Pictures from across China: September 11 to 15, 2017

Pictures of the week: September 11 to 15, 2017 Landfall spring bull sale. Picture: Phillip Biggs

TASMANIA: Leukaemia Foundation Light the night event in Ulverstone. Picture: Brodie Weeding

TASMANIA: Launceston Footabll Club. Picture: Phillip Biggs

JERVIS BAY: Fire over Jervis Bay. Picture: Russ Quinn.

TUNCURRY: Fires and smoke create an eerie sunset scene. Picture: Judy Butler

PORT MACQUARIE: People took to the beach on Wednesday as temperatures climbed into the 30s. Picture: Ivan Sajko

NOWRA: Illaroo Road Public School students put on a show.

MANDURAH: There were plenty of frozen margaritas, tequila shots, tacos and mariachis at the opening of Funky’s Mexican Cantina on Wednesday night. Picture: Marta Pascual Juanola

MANDURAH: A prolific outing saw Ryan Black take out the Muay Thai WA state title at the Futures VI fight night. Picture: Marta Pascual Juanola

HUNTER: The Richmond Vale fire still burning after night sets. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

HUNTER: The fire crowning at Leggetts Drive, near Kurri in NSW. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

HUNTER: Jay Bolton hopes more local business people will rise to the Ninja Warrior for Charity challenge. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

HUNTER: Darren Weir gets one hand on the Newcastle Cup on Thursday at the Broadmeadow track. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

EDEN: The Vanns will get Eden dancing at the Sapphire Yuoth Festival this weekend.

DUNNS CREEK: Narooma fire crews brought a blaze under control during the week

NOWRA: Year 12 art work by Emily Percival.

LAUNCESTON: Northern Hawks Netball Club dinner and presentation dinner. Picture: Paul Scambler

LAUCNESTON: Honey tasmania’s Rebecca Campbell at their new store and factory, The Beehive, in Exeter on the West Tamar. Picture: Scott Gelston

LAUCNESTON: Rodney Bird and Sam Nixon at the Aussie Legends Evandale Football Club lunch. Picture: Phillip Biggs

TASMANIA: Some of n Honey Products bee hives at Badgers Head. Picture: Scott Gelston

TASMANIA: Lindsay Bourke of n Honey Products at Badgers Head. Picture: Scott Gelston

TASMANIA: Bee hives at Badgers Head on Tasmania’s North Coast. Picture: Scott Gelston

LAUNCESTON: Luke Prince and Neil Johnson at the Aussie Legends Evandale Football Club lunch. Picture: Phillip Biggs

LAUNCESTON: Emma Parsons and Emily Gladding at the Aussie Legends Evandale Football Club lunch. Picture: Phillip Biggs

LAUNCESTON: Garage Sale Trail. Picture: Phillip Biggs

TASMANIA: The Launceston Orchid Society. Picture: Paul Scambler

LAUCNESTON: Action at the NSATIS athletic carnival at St Leonards. Picture: Scott Gelston

LAUCNESTON: Action at the NSATIS athletic carnival at St Leonards. Picture: Scott Gelston

TASMANIA: Body builder Dane Tiffin at Zapfitness. Picture: Phillip Biggs

LAUNCESTON: An n Defence Force helicopter and military hardware landed at Scotch Oakburn College on Wednesday. Picture: Phillip Biggs

LAUNCESTON: An n Defence Force helicopter and military hardware landed at Scotch Oakburn College on Wednesday. Picture: Phillip Biggs

TASMANIA: Lilydale football Club division 2 premiers celebrate the end of the season. Picture: Paul Scambler

TASMANIA: Sahara Rumble, of Deloraine took out the win in the orchestral stringed instrument solo category. Picture: Brodie Weeding

TASMANIA: Thora Cosgriff, of Devonport came second in the orchestral stringed instrument solo category. Picture: Brodie Weeding

TASMANIA: Naomi Townsend, an apprentice chef at Gateway Inn Hotel at Devonport who was a 2016 finalist in the Fonterra Proud to be a Chef finals. Picture: Brodie Weeding

TASMANIA: Leukaemia Foundation Light the night event in Ulverstone. Picture: Brodie Weeding


A-League: Merrick vows to be cautious with marquee as Jets notch another pre-season winphotos

FLYING: Roy O’Donovan scored the Jets’ opening goal in a 2-1 win over Wellington at Jack McLaughlan Oval on Saturday. Picture: Sproule Sports Focus

ERNIE Merrick has no concerns about the physical fitness of marquee player Ronny Vargas but the Jets coach will not rush the attacking midfielder into action.

