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Hooper excited about first Rugby World Cup

Wallabies star Michael Hooper is excited about stepping into the unknown at the upcoming Rugby World Cup, but far too busy to reflect on his extraordinarily rapid rise through the ranks.

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At the time of the last World Cup four years ago, Hooper was still at the Brumbies and yet to make his Test debut.

Now the 23-year-old NSW Waratahs flanker has accrued 46 Test caps, captained his country, played in a Super Rugby title-winning side and is one of the prime movers in a Wallabies squad focused on securing the nation’s third World Cup.

The speedy openside is joint vice-captain of the current squad and has won a stack of individual awards and accolades, but doesn’t spend time reflecting on everything he’s achieved since 2011.

“Four years ago is a long time, I’m just thinking about the here and now I guess,” Hooper told AAP from the Wallabies’ training camp in the United States.

“It will be nice to reflect and go back a bit, but (I’m) so enveloped and so engulfed in what is the job we’ve got coming up that it’s hard to think about anything else.”

“There’s always going to be time for reflection and when that comes, so be it, but right now it’s such an exciting time you’re not thinking about other things, you’re thinking about what’s ahead.”

For Hooper, the excitement comes from being a World Cup novice.

“I’m excited about the fact that I don’t know anything, that it’s going to be a new and fun experience,” Hooper said.

“I know that when we were there (in Britain) on the spring tour last year there was already some good hype about the World Cup there, so I know it can only really have improved in the last couple of weeks particularly.”

Another unknown for Hooper is the preferred backrow combination of coach Michael Cheika, who always holds his selection cards close to his chest.

“He keeps us guessing all the time, so I don’t know what his thinking is there,” Hooper said.

“You’d like to get the inner working of his mind sometimes, but you can’t and that’s what keeps you on your toes.”

It remains to be seen whether Cheika will again unleash from the start of games the potent fetching tandem of Hooper and David Pocock, as he did so successfully in the Rugby Championship decider against New Zealand.

“I think we complement each other on the field, I really enjoyed playing with him,” Hooper said.

Navas ‘delighted’ to still be at Real, Benitez says

Real and United had tied up the deal but blamed each other after it collapsed because the paperwork was not filed until shortly after the deadline.

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Costa Rica international Navas remains at Real and United announced on Friday that Spain’s De Gea had agreed a new four-year deal with the Premier League club.

Benitez told a news conference ahead of Saturday’s La Liga match at Espanyol he had full confidence in Navas, as well as support keepers Kiko Casilla and Ruben Yanez.

He said he had been having dinner with Navas and the keeper’s wife and agent the night the transfer failed to go through.

“He (Navas) knows how much confidence I have in him and he is calm and confident,” Benitez told reporters.

“All I want is for him to do things really well,” added the 55-year-old, who took over from Italian Carlo Ancelotti at the end of last season after Real failed to win any of the three main competitions.

“Yesterday he trained superbly. He made three or four great saves. Beyond that he is not affected. He is delighted and so am I. I always tell the truth.”

Real, who play their Champions League Group A opener at home to Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday, will be without Colombia playmaker James Rodriguez and Brazil fullback Danilo for several weeks after the pair returned injured from international duty.

Benitez, who said he had enough quality in his squad to cope, is likely to deploy Spain midfielder Isco and his international team mate Dani Carvajal in their place.

Real drew their opening match of the campaign 0-0 at promoted Sporting Gijon before thrashing Real Betis, the second-division champions, 5-0.

They are two points behind joint leaders Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Celta Vigo and Eibar, who all have six points.

(Reporting by Iain Rogers, editing by Ed Osmond)

No problem in United dressing-room, says Van Gaal

“I have a superb relationship with my players,” the Dutchman told a news conference before the game against Liverpool on Saturday in what his opposite number Brendan Rodgers described as “the biggest derby in the history of the league.

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Newspaper reports this week said many United players were unhappy with Van Gaal’s training regime and with his open criticism of his squad.

But Van Gaal said “it is very positive when players come to you because you know they trust you” following the visit by captain Rooney and vice-captain Carrick.

They told him the dressing-room was flat, explaining that they were trying to help him.

“I communicate not only with my captains, they try to warn me, so I then go to my dressing-room and communicate with my players and we discussed a lot of aspects — but not what some have written.”

