Terriers’ tough ask in Coonabarabran

OUT OF ACTION: Gulgong Terriers’ Terry Wood (with ball) will be among a list of players away from the side this weekend against Coonabarabran. The Gulgong Terriers will have to climb the equivalent of Mount Everest on Saturday as an under-strength side travels to play Coonabarabran.
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The Terriers were knocked around from a physical encounter last weekend against Warren Bulldogs and will have several key players missing from their line up.

On top of their injuries, the Gulgong side has a large portion of players away this weekend.

Coach Steve Haney, who will also be away this weekend, said the Terriers will be stretched to their full depth on Saturday but was confident they could get the job done against this year’s Castlereagh League minor premiers.

“This will be a good opportunity for the boys travelling up there. As a club throughout the season you are going to need to call on everybody and this is a weekend where we have to step up,” Haney said.

The Gulgong side, which currently sits in a three-way split for second position on the Castelreagh League laddder, knows the importance of this weekend’s results.

“We have to control the game. Control our sets of six and get to the kick,” Haney said.

“If Coonabarabran were to get a bit of a roll on we have to stop it quick smart because the competition is that close we don’t want to hurt our for an against.

“The last thing we need to be doing is going to Trangie next week and forcing ourselves to put 100 on them.”

Haney doesn’t expect the same physical presence from Coonabarabran as Gulgong saw in the game against Warren.

He said with the large portion of players unavailable, some positional changes were also going to be made.

“Dan Harding will come from the centres into the halves to replace Terry Wood. We are missing the likes of Sam Dunn and Nathan Martyn which also gives us room to fill up front. I am confident players can step up into these roles,” Haney said.

“I’d hate to see our all hard work during the season to be undone.

“It’s a big ask to travel to Coonabarabran and beat them. Congratulations to them they are the minor premiers and the benchmark team but we’ll be coming at them.”

The Dunedoo Swans have a bye this week before playing away to Coonamble on August 11.

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Ministerial spill in Gulgong

IT’S OFFICIAL: (from left) Mid-Western Regional Youth Mayor Henry Van Laeren, State Member for Orange Andrew Gee, Mid-Western Regional Council Mayor Des Kennedy, State Minister for Sport and Recreation Graham Annesley, officially open the upgraded Gulgong Skate Park on Wednesday.010812/spGulgongSkatePark/001State Minister for Sport and Recreation Graham Annesley would like to forget one part of his first trip to Gulgong when a photo opportunity at the upgraded skate park opening went embarrassingly wrong.
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After officially opening the refurbished facility Mid-Western Regional Council, Mayor Des Kennedy took a scooter up and down a few ramps without incident.

Then it was Annesley’s turn but for former rugby league referee and former Chief Operating Officer of the NRL it didn’t go well.

After coming off the ramp he lost control of the scooter, was unable to steady himself, and hit the deck.

Annesley appeared uninjured as he got up, his pride copping the brunt of the fall.

His parliamentary colleague Andrew Gee jokingly tried to talk up Annesley’s stunt attempt.

“The way I saw it, the minister was executing an aerial 360 and didn’t make it, it was a glorious attempt but he didn’t land it but I give him 10 out of 10 for style,” he said.

In reality Annesley started on the lower half of the ramp

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Minister opens Gulgong Skate Park

IT’S OFFICIAL: (from left) Mid-Western Regional Youth Mayor Henry Van Laeren, State Member for Orange Andrew Gee, Mid-Western Regional Council Mayor Des Kennedy, State Minister for Sport and Recreation Graham Annesley, officially open the upgraded Gulgong Skate Park on Wednesday.010812/spGulgongSkatePark/001Gulgong’s $90,000 upgraded skate park was officially opened on Wednesday afternoon and even politicians skated into town to be a part of it.
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The facelift of the facility at Billy Dunn Oval was funded by Mid-Western Regional Council, a grant from the State Government and money raised by the Gulgong Skate Park Working Party, along with a donation from Moolarben Coal towards the new equipment and a shelter.