Ernie MerrickTweetFacebook Newcastle Jets v Wellington PhoenixPictures: Sproule Sports FocusVargas arrivedin Newcastle on Sunday and will undergo a medical before meeting his teammates on Monday.The attacking midfielder’s last game for AEK Athens was on May 17, and he has since been working with a personal trainer and attending training with Belgian club Antwerp.

“Ronny Vargas will be physically fit but he won’t be match fit,” Merrick said. “He will need at least a week of solid training under his belt. I doubt that he will play the local friendly but we will not make afinal decision until later in the week. There is nothing worse than bringing someone in and everyone else is match fit. We will test him in a number of areas before he plays.”

However, Merrick is confident that the Venezuelan international will be ready to go in round one.

“I must commend [football operations manager] Joel Griffiths,” Merrick said. “He was the one who kept persisting. I didn’t think we were going to get Ronny over the line. Joel did a great job and we have a really top-class player coming into our squad.”

The win over the Phoenix was the Jets’ third straight against A-League rivals.

Roy O’Donovan latched on to a clever ball from Wayne Brown to put the Jets ahead in the 34th minute. His goal was cancelled out by an AndrijaKaludjerovic header in the 64th minute beforeJoe Champness scored a winner for a second straight game, crunching a lobbed pass by O’Donovan with a left-foot volley in the 80th minute.

“It was pretty scrappy but you can’t play terrific footballevery game,” Merrick said. “The bottom line is that we are winning. Given that is the third A-League win in a row, it shows we are getting consistency. We are scoring goals and creating lots of chances. I’d like to put more away. It wasn’t pretty but it was a win. Leading into the first round on October 7,I am pretty happy with that.”

Merrick praisedfront duoO’Donovan and Andrew Nabbout and centrebacks Nigel Boogaard and Nikolai Topor-Stanley who “won everything in the air”.

However, he was disappointedwith the lack of play through midfield.

“We had some good chances in the first half, but then we reverted to playing long balls,” he said.

Lara Gilmour’s advice for people thinking about getting their first tattoo

Artistic: Lara Gilmour, a 23-year-old tattoo artist, has shared her story for the Illawarra Mercury’s More Than Skin Deep series. Visit the Mercury website.More Than Skin Deep series

Lara Gilmour admits she probably shouldn’t have started getting tattoos as young as 15, but she just wanted to be colourful.

‘’There was no defining moment in my life that made me want to do it. I just wanted to be as bright as I could be,’’ the 23-year-old said.

And now she makes a living out of adding ink to the skin of other like minded souls.

Lara’s advice for people thinking about getting their first tattoohttps://nnimgt-a.akamaihd苏州夜生活/transform/v1/crop/frm/6RkUQGAdGGK9mBaEPQ5Lkk/eb62b461-b666-4a97-a142-bdabd5f82db2.jpg/r0_74_5184_3003_w1200_h678_fmax.jpgLara Gilmour admits she probably shouldn’t have started getting tattoos as young as 15, but she just wanted to be colourful.Illawarra, Wollongong, tattoo, Lara Gilmour2017-09-16T13:00:00+10:00https://players.brightcove苏州夜生活/3879528182001/default_default/index.html?videoId=5577704301001https://players.brightcove苏州夜生活/3879528182001/default_default/index.html?videoId=5577704301001Lara’s body art has no rhyme or reason –she is influences by bands, artists and Walt Disney to name a few.

‘’One of my favourite tattoos is my rabbit … and I have a big portrait of my dog who passed away on my thigh.

‘’I got it four days later.

Inked: Lara’s body art has no rhyme or reason – she is influenced by bands, artists and Walt Disney to name a few. Pictures: Sylvia Liber

‘’It was very hard to get that one done. Everythingjust bubbled to his surface when Igot his done, it’s the most meaningful one for sure.’’