Van Gaal also blamed the “crazy world of football” as being the cause of the transfer sagas that surrounded goalkeeper David De Gea and led to Manchester United paying 36 million pounds ($55.5 million) for a teenager.

“The world of football is a crazy world and I cannot change that crazy world,” the 64-year-old Dutchman said.

“There is a market and there is a market price and we cannot have any influence on that price.”

United signed 19-year-old French forward Anthony Martial from AS Monaco this month for a fee that could rise to as much as 58 million pounds.

“I said to Ed (Woodward, United’s chief executive) he is the best of his age and we need a striker in the future.

“So we can wait a year and he will be 10 million more expensive but now we can build him up and at the right time he can enter in the game.”

He also said there was no pressure on Martial to be an instant success at Old Trafford.

“He is 19 years old, he does not have to score, he has to adapt and it is very difficult to adapt. You have seen how (Angel) Di Maria struggled and he was 27 and (Radamel) Falcao and he was 29.

“It is not so easy at Manchester United, the pressure is much higher than at other clubs.”

(Reporting by Mike Collett, editing by Ed Osmond)

Lewis happy to lead Hawks in AFL

Jordan Lewis is ready to captain AFL premiers Hawthorn, provided Luke Hodge decides it’s time to step aside.

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There is speculation that Lewis will take over next season from Hodge, who is widely respected as the sport’s best skipper.

Hodge has been the on-field leader for their premiership three-peat and, while he was busted for drink driving during the finals, he retains a lofty status in the game.

Hawthorn will most likely decide next month whether to make the change.

“There’s obviously a lot of water to go under the bridge,” Lewis said.

“When the time is right, Hodgey will understand that he’s not going to be around forever.

“So if he feels the need … to pass that on, whether it’s this year or next year, there’s probably a handful of guys waiting in the wings that could honestly stand up and lead this team really well.”

Lewis turns 30 next year, making him two years younger than Hodge.

“Hodgey is obviously the leader and has been a great leader for so long, so why tip him out when he’s at the top of his game?,” he said.

“He will do it if he wants to do it – if he doesn’t, then someone else will have to step up and fill that role.”

Lewis made it clear he is ready for the role and said given Hawthorn’s strength, it would be a straightforward succession.

“It would sit comfortably, there’s no doubt about that,” he said.

“I’ve been around for 12 years now, I’m experienced.

“You don’t have to really control this group like some of the other clubs – we have a pretty disciplined group.

“And it’s quite an easy side to lead.”

Lewis’ standing at the club was highlighted on Wednesday when new sponsor Audi announced him as their latest ambassador.

The hard-nosed onballer is the odd man out in a group that includes celebrities such as Hugh Jackman and Collette Dinnigan.

“I’m a little bit embarrassed, but you take what comes your way,” he said.

“I remember when I first arrived at the club, I had a Holden that broke down after two weeks – that was a major disaster.”

Tigers destroyed in Shield by WA gun Paris

One year ago, West Australian paceman Joel Paris couldn’t even pick up a pair of socks without getting injured.

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Now, the 22-year-old paceman is being touted as a future Test prospect after playing a match-winning role in WA’s nine-wicket triumph over Tasmania at the WACA Ground.

Paris, playing just his second Sheffield Shield match, snared 6-23 to dismiss Tasmania for 205 in their second innings.

It left WA needing just 52 runs to win, and they achieved their target with ease courtesy of Cameron Bancroft (32no) and Jonathan Wells (18no).

But the day well and truly belonged to Paris.

Tasmania resumed play on day four at 5-184, with the visitors requiring a big knock to add significant runs to their overnight lead of 30.

But the Tigers’ victory hopes were in tatters when Paris dismissed Tom Triffitt (13) and Xavier Doherty (0) before a run had been added to the overnight score.

Paris then removed dangerman James Faulkner for 40, and he had wicket No.6 when Jackson Bird skied him to fine leg.

Cricket fans had a taste of Paris’ potential during last summer’s domestic one-day cup, when he snared 13 wickets at an average of 12.92 to spearhead WA’s title-winning campaign.

But a torn quad suffered in the final ended up grounding Paris for the rest of the summer.

So fragile was his quad at the time, Paris even re-injured it while picking up a pair of socks.

“I rang the physio after I did it, and we had a bit of a chuckle about it,” Paris said on Wednesday.

“It didn’t take much for it to re-tear. And that was the problem. It wasn’t fully re-tearing – it was just little tears here and there that kept me out of the game.

