Inside Pulse » results A pop culture mega-site with Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games coverage for diehards, including news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary. Tue, 21 Oct 2014 19:00:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 A pop culture mega-site with Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games coverage for diehards, including news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary. Inside Pulse no A pop culture mega-site with Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games coverage for diehards, including news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary. Inside Pulse » results The Open Championship Results: Darren Clarke Victorious Tue, 19 Jul 2011 01:54:56 +0000 Below is the recorded finish of the open with the final tally, individual day scores, and earnings listed:
Pos Player Score -Day Scores- Earnings
1 Darren Clarke -5 68 68 69 70 275 $1,451,830
T2 Dustin Johnson -2 70 68 68 72 278 $689,617
T2 Phil Mickelson -2 70 69 71 68 278 $689,617
4 Thomas Bjorn -1 65 72 71 71 279 $419,416
T5 Rickie Fowler E 70 70 68 72 280 $293,054
T5 Chad Campbell E 69 68 74 69 280 $293,054
T5 Anthony Kim E 72 68 70 70 280 $293,054
8 Raphael Jacquelin +1 74 67 71 69 281 $209,708
T9 Simon Dyson +2 68 72 72 70 282 $168,304
T9 Sergio Garcia +2 70 70 74 68 282 $168,304
T9 Davis Love III +2 70 68 72 72 282 $168,304
T12 Martin Kaymer +3 68 69 73 73 283 $126,362
T12 Lucas Glover +3 66 70 73 74 283 $126,362
T12 Steve Stricker +3 69 71 72 71 283 $126,362
15 George Coetzee +4 69 69 72 74 284 $109,694
T16 Fredrik Jacobson +5 70 70 73 72 285 $90,336
T16 Charl Schwartzel +5 71 67 75 72 285 $90,336
T16 Richard Green +5 70 71 73 71 285 $90,336
T16 Y.E. Yang +5 71 69 73 72 285 $90,336
T16 Webb Simpson +5 66 74 72 73 285 $90,336
T16 Zach Johnson +5 72 68 71 74 285 $90,336
T22 Anders Hansen +6 69 69 72 76 286 $72,054
T22 Tom Lehman +6 71 67 73 75 286 $72,054
T22 Tom Watson +6 72 70 72 72 286 $72,054
T25 Rory McIlroy +7 71 69 74 73 287 $62,913
T25 Miguel Jimenez +7 66 71 72 78 287 $62,913
T25 Adam Scott +7 69 70 73 75 287 $62,913
T28 Charles HowellIII +8 71 70 73 74 288 $56,863
T28 Ryan Moore +8 69 74 76 69 288 $56,863
T30 Ryan Palmer +9 68 71 72 78 289 $47,126
T30 Seung-yul Noh +9 69 72 75 73 289 $47,126
T30 Stewart Cink +9 70 71 77 71 289 $47,126
T30 Tom Lewis +9 65 74 76 74 289 $0
T30 Pablo Larrazabal +9 68 70 76 75 289 $47,126
T30 Bubba Watson +9 69 72 74 74 289 $47,126
T30 Jason Day +9 71 70 76 72 289 $47,126
T30 Gary Woodland +9 75 68 74 72 289 $47,126
T38 Simon Khan +10 71 72 77 70 290 $36,296
T38 Gary Boyd +10 71 70 76 73 290 $36,296
T38 Trevor Immelman +10 70 72 72 76 290 $36,296
T38 Yuta Ikeda +10 69 71 75 75 290 $36,296
T38 Jeff Overton +10 68 71 78 73 290 $36,296
T38 Robert Rock +10 69 71 74 76 290 $36,296
T44 Justin Rose +11 72 70 79 70 291 $28,533
T44 K.J. Choi +11 71 72 75 73 291 $28,533
T44 Spencer Levin +11 72 69 81 69 291 $28,533
T44 Kyle Stanley +11 68 72 77 74 291 $28,533
T48 Gregory Bourdy +12 73 70 77 72 292 $23,552
T48 Robert Allenby +12 69 72 75 76 292 $23,552
T48 Jim Furyk +12 72 70 76 74 292 $23,552
T48 Floris De Vries +12 70 73 76 73 292 $23,552
T48 Richard McEvoy +12 69 72 75 76 292 $23,552
T48 Peter Uihlein +12 71 71 75 75 292 $0
T54 Rory Sabbatini +13 71 70 77 75 293 $21,455
T54 Louis Oosthuizen +13 72 70 74 77 293 $21,455
T54 Paul Casey +13 74 69 78 72 293 $21,455
T57 Stephen Gallacher +14 70 71 77 76 294 $20,568
T57 Gregory Havret +14 72 71 78 73 294 $20,568
T57 Bill Haas +14 72 70 79 73 294 $20,568
T57 Fredrik Andersson Hed +14 68 75 77 74 294 $20,568
T57 Bo Van Pelt +14 73 69 73 79 294 $20,568
T57 Ricky Barnes +14 68 74 78 74 294 $20,568
T63 Mark Wilson +16 74 68 75 79 296 $19,842
T63 Joost Luiten +16 73 69 79 75 296 $19,842
T63 Matthew Millar +16 71 72 80 73 296 $19,842
T66 Edoardo Molinari +17 69 74 76 78 297 $19,438
T66 Paul Lawrie +17 73 70 81 73 297 $19,438
68 Henrik Stenson +18 72 71 75 80 298 $19,196
69 Harrison Frazar +19 72 70 77 80 299 $19,035
70 Kenneth Ferrie +21 71 71 76 83 301 $18,874
71 Jung-gon Hwang +24 68 74 83 79 304 $18,712

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE – AFL 2011 Round 4 Thu, 21 Apr 2011 21:33:08 +0000 Results:

Richmond 13.12 (90) def by Collingwood 24.17 (161)
            Another day, another Collingwood win.

Hawthorn 10.12 (72) def West Coast 9.11 (65)
            Not a good game.

Carlton 11.13 (79) drew with Essendon 11.13 (79)
            Another draw! In an era where one draw a season is amazing, we’ve had three in four rounds! An even season, to be sure.

Sydney 7.12 (54) def by Geelong 11.15 (81)
            Writing the Cats off this season may be a mistake after an impressive away win.

Port Adelaide 14.14 (98) def Adelaide 9.12 (66)
            A come from way behind win, Port’s first for the year, in what was a pretty good match. Neither team, however, is looking particularly strong this year.

Gold Coast 9.15 (69) def by Melbourne 23.21 (159)
            Despite the absolute hammering, Gold Coast won their first quarter for the year. It’s a learning process for the new club.

Fremantle 18.19 (127) def North Melbourne 14.14 (98)
            And the team that had the bye the week before loses again. Mind you, Fremantle look like being a dark horse this year.

Bye: St Kilda, Brisbane, Western Bulldogs


* In ‘football fans are also morons’ news, Hawthorn’s Lance Franklin was racially abused on the weekend. We might not have the thug mentality of soccer hooligans the world over, but there is something low about the group IQ when it comes to football and men.

* Gary Ablett Jr has been pillories by the Melbourne media for not going back to the Gold Coast with his team mates because of media commitments, and then missing a match with a sore ankle. They want, want, want from these blokes, and then, when something happens they don’t like, they just jump on them. There are times when the media can get stuffed.

SANFL Round 3

Woodville-West Torrens 5.7 (37) def by Sturt 13.17 (95)

Norwood 8.7 (55) def by Glenelg 10.16 (76)
            Good game this one.

Central District 25.10 (160) def South Adelaide 13.5 (83)
            Well, last week’s triumph didn’t last long for South… and last week’s loss looks to have been just a wake-up call for Centrals. Life returns to normal.

North Adelaide 15.9 (99) def Port Adelaide 10.11 (71)
            North did make it look easy.

Bye: West Adelaide

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE – AFL 2011 Round 1 Wed, 30 Mar 2011 23:02:08 +0000  Instead of doing all sports, I’m going to focus this year on the Australian Football League, with detours into the South Australian National Football League.


Carlton 14.20 (104) def Richmond 13.6 (84)
            Not a good match, I’m afraid.

Geelong 6.12 (48) def St Kilda 6.11 (47)
            Something of an upset, but there is a good chance St Kilda’s mind is not yet on the job after all the off-season happenings.

Collingwood 24.11 (155) def Port Adelaide 12.8 (80)
            While it was a thrashing, Collingwood did not play a complete four quarters and there is something in the young Port team to be excited about.

Brisbane 14.8 (92) def by Fremantle 13.16 (94)
            Upset! Brisbane lost at home to a team from the other side of the country? Not a good start. Well done, Freo!