But most of Lara’s work has no real meaning at all, including her latest edition which is a gometric seahorse.

Read more: Sian’s first tattoo aged 40 was a ‘spur of the moment thing’

She’s happy to leave her designs in the hands of like-minded colleagues and give them ‘’free rein’’ to have as much fun as she does.

Lara – who is very heavily tattooed for a young woman and has a bold designon the side of her shaved head –says she doesn’t notice people’s reactions.

But she has her boyfriend would give a different answer.

‘’Don’t ask all your friends for their opinions, that’s the worst thing you can do,” says tattoo artist Lara Gilmour.

‘’I’m really oblivious to this sort of stuff, I don’t notice people looking at me when I’m walking down the street.

‘’My boyfriend would say people stop and stare at me.’’

As a professional artist, Lara has some views about tattoo placement.

‘’Necks, hands and faces have always been the last places you get …they’re the places thatheavily tattooed people have, tattoo artists, they are not something you shouldjust walk in and get because you feel like it,’’ she says.

‘’It’s a right of passage to get those places tattooed and Ithink anyone that really respect the tattoo culture really understands that.’’

Lara has some advice for people thinking about getting their first tattoo.

‘’Don’t ask all your friends for their opinions, that’s the worst thing you can do. ‘’And don’t do your hands or your neck.’’

Lara GilmourIllawarra Mercury series called ‘’More than Skin Deep’’.

It’s the brain child of Illawarra Mercury photographer Sylvia Liber.

‘’A person’s appearance can be misleading,’’ Sylvia says ‘’I agree that it displays a small part, but overall it’s an inaccurate way of measuring someone’s personality.’’

‘’I wanted to hear what was behind the incredible tattoos,’’ she said.

‘’I wanted people, our readers, instead of making a judgement based on appearance, to listen to these people first.’’

Read more:Three generations ofRandsnow tattoo from Windangshop

The story,Lara’sadvice for people thinking about getting their first tattoo, first appeared on the Illawarra Mercury.

Newcastle rugby: Wanderers earn another date with Hamilton in decider

TRY TIME: Wanderers’ No.8 Rhys Dombkins plants the ball on the line in the Two Blues’ 34-20 win over Southern Beaches. Picture: Stewart HazellTHERE is very little that Wanderers do not know about Hamilton and vice versa.

Two Blues to tackle familiar foe in decider TweetFacebook NHRU preliminary final: Wanderers 34 Southern Beaches 20Pictures: Stewart HazellThe twopowerhouse clubs have featured in the biggest and best games in the NHRU over the past fouryears.

On Saturday, they will meet in the grand final at No.2 Sportsground for a third straight year.

Again, the Two Blues had to qualify the hard way, beating Southern Beaches 34-20 in the preliminary final.

The resultwas a reverse of the qualifying final in which Beaches scored a converted try in injury time to win 20-19. Wanderers bounced back with a 59-5 hammering of Maitland in the minor semi-final to set up Saturday’s rematch with Beaches.

“Beaches are a good side and a team that plays for 80 minutes,” Wanderers coach Viv Paasi said. “We knew we had to keep grinding away at them and things would fall our way and they did.”

Minor premiers Hamilton, who are celebrating their 50thyear,had the luxury of a weekend off after beating Southern Beaches 27-10 in the major semi-final.

The grand final match-up is hardly a surprise. The Hawks and Wanderers finished one-two. At one point they were four wins clear of the chasing pack.

Wanderers have lost both encounters to the Hawks this season, going down 20-18 at Passmore Oval and 34-30 at No.2 Sportsground.

“It is about time we beat them,” Wanderers coach Viv Paasi said. “We know each other pretty well. We will do a few bits and pieces on them but the way to win big games is by worrying about yourself. That is what we have done in the past fortnight and I think it has shown. There is definitely things we need to tidy up from Saturday’s game–our restarts and other things. There were a few bits and pieces that weren’t as good as last week.”

Against Beaches, Wanderers led 17-3 at half-time and were always in control. Beaches fought hard and closed to 24-15 in the second half, before the Two Blues skipped away again.

In the end, Beaches couldn’t handle the pace of Wanderers flyers Tim Mash (one try), George Ashworth (two tries), Dillon Rowney and Josh McCormack.