“It wasn’t a great situation to be in, but we tried to see some positives out of it, and that was to build some strength up and have a good crack this year.”

Paris snared six wickets in his Shield debut against Victoria last month, and his game haul of eight wickets against Tasmania showcased his match-winning abilities.

WA coach Justin Langer said a Test career beckoned for Paris if he could stay fit.

“We know he’s a real talent,” Langer said.

“When you get six-for, you straight away put your name up, don’t you?”

Tasmanian skipper and former Test batsman George Bailey was also impressed by the emerging paceman.

“He’s tall with good pace and swings it, which is three pretty key ingredients,” Bailey said.

“I spent a little bit of time with him in Brisbane at the cricket academy, and was really impressed by his work ethic and character.”

No Test pitch monster in Hobart: curator

No “green eyed monster” lies in wait for the wounded West Indies in the first Test against Australia – just plenty of runs, Hobart curator Marcus Pamplin says.

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Despite the Bellerive Oval deck still boasting a distinct green tinge on Test eve, Pamplin played down talk that batsmen would be treading on a minefield.

Asked if speculation over a raging green top had been blown out of proportion, Pamplin said: “I think so.

“I think the ball will come right through to the batsmen.

“It will be pretty tough for the first session but then it will be a nice batting track.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if they bat first whoever wins the toss.”

Pamplin said he had prepared the same wicket in which Test keeper Peter Nevill stroked an unbeaten 235 for NSW in February in their Sheffield Shield win by an innings over Tasmania.

He said the last Shield clash in Hobart barely a fortnight ago would also provide a clue to what to expect this week.

In that match, Tasmania lost the toss and sent South Australia in – the Redbacks were 3-441 by stumps on the first day on their way to a 302-run win.

“It’s very similar to pitches in Shield games. I reckon the Shield games have been a tad greener,” Pamplin said.

“I reckon we’ve had the most centuries here in Shield cricket and we’ve all had results too (this season).

“It just goes to show the ball is really coming on to the bat, with a lot of range for shots, and the outfield is really quick.”

In the last Tasmania-SA Shield clash, neither side picked spinners.

But Pamplin predicted Australian offie Nathan Lyon – celebrating his 50th Test – would still be a factor at Hobart against the Windies.

“We used this pitch last season against NSW and Nathan Lyon and Steve O’Keefe took a lot of wickets in the second innings,” he said of Lyon (4-75 match figures) and O’Keefe (3-45).

“And to prove there was still a lot of pace in it, Doug Bollinger (7-94 match figures) got wickets as well.

“And there was a lot of runs scored – I think Peter Nevill scored 230 (sic).”

Pamplin said he had not felt pressure to produce a result wicket to ensure interest in a Hobart Test.

“Not really. We are just trying to produce the best wicket we can and hopefully it goes four, five days,” he said.

Canberra is believed to be poised to replace Hobart as a Test venue if the Windies clash attracts poor crowds.

Gina excited about first Roy Hill shipment

Billionaire Gina Rinehart is excited about Roy Hill’s first iron ore shipment this week despite the commodity trading at a fresh 10-year low.

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Australia’s richest person is preparing to celebrate the company’s first load of the steel-making ingredient from Port Hedland on Thursday following recent delays to the $10 billion project.

“Despite the many media critics and their relentless negativity, we have now loaded a ship of low phosphorous Roy Hill ore, the next step in the exciting story of the Roy Hill project,” Mrs Rinehart said in a statement.

The loading of the MV Anangel Explorer was completed on Tuesday, a day after the price of Australia’s largest export commodity fell below the key psychological barrier of $US40 per tonne.

Hancock Prospecting executive director Tad Watroba said the ship loading was a “very happy day” for everyone associated with Roy Hill and attacked those who blame iron ore price falls on the company boosting global supply.

“With more than 90 per cent of Roy Hill’s production secured under long-term contracts, very little ore will enter the spot iron ore market,” Mr Watroba said.

However, details of the prices Roy Hill’s minority partners have paid for their iron ore have not be released.

The iron ore spot price fell to $US38.65 overnight as Chinese steel demand remains weak.

Mrs Rinehart recently revealed that she acted against the advice and recommendations of experts who said pursuing Roy Hill was the wrong decision.