Adelaide 16.9 (105) def Hawthorn 12.13 (85)
            20 years ago, round 1 1991, Adelaide played their first game in the AFL, and defeated Hawthorn. 20 years later, they win by 20 points. Emotion may have had a lot to do with this.

Essendon 16.17 (113) def Western Bulldogs 8.10 (58)
            Strong win for new coach Hird.

Melbourne 11.18 (84) drew with Sydney 11.18 (84)
            A draw already? This year is going to be frustrating as all hell.

West Coast 13.14 (92) def North Melbourne 13.10 (88)
            A win at home for the Eagles. That’s about all that can be said.

Bye: Gold Coast


* Brendan Fevola was caught in another gambling venue this week after returning from the USA. Sigh.

* Ricky Nixon has been banned from representing AFL players for two years. But he can still represent coaches. Huh? He is fighting this, by the way.

* The big news out of the weekend – apart from what seemed a strangely large amount of serious injuries for this early in the year – was the crowds. Badly down. Live broadcasts against gate and the fact that the build up has been rather muted after a different (not saying bad, just different) pre-season.
            There is also the rumour coming out of Melbourne media that the low crowds might just be because the reigning premiers Collingwood – who are also pre-season winners, and hot favourites for 2011 – are so unloved that people just do not want to see people against them or playing to be second to them. Collingwood have the most favoured draw of any team, are given more leeway than any team (see away jumpers for an example), and are even only going interstate twice this year; the favouritism is obvious except to Collingwood supporters. Has the AFL’s favouritism now come back to haunt them?
            But there is no doubt the crowds were down. TV ratings are yet to come in, but this could well affect the AFL’s new TV deal negotiations come the end of the year. I can tell you now, Adelaide ratings were apparently down, but matches being broadcast up to an hour after they happened will do that when radio is immediate.
            Oh, AFL, you are starting the year so well!

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #124 – Ashes 3, Australia Strikes Back! Mon, 27 Dec 2010 11:37:26 +0000 More Ashes cricket, and I start my year end listings, with two little lists. Also, if you are that way inclined, I’ve also got a new column up in the wrestling section . But, for now, here’s the view!

Third Ashes Test – Australia v England
Australia 1st innings: 268; England 1st innings: 187; Australia 2nd innings: 309; England 2nd innings: 123
            Australia won by 267 runs
10 Thoughts On Ashes 3:
1) Australia seemed to have crumbled again in the batting stakes, being dismissed in less than a day, but I’m not so sure. Let’s see how England goes because to me it’s looking like a bowlers’ wicket.
2) Sure enough, England are falling at a regular rate on day 2 as well. Bowling rules this match.
3) Poor Prior, getting out with the ball bouncing off his body onto the stumps.
4) Welcome back, Mitchell Johnson! Wickets galore in England’s first innings. Maybe an enforced layoff and listening to those who have been there before does pay off for some people. Now if only Ricky Ponting can follow this advice…
5) England collapsed and panicked. 187 is not a good score, no matter how you look at it.
6) Australia’s second innings was saved by Watson (another score in the 90s) and Hussey (another century), with very few other contributors. Still, 309 is a good score. But more and more this is looking like a bowlers’ pitch.
7) England are panicking. They are not used to being in this situation in Australia and are even dropping catches. Did they believe their own hype too much?
8) Can England make almost 400 runs (391 to be precise) in their final innings? It has not been done all that often, and is going to take a monumental effort for the Poms to save this test.
9) End of Day 3 and England are 5/81 – including losing a wicket on the last ball of the day – and staring defeat in the face. This is not the same English team… nor the same Australian one. Except for the fact both teams are letting loose in the verbals. The sledging is getting personal and violent. Some things never change.
10) What, did England have a lunch appointment or something? Day 4 and they lasted not even an hour before meekly capitulating. Well, this evens things up. Despite England’s insipid performance in Perth, the Boxing Day Test now looms as a real battle. Bring it on!

A-League Round 18 (cont)
Newcastle Jets 2 def Gold Coast United 0
North Queensland Fury 1 def Sydney FC 1
A-League Round 19
Adelaide United 1 def by Melbourne Heart 2
Wellington Phoenix 4 def Newcastle Jets 0
Melbourne Victory 2 def Perth Glory 0
North Queensland Fury 0 def by Brisbane Roar 2
Gold Coast United 0, Central Coast Mariners 0
            Match abandoned twenty minutes in due to poor weather conditions. In Europe they play in snow, but some torrential rain stops it here in Australia. But, they said, they didn’t want to damage the pitch. Of course. Heaven forbid we should play sport on a sporting ground…
W-League Round 7
Adelaide United 0 hammered by Sydney 4
Melbourne Victory 0 def by Perth Glory 1

NBL – Round 10
Gold Coast 93 def Townsville 81
Adelaide 81 def Sydney 77
Wollongong 85 def by New Zealand 89
Cairns 56 def Townsville 51
Melbourne 80 def by New Zealand 90
Perth 87 def Sydney 84
WNBL – Round 11
Bendigo 81 def Townsville 43
West Coast 53 def by Logan 78
Sydney 77 def Dandenong 67
Bulleen 94 slaughtered AIS 38
Canberra 71 def by Townsville 77
Adelaide 76 def by Logan 85

Perth 5 def by Canberra 7
Sydney 3 def by Adelaide 4
Perth 5 def by Canberra 9
Sydney 5 def Adelaide 0
Perth 8 def Canberra 1
Perth 4 def by Canberra 7
Sydney 3 def by Adelaide 7
Sydney 4 def Adelaide 0
Canberra 3 hammered by Melbourne 20
Canberra 3 def Melbourne 2
            This was the second match of a double header. How could Melbourne go from 20 runs down to 2 in one afternoon? Canberra were obviously consistent, but Melbourne, what’s going on?

All right, it’s that time of the year again. Time when we look at the year that’s gone and say what’s what. It’s list time!
            I’ll do my sports lists later, so for now you have my first two lists, people and events.
Top 5 Australian News Stories of 2010
5) Mary MacKillop’s canonisation. Yes, Catholics all over Australia now have their own saint to worship. Why do Catholics seem to worship saints ahead of, you know, God and Jesus? And don’t say they don’t; surveys have shown personal saints figure first in the lives of many Catholics. But now we have one so we don’t have to feel left out. Lucky us.
4) Australians are more censored than ever before. More books banned. More news stories hidden. More official statements from courts and officials made private under Freedom of Information laws (Freedom from Information?). A mandatory internet filter about to be inflicted upon the country. No R-rated video games (because adults cannot make their own decisions). Several films restricted. Comedians and jokes banned for being offensive. Welcome to Australia, suburb of China.
3) Australia’s bizarre weather. More floods than usual. Cyclones all over the place. The mandatory bushfires. South Australia’s December monthly rainfall dropping in one day. December, the start of summer, wet and miserable.
2) Australia’s non-result election. A hung parliament. Labor holding on with the help of two independents. The Liberal opposition just being an opposition and not bothering to do anything to help the country. Australia in a period of stasis for a few years (apart from a God-awful national schools curriculum… but this ain’t the time or place.)
1) Kevin Rudd’s knifing. A serving PM knifed by his own party because some opinion polls were against him and he was seen as autocratic. My God, that’s what made Keating successful. Oh well, we got Julia and nothing changed.
Top 5 Interesting Australians of 2010
By the way, as far as I’m concerned, just because they make movies or music or play sport, some famous people are not automatically interesting. In fact, many are downright boring. Maybe tedious is a better word (and, yes, I am looking at you, Ben Cousins)…
=5) Julia Gillard. Our first female Australian prime minister, who came by her job after the knifing by her party of incumbent Kevin Rudd, and then scraping through to have a minority government after the federal election. That Chinese curse is upon us: “I hope you live in interesting times.”
=5) Kevin Rudd. The deposed PM was in the headlines as PM, as ousted PM and then as foreign minister, and finally as a result of some Wikileaks outages. Cannot keep away from the headlines, it seems, and it is obvious the Americans in power still like him.
4) Tony Windsor. One of the independents who hold the balance of power in the minority government, and the most outspoken, as well as appearing the most intelligent. Of course, in the Senate there are others, including another extremely intelligent independent Nick Xenophon. Why is it the intelligent ones are independent?
3) Jessica Watson. I’m guessing if you don’t live in Australia this name means nothing, but she single-handedly sailed around the world, the youngest ever solo sailor (or something like that). And in her interviews afterwards she has come across as a nice kid, not some glory hound.
2) Brendan Fevola. The human headline of 2010. Photo scandals. Gambling issues. Open mouth, insert foot issues. Not a month went past when he wasn’t in the news for some stupid thing or another. The fact he plays sport and is seen as a role model by some incredibly gullible kids is as scary as things can get.
1) Julian Assange. Wikileaks founder. Love him or loathe him (for what it’s worth, I respect him), you cannot ignore him and everything he’s done to make the world a more open place. I just wish he’d do more about the shady side of big business, exposing those crooks for all they’re worth, than government.

