Payne’s mistake lesson for all riders: AJA

Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Michelle Payne’s mistake in taking a banned appetite suppressant should be a lesson for all riders, the Australian Jockeys Association says.


An embarrassed Payne says she takes full responsibility and should have investigated further after her doctor prescribed Phentermine to help deal with gastrointestinal problems connected to injuries she sustained in a serious race fall.

AJA chair Des O’Keeffe says Payne accepts it is the rider’s responsibility to know what they are taking and the rules around it, regardless of whether it is prescribed by a doctor or not.

“At the end of the day the buck stops with the rider,” O’Keeffe said.

“There’s plenty of information out there of what they can and can’t take. They need to follow that carefully.”

Payne was banned from riding in races for four weeks, until July 21.

O’Keeffe does not believe it will hurt the reputation of the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup.

“Michelle Payne’s reputation is as an icon of Australian sport and not just racing.

“I think the manner in which she’s handled this she should be extremely proud of, disappointed that it’s occurred, but proud of the manner in which she’s handled it.

“I don’t believe it will tarnish her reputation in any way whatsoever.”

O’Keeffe said Payne seems well after suffering life-threatening injuries in the fall in May last year, which required extensive surgery.

“I know she’s found winter very difficult this year and hopefully with additional treatment, additional advice now she can get on top of it,” he said.

Payne rode at Royal Ascot last week and has been invited to compete in the Shergar Cup international jockeys’ challenge at Ascot on August 12.

“I look forward to working hard and being in great shape upon my return to racing,” she said.

NZ locks braced for Lions odd couple

The All Blacks locks are expecting plenty from a revamped British and Irish Lions duo at the opposite ends of their career.


Sam Whitelock and Brodie Retallick dominated the second row battle in New Zealand’s 30-15 first Test win at Eden Park.

The response of Lions coach Warren Gatland was to replace George Kruis with Maro Itoje and bring a third Englishman, Courtney Lawes, onto the reserves bench.

Veteran Alun Wyn Jones retains his starting spot despite a quiet Test, attracting criticism in some quarters.

Gatland has belief his faithful Welsh servant will respond with the sort of physicality the pack as a whole was missing last week.

“It is a big game for him. He was a bit disappointed with how it went last week,” Gatland said.

“He is pretty focused and motivated. Normally in the past when he has been challenged he has really fronted the next game.”

A 110-cap veteran for Wales, Jones has played in the last seven successive Lions Tests.

At the other end of the scale, Itjoe is the youngest member of Gatland’s tour party at 22.

Arguably the brightest rising star of European forward play, “Super Maro” has been immersed in success from the outset with both England and his all-conquering club Saracens.

His first start against the All Blacks will carry the extra responsibility of calling the lineouts.

“We acknowledge that they’re too good operators, they’re very talented guys,” Itoje said.

“The challenge for us is to surpass them. We haven’t come here to play second best.”

Whitelock has been impressed by Itoje and the impact he has on his teammates.

His impact at the tackle and breakdown provided evidence of why he is regarded as a leading blindside flanker candidate.

“He’s very young. He has the energy and excitement when he’s out there playing,” Whitelock said.

“Both guys are really physical, they love that physical battle and we know they’re going to bring that.”

Mighty Meg inspires Australia to big win

Australia skipper Meg Lanning says she never doubted her side would chase down a record target of 258 to beat Sri Lanka and seal a second successive win at the Women’s Cricket World Cup.


Lanning scored an imperious 152 not out as Australia raced to 2-262 inside 44 overs to win by eight wickets.

However, her fine innings was overshadowed by a brilliant unbeaten 178 from Sri Lanka’s Chamari Atapattu.

Atapattu was one of only three players in her side to reach double figures, but struck the highest-ever score by a female player against Australia in a record-breaking knock that included six sixes and 22 fours.

It was also the highest proportion of runs scored by an individual in a women’s ODI.

“It was a very special innings from Atapattu,” Lanning said.

“We tried all sorts of different things to slow her down and get her out but she was too good for us today.

“Some of those shots she played were incredible and well done to her. It was one of the great knocks.”

Buoyed by the fireworks of their No.3 batswoman, Sri Lanka dismissed Australia opener Beth Mooney for a duck in the first over.

Nicole Bolton was lucky not to follow her back to the pavilion shortly after as wicketkeeper Prasadani Weerakkody dropped a simple catch when she was on five.

But it proved to be the only alarm for the world champions as Lanning underlined her status as the world’s best batswoman with her 11th ODI ton after putting on 133 for the second wicket with Bolton (60).

After Bolton’s dismissal she was joined at the crease by Elysse Perry, who scored 39 not out, with the skipper smashing a six to seal the win and bring up the biggest score of her international career.

“I thought we were good in patches with the bat and ball but it wasn’t our best performance,” she said.

“At the moment the wickets and the grounds are conducive to scoring runs and as soon as you get any width you feel you can free your hands.