Last week Roy Hill rescheduled the departure of its first shipment due to “progressive commissioning and operational and safety constraints” but the company said on Tuesday that the loading was more than a month ahead of Mrs Rinehart’s expectations.

Roy Hill plans to ramp up to its 55 million tonne capacity within 18 months, a feat which has not been achieved in the Pilbara.

The first shipment comes as global miner Anglo American flagged production cuts across its two iron ore operations in South Africa and Brazil as part of a “radical” company-wide restructure.

Fast bowlers to lead West Indies charge

West Indies skipper Jason Holder admits he’s even having trouble winning the toss of late.

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But the underdog captain said his team’s preparation was as good as it could be going into Thursday’s Hobart Test series opener against Australia.

While the visitors’ final XI is yet to be confirmed, the likelihood is a line-up similar to that thrashed by 10 wickets by a rookie Australian side during a warm-up game in Brisbane last week, plus the addition of fast bowler Jerome Taylor.

The right-arm quick will spearhead the West Indies’ attack and, along with bolter Shannon Gabriel, will be charged with slicing through the Aussie middle order.

“If we can get into their middle order as quickly as possible, that would be better off for us,” Holder told reporters on Wednesday.

Australia’s in-form opener David Warner and No.3 Steve Smith are the sticking points in the West Indies’ plan and will be the priorities for Taylor and Gabriel.

And once they’re gone, Holder wants to target what he sees a shaky middle order.

“Guys like Shaun Marsh, who’s coming back into the side, and Joe Burns (who) is trying to make his mark … there are some other guys who are just trying to settle in (to) the Australian side who we can try to exploit and put pressure on if we get the top-order players out,” the skipper said.

It will be tempting for Holder to unleash his fast bowlers as soon as possible on a green Bellerive deck, but that’s up to the mercy of a coin flip.

“We’ll see how it goes – I haven’t won a toss for a little while either,” he joked.

Having put the Brisbane walloping behind them, Holder said the West Indies had knuckled down to training.

“All the guys have done all they possibly can leading up to this first game.

“It has to be a situation where we have to put things right: players think a little bit more on their feet and just try to analyse each situation as it comes.

“Once we do that, we will be in good stead in this first Test match.”

Amid widespread scrutiny of their inexperience, Holder admitted some of the commentary might be justified.

“We haven’t been near our best in the recent past but I still have faith that we can turn things around,” he said, adding that consistency would be the key to change.

“That’s where we fell down for the last few months, the last few years. It has to start somewhere – we just need to be consistent in whatever we do.

“Once we start doing that, we’ve shown in the past that we can take 20 wickets.

“We just need to put our heads down, think a little bit more and try to fight through situations.”

DIY Sovereignty and the Cronulla Riots

In early December 2005, an SMS text started doing the rounds of Sutherland shire locals.

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It was an invitation.

“Aussies: This Sunday every f***ing Aussie in the shire, get down to North Cronulla to help support Leb and Wog bashing day. Bring your mates down and let’s show them that this is our beach and their never welcome back.”

This coincided with broadcasts by popular Sydney radio announcer Alan Jones, who reminded listeners of his role in raising consciousness triggering the event: “I’m the person that’s led this charge here. Nobody wanted to know about North Cronulla, now it’s gathered to this.”

Was there any reference to race in Jones’ broadcasts? “We don’t have Anglo-Saxon kids out there raping women in western Sydney,” he said. What about vigilantism? When a caller named John suggested, “If the police can’t do the job, the next tier is us”, Jones’ response was: “Yeah, good on you John.”

The cultural festival of sorts took place on 11 December 2005. A few thousand people turned up for a barbecue and a few beers. OK, more than a few beers. Some attendees covered themselves with the Australian flag. The air was filled with a passionate chorus of “We grew here, you flew here.”

Not all locals could attend. In her 2007 article ‘Cruising : ‘moral panic’ and the Cronulla riot’, July Lattas wrote about a group of Cronulla youths who were away on a schoolies cruise when they heard about the event. They said that as their cruise sailed back to Sydney under the Harbour Bridge, “pumped-up young Shire people [struck] up a chant of ‘White Pride!’ and ‘Shi-ire!’”

The riot was apparently in response to some young Lebanese boys misbehaving toward lifesavers and making lewd and racist remarks at young women on the beach. We’re also led to believe that this behaviour is part of a broader problem with Lebanese/Muslims not integrating, becoming radicalised, etc.