State Minister for Sport and Recreation Graham Annesley congratulated the community on their fundraising contribution to the skate park and said it gave him great pleasure to officially open it.

“It’s really satisfying for me to be able to assist with the opening of something as significant for our young people as this particular facility,” he said.

“Quite often our young people get a bit of a bum rap and I think the more that we can do to try and get them involved in the community, give them things that will occupy their time and keep them fit and healthy is very worthwhile.”

Mid-Western Regional Council Mayor Des Kennedy said the skate park was something that could get young people active and outdoors.

“The modern day technology that’s on tap, eg computers and iPhones, tends to keep the youth indoors too much,” he said.

“In comparison to when I was a kid you played footy or went walking because there was nothing to keep you inside, nowadays there’s everything to keep a kid inside rather than get outside and exercise.

“From a community point of view the more money we can spend on activities getting kids away from computers and TVs … the better.”

State Member for Orange Andrew Gee said he thinks the skate park facility will be “well used for years to come”.

“I think that it’s a great venue and I think that it’s important that we develop these facilities in our regional centres,” he said.

“We have these in many cities around NSW but we need to give our kids activities out in the bush as well.”

Mid-Western Regional Youth Mayor, Henry Van Laeren said the upgrade was an example of local youth issues being heard.

“It’s a great meeting place for young people and a place for them to develop their skills and exercise,” he said.

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Mudgee must win to keep solid St Pats away from minor premiership

The Mudgee Dragons’ premier league side will want to send St Pats home with the minor premiership all but taken from their grasp on Sunday.
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Three Group 10 sides, including Bathurst St Pats, are breathing down the Dragons’ neck for the competition lead.

Three rounds remain in the competition and Mudgee currently holds a one-point lead to St Pats, Orange CYMS and Lithgow.

The Bathurst side arguably has the hardest run home to the semi-finals, playing Mudgee at Glen Willow on Sunday before coming up against Lithgow at Bathurst and Orange CYMS at Wade Park.

If St Pats were to win all of those games they would be close to winning the 2012 minor premiership.

Mudgee premier league captain-coach Mat Stott has said in previous weeks his side must play high percentage football and focus their games on a week to week basis.

This is something backed up by last Saturday’s draw with Cowra. Had the Dragons lost that match, they too would be in the log jam for first place.

Stott would be telling his team the same again for Sunday – focus on the job at hand and most importantly, get the job done.

The message is simple.

Mudgee’s first division side will be looking to shore up their minor premiership hopes with another win at Glen Willow on Sunday.

It is likely for the first division competition to come down to the last round when first (Mudgee) will play second (Oberon).

The Mudgee under 18s will also want to send a message to St Pats on Sunday who are likely to be semi-final opponents.

FRONT?RUNNER: (right) Mudgee Dragons prop Chris Hickman will be leading the way against Bathurst St Pats on Sunday. PHOTO: SANDY?SMITH 220712\SS Dragons PremLge\5047

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Gulgong HealthOne officially opened

Western NSW Local Health District chief executive Ron Dunham joins Member for Orange Andrew Gee and Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Health Melinda Pavey to unveil a plaque opening the Gulgong HealthOne. The Gulgong HealthOne has been officially opened with a visit from Member for Orange Andrew Gee and Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Health Melinda Pavey.
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“The fight for proper health services in Gulgong has been a long and difficult road,” Mr Gee said.

“The road will end with an MPS [Multi-Purpose Service], which is what Gulgong wants and what it deserves.”

Mr Gee said the battle had been a true community effort, and reminded him of the Texan slogan, “Don’t mess with Texas”.

“I think we’ve seen from the drive and passion of the people in Gulgong that you don’t mess with Gulgong either.”

Ms Cavey commended Mr Gee for his battle on Gulgong’s behalf, which she said had provided a steep learning curve for a new member, and showed a commendable willingness to be driven by the passion of his constituents.

Ms Pavey said it was great to see one of the state’s oldest towns equipped with one of the most modern health facilities.

