Suzuki RM80 which they still mess around with on weekends.

True to her word she had a motorbike licence before their wedding in 1995.

So the motorbike passion was certainly ignited (there was no choice really).

Scott was sick of being left behind and no longer letting Suzy use methanol in the BSA so she soon had the need for speed and started looking for a modern bike.

Along came the Harley Davidson 48.

It’s a 2010 model and Scott bought it for Suzy for her birthday in 2014 (lucky gal!).

The story behind it is that Harley Davidson held a competition called Judgement Day amongst its Australian dealers where each dealership was given a 48 to customise.

Scott was lucky enough to find this one at a dealership in Sydney.

It features a 1200cc Screaming Eagle kit, Vance and Hines pipes, custom silver “boat fleck” paint and seat trim, custom graphics and those stand out blue rims and whitewall tyres.

The Harley is on full registration so gets some regular road use while the BSA is on historic registration so only comes out on club runs.

Suzy admits to being a bit of a seasonal rider – nothing wrong with preferring to cruise when the sun is shining!

Suzy and Scott are both members of the CWCC and regularly get to monthly meetings and club runs.

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Last word goes to Suzy – “When it comes to a choice of rides its a tough one, but I keep coming back to the red bike”.

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Former Peel Health Campus guard on trial over alleged sexual assault of teenage girl

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Perth District Court.The defence team for a man accused of the sexualassault ofa teenagegirl in Mandurah will argue the accused’s alleged victim had been “smitten”, and made up claims after her “crush” was not reciprocated.

Shaun David Fairfield is on trial in the Perth District Court this week afterpleadingnot guilty to five counts of indecent dealing and two counts of sexual penetration of a 15-year-old girl.

The charges relate to alleged incidents involving a patient at Peel Health Campus where Mr Fairfield was employed as a security guard in 2014.

On Monday the court heard Mr Fairfield was working the night shift at the hospital on May 16/17, 2014, when he took the girl, who was a psychiatric patient, outside for “fresh air”.

The pair were said to have not returned to the emergency department where the girl was a patient until well after midnight, having spent a long time outside, according to State prosecutor Tatiyajith Karunaratne.

A jury chosen to decide Mr Fairfield’s fate were told by Mr Karunaratne the accused sexually assaulted the girl while outside the hospital by touching her “private area”, showing her a photo of his genitals, and “grinding” against her, as well as sexually penetrating her twice.

All the alleged offences happened while the girl was in the care of Mr Fairfield.

Mr Fairfield denies all charges.

Defence counsel Genevieve Cleary told the jury her client had taken the girl out for a walk, but nothing sexual had happened between the two.

Ms Cleary said there was no footage of Mr Fairfield and the girl together, norwas there DNA or other forensicevidence.

The case was a matter of the alleged victim’s “uncorroborated word against [Mr Fairfield’s]”.

Ms Cleary suggested the claims made by the girl, which were not brought to light until close to four months after the date of the alleged offences, were a result of her being “annoyed and hurt her crush was not reciprocated”.

The first day of the trial saw six witnesses called, including the girl’s mother, a local security guard, and Peel Health Campus employees.

The alleged victim, who recorded her testimony before the trial, will be heard on Tuesday when the trial continues.

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Open day at fire station

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Local firefighters are encouraging people to visit Parkes Fire Station for the Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) annual Open Day this Saturday, 21 May.

Parkes Fire Station will be open from 10am to 2pm and families are encouraged to come along and meet their local firefighters and learn more about fire prevention.

A range of free activities will be on offer, including firefighting demonstrations, station tours and fire safety presentations.

Firefighters will also be able to provide advice on installing smoke alarms,changing smoke alarm batteries and preparing a home fire escape plan.

Children will be able to see fire engines and firefighting equipment up close, which is always one of the highlights of this much anticipated day.

For the first time, FRNSW is this year partnering with LEGO City to spread the fire safety message on Fire Station Open Day.

The partnership will see a new Brigade Kids activity booklet and LEGO City minifigures available for open day visitors.

“With May being the 10th anniversary of the introduction of smoke alarm legislation, open day is a timely opportunity to talk to the experts about replacing your smoke alarm,” Station Commander Craig Gibson said.

“Given that not all smoke alarms last beyond 10 years, this year we’re encouraging residents to replace their outdated alarms with the latest photoelectric smoke alarms, which provide earlier detection and fewer false alarms.

“Why not come along to Parkes Fire Station on Open Day and and talk to us about how you can reduce the risk of fire destroying your life,” Station Commander Gibson said.

Natalie Curr, Brand Manager for LEGO Australia said “LEGO City is based on everyday heroes such as firefighters, allowing children to build and role play. This partnership with Fire & Rescue NSW is the perfect opportunity for LEGO City support the real life heroes in our community.”

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New tourism website

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DISCOVERING the very best that our region has to offer is now a computer mouse click away on a new tourism website.

Gannawarra Shire Council’s tourism website has gone live and showcases the best places to dine, stay and visit.

As part of the Murray Regional Tourism platform that features all of the Murray destinations – 苏州美甲美睫培训学校visitthemurray苏州美甲美睫培训学校419论坛 – the website follows the recent launch of the new touring map and features information on the region including maps, accommodation and dining, visitor services, recreational activities and events.

Council’s economic development manager, Roger Griffiths said that the website will assist the shire in promoting the Murray region and increasing local visitation and involvement in the many nature-based tourism activities and events.

“It will also encourage people to travel along the length of the Murray and visit the many smaller towns,” he said.

The website will be updated regularly with new information and attractions of the Gannawarra region.

District forests and lakes feature prominently on the website.

The website highlights the natural bush settings nestled against tranquil-paced waterways that offer opportunities for many outdoor activities.

Camping, bush walking, fishing, canoeing and bird watching are possible throughout the region.

“These peaceful past times are guaranteed to delight with wildlife, stunning natural flora or hints of heritage,” it states.

Guided walking tracks or the Canoe Trail on Gunbower Island are mentioned and, for those who like a faster pace, waterskiing on our lakes and creek is the regarded as a perfect choice with boat ramp access dotted along our waterways.

The website highlights the shire’s many towns, attractions such as golf courses, red gum sawmills, unique cafe dining opportunities, diverse shopping precincts and special places of interest.

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