Yet surely a drunken race riot is not the most temperate response to a few boys misbehaving. If Cronulla and subsequent rallies by Reclaim Australia held every few months are anything to go by, the non-Lebanese and non-Muslim communities are equally capable of exhibiting violent extremism in word and deed. And drunken race riots weren’t part of the values I learned at pre-school, kindergarten, infants, primary and secondary school in Sydney.

Then again, smashing shop windows and randomly attacking people (as happened during reprisal attacks) aren’t exactly part of the core values of Australia or Lebanon for that matter. Lebanon is one of the Middle East’s most cosmopolitan nations, where people of various ethnic and religious backgrounds live in peace.

The Cronulla rioters saw the beach as almost their sovereign territory, and wanted to exclude outsiders, especially Lebanese and Muslims. As Dr Amelia Johns puts it in her recently published book ‘Battle for the Flag’, the Cronulla riots were an act of “DIY Sovereignty”.

We can’t build enduring Australian patriotism by imagining we live in small sovereign spaces where only “our” kind are welcome. Australia is what it is – multicultural, multi-ethnic and multi-confessional. So what if I grew here while you flew or sailed here. As our national anthem reminds us: “For those who’ve come across the seas we’ve boundless plains to share”.​

Irfan Yusuf is a lawyer and author working on a PhD on counter terrorism at Deakin University.

Watch SBS’s award-winning documentary ‘Cronulla Riots: The Day That Shocked the Nation’ on SBS2 Thursday 9.30pm. Ten years on, is Australia more tolerant? Take our poll.

Qld syphilis outbreak prompts warning

Increasing syphilis rates in north Queensland have prompted public health groups to urge young people to get tested and practise safe sex.

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The Townsville Hospital and Health Service recorded 33 cases of the sexually transmitted infection before September this year, including one that was transferred to an unborn baby from its mother.

Townsville Public Health Unit (TPHU) director Dr Steven Donohue says the number of cases, which grew from 25 in the same period last year, was concerning.

He said an untreated case could have serious consequences, including a higher risk of HIV infection.

“Syphilis is highly infectious and often has no symptoms,” he said.

“It usually needs a blood test to detect.”

The infection of unborn babies from their mothers – known as congenital syphilis – can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth and infant death.

The Townsville Aboriginal and Islander Health Service (TAIHS) says gay and bisexual men and young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are most at risk of getting the infection.

But he said it can be avoided through the proper use of condoms.

“We are urging sexually active young people to come to their local health services,” senior medical officer Dr Theunis Kotzee said.

The health warning comes almost a month after the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (QAIHC) warned of the worst syphilis outbreak seen in Australia’s northern indigenous communities in 30 years.

They say 500 Aboriginal or Torres Strait Island Queenslanders have been infected since 2010.

Indigenous people living in remote northern areas were 300 times more likely to be affected than other Australians, they said.

Australia needs to ‘re-double’ efforts to avoid Paris-style attacks: Keenan

Australia and Southeast Asia must re-double efforts to share intelligence and make sure Paris-style terror attacks can’t be replicated in the region, Australian Justice Minister Michael Keenan said on Wednesday.

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Hundreds of Indonesian Islamic State sympathisers and some Malaysians and Singaporeans are believed to have gone to fight in Syria and Iraq. Southeast Asia faces the risk of attack when they return, Malaysia has said.

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“The fact that the national security situation has significantly deteriorated for all of the countries in the region, including Australia, means we need to re-double those efforts,” Keenan, who is also Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Counter Terrorism, told Reuters in an interview in Singapore.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the deaths of 130 people in attacks in Paris last month, the deadliest in France since World War Two.

Keenan also denounced comments by US Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump who has called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States following last week’s massacre in San Bernardino, California, by a Muslim couple.

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“That is entirely the wrong response,” Keenan said.

“When we look at Southeast Asia, we get a good example that we are not somehow at war with a particular religion. And neither do we need to target Muslim Australians or anywhere else in the world.”

Australia next week marks the anniversary of a siege in central Sydney in which a gunman with radical Islamist sympathies took over a central city cafe.

Two hostages and the gunman were killed when police stormed the building.

(Reporting by Ryan Woo; Additional reporting by Fathin Ungku in SINGAPORE; Editing by Nick Macfie)

Pattinson our ‘X-factor’: Smith

He hasn’t played Test cricket in almost two years.

