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FIRING: Perth’s Jesse Wagstaff was at his blistering best against Sydney. Picture: Chris Hyde Source: PerthNow
WITH time winding down and the Perth Wildcats barely able to make a shot against a surging Sydney Kings outfit, Rob Beveridge peered down his bench for a saviour.
There sat Jesse Wagstaff, the shaggy-haired forward who had only days earlier been named the league’s player of the month for January.Turns out he’s pretty good in February, too.Wagstaff lit up Challenge Stadium with a trio of three-point bombs to kill off Sydney’s brave fightback and help seal a 91-74 win to keep the Wildcats’ chances of finishing atop the NBL ladder alive.After beginning the final term on the bench, the dynamic forward entered the game with Perth clinging onto a five-point lead that had been whittled down from as much as 22 earlier in the contest.But Wagstaff allayed any fears that the Wildcats would drop their third straight game by delivering a swift knockout blow, scoring 11 of his game-high 25 points in a scintillating three-and-a-half minute burst. by the time he was done, the home side had blown the lead out to 16 and the contest was over.While Beveridge expressed his post-game frustration at some players turning down open shots, Wagstaff said he had refused to hesitate in the big moments.“Bevo says if you’re open, take it,” Wagstaff said.“if it’s your shot in the right spot in the right time of the game, then we’ve all got a licence in our individual situations.”Relishing a starting role, Wagstaff produced one of his best games of the season, shooting 5-8 from long range and adding eight rebounds.despite another match-winning performance, the former rookie of the year was quick to deflect praise onto his teammates, with the side’s reserves helping build a considerable first-half lead.“I think when we went on that run in the second period, it was the five bench guys out there, which is testament to the depth of our team,” he said.“To create that intensity was fantastic, and we forced them into a few turnovers so we can get some cheap baskets and that’s what really breaks a game open.”Both Wagstaff and the coach conceded the side needed to find answers to its third-quarter woes, with the Wildcats failing to captalise on a dominant opening 20 minutes.“obviously we gave up a fair few easy baskets, but it’s all stuff we can control,” he said.“Most of it is effort plays – the little stuff (like) screening, cutting, being in position, being aggressive, getting the ball out of bounds quicker.”Follow Chris Robinson on Twitter: @CJKRobinson
Fancy planning a killer night out with a group of friends but don’t have the time or aren’t “in the know”? A social concierge may be the answer to your problems.
Rachel Abbott is a senior manager in a large management consultancy firm. A New Yorker by birth who lived in London for six years, Abbott had been residing in Sydney for just under a year when it came time to organise her hen’s night in December 2011.
“I thought, ‘I don’t really know what I want to do’,” she says.
There were two main problems for Abbott. A busy job meant that her time was at a premium and she also wanted an experience for her hen’s night that was a bit out of the ordinary.
“I eat out a lot, so know where to find restaurant reviews but I didn’t want to just have a dinner for my hen’s,” Abbott says. “I wanted to do dinner and something a bit more special but so many things just seem touristy. Things like a harbour cruise can be an expensive gamble if you don’t know what you’re getting.”
For a $50 flat fee, Abbott engaged the services of More the Merrier, a new Sydney business that helps individuals plan group outings.
The self-described social concierge service, for groups of more than six, was established in August 2011 by friends Zae Greenwood and Chris Dair. Greenwood had worked for a decade with London’s Maybourne Hotel Group, which owns Claridge’s, The Berkeley and The Connaught, first organising society weddings and corporate events, then in public relations for the group.
Dair is studying for a commerce degree and is a former dancer in musical theatre productions. he got the idea for More the Merrier from organising wrap parties for his fellow cast members.
“I think we’re becoming a little bit time poor,” Dair says. “we can let our social occasions slip by without giving them the attention they deserve.”
So far More the Merrier’s customers have been split evenly between small and medium businesses without the internal resources to organise company outings and individuals who have a special occasion to mark, such as a hen’s night or 50th birthday, that they don’t have time to organise.
“we can fall in the trap of doing the same things all the time and becoming comfortable in our immediate surrounds,” Dair says. “[More the Merrier] is like a social intervention.”
Clients give a brief to More the Merrier and the company’s concierge manager, Cynthia Hanson, puts together some options to choose from. there are pre-packaged tours and Hanson also puts together custom group activities.
“I wrote her [Hanson] a paragraph describing me and my friends and what we were looking for,” Abbott says. “I wanted