She announced that with the new multi-purpose health service (MPS) approved to be constructed behind the HealthOne, work had already begun on the demolition of the old Gulgong Hospital.

Western NSW Local Health District chief executive Ron Dunham said both politicians had been involved intimately with the long process of securing a HealthOne for Gulgong, and both had been persistent and sensitive to local needs.

“Congratulations, community,” he said. “This is a great achievement.”

Former Gulgong doctor Robin Williams, visiting from his current home in Molong, said he and Dr Glenys Caterson had dreamed of an integrated health facility for Gulgong.

“It’s taken us a long time to get to this position,” he said.

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Mudgee shooter to take on the world

TOP GUN: Jacob Mackenzie will be representing Australia at the FITASC World Championships from August 10-19. Junior Australian sporting clays representative and Mudgee shooter Jacob Mackenzie is in final preparations to compete at his third FITASC world championships this month.
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Mackenzie will fly to Chicago next Friday and spend about five days acclimatising to conditions before competition begins on August 16.

The four-day world championships are being held at Northbrook Sports Club in Hainesville, Illinois, and Mackenzie said he was hoping to be third time lucky.

“To win it, that’s the big goal,” Mackenzie said.

“I have to be positive and concentrate to hit every target.”

Mackenzie said like many international events he wasn’t sure what targets were going to be thrown at him but has tried to do as much research as possible.

“I’ve done some research looking into the terrain and spoken to a few Americans familiar with the elements at Northbrook and what type of traps they use,” he said.

“Really it all comes down to what is thrown at you on the day.”

The Northbrook club has a reputation for being one that “confounds” shooters of all skill levels.

The 19-year-old said he knows to give himself the best chance of winning he has to be physically prepared but more importantly mentally adept.

“You have to be mentally prepared,” Mackenzie said.

“There’s nothing special that I do in the lead up.

“You just try and not let the pressure get to you.

“If there was anything I do it’s to try and keep a clear mind, sometimes you have be away from it all to clear your mind.”?

The four-day competition will see 200 targets, eight new style parcours and numerous traps.

Mackenzie said it would be unlikely to see Olympic competitors at this event because the discipline of Parcours de Chasse was a non-Olympic discipline.

McKenzie recently spent a month back in his hometown to prepare while on holiday from university.

“I went out to the range what seemed like everyday to practise and I’m happy with the way I’ve been shooting,” he said.

In June, Mackenzie was ranked number one junior in the world by the international body for sporting clays, Fiocchi FITASC.

He said the rankings were updated recently and he had moved back to third.

However he was not worried because international shooters may have had more events in the past month or so.

There will not be much sightseeing for Mackenzie while in America as he has to jump straight back on a plane after the World Championship shoot.

“I have my practical experience as part of my PE teaching degree at university and that starts as soon as I get back,” he said.

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Mid-Western Regional schools kicking goals with Setanta

BALL UP: St Matthew’s Catholic School students (back) Caoimhe Griffiths, Harry Lee, Emily Burke, Ben Lipscomb, (front) Alex Robbins and Matilda Jessiman. They are pictured with GWS Giants star Setanta O’Hailpin yesterday.Greater Western Sydney forward Setanta O’Hailpin believes the next Giants’ superstar could be coming from the classrooms of Mudgee and Gulgong.
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O’Hailpin visited the Mid-Western region on Thursday as part of the Australian Football League’s (AFL) 2012 Central West tour.

Currently sidelined with an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury, Setanta took the opportunity to travel to Dubbo, Wellington, Gulgong and Mudgee this week to talk to students about how a professional football career is a possibility.

“They’ve [children] taken it with both arms and they are enthusiastic. Obviously from my experiences so far not many [professional sports] people come out here so it’s great to talk to these kids and let them get a bit of understanding of what professional sport is and the sacrifices you make,” he said.

The former Gaelic footballer said at a young age he had to decide whether to stay in Ireland and work or become a professional.

At the age of 18 he began playing Australian Rules Football and did not make the big time for some three years. In a ten-year career he has played 80 games for Carlton in the AFL and injured his knee six games into this year’s campaign for the Giants.