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Injury has enforced a re-modelled bowling action.

But fiery comeback quick James Pattinson has still been branded Australia’s X-factor by captain Steve Smith for the first Test clash with the West Indies in Hobart.

In his first Test since March 2014, Pattinson has been asked to fill the big shoes left by strike weapon Mitchell Starc (ankle) for the three-game series opener starting on Thursday.

Smith backed the injury-plagued Pattinson to spark a new-look Australian attack also reeling from Mitchell Johnson’s retirement as he eyed off a series whitewash.

“He bowls at 150kph when he has got everything together – he brings that X-factor to the team,” Smith said of the 25-year-old.

“He’s got a lot of aggression.

“He is not afraid to show that which I think is a great attribution.

“Hopefully he can have a successful comeback into the Test team.”

Pattinson is known for having one of the worst cases of “white line fever” in the Australian team.

His berserker quality was evident on Test debut back in late 2011.

He cut loose against an unsuspecting New Zealand at the Gabba to at one stage claim three wickets in four balls on his way to figures of 5-27 – still a Test career-best.

It has been 21 months since his last baggy green sighting in a stirring series-clinching third Test victory against South Africa at Cape Town that ended Proteas captain Graeme Smith’s career in frustration.

Since then, Pattinson has suffered a recurrence of back stress fractures and a hamstring injury.

It ensured he had to remodel the action that had claimed 51 wickets at 27.07 in his 13 Tests to date.

Smith is confident Pattinson is ready to again lead the Australian attack.

“He has played enough. He deserves an opportunity,” he said.

“I think he just needs to go out there and do what he does well – that’s bowl fast, swing the ball and get it up there, get it moving.

“I think he is pretty similar in the way Joshy Hazlewood bowls.

“Hopefully those two can lead our attack really well.”

Chairman of selectors Rod Marsh had hinted that Hazlewood would be given a break this summer.

And the Hobart clash appeared the most likely considering the short turnaround between the Boxing Day and New Year’s Tests.

But Hazlewood received the nod for the three-Test series opener at Bellerive, relegating WA bolter Nathan Coulter-Nile to 12th man duties.

Smith said the batting order would remain the same despite speculation that wicketkeeper Peter Nevill would replace allrounder Mitch Marsh at No.6.

Australia are overwhelming favourites to thrash a Windies side that has not won an overseas Test series of note in 20 years.

“We want to win this series 3-0,” Smith warned.

Maddinson stars in NSW Shield victory

A final-day captain’s innings from Nic Maddinson set up New South Wales for an unlikely victory against Queensland in the Sheffield Shield clash in Mackay.

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A match that was a dour affair for the first three days provided a thrilling finish after Queensland’s attacking declaration gave the Blues a chance of winning, which they grabbed, getting home with three wickets to spare.

With the light closing in and men camped around the bat, Steve O’Keefe and Gurinder Sandhu shared a crucial 15-run partnership with the latter hitting consecutive boundaries to take them over the line.

The result seemed unlikely when Maddinson arrived at the crease at 2-59 and NSW requiring a further 155 runs to win.

In a match where most batting strike rates were well under 50, the Blues skipper’s 80 came from 72 balls including seven fours and three sixes.

“I don’t think it’s one of my best innings, but it might be one of my most important,” Maddinson said.

“I hadn’t been in a position before where I’ve had to play a big fourth-innings knock to help win a game, so that was good.

“My goal as long as I play is to represent Australia. I was disappointed with the way I started this season so I’m very happy to get runs today.”

The stylish left-hander fell leg before wicket to debutant Mitch Swepson (3-69) with his side still needing 23 runs, a task made harder when Ben Rohrer (31), who had helped put on 61 for the fourth wicket, was caught and bowled by Jason Floros (4-71) without adding to the score.

Sean Abbott (3) was then trapped lbw – becoming Floros’ fourth victim of the innings – and Ryan Carters fell to Swepson, caught by Sam Heazlett at short leg, to set up the tense finish.

Maddinson admitted the result wouldn’t have been possible without the bold declaration from opposite number Chris Hartley.

The declaration came just after lunch when the Bulls were 7-131 in their second innings.

Earlier, Doug Bollinger (2-29) and Sean Abbott (2-26) cut through the Queensland top-order batting line-up to bring their side back into the game.

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