Beaches coach Johan Lourens, who will hand the reins overnext season, was frustrated at the stop-start nature of the game and the decision by referee Brendon Farrar to sinbin centre Filisione Pauta for a high tackle in the first half.

Wanderers fullback Josh McCormack and replacement Mark Sherwood also received yellow cards.

“It was so stop-start,” Lourens said. “We wanted to play rugby.”

Apart from the outside backs, breakaway Ben Ham, lock Marcus Christensen, halfback Luke Sherwood and prop Leeland Marshall were strong for the Two Blues.

“Hammy is one of the guys who rarely gets noticed, and then you watch the video and he has done three times as much work as anyone else,” Paasi said. “It means a lot to him to play the grand final. He has played in the last four as has Boo (Sherwood), Luke Simmons, Cal McDonald, Ben Christensen and BillyCoffey. There is a bit of experience there.”

National Premier League play-offs: Edgeworth Eagles thrash Canberra Olympic to press claims for home run

EDGEWORTH are potentiallyone win away from hosting the National Premier League play-off grand final

ON FIRE: Veteran Daniel McBreen scored a double in Edgeworth’s 4-1 win over Canberra Olympic on Saturday night. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

The Eagles disposed of Canberra Olympic 4-1 at Deakin Stadium on Saturday night and will now meet the Brisbane Strikers at Jack McLaughlan Oval next weekend. Brisbane accounted for South Hobart 4-2 in Tasmania.

The three-time Northern NSW NPLchampions made it to the national finale last year, which they lost away to Sydney United 58, after wins on the road against Victorian winners Bentleigh Greens and Perth FC.

Match hosts are decided on a points system. A win in normal time is worth three points, away goals four points and home goals three points. A point is deducted for each goal conceded and per yellow card. A red card incurs a three-point penalty.

Kieran Sanders put Edgeworth ahead in the 15th minutes after a nod on from Daniel McBreen.His goal was cancelled out by Jordan Tsekenis in the 26th minute beforeJosh Evans put the visitors back in front with a crisp header onhalf-time.

“We deserved the second goalandwas an important moment to be honest,” Edgeworth coach Damian Zane said

The second half was all Edgeworth. McBreen produced a quality finish in the 75thminute before icing the win late.Edgeworth collected 18 points forthe 4-1 win.

APIA Leichhardt, who are in the other group,collected five points from their 1-0 win over Adelaide City. Heidelberg United beat Bayswater FC 2-1 in Perth in the second game on that side of the draw.

“On our side of the draw, we are probably one win off hosting a final,” Zane said. “APIAonly got five points for their win so we are sitting pretty.”

Edgeworth traveled to Canberra with an aggressive game plan and it paid dividends.

“It could have been more but had you offered me a 4-1 win I would have taken it,” Zane said. “We played pretty open and expansive because we wanted some goals and we got them. It was noce for Macca to score a couple.Once he gets up and about, he helps motivate the group. He was quite elusive tonight. People were saying how quick is he?”

OpinionOn trail of another ecotourism winner

Increasingly, walking trails, cycling trails, ecotourism trails and, in some cases, commuting links are appearing along the disused railway lines snaking across .

Railroads, with their gentle slopes, make ideal cycling or walking trails for locals and tourists.The Hunter has the Fernleigh track as ashining example of a completed active travel trail and the Richmond Vale Rail Trail (RVRT) as a work in progress.The conversion of the disused rail line from Hexham to Richmond Vale has been a long-term dream of many since the last steam train made its spectacular exit by blockading the line on Hexham Swamps in 1987.

The RVRT traverses three LGAs and the councils of Cessnock, Lake Macquarie and Newcastle have plans now underway to bring it to the shovel ready stage.The RVRT will connect Shortland to Hexham along the old water pipeline, then Hexham across Hunter Wetland National Park, Pambalong Nature Reserve, Stockrington State Conservation Area, via tunnels and bridges through the Werakata State Conservation Area to Richmond Vale. The RVRT will become one of the Hunter’s iconic trails linking Newcastle to the vineyards, and bringing access along the way to a wide variety of ecosystems from wetlands to red gum forests and an abundance of bird life.

We need public support to ensure this important project for our region is completed.