“We were confident of chasing it down and although they got a few more than we would have liked, with our batting line-up and a good wicket we thought we could win.

“Once we set that base, Bolts and I, we knew we’d be able to chase it down.”

Australia’s bowlers shared the wickets between them with Perry, Kristen Beams and Bolton bagging two apiece.

Megan Schutt, Ash Gardner and Elyse Vilani each took a wicket.

New Zealand are Australia’s next opponents on Sunday, again at Bristol.

A look at the new financial year for investors

Investors over the past financial year have had to deal with the Brexit fallout, an OPEC production agreement and numerous local and global elections.


CommSec chief economist Craig James says the most important election was the presidential race in the United States.

“Basically, Donald Trump was elected on the premise that he’ll be cutting taxes and increasing infrastructure spending. We haven’t seen it yet, but the market certainly has rallied on that expectation.”

That indicates President Trump will continue to sway global shares.

Macquarie analyst Martin Lakos says the US president’s policies have given momentum to global share markets, which have outperformed the local index.

“The Aussie market in the last financial year is up about 9 per cent, not bad, but that compares with, say, the US markets are up about 15, and we’ve got the Hong Kong market up 24, the German market up 30 per cent. So, in that context, we’ve underperformed.”

Also important in the new financial year is what the US Federal Reserve will do with interest rates in that country.

Craig James says Australian interest rates look set to stay low, bad news for retirees reliant on fixed-income returns.

“Well, I think we’re going to continue to see an environment of low inflation and low interest rates, so I think there’s still a focus on the dividend payers — the utilities, the property trusts — as well as other sectors across the market such as the banks and telcos.”

AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver says he expects the Australian share market to rise in the new year, but modestly.

“So the bottom line is, yes, the Aussie economy keeps growing but it’s relatively constrained growth. And, therefore, profits grow, but at a relatively constrained growth. Share market goes up, but not dramatically.”

Macquarie’s Martin Lakos says the real opportunity for investors is overseas, amid signs global growth is picking up.

“So whether it’s investing directly or investing via Australian companies that have a good proportion of their businesses in overseas markets and economies, we certainly still like that theme.”

AMP’s Shane Oliver says he agrees.

“If you want to see good returns, you’ve probably got to have a decent exposure to global shares, particularly eurozone shares, Japanese shares, emerging market. That’s where I think the growth will be.”

Meanwhile, new superannuation rules will come into effect on Saturday. (July 1)

The before-tax contributions cap will fall to $25,000, regardless of a person’s age.

The after-tax cap declines from $180,000 to $100,000.

And the bring-forward rule, which allows people to combine three years of caps in a single year, will also be reduced, from $540,000 to $300,000.






More deaths as migrants try to cross the Mediterranean

When an Italian navy boat brought 700 migrants to the port of Pozzallo on Wednesday, medics had to carry some migrants off on stretchers.


Pozallo Port Doctor, Angelo Gugliotta says some of those rescued off the coast of Libya were severely malnourished.

He says others had physical injuries, including gunshot wounds.

“In regards to the situation in general when it comes to migration internationally, it is not my job to comment, but I am a medic and I have taken the Hippocratic Oath to respond in a time of need in the role of a medic, and this is a situation that has become ever more dramatic over the years, with incredibly high numbers of people arriving. The last arrival we assisted to was on Sunday and already, just three days later we have 700 more arriving today and I am certain we have more people arriving before next Sunday.”

He says one boy born on a migrant boat, died from respiratory problems soon after he and his mother were rescued.

“For the first time I have had to ask the emergency services to intervene because we had a “code red” patient already at the time of arrival. The medical needs are the same as usual, gunshot wounds, hypothermia, cases of asthenia, dehydration and so on.”

Rescue workers have also recovered five bodies off the Libyan coast on.

Rescue Worker, Hossam Al-Tabouny says the makeshift rubber dingy used for their journey washed up damaged on rocks.

But he says the other four people believed to be on board have not been found.

“Of course the recovery of bodies from Tajura is ongoing. Today’s search recovered five bodies but because of limited time there still remain other bodies around but they will be removed in the coming days to clean up our shores”

Meanwhile, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi says migration needs to be seen as an opportunity.

Speaking at an international conference on migration in Berlin, Mr Grandi urged Germany and other countries to do more to save refugee lives at sea

“Regardless of status, refugee or migrant, saving lives including through rescue at sea and protecting them from these threats are compelling humanitarian imperatives. We must also work to reduce those risks in the first place. Regular pathways must urgently and substantially be expanded to prevent migrants and refugees from having to resort to dangerous and exploitative mechanisms.”

The Berlin conference also heard the German Foreign Minister, Sigmar Gabriel suggest Germany and other nations need to change the way they think about migration policy, on an international scale and on a societal level.

European vessels are pulling hundreds of migrants from surrounding seas daily, often carrying those fleeing war, persecution or poverty.