The tall forward said this week’s regional tour was about showing people they can diversify into different sports and didn’t have to just play rugby league or soccer.

“We’ve got such a massive region out here and it’s been untapped so far. The more players we can try to get to play football the greater our game is going to be. Over the next five years we’re [GWS] going to be working hard and visiting as many places as we can to get people involved in the game,” he said.

“We need to start children early and get them inducted into our Auskick program and you never know what might eventuate. You know we could have a kid from Gulgong, Dubbo or Mudgee and play AFL in a GWS guernsey.

“This game is one that is only played in Australia and we must not lose sight of that.”

The 29-year-old, who is of Irish and Fijian heritage, stands at 199 centimetres and said children were amazed how, at his height, he had learnt to play the game.

“Oh very much so. After I talk to them they come up and stand next to me and admire how tall I am. But I tell them if they eat the right vegetables and mashed potatoes, the right foods, they’ll be as big and as strong as me,” he laughed.

“One day these kids might be able to relate to it. When I was at school people would talk to me and I would idolise them.”

Setanta said it had been a great experience under the guidance of Kevin Sheedy and Mark Williams in 2012.

“Kevin Sheedy and Mark Williams, what they’ve both done for the game is exceptional,” he said.

“Sheeds has been in the game for 27 years and I think he is coaching his 1000th game this week, let alone, that explains the magnitude of Kevin and what he’s done.

“And it’s not just for the game but for the indigenous people and a lot of other things people don’t always see. He can turn up anywhere in Australia and be recognised. I’ve gained a lot of experience and learn from him every day.”

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Swans’ brave win keeps semi-final hopes alive

A well coached Gilgandra Panthers almost stole the show against Dunedoo Swans on Saturday.
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The Panthers chased down a 20-6 deficit early in the second half to level at 20-all with ten minutes to go at Robertson Oval.

However Swans centre Chris Jones scored with three minutes remaining and winger Tyson Searle also touched down in the final seconds to see Dunedoo win 30-20.

Dunedoo’s Castlereagh League semi-final aspirations are slim but still alive if they can win their two remaining games and have results go their way.

Captain-coach Billy-Joe Francis said his side made a remarked improvement from the previous week’s game against Coonabarabran.

“This time we made sure we were in the ball game early,” Francis said.

“Our defence held up really well and instead of us having an intercept try against us we scored one ourselves this week which was rewarding.

This is called an in-line CSS style.

“We got ourselves in a good position to lead 10-6 at half time. Because we were actually running into the wind I thought we would be down at the break.”

A quick fire double to Swans centre Troy Rose gave the swans a 20-6 lead only seven minutes into the second half but the game was far from over.

The Panthers were doing it tough as injuries decimated their team to the point that they finished the game with just one fit player on the bench.

Suffering a head gash earlier in the game, a patched up Ned Kelly scored his second try for the Panthers through determined running.

Winger Adam Cross touched down out wide minutes later and somehow scores were locked at 20-all with 10 minutes to go.

“Gilgandra are a really well coached side and they just keep coming at you and at you,” Francis said.

“Every time you think you have them beat they just turn it on.

“I thought for a moment we were in trouble but I was proud of how we played.

“We pulled off a great back line movement towards the end of the game and that really helped get us over the line.”

The Panther’s aspirations to finish second on the ladder received a severe dint as they now join Warren and Gulgong in second position on the Castlereagh League ladder.

DUNEDOO SWANS 30 (Troy Rose 2, Chris Jones 2, Tyson Searle, Tom Besgrove tries; Billy-Joe Francis 3 goals) def. GILGANDRA PANTHERS 20 (Ned Kelly 2, Adam Cross, Nick Weir tries; Alex Prout 2 goals)

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Waratahs secure semi after Barbarians blitz

A semi-final spot is assured for Kandos Waratahs following a 12 tries-to-one win against Orange Barbarians on Saturday.
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Kandos has again leapfrogged Wallerawang into third position on the Centennial Coal Cup ladder after the 66-6 victory.