At the TFIwe have organised, with the generous support of the Donaldson Conservation Trust, an exciting array of expert speakers for a free conference Active Transport: The Richmond Vale Rail Trail on September 27 at the University of Newcastle’s Callaghan Campus. The book Towards the Richmond Vale Rail Trailalso will be launched at the conference.

Join us for a memorable day.

Professor Tim Roberts is the director of the Tom Farrell Institute for the Environment, University of Newcastle

A NSW judge has slammed the running of a Port Stephens Council legal case

Wet and Wild Prolonged: Lagoons Estate owner David Vitnell at the lagoon area that gives the Nelson Bay development its name. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers.

Legals: Mr Vitnell on his proposed stage three of the Lagoons Estate.

Wet: a photo showing water settling on the Lagoons Estate after heavy rain.

Beautiful: Home owners who have built large, established homes at the Lagoons Estate because of the beauty of the lagoon. Residents say excessive water entering the site has caused extensive damage.

Angry: Lagoons Estate property owners (from left) Bill Park, George Pagacs, Gloria Grayson, Randall Grayson, Ron Ricketts and Roy Johnson.

TweetFacebookThe conduct of the proceedings does not reflect well on the legalrepresentatives or their clients. It has certainly not been in the interests of the parties or in the interests of justice. The current dispute has all the hallmarks of an attitude on both sides which is both myopic and pedantic. There has been an excessive focus on formality and minutiae, at the expense of the real issues in dispute.

NSW Supreme Court Justice Michael Pembroke

Mr Vitnell isseeking a court declaration that the council has not complied with a 2006 NSW Court of Appeal decision ordering it to complete millions of dollars in drainage works near the Lagoons Estate, after Justice Roger Giles in 2006 strongly criticised the council and found it had not acted“in good faith”.

The 2006 decision came after decades of complaints from two owners of the Lagoons Estate, after the council approved a neighbouring housing development in the 1970s and carried out road drainage works which included water dischargesdirectly onto the Lagoons Estate.

In the 1990s the council carried out further roadworks that increased the amount of discharge to the Lagoons Estate, and failed to carry out mitigation works despite writtencommitmentsto do the work.

In 2002 new owner BrienCornwell,of Melaleuca Estate Pty Ltd, took legal action to force the council to stop the stormwater discharges, and spent $3.5 million on an internal drainage system as part of a council approval for the first two stages of the Lagoons Estate housing development. Port Stephens Council spent about $1.3 million to reduce water entering the Lagoons Estate.

Mr Cornwell won the2006 court case, and Justice Giles blasted the council for showing “a signal disregard” of Mr Cornwell’s rights, after the council argued it had the right to “carry off water, mud and filth” from public roads, “collect and concentrate” it and put it on the estate.

Justice Giles ordered the council to undertake significant drainage work to stop stormwater “in excess of natural flow” from entering Lagoons Estate and the lagoon system that gives it its name, with an 18-month deadline.

Mr Vitnell bought the estate after Mr Cornwell’s companies went into liquidation, and launched action against the council in 2015 arguing it had not complied with the 2006 order.

Civil engineer and water engineering expert Geoff O’Loughlin, who was appointed by the court with the consent of Mr Vitnell and the council, was required to answer what Justice Pembroke described as “two relatively straightforward questions” relating to stormwater on the Lagoons Estate.

In a decision on September 8 Justice Pembroke listed the 14 dates the matter hadreturned to court since May, 2016, including an appearance in which he blasted the council for taking two months to concede it could not rely on a 2007confidential agreement with Mr Cornwell to stop Mr Vitnell’s case.

The council paid Mr Cornwell $750,000 in 2007 –and approved paying $750,000 more – as “insurance” to stop him taking further legal action against itover the Lagoons Estate saga.

The “insurance” failed –and ratepayers officially wasted $750,000 –because it only applied as long as the estate wasn’t sold.

“Why would you wait to come to court and incur the costs of four barristers to have an argument about something blindly obvious?” Justice Pembroke asked a barrister for the council, before ruling an agreement with Mr Cornwell had no force against Mr Vitnell.

On September 12 Justice Pembroke set down a May, 2018 hearing date.

Mr Vitnell said the council had clearly not been happy with the court-appointed expert’s report. He expressed serious concern about the millions of dollars the case had cost so far, and future potential costs once the matter is finalised.