And that’s the View through to December 20, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #123 – Brief and to the point… plus AFI Awards Mon, 13 Dec 2010 11:23:48 +0000  Not much of note happened this week. The regular sports got on with life, no real news beyond Brendan Fevola once again getting into trouble (allegedly he owes $200k and the people concerned want it yesterday, and I emphasise allegedly because it is just a Rupert Murdoch owned newspaper starting this tale). Cricket has a brief international respite. That’s it. Short, sharp and shiny.
            Enjoy the abbreviated View.

What? Oprah’s in Australia and I’m supposed to talk about it? Really? Well, really, according to an email that asked me my thoughts on it. Okay, here goes. She’s giving the country a much needed tourism boost, a campaign that money really can’t buy. She thinks McCafes mean something in this country (they do, but only for expat Americans and wannabe Americans who live in Sydney), she thinks the people of this country should know how many indigenous species of beetle there are, and she screams a lot for no apparent reason. Australian media and politicians are treating her like a head of state; 95% of Australians think that she’s just another loud tourist who brought along a whole bunch of other loud tourists with her. We’ll be polite and helpful if we meet any of them, but they’re just people here on holiday.
            There, Oprah Winfrey in Australia. Can I get on with the important stuff now, like sport? Thank-you.
            The view:

Australia have made the changes for the third test in Perth. At least one smacks of desperation. And that’s all I’m saying until the match. So let’s see if it’s too little or too late.

A-League Round 17 (cont)
Melbourne Heart 0 def by Newcastle Jets 2
A-League Round 18
Adelaide United 2 def North Queensland Fury 0
Melbourne Heart 1 def by Melbourne Victory 3
Gold Coast United 2 def Wellington Phoenix 0
Sydney 0 def by Brisbane Roar 1
Perth Glory 1 drew with Central Coast Mariners 1
W-League Round 6
Adelaide United 1 def by Brisbane Roar 3
Newcastle Jets 0 def by Canberra United 1
Sydney 2 def Perth Glory 0

NBL – Round 9
New Zealand 93 def Cairns 79
Wollongong 81 def Adelaide 79
Townsville 91 def Gold Coast 86
Perth 87 def Melbourne 76
Sydney 80 def by Wollongong 95
WNBL – Round 10
Canberra 96 def AIS 56
Bendigo 69 def  West Coast 62
Logan 57 def by Bulleen 73
Sydney 83 def AIS 61
Dandenong 72 def by West Coast 77
Townsville 62 def by Bulleen 86
Adelaide 69 def by Bendigo 76

Adelaide 8 def Brisbane 4
Canberra 0 def by Perth 7
Sydney 4 def by Melbourne 6 (15 innings!)
Adelaide 1 def by Brisbane 3
Canberra 0 slaughtered by Perth 10
Sydney 6 def by Melbourne 7
Canberra 1 def by Perth 2
Sydney 4 def Melbourne 1
Canberra 2 def by Perth 8
Melbourne 12 hammered Sydney 5
Sydney 3 hammered by Melbourne 18 (completed early)

Garth Wood, winner of Australia’s version of ‘The Contender’ television series, shocked Australia’s IBO Middleweight champion Anthony Mundine with a fifth round knockout this week.
            ‘The Man’ was beaten cleanly and it is being speculated that his boxing career may be on the wane. But while this is certainly not a good result, to say he is finished is most likely premature.

2010 AFI Awards
The Australian Film Institute awards for this year were held this week. They recognise the best in film and television, and in my opinion they rarely make too many mistakes (not like the Oscars… O’Rourke not winning best actor! Hmph!). So here is the full list of winners and some commentary from me on it all.
Best film – ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best direction - David Michod, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best original screenplay - David Michod, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best adapted screenplay - Stuart Beattie, ‘Tomorrow When The War Began’
            Great book, not too bad film. But considering the structure and POV of the book, this was as well done as it was possible to do.
Best lead actor - Ben Mendelsohn, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best lead actress - Jacki Weaver, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best supporting actor - Joel Edgerton, ‘Animal Kingdom’
            Yeah, ‘Animal Kingdom’ is a good film. A crime drama – something which Australians tend to do moderately well only on TV or as comedies – but this is good I think because it looks more at the lives of those involved and not the heists themselves.
Best supporting actress - Deborah Mailman, ‘Bran Nue Dae’
            One of the better films about indigenous Australians because it is upbeat and not depressing. A musical as well.
Best feature length documentary – ‘Contact’, Martin Butler and Bentley Dean (ABC)
            Haven’t seen this, but want to. About the last group of Aborigines to meet white men in Australia, in 1964. Sounds really good.
International award for best actor - Sam Worthington, ‘Avatar’
            Why? That film was only about the special effects, and not the so-called acting of the humans. I think Russell Crowe in the Robin Hood film was better. The best was probably Geoffrey Rush in ‘The King’s Speech’ but I think that was released too late to qualify for this year.
International award for best actress - Mia Wasikowska, ‘Alice in Wonderland’
            Again, why? She was overshadowed by every single actor that appeared on screen with her. The special effects and Johnny Depp were the stars of this film, maybe even director Tim Burton, and she was there to give the titular character some body and to look nice. What about Cate Blanchett in ‘Robin Hood’? (Yes, I liked ‘Robin Hood’, deal with it!)
Young actor award - Harrison Gilbertson, ‘Beneath Hill 60’
            Stunning film, based on a true story, with a very claustrophobic feel, and all the actors in it were very good.
Members’ choice award – ‘Animal Kingdom’
Readers’ choice award – ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best cinematography - Greig Fraser, ‘Bright Star’
            Missed it. Sorry.
Best editing - Luke Doolan, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best sound - Andrew Plain, David Lee, Gethin Creagh and Robert Sullivan, ‘Tomorrow When The War Began’
Best original music score - Antony Partos and Sam Petty, ‘Animal Kingdom’
Best production design - Janet Patterson, ‘Bright Star’
Best costume design - Janet Patterson, ‘Bright Star’
Visual effects award - Peter Spierig, Michael Spierig, Rangi Sutton, James Rogers and Randy Vellacott, ‘Daybreakers’
            Missed this one as well.
Best television drama series – ‘Rush’, Season 3 (Ten)
Best telefeature, mini series or short run series – ‘Hawke’ (Ten)
Best direction in television - Emma Freeman, ‘Hawke’ (Ten)
            This was a superb miniseries that gave an honest look at our former Prime Minister and union leader. Great in all aspects.
Best screenplay in television - Jason Gann, Adam Zwar, ‘Wilfred II’ – Episode 7, Dog Star (SBS)
            Never got the appeal of this series, despite numerous attempts. (It’s about a dog who’s actually a man in a suit and only one person realises this. I think.)
Best lead actor in a television drama - Richard Roxburgh, ‘Hawke’ (Ten)
            Well deserved.
Best lead actress in a television drama - Catherine McClements, ‘Tangle’, Season 2 (showcase)
            Never seen it; it’s on PayTV and why pay for TV?
Best guest or supporting actor in a television drama - Damien Garvey, ‘Underbelly: The Golden Mile’ – Episode 10, Hurt on Duty (Nine)
            Probably the least of the Underbelly franchise, but still riveting television.
Best guest or supporting actress in a television drama - Deborah Mailman, ‘Offspring’ (Ten)
            Never saw it, but this is Deborah Mailman’s second acting award in this AFI Awards. She is a very good actress and why she isn’t a bigger star around the world makes me… Hang on. That’s right. She doesn’t fit in with the standard anorexic bimbo – all teeth, botox and plastic. She only has talent and natural good looks. Poor woman.
Best children’s television drama – ‘My Place’ (ABC)
            Missed it.
Best children’s television animation – ‘dirtgirlworld’ (ABC)
            My kids like this, so I’d say it’s well deserved.
Best television comedy series – ‘Review With Myles Barlow’, Season 2 (ABC)
            One of the most original comedies in Australia in years. Barlow is a critic, but he doesn’t just critique film and music and arts – he critiques aspects of life and to do so he indulges in them. Like stalking a celebrity, going to prison, backpacking Europe, starting a cult… funny stuff.
Best light entertainment television series – ‘The Gruen Transfer’, Series 3 (ABC)
            One of the few shows my wife and I watch together. It’s a critical and funny look at the world of advertising. I even own series 1 and 2 on DVD already. More funny stuff.
Best performance in a television comedy - Phil Lloyd, ‘Review With Myles Barlow’, Season 2 (ABC)
            Not only does he play Miles, he is one of the two writers. It’s about time he got some credit.
Outstanding achievement in television screen craft - Shaun Micallef, ‘Talkin’ ’bout Your Generation’ (Ten)
            While I find the show not to my tastes, Micallef is one of the funniest men in Australia, and if you can get a hold of his book – ‘Smithereens’ – it has some of the best modern Australian comedy writing out there.
Best documentary under one hour – ‘You Only Live Twice, The Incredibly True Story Of The Hughes Family’ (ABC1)
            Didn’t see it.
Best documentary series – ‘Liberal Rule, The Politics That Changed Australia’ (SBS)
            Only lasted one episode; this sort of politics depresses me.
Best direction in a documentary - Jacob Hickey, ‘Inside The Firestorm’ (ABC)
            Missed this as well.
Best cinematography in a documentary – ‘Miracles’ – Episode 1, Miracle in the Storm (ABC)
Best editing in a documentary - Steven Robinson, ‘Inside The Firestorm’ (ABC)
Best sound in a documentary - Jock Healy, Tristan Meredith and AJ Bradford, ‘Inside The Firestorm’ (ABC)
Best short animation – ‘The Lost Thing’ – Sophie Byrne, Andrew Ruhemann and Shaun Tan.
Best short fiction film – ‘The Kiss’ – Sonya Humphrey and Ashlee Page.
            I feel bad now…
Best screenplay in a short film – ‘Deeper Than Yesterday’ – Ariel Kleiman.
            And worse.
Outstanding achievement in short film screen craft - Nick Matthews – ‘The Kiss’, Cinematography.
Raymond Longford award (“given to a person who has shown an unwavering commitment over many years to excellence in the film and television industries and has, through their body of work to date, contributed substantially to the enrichment of Australian screen culture”; this is the AFI’s highest honour) – Reg Grundy
Byron Kennedy award ( for “outstanding creative enterprise within the film and television industries”) – Animal Logic – presented to Zareh Nalbandian
            So there you have it.

And that’s the View through to December 13, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #122 – We didn’t get the World Cup issue. Wed, 08 Dec 2010 01:29:22 +0000 Australia didn’t get to host the World Cup Soccer. Apparently this is the end of the world. But it’s only soccer. I’m surprised the competing nations didn’t all get given a nil-all draw, and then be forced to shoot at a goal protected by a skinny man with gloves until some one finally managed to score enough to win the event. Oh, they did. But the goals were measured in dollars and the skinny man with gloves was just the intermediary between FIFA and everyone else.
            I’m not actually bitter. While it’s a blow for the tourist money and means many of our nation’s stadia won’t get upgraded, I think having the McDonalds of world sports here and giving them everything they want despite the fact that (judging by audiences) 80% of Australians don’t even care about the sport is just ludicrous.
            Of course, that’s just me and the soccer lovers (a nasty habit which can be broken by aversion therapy) will say having the WC is the best thing ever, letting me know via nasty emails and responses… although their comments will lack grammar, proper syntax, punctuation and anything even approaching decent spelling, making them as hard to understand as Glen Beck’s logic. Oh, I do continue this rant further down, if you want more vitriol.
            Now: The view!

Australia v England – 2nd Ashes Test
Australia 1st innings 245; England 1st innings 5(dec)/620; Australia 2nd innings 304
            England won by an innings and 71 runs.
Ten Thoughts on the Second Ashes Test:
1) The new Adelaide Oval grandstand looks so underwhelming on TV. All the charm and character of the Adelaide Oval of the past has been replaced by a generic small-ish stadium. And apparently this is “progress”.
2) 3 wickets for 2 runs! Australia were 3 for 2!? What in the holy hell was that shit? They dropped Mitchell, how about some goddammed batsmen while they were at it?
3) England should have gloated so much more in that first innings of Australia. They should have laughed at them and made them feel like they were pathetic. Because Australia deserved it. Hussey (93), Watson (51) and Haddin (56) scored some runs. Ponting got a duck. Clarke got 2. The 8 extras were the fifth highest score of the total! Gloat, England! You’ve earned it!
4) Early English wicket on day 2… then they decide to bat for a while… Australia better be ready for a lo-o-o-ong day. Dropped catches, missed run-outs… an even longer day.
5) Day 3 was stopped short due to a sudden thunderstorm with pelting rain. (Don’t I know it! Frantic dash outside to rescue the washing…) England were 4/551, with Pieterson 212 not out. You’d have to say England’s day again, and the rain may be the only thing saving Australia’s bacon at the moment.
6) Early on Day 4 and England declare at the mammoth total of 5/620. Australia will have to rely on the weather and dour batting to save this one.
7) Australia looked to be saved by the rain again after tea, but the skies cleared and then Australia lost a vital wicket in the last over, with Clarke gone for 80-odd, leaving Australia 4/238 at the end of the day with one day left and only rain there to save Australia.
8) Surely Ponting’s position must be up for review. Another double failure with the bat and, really, his captaincy is not inspiring. And North as well… and he was being touted as captain material not that long ago.
9) And doesn’t day 5 with Australia defending the meagre total start well for the Aussies with wickets falling regularly (Harris got a king pair… that’s two golden ducks… that’s no runs at all, dismissed on the first ball…). Australia clearly wants to beat the rain as much as the English! Hey, Australia, trying IS an option!!
10) England won and they thoroughly deserved it. Australia were outplayed, outcaptained and outclassed across the board.

A-League Round 16 (cont)
Sydney 3 def Wellington Phoenix 1
Gold Coast United 1 def by North Queensland Fury 2
            1714 people bothered to turn up. So the so-called passionate supporters who so desperately wanted the World Cup in Australia couldn’t even go out and support the local league. “But it’s the World Cup!” they cry. And, sure, if Brazil, Argentina, Australia, Germany, England, etc play, the crowds will be there. But think about the final pool game between, say, Nicaragua and Nigeria, where neither team has won yet and won’t make it through to the next round… how many supporters are going to bother to turn up? Really? You say you would? Liar.
            And. Let’s be serious, you think FIFA didn’t look at this, only two days before the vote was taken, and take it into account? “They say the Australian people will support the World Cup, but they can’t even support the A-League!” Yes, sure, there’s corruption – there always is at this level of sport – but Australia got only ONE vote. That’s not corruption at work. That’s the rest of the world telling Australia that if you want a sport, you have to take it seriously. Crowds are down, TV ratings are down, interest is down, Soccer is the number 3 or 4 rated football code in the country.
            But, the apologists cry, 200,000 Australians play soccer! Yes, including children and juniors and indoor comps. And why? Because it’s seen as safe. But it’s not even the most popular sport (and no, it isn’t; the stats used are not comprehensive – soccer lovers use all forms of soccer in their stats, but ignore all forms for others) in Australia – cricket and netball vie for that honour. More kids ‘do’ swimming, even though they may not compete, than soccer. Counting kindergym (under-5’s gymnastics), more people do a gymsport than soccer as well. Of course, soccer apologists will say I am lying. They always do. Neglecting to mention they lie and that I have some decent stats on my side.
            The World Cup, they claim, is the biggest sporting event in the world. And yes, it is the biggest single sport event in the world. But the Olympics and Asian Games are both larger. Soccer claims the preliminary matches count towards its size; so why don’t Olympic preliminaries count?
            It’s soccer. They aren’t going to listen to criticisms. Their McDonalds sport is like a cancer on the world and they don’t care. It has led to wars, inherent corruption, cheating (ask Ireland about that one) and ridiculous amounts of crowd violence across the world. They think none of that matters. Why should the rest of us care?
A-League Round 17
Brisbane Roar 3 def Perth Glory 2
Melbourne Victory 3 drew with Brisbane Roar 3
Central Coast Mariners 4 hammered Sydney 0
North Queensland Fury 0 def by Newcastle Jets 2
Gold Coast United 3 easily def Melbourne Heart 0
Wellington Phoenix 2 def Adelaide United 1
W-League Round 5
Melbourne Victory o hammered by Brisbane Roar 4
Canberra United 4 hammered Adelaide United 0
Perth Glory 1 def Newcastle Jets  o

NBL – Round 8
Gold Coast 85 def Sydney 68
Adelaide 92 def Townsville 79
Cairns 80 def Wollongong 62
Melbourne 82 def Gold Coast 78
Perth 90 def Townsville 64
Sydney 80 def by New Zealand 94
WNBL – Round 9
Townsville 61 def AIS 46
Bulleen 87 def Dandenong 75
West Coast 65 def by Canberra 92
Sydney 59 def Townsville 57
Bendigo 70 def by Bulleen 83
Logan 80 def AIS 45
Adelaide 66 def by Canberra  97

V-8 Supercars
Sydney 500
Race 25
1st Jonathon Webb (Falcon FG)
2nd Jason Bright (Commodore VE2)
3rd Rick Kelly (Commodore VE2)
            Only one of the five drivers – James Courtney – fighting out for the championship even finished the race! And there are complaints that his car, which was badly damaged, was actually not roadworthy enough to be allowed out of the pits after it was very quickly repaired. This is really going down to the wire…
Race 26
1st Lee Holdsworth (Commodore VE2)
2nd Steve Richards (Falcon FG)
3rd Shane van Gisbergen (Falcon FG)
Final Standings:
1st James Courtney
2nd Jamie Whincup
3rd Mark Winterbottom
4th Craig Lowndes
5th Garth Tander

Brisbane 8 def Perth 1
Adelaide 1 def by Canberra 3
Adelaide 6 def by Canberra 11
Melbourne 1 def by Sydney 3
Brisbane 2 def by Perth 7
Adelaide 1 def by Canberra 6
Brisbane 3 def Perth 1
Brisbane 2 def by Perth 3
Melbourne 1 def by Sydney 2
Melbourne 1 drew with Sydney 1 (curfew closed game)

After last week, here’s my top 10 favourite non-Australian International cricketers. Again, this comes from a little over 30 years of watching cricket, and these are my favourites, not necessarily the best.
=(10) Richard Hadlee (New Zealand). I didn’t see much of him, really, and I think I probably missed out here.
= (10) Clive Lloyd (West Indies). Ditto for this master batsman.
(9) Chris Cairns (New Zealand). First New Zealander to make me care about them.
(8) John Davison (Canada). Yes, a Canadian. And, no, he didn’t play tests.
(7) Malcolm Marshall (West Indies). Deadliest fast bowler ever.
(6) Larry Gomes (West Indies). Steady, reliable batsman.
(5) Kepler Wessels (South Africa). Okay, I know he also played for Australia, but I think he really came into his own with the South African team after all the years of world exclusion.
(4) Daniel Vettori (New Zealand). Efficient bowler and a damn fine captain.
(3) Ian Botham (England). Would have been the best all-rounder, were it not for…
(2) Imran Khan (Pakistan). Best all-rounder.
(1) Sachin Tendulkar (India). Greatest batsman I ever saw. Full stop.
            Agree? Disagree? Want to rip me a new one? Remember, these are my favourites, not necessarily the best. Feel free to leave a comment.

And that’s the View through to December 6, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #121 – The Ashes Are Here! Tue, 30 Nov 2010 23:24:40 +0000 Who cares what else is happening? England and Australia are playing one another in the Ashes! That’s all that matters! Sitting in front of the TV, an eskie full of beer and a couple of meat pies. Come on Aussie!

Australia v England – 1st Ashes Test
England 1st innings 260; Australia 1st innings 481; England 2nd innings 1(dec)/517; Australia 2nd innings 1/107
            Match drawn.
Ten Thoughts on the First Ashes Test
1) Siddle’s hat-trick was a thing of beauty. He had them bewildered and was bowling brilliantly.
2) England came into the game with such promise and hope. Their preliminary matches were dominant. But that first innings was out of character. So why did they bat like they were scared? And why did they drop so many catches?
3) Hussey saved his career with his solid 195. And Haddin has shown with his 136 that he is a worthy heir to Adam Gilchrist’s batting wicket-keeper throne.
4) Clarke should not have played – his back was clearly troubling him. That’s the only reason I can see for his poor batting and ludicrously simple dropped catch. North’s career must be at a crossroads. And Ponting could also be worried. They underperformed, all of them.
5) Bowler Steven Finn was a revelation for the English team. He could prove to be a game breaker already, and he’s barely into his 20s.
6) The second innings was a completely different English team. Where were they on the first 3 days?!
7) Cook and Strauss batted with great poise and control. Nothing silly, nothing too fancy. They had a ship to steady and they did it well.
8) Australia bowled in the second innings like a different team. Wayward and not tight at all. What happened? Did the two teams do some sort of swap during the innings break?
9) So something has happened to the ‘Gabba ground. Three partnerships in a row broke the record for highest partnerships on the ground in Ashes tests. Good to see that changes are being made so the grounds are not predictable.
10) The last day was just England so clearly playing for a draw. A drawn series means England retain the Ashes. Is this final day an indication of the sort of cricket we could be faced with for the rest of this summer – dull?

A-League Round 15 (cont)
Wellington Phoenix 2 def Melbourne Heart 0
Central Coast Mariners 1 absolutely humiliated by Brisbane Roar 5
A-League Round 16
Newcastle Jets 1 drew with Central Coast Mariners 1
Adelaide United 2 def Gold Coast 1
Wellington Phoenix 2 drew with Melbourne Victory 2
Melbourne Heart 0 drew with Sydney 0
North Queensland Fury 1 drew with Perth Glory 1
W-League Round 4
Adelaide United 0 hammered by Melbourne Victory 4
Sydney 1 def by Newcastle Jets 2
Brisbane Roar 1 def Perth Glory 0
            A goal in the 93rd minute of 94 minutes! What an ending! (There – something positive.)

NBL – Round 7
New Zealand 100 def Gold Coast 79
Townsville 94 def Melbourne 66
Wollongong 89 def Sydney 72
Perth 64 def by Cairns 72
WNBL – Round 8
AIS 53 def by Canberra 76
Dandenong 74 def Sydney 59
West Coast 66 def Townsville 64
Bendigo 72 def AIS 57
Bulleen 69 def Sydney 62
Adelaide 82 def Townsville 60

Rugby Union
Spring Tour
England 11 def by South Africa 21
France 16 destroyed by Australia 59
Wales 25 def by New Zealand 37
Ireland 29 def Argentina 9
Scotland 19 def Samoa 16

Perth 9 def Adelaide 7
Brisbane 6 def Sydney 1
Perth 9 def Adelaide 3
Perth 2 def by Adelaide 4
Brisbane 1 def by Sydney 3
Brisbane 12 def Sydney 3
            A 9-run 11th inning did it for Brisbane.
Perth 4 def by Adelaide 11
Canberra 2 def by Melbourne 6
Brisbane 0 def by Sydney 1 (finished early)
Canberra 2 def by Melbourne 10

Just thought I’d put out there my top 10 favourite Australian cricketers. I’ve been watching cricket for a little over 30 years, and with the Ashes almost completely dominating my sporting mind, here’s my favourite players. They may not be the best cricketers ever, but that does not matter.
(10) John Dyson. This batsman is on my list for many reasons – unassuming, hard working, dependable. But there is one over-riding reason why he became a favourite – he took what I consider the best ever catch in all of test cricket ever.
(9) Michael Clarke. In my opinion, best of the current crop. If he can just keep his personal life separate from his cricketing life, and not get too injured, he’ll likely become recognised as one of the greats.
(8) David Boon. A hero to all of us who are slightly, shall we say, barrel-shaped. Strong and dependable. And insane enough to enjoy fielding at silly mid-on.
(7) Darren Lehmann. Career was too short, and stop-start, mainly because of eastern state politics. Still, one of the most exciting batsmen I have ever seen.
(6) Jason Gillespie. Underrated bowler, dropped stupidly from the team after he scored a double century! Always put in full effort, no matter what.
(5) Adam Gilchrist. The greatest ever wicket-keeper batsman. And his autobiography is actually entertaining. None could score like him before Twenty20 was developed.
(4) Dennis Lillee. Maybe not as fast as others, but he still looked like he could kill you with a ball if he wanted. And he had the best moustache ever in professional sport (sorry Newk, Boonie, Merv…).
(3) Rod Marsh. Still, in my mind, Australia’s best ever wicket keeper. Could hit the ball when at bat and I even remember watching him bowl once in a ODI! Seemed to always enjoy his cricket (underarm bowling incidents notwithstanding).
(2) David Hookes. As South Australian captain I watched him with Wayne Phillips score at the time a world record partnership at Adelaide Oval. Snubbed by the Australian selectors too often, killed by some thug in Melbourne. Bad things sometimes do happen to good people.
(1) Steve Waugh. My favourite Australian captain, the highest run scorer in Australian test cricket, an underrated bowler (especially by himself). And he came across as a genuinely nice guy away from the arena.
            Agree? Disagree? Want to rip me a new one? Remember, these are my favourites, not necessarily the best. Feel free to leave a comment.

And that’s the View through to November 29, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #120 – Drafty Mon, 22 Nov 2010 11:17:32 +0000 Drafting, ashing, sporting, resulting. It’s the latest view!

Australian Rules Football
AFL – Draft
The AFL had the most compromised draft ever this week, to put the youngest players in the nation on the cattle market, not knowing what state they’ll be forced to travel to, away from family and friends. Yes, I know they put themselves up for it. But without those positive influences and support, is it any wonder we see such pathetic behaviour from our footballers?
            Ah-hem. Sorry.
            The draft top 20:
1 Gold Coast – David Swallow (East Fremantle/Gold Coast)
2 Gold Coast – Harley Bennell (Peel Thunder)
3 Gold Coast – Sam Day (Sturt)
4 West Coast – Andrew Gaff (Oakleigh Chargers)
5 Brisbane Lions – Jared Polec (Woodville-West Torrens)
6 Richmond – Reece Conca (Perth)
7 Gold Coast – Josh Candy (Northern Knights)
8 Essendon – Dyson Heppell (Gippsland Power)
9 Gold Coast – Dion Prestia (Calder Cannons)
10 Gold Coast – Daniel Gorringe (Norwood)
11 Gold Coast – Tom Lynch (Dandenong Stingrays)
12 Melbourne – Lucas Cook (North Ballarat Rebels)
13 Gold Coast – Seb Tape (Glenelg)
14 Adelaide – Brodie Smith (Woodville-West Torrens)
15 Geelong – Billie Smedts (Geelong Falcons)
16 Port Adelaide – Ben Jacobs (Sandringham Dragons)
17 North Melbourne – Shaun Atley (Murray Bushrangers)
18 Carlton – Matthew Watson (Calder Cannons)
19 Hawthorn – Isaac Smith (North Ballarat VFL)
20 Fremantle – Jayden Pitt (Geelong Falcons)
(Collingwood, Sydney, Western Bulldogs, St Kilda had their first picks after the top 20)
            In all, a safe draft, with Gold Coast getting the pick of the crop. Talk is the AFL is extremely dissatisfied with Fremantle having such poor returns, and so is determined to make Gold Coast successful. To give you an idea of how much they are determined – when Adelaide entered the AFL in the early 1990s, they were not allowed to participate in the draft until their second year. Gold Coast on the other hand are getting more priority picks and concessions than all other interstate teams combined have ever had. And Greater Western Sydney will do the same. Why? Because the AFL does not care about its heartland but wants to waste money trying to take the sport into places where it will struggle to even be accepted, let alone adopted, by the people. They see money. And to the AFL that is all that matters: $$$.

Australia A v England
Australia A 1st innings 230; England 1st innings 523; Australia A 2nd innings 301; England 2nd innings 0/11
            England won very easily by 10 wickets
All the cricket news in Australia is focused, unsurprisingly, on the upcoming Ashes battle (and see down below for a brief overview of what that series is…). And this year has seen a return to an old format that I think is great – the visiting English team playing various state teams and an Australia A team. While other national teams may be ranked higher than the English, there is something special about the Ashes campaign that means it should be treated as different. I like this way of going about things after a few years of it not happening, and I hope it continues.
            The only other bit of news concerns the South African team. Now, the South Africans are a little bit annoyed that Australia insists that any tour of Australia by South Africa include the Christmas period for the Boxing Day and New Years tests in Melbourne and Sydney respectively. The Australians know these are their two biggest cash cows and are reluctant to see them go at all. The South Africans, on the other hand, quite rightly point out that this is also a time for celebration of cricket in their home country, being in the Southern Hemisphere and all, and they want the South Africa/Australia tours to be shared across this time. Australia have refused, meaning the tours of these countries by these countries are going to be cut cruelly short. Yes, it would be a shame to have the Boxing Day test at the MCG gone for a year… but South Africa do deserve something at a time when they would also like to celebrate and reap in some rewards. The day does not belong to Australia exclusively.
            Oh how I love it when the almighty dollar speaks louder than what’s the best for the sport, especially in a nation like South Africa that everyone pays lip service to helping… so long as it doesn’t hinder themselves.

Egypt 3 def Australia 0
A-League Round 14 (cont)
Newcastle Jets 1 drew with Brisbane Roar 1
Melbourne Victory 2 drew with Central Coast Mariners 2
A-League Round 15
Melbourne Heart 0 def by Adelaide United 2
Newcastle Jets 1 def Wellington Phoenix 0
Brisbane Roar 1 drew with North Queensland Fury 1
Sydney 2 def Perth Glory 0
Central Coast Mariners 2 def by Gold Coast United 3
W-League Round 3
Canberra United 1 drew with Melbourne Victory 1
Newcastle Jets 0 hammered by Brisbane Roar 4
Sydney 4 hammered Adelaide United 1

NBL – Round 6
New Zealand 57 def by Wollongong 73
Melbourne 84 def by Perth 93
Cairns 87 def Adelaide 71
Gold Coast 82 def by Melbourne 85
Townsville 77 def Adelaide 73
WNBL – Round 7
Dandenong 74 def by Bendigo 77
AIS 61 def by Sydney 71
West Coast 72 def Adelaide 59
Bulleen 74 def Logan 67
Bendigo 72 def Logan 67

Rugby Union
Spring Tour
Ireland 18 def by New Zealand 38
Scotland 21 def South Africa 17
England 26 def Samoa 13
Italy 14 def by Australia 32
Wales 16 drew with Fiji 16

V-8 Supercars
Sandown Challenge
Race 23
1st Paul Dumbrell (Falcon FG)
2nd Jamie Whincup (Commodore VE)
3rd Mark Winterbottom (Falcon FG)
Race 24
1st James Courtney (Falcon FG)
2nd Mark Winterbottom (Falcon FG)
3rd Jamie Whincip (Commodore VE)

Adelaide 2 def by Perth 4
Adelaide 7 def Perth 3
Melbourne 2 def by Canberra 5
Sydney 5 def by Brisbane 9
Sydney 3 def by Brisbane 4
Melbourne 4 def Canberra 0
Sydney 4 def Brisbane 0
Adelaide 4 def by Perth 6
Melbourne 3 def Canberra 1
Melbourne 8 def Canberra 9 (extra innings)
Adelaide 4 def Perth 3
Sydney 2 def Brisbane 0

The Ashes
            I promised this last year and never actually did it. So here is a brief history of the Ashes, the cricketing world’s longest rivalry and longest lived fought over “trophy”.
            The first tour of England by an Australian team appears to have been in 1868, when a team of Aboriginal Australians were sent to England. More a curiosity than anything at the time, it was still the first.
            The first officially recognised Test match was held in March of 1877 between England and Australia, in Australia, which Australia won by 45 runs (quirk of history – the centenary cricket match between England and Australia in 1977 was won by Australia by, you guessed it, 45 runs). I should point out now that the first international cricket match ever was played between Canada and the United States in 1844.
            The Ashes themselves dates back to 1882 when Australia defeated England for the first time ever on English soil. The name comes from an ‘obituary’ in the UK newspaper The Sporting Times: “In Affectionate Remembrance of ENGLISH CRICKET, which died at the Oval on 29th AUGUST 1882, Deeply lamented by a large circle of sorrowing friends and acquaintances R.I.P. N.B.—The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia.”
            At the start of the next series English captain Ivo Bligh promised to “bring back the ashes.” He was presented with a gift of an urn, which contained the ashes of some object (variously believed to be a bail, a ball, a stump or a woman’s veil – and the last is the most widely believed now) by some Melbourne women after England won the deciding test in this subsequent 1883 series. This was presented to the MCC upon Bligh’s death and is now the symbol of the contest (though not, as is widely believed, the actual trophy; until the 1990s there was not a real, actual trophy).
            The media latched onto this and the name at the time, but it soon faded from public usage. The term remained used by only the cricketers themselves until the early 1900s when the term was once more used by an English captain in public and this time the media did not let go of it and the name stuck. So we have the Ashes.
            The series is held in alternating 18 and 30 month gaps in the alternating nations. It is one of the few test series remaining where the teams play five games instead of the now standard 3 (or less in some cases).
            It should also be pointed out that England currently holds The Ashes, after defeating Australia 2–1 to regain them in 2009 in Great Britain. Australia, though, leads overall with 31 series wins to England’s 29, with 5 drawn (4 of those leading to Australia retaining and one for England).

And that’s the View through to November 22, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #119 – Arias and not as much dog sex Tue, 16 Nov 2010 11:33:48 +0000  More results than you could shake a stick at! If, of course, stick shaking is your thing. It’s not mine. I prefer girls. Call it a weakness.

Pakistan wicket-keeper Zulqarnain Haider didn’t report in Dubai for Pakistan’s match against South Africa (held, as is usual nowadays for a Pakistani team, in a neutral country). Grave fears were held for him, until he rocked up at London’s Heathrow Airport. There he has claimed asylum, claiming that he received death threats because he refused to be involved in match fixing.
            The International Cricket Council, in their own special way, have said they cannot help him unless he helps them. They also say they are in constant contact with the Pakistan Cricket Board over all of this. After all, they feel this is a “team matter’.
            Yes, let’s make the terrified cricketer who feels he has to flee for his life feel even more vulnerable and threatened.

A-League Round 13 (cont)
Adelaide United 2 def Perth Glory 0
North Queensland Fury 2 def by Melbourne Heart 3
A-League Round 14
Gold Coast United 3 def Sydney 1
Wellington Phoenix 0 def by Central Coast Mariners 3
Newcastle Jets 3 def Adelaide United 1
Perth Glory 3 def Melbourne Victory 1
Melbourne Heart 1 def by Brisbane Roar 2
W-League Round 1
Brisbane Roar 2 def by Sydney 4
Adelaide United 0 def by Newcastle Jets 2
Perth Glory 1 def by Canberra United 4
W-League Round 2
Perth Glory 4 hammered Adelaide United 0
Canberra United 1 drew with Brisbane Roar 1
Melbourne Victory 1 def by Sydney 4
Why bother?

NBL – Round 5
Adelaide 78 def by New Zealand 82
Cairns 96 def Gold Coast 76
Sydney 59 def by Townsville 64
Perth 114 def New Zealand 74
Wollongong 93 def Melbourne 82
WNBL – Round 6
Sydney 78 def by West Coast 81
Townsville 95 def AIS 55
Canberra 87 def Bendigo 59
Dandenong 98 def Adelaide 64
Logan 68 def Sydney 64
Bulleen 104 def West Coast 81
Another quiet week. Things are settling in nicely so far with the new Australian league. Now if they can only attract some crowds.

Rugby League
Four Nations
Australia 12 def by New Zealand 16
Last week I talked about Joel Monaghan’s indiscretion with a member of the animal kingdom. Well, of course, a story like this just ain’t going to go away!
            This week Monaghan quite the Canberra Raiders to , he said, save the team further embarrassment over his utterly ridiculous behaviour. Sad, yeah, but that’s the way it goes. What he did was just not acceptable.
            And in that vein, Canberra’s executive Don Furner expressed his hope that one day Monaghan would be able to return and play for the Raiders. Of course, that would be good… Hang on! What the…? They want him back? And he already has a Super League club ready to take him on in Europe?
            Okay, he didn’t kill anyone, he didn’t take drugs, he didn’t abuse a woman. But the guy got so drunk he thought it was funny to think about having sex with a dog! It does not matter that it was ‘simulated’, the fact is that thought actually crossed that man’s mind! But he did so much good for Canberra, the apologists cry. Sure, and even more to make man’s best friend feel loved and wanted.
            Now this does not mean he should never ever play rugby again. Far from it. But at least, please, let the furore die down before trying to rehabilitate a guy. Forgiveness is wonderful; but we need to forget exactly what it was he did first. There needs to be a time frame. There needs to be some sort of punishment seen at least to be served. At least a little one.

Rugby Union
Spring Tour
Wales 25 def by South Africa 29
Scotland 3 hammered by New Zealand 49
Ireland 20 def Samoa 10
Italy 16 def by Argentina 22
England 35 def Australia 18
            Equal highest winning margin by England against Australia, and the highest point total they have ever scored against Australia. Things look shaky for Australia in the upcoming World Cup.

Formula One
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
1st Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
2nd Lewis Hamilton (McLaren)
3rd Jenson Button (McLaren)
Driver’s Championship:
1st Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
            The youngest driver ever to be world F1 champ.
2nd Fernando Alonso (Ferrari)
3rd Mark Webber (Red Bull)
            Shame he didn’t win but when even his team was pulling for the other guy, he really didn’t have much hope. However, excellent season from a man who 3 years ago was seen as all talk. This is the way to come back at your critics – with results. Oh that more sports people understood that!
V-8 Supercars
Falken Tasmania Challenge
Race 21
1st Craig Lowndes (Commodore VE)
2nd Garth Tander (Commodore VE)
3rd Greg Murphy (Commodore VE)
Race 22
1st Mark Winterbottom (Falcon FG)
2nd Paul Dumbrell  (Falcon FG)
3rd Jason Bright (Commodore VE)

For the first time in 10 years we have a professional baseball league in this country! 6 teams at this stage, lots of games.
            (Any suggestions as to how you want this, just the scores, or RHE stats, let me know below…)
Canberra 0 def by Sydney 1
Melbourne 1 def by Adelaide 9
Perth 3 def by Brisbane 8
Canberra 2 def by Sydney 4
Melbourne 4 def by Adelaide 7
Perth 2 def Brisbane 0
Melbourne 2 def by Adelaide 13
Perth 4 def Brisbane 2
Canberra 3 def by Sydney 13 (called early)
Melbourne 3 def by Adelaide 8
Perth 4 def Brisbane 1
Canberra 5 def by Sydney 7

ARIA Awards 2010.
            The ARIA Awards (Australian Recording Industry Association) are the Australian Grammy Awards. Given to music acts, this year it was done in a manner that can only be described as… strange. The acts seemed to be all over the place when accepting their awards, it looked like a chaotic mess, Carmen Electra was there talking about sex videos and it was, quite simply, strange.
Album of the Year: Angus & Julia Stone – Down the Way
Single of the Year: Angus & Julia Stone – Big Jet Plane
Best Female Artist: Washington – I Believe You Liar
Best Male Artist: Dan Sultan – Get Out While You Can
Best Group: The Temper Trap – Conditions
Best Independent Release: Sia – We Are Born
Best Adult Alternative Album: Angus & Julia Stone – Down the Way
Best Adult Contemporary Album: Crowded House – Intriguer
Best Blues & Roots Album: Dan Sultan – Get Out While You Can
Best Children’s Album: The Wiggles – Let’s Eat!
Best Comedy Release: Andrew Hanson, Chris Taylor & Craig Shuftan – The Blow Parade
Best Country Album: The McClymonts – Wrapped Up Good
Best Dance Release: Yolanda Be Cool & DCUP – We No Speak Americano
Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Album: Parkway Drive – Deep Blue
Best Music DVD: Various Artists – Sound Relief
Best Pop Release: Sia – We Are Born
Best Rock Album: Birds of Tokyo – Birds of Tokyo
Best Urban Album: M-Phazes – Good Gracious
Breakthrough Artist: Washington – I Believe You Liar
Best Classical Album: Australian Brandenburg Orchestra & Paul Dyer Tapas – Tastes of the Baroque
Best Jazz Album: James Morrison & The Idea of North – Feels Like Spring
Best Original Soundtrack/Cast/Show Album: Before Too Long Triple J’s Tribute to Paul Kelly
Best World Music Album: Mamadou Diabate, Bobby Singh & Jeff Lang – Djan Djan
Best Cover Art: Angus & Julia Stone for Angus & Julia Stone – Down the Way
Best Video: Kris Moyes (dir.) for Sia – Clap Your Hands
Engineer of the Year: Wayne Connolly, Paul Dempsey, Fast Friends for Little Birdy – Confetti
Producer of the Year: Angus & Julia Stone for Angus & Julia Stone – Down the Way
            Public voted awards
Most Popular Australian Album: Powderfinger – Golden Rule
Most Popular Australian Single: The Temper Trap – Sweet Disposition
Most Popular International Artist – Mumford & Sons
Most Popular Australian Artist: Powderfinger
            ARIA Hall of Fame Inductees
The Church
The Loved Ones
John Williamson
Johnny Young

And that’s the View through to November 15, 2010.

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THE VIEW FROM DOWN HERE #118 – I Hear Motion Mon, 08 Nov 2010 23:53:37 +0000  Sport, horses, marijuana, dogs, crashes, a musician dies. It’s been just another week here in Australia. No, really, it has. Intrigued? I hope so. Please, do read on…

One Day International
1st ODI: Australia v Sri Lanka
Australia 8/239; Sri Lanka 9/243 (44.2 overs) – Sri Lanka defeated Australia by 1 wicket.
            Sri Lanka were 8/107… and still won! One of the greatest comebacks ever in the history of cricket. This means two things – Australia is not ready for England, and Sri Lanka are still a genuine power of world cricket, not to be taken lightly.
2nd ODI: Australia v Sri Lanka
Rain-affected match with the Duckworth-Lewis so-called system to sort things out making it even worse for all those involved.
Sri Lanka 3/213 (41.1 overs); Australia 210 (37.4 overs) – Sri Lanka won by 29 runs.
            Yes, despite being 3 runs ahead, they won by 29. You work it out.
3rd ODI: Australia v Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka 115 (32 overs); Australia 2/119 (21.4 overs) – Australia won by 8 wickets
            Hang on… what happened? Did these two teams have a transplant or something? The only interest in the end was whether Clarke would get his half century, which he did when he scored the winning runs with a four. Wow. This makes no sense.
One moment Clarke should be taking over from Ponting in all forms of the game in Australia. Next, Clarke should be dumped for North. The media in this country is running rampant with rumours that are being put forward as fact. You’d think they all worked at FoxNews or something. The team is in trouble with their performances, yes. There is no denying that. But it is most likely not in trouble internally. Not to this extent. Yes, some players are under pressure to retain their positions. But that is as it should be. Keeps them on their toes and means if they continually fail to perform they can be replaced. (Not always, of course. There are too many examples of Cricket Australia ignoring young talent to prop up a failing career in its twilight just because the player in question is from NSW or Vic… but generally, this rule works.) But to have such ridiculous statements putting extra, unneeded pressure on the team is just going to be detrimental to the whole immediate future of Australian cricket.
            FoxNews belongs to the former Australian Rupert Murdoch, the Republican Party and certain Arab Oil Sheiks. Its obscene practices of putting forth badly thought out opinion and works of fiction as news should not be influencing Australia that much.

A-League Round 12 (cont)
Wellington Phoenix 1 def by Brisbane Roar 4
Perth Glory 0 drew with Melbourne Heart 0
A-League Round 13
North Queensland Fury 0 def by Central Coast Mariners 1
Melbourne Victory 0 def by Gold Coast United 1
Brisbane Roar 4 def Adelaide United 0
Sydney 1 def Newcastle Jets 0
            An obvious refereeing mistake gave Sydney this one, not their own skill.
Perth Glory 0 def by Wellington Phoenix 1
Why bother?

NBL – Round 4
Townsville 85 def by Perth 91
Cairns 86 def Perth 69
Gold Coast 81 def by New Zealand 96
Adelaide 87 def Sydney 75
Melbourne 82 def by Wollongong 86
WNBL – Round 5
Canberra 74 def  Townsville 61
West Coast 64 def by Bendigo 67
Dandenong 99 def Logan 63
AIS 59 def by Townsville 82
Sydney 75 def by Bulleen 95
Adelaide 79 def by Bendigo 91
Wow! A week’s gone by without some international competition being beset by issues!

Rugby League
Four Nations
Papua New Guinea 10 def by England 36
New Zealand 20 def by Australia 34
            And the New Zealand crowd lost it, pelting the ground with rubbish after their team’s loss, including a full bottle of beer which hit one of the Australian players in the head. Last week I said Australia were the best on the day; now it seems they are better. Period.
            At the moment.
Back in June Roosters hooker Jake Friend was arrested. It was found he had drugs on his person. Well, on Tuesday in court it came out they were Valium taken from an 89 year old patient of a nursing home with mental degeneration issues who had no connection to rugby in any way, shape or form. How Friend got them is anyone’s guess.
            But that’s not the big news. Oh no, no, no!
            This one is to be listed in the ‘What the hell were they thinking?’ file. Canberra Raiders star player Joel Monaghan is being investigated for something that allegedly happened during the club’s ‘Mad Monday’ debauchery. Nothing unusual there – rugby players go off the rails all the time during Mad Monday. So what did he do to get such instant notoriety?
            He was photographed by a team-mate while having a simulated sex act with a dog.
            He was allegedly photographed by an alleged team-mate while allegedly having an allegedly simulated sex act with an alleged dog.
            The anonymous man who posted it online has been threatened (of course – shoot the messenger is always the cry of rugby league). He said he only did it after asking the Raiders for a comment and he was rebuked. The radio station that brought wide attention to it by posting it online somewhere took it down very quickly.
            It seems that yet again rugby league sprang to the defence of the indefensible. Now, after the public outing, they are having inquiries and such. Stuff that would not have happened had it remained an in-house joke amongst mates. It may well have become part of league folklore. But it became public so now everyone involved is saying it’s bad, tut-tut. Hypocrites.
            But, anyway, Monaghan’s manager is reported to have said, “It was a moment of abject stupidity brought about by too much drink and a complete lack of any thought process.”
            Can’t add anything more to that.

Rugby Union
Spring Tour
Wales 16 def by Australia 25
Ireland 21 def by South Africa 23
England 16 def by New Zealand 26

Formula One
Brazilian Grand Prix
1st Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
2nd Mark Webber (Red Bull)
3rd Fernando Alonso (Ferrari)
4th Lewis Hamilton (McLaren)
Any of these four can win the drivers’ championship come the last race of the year in Abu Dhabi, while the 1-2 secures Red Bull the construction title, their first. I can’t remember a championship this close in F-1. Maybe 2 drivers fighting it out, but 4? And down to the wire? At least it’s making things interesting for a change.

Horse Racing
Melbourne Cup
The richest race is Australia. It is called the race that stops a nation because, well, it seems most people are watching it. It’s a public holiday in Victoria. Every other state has office sweeps in their local papers. And because for some reason abusing animals is considered sport, I shall put the results here.
            But: The RSPCA estimates that 70% of thoroughbreds born in Victoria do not race and that of those that do race a third are lost to “wastage”. What happens to these animals? Are they onsold to become children’s pets? Put out to stud? Exported to be eaten? Who knows?
1st Americain (a French horse)
2nd Malucky Day
3rd So You Think (the favourite)
A veteran Australian jockey has been suspended for 3 months for being caught out with a positive test for marijuana. Stupid? Yep. Overkill? For sure. Does a jockey taking dope mean anything? Nope. These guys are not the role models of other sports people. And the photo of him after copping the ban showed him with a cigarette and can of beer. To quote/paraphrase the late, great Bill Hicks (because I can never remember these things exactly): The government wants its drugs taxable.” Especially after recent studies [] done on the subject show some rather interesting indicators.

Dale Parker, 18 year old Australian cyclist who recently won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in India, is suddenly finding his career at the cross-roads. Allegedly, while or after doing burnouts in his car, he crashed his car into a stobey pole after dropping a mate off somewhere, causing the pole to fall on said mate, injuring him quite severely. Parker was tested and found to be over the blood alcohol limit.
            So he lost his licence and will have to face the courts. Then Cycling South Australia have asked him step down from all racing commitments for the time being. And now he appears to be in danger of losing his spot on Lance Armstrong’s Trek-Livestrong development squad as well, meaning his ProTour dreams may also be dashed.
            No other comments. Just putting this out there.

Musician James Freud found dead.
            At the age of 51, front man of the Australian band The Models, James Freud apparently took his own life after a long on-again, off-again battle with alcohol abuse.
            I just wanted to pout this out there because the Models were one of my favourite Australians bands in the 1980s. I first came across James Freud in 1980 with his single ‘Modern Girl’ (performed by James Freud and the Radio Stars). This band tried to record with Gary Numan, the results apparently were not seen by either party as any good and it was shelved, then the band broke up.
            He then joined the Models in 1982 and stayed with them until they broke up. ‘I Hear Motion’, ‘Barbados’ and their mammoth hit ‘Out Of Mind, Out Of Sight’ were part of the sound track to my teenaged years. The pounding drum beats of OOM,OOS would generate a line of air drummers at nearly every Blue Light Disco.
            They were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in October, but he was not present with his former band mates, though veiled references to his issues were made at that time.
            A sad bit of news, to be sure, but he has left a body of work that resonates at least with this one old, jaded music fan. Vale.

And that’s the View through to November 8, 2010.

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