Prop Cody Strickland returned for the home side at Kandos Waratahs Park and immediately found his previous form with the boot, kicking the first four goals from as many attempts.

Waratahs’ Matt Hayward began the procession to the Barbarians’ try-line with a fourth-minute try near the posts, backing up Glenn Osgood’s midfield bust.

Osgood was also involved in the next try-scoring movement to set up Jackson McKay from 45 metres, the conversion bringing a 12-nil score-line.

The third by John Madden in the 16th minute took the Waratahs to an 18-point lead. Kandos’ goalkickers were on target, and the scoreboard ticked over in six-point increments with every try scored for the next 35 minutes.

Tries were then scored by Ramon Connors, a second by McKay, and Chris Rayner before the teams left for halftime at 36-0.

Scoring resumed three minutes into the second half with Madden’s second try, then Luke Hundy’s converted try four minutes later brought up 48 unanswered points.

Strickland scored the ninth Kandos try, a 10-metre power surge to the line, but his conversion attempt was astray. The game was well out of danger at 52-0.

Osgood and McKay were best for the Waratahs, creating much of the groundwork in the side’s 60-point win.

Osgood and Hayward combined again for the next try, the skipper tackled 10 metres out but was unmarked. This allowed Hayward to get the ball off the ground to score his second.

Bringing up 60 points for Kandos was Christian Ollofsson’s try before Matt Hundy’s 75th-minute touchdown saw the score reach 66.

The Barbarians crossed for a consolation converted try in the dying minutes.

Osgood and McKay were best for the Waratahs, creating much of the groundwork in the side’s 60-point win.

Three forwards return for this Saturday’s match against Portland at Portland and Kandos are hoping to have their strongest side available for the first semi-final in two weeks.

Coach Glenn Osgood was simultaneously relieved and proud after the game to learn he had steered his side to an eighth consecutive finals berth.

However his elation was tinged with sadness as news of the passing last week of former Kandos player Michael Shumack.

Interesting weekend results caused a reassessment of fortunes for the top teams, as Lithgow Bears were held to a 24-all draw by middle-of-the-ladder CSU Yellow, and Wallerawang beaten 32-24 by CSU Blue.

One point apart at the top of the table, Lithgow and CSU Blue will meet this week in what could be a play-off for the minor premiership.

For sport as it happens around the region

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Kandos driver hits 152km/h, loses plates

Police have confiscated the car registration plates of a Kandos driver who was clocked at 152km/h while travelling through Running Stream on Thursday.
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While patrolling the Castlereagh Highway as part of “Operation Tiger”, Traffic and Highway Patrol Command Officers spotted the 4WD vehicle following a sedan.

The 4WD overtook the sedan and travelled towards the officers, who recorded its speed at 152km/h in a 100kph zone.

Police stopped the car and spoke to a 45-year-old Kandos man about his manner of driving.

During inquiries officers identified an amount of ammunition in the vehicle.

A further search revealed two rifles in the back seat of the vehicle, one loaded.

Police escorted the driver back to his home address, where further inquiries were conducted in relation to the firearms.

His driver’s licence was suspended for six months.

The number plates of the vehicle were seized by police and will be secured for three months.

The driver was issued an infringement notice for exceeding the speed limit by more than 45km/h, which carries a fine of $1915 and six demerit points.

His driver’s licence was suspended for six months.

The number plates of the vehicle were seized by police and will be secured for three months.

Police will be taking further action in relation to the security of the firearms involved in this matter at a later time.

Superintendent Stuart Smith, Operations Commander of the Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, said this traffic stop sends a clear message to motorists in rural areas.

“Drivers who drive at such speeds can now expect to lose their registration plates for six months, which means other family members and friends will also not have access to such vehicles,” he said.

“People driving in country areas need to accept the speed limits and drive accordingly.

“Those conveying firearms for whatever reason need to ensure proper security and management, as Highway Patrol officers will take action in these circumstances.”

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