If the case ends in MrVitnell’s favour the council couldbe forced to pay two lots of legal expenses, with the likelihood of damages because of the five years Mr Vitnell has not been able to proceed with the third stage of the estate. If Mr Vitnell wins the council will also be forced to complete drainage works required under the 2006 order. The council in 2006 received estimates of up to $36 million to appropriately drain the area.

Mr Vitnell said he did not believe Port Stephens councillors, except for outspoken councillor Geoff Dingle, had been fully aware of the strength of the case against it.

Council general manager Wayne Wallis said it was not appropriate for the council to comment while the matter is before the courts.

“What I can say is that councillors have been fully briefed on this matter, and have been throughout the entire process,” Mr Wallis said.

UFOs in the sky above Cessnock and Singleton weren’t from another planet

UFO mystery in the Hunter solved | VIDEO, PHOTOS, POLL Night Lights: Dozens of lights were spotted in the sky, south-west of Cessnock.

TweetFacebookDid he think they were UFOs?

“The first thing my wife said was ‘they’re UFOs’, but I don’t really believe in UFOs.”

He thought they could possibly bemilitary drones.

He wondered if someone could help identify the craft.

“I’m curious because it’s an odd thing and I don’t have an explanation,” the man said.

“I’m one of those people that likes to have an answer to these things. Maybe somebody else saw it. If a number of people saw it, there could be different perspectives on it.

“Someone in the aeronautics industry might recognise the lights and know what kind of craft it is.”

Topics posted the man’s story on Reddit and YouTube.

Thankfully someone out there in internet land was able to solve the mystery.

A postunder the name HydraMonkey, said the lights came from“regional link flights placed into holding whilst waiting to land”at Sydney Airport.

“The article says the flights started at about 8pm. At that time there were three flights in holding just south of the Singleton Military Area with a Virgin flight just breaking from holding and moving south.

“To the west threelarger jets are moving to final approach for Sydney.”

But why did the man not hear any sound coming from the planes?

“There was a very strong westerly blowing wind on Thursday that went as far to affect normal flights at Sydney,” HydraMonkey said.

“Depending on where he was, the wind might have been moving sound away from him.”

If anyone has a UFO story to share, let us know at [email protected]苏州夜网.au.

AFL: Geelong Cats beat Sydney Swans in semi-final knockout

Cats conjure up a ninth life with big win over the Swans Happy returns: Daniel Menzel celebrates a major score as Geelong captain Joel Selwood (left) looks on.

TweetFacebookPictures: AAPIn this season of nonplus, this might have been the most confounding twist yet. At one end of the MCG, the great Buddy Franklin, playing in his usual position, was double-teamed, and halved as a force, contributing not a single goal, and usually innovative Sydney could do nothing about it.

On one leg, Franklin sported what may have been a wad of padding, or a floatie. Either way, he played as if marooned, drowning not waving.

At the other, the great Paddy Dangerfield, playing out of position, was double-teamed, and yet somehow redoubled as a force, kicking four first-half goals, and so did those around him, and sometimes proxying for him, profit, and the usually enterprising Sydney could do nothing about that, either. He kicked no more after half-time; he had no need.

So did the Cats, down in estimation, confidence and personnel, and having lost TomLonergan, Buddy’s notional opponent, before the game, summon up one of the great counter-intuitive finals wins. So on they go, to Adelaide and a preliminary final, and even with a little in reserve after sitting out the final quarter, which was played as if in ceasefire mode.

Geelong had and used the double chance. Sydney has been on its last chance for months, and finally it expired. It was one thing for them to give the competition a six-game head-start, another to give Cats six goals head-start in a do-or-die final. So out they go.

The solution to the riddle of this night’s result was manifest at each end, but the working-out was up the ground. There, the Cats won all the contests, strategic, mental and physical. They broke even at clearances, the Swans’ patent strength, this despite sacrificing Dangerfield to the forward line detail. In this enterprise, Mitch Duncan was outstanding, and Sam Menegola, surplus to requirements last week, no less.

Geelong monopolised the ball, with the dual effect of denying it to Sydney and taking the usual manic finals burr out of the game. This was control, but the Swans prefer, would you believe, chaos. And they were helpless to manufacture it. Here was a page from the playbook of Hawthorn, the only team to beat Sydney since April, until now. This was apart from anything else a finely worked coaching triumph. Captain Joel Selwood said coach Chris Scott was the three-voter this night.

And slowly it dawned on you that well as the Swans had done even to be here this season, the Cats were always hereabouts, and resilient as Sydney has been this last decade or so, the Cats have always been thereabouts, too. They have their pride, and it showed, glinting like an Anzac Day medal.

Quiet night: Sydney’s Lance Franklin failed to make an impact. Photo: Wayne Ludbey

In prospect, this was the calm after the storm created by Richmond the previous Friday night. Both teams were from out of town. Geelong generally misses home, Sydney makes itself at home wherever it goes. Hence the apprehension.

A day of drenching rain added to the dampening. “The platforms are wet, because of the rain,” said the Met man on Jolimont station, and you knew then that it was going to be a night of trying too hard. The crowd dribbled in, finally reckoning up at just more 55,000.

But the rain did have the effect of making the MCG and everything in it sparkle as if sporting a new coat of paint. That charm will have been lost on Sydney.

The last thing Geelong could afford Sydney was the flying start that has been a feature of their recent meetings. Artfully, they moved the game into a lower key than is usual for finals, and usual for Sydney, which thrives on a more frenetic beat.

The conditions helped, affecting handling and footing. After Dangerfield kicked two early goals, the Swans were forced to order a man back as rearguard, The overall effect was further muffling. Meantime, the Cats set a swarm on Franklin, outnumbering him so completely that the umpires might have called for a count. Tactically, this was to be expected.

The surprise was that Sydney had no counter.Sydney, such a self-assured team these last four months, were befuddled. And duly the Geelong goals rained, six in a row, 11 of 13 until the game was asleep and the counting could stop.

If you were to single out a goal as symbolic, it was the one kicked by Duncan from a 50-metre penalty against Franklin, who if he made any movement off the line, it can only have been a sideways glance. The Swans might have guessed then that this was not to be their night.

Reports of Sydney’s death in April turned out to be greatly exaggerated. Reports of Geelong’s death last week turned out to be even more exaggerated. The Cats did, and the Swans died.

Man with cerebral palsy lashes out at Devonport taxi company

Damian McCoy has spent hislifegrappling withthe everyday challenges caused by two tragic events in his childhood: a car accident that left him with cerebral palsyand his mother’s death.

But all the strength Mr McCoy has built up in the 40 years since those events melted after a trip to Brisbane ended with him locked out of Devonport Airport in the freezing night air, wondering what had happened to the taxi he’d booked an hour earlier.

“Theairport was closed, I’m waiting in the dark, my phone hadrun out of battery so I couldn’t call anyone and I’m there with a disability waiting for a taxi,” he said.

Seeing airline staff leavein a Maxi Taxi reserved for them onlyadded insult to injury.

“When they all drove offI felt utterlydejected, lost, isolated andangry,” he said.

Mr McCoy has lashed out atTaxi Combined Devonport, which did pick him up after half an hour.

Qantas staff bookedthe taxi for him shortlyafter his connecting flight from Melbourne took off.

DEJECTED: Damian McCoy, who has cerebral palsy, has blasted a Devonport taxi company that left him waiting outside Devonport Airport. Picture: Lachlan Bennett

Mr McCoy wanted to use a differenttaxi company because of past bad experiences but said he wastold Taxi Combined Devonport was the only service that could be booked.

Devonport Airport general managerDave Racesaid the airport didn’t have an exclusive contract with Taxi Combined Devonport that would prevent another company being booked.

“In order to provide the best possible service to its customers, Devonport Airport uses two local taxi companies,” Mr Race said.

“Customers with concerns about their taxi service should discuss the matter with the taxi company.”

The manager of Taxi Combined Devonport was unavailable for comment.

Mr McCoy is trying to move past the incident as he prepares to move to Brisbane for medical treatment.

But he worries others may face the same situation.

“What if someone with a severe disability gets out there and it happens to them?,” he said.

“It’s not about me. It’s about people who required services out there and they aren’t there, they are not being met.”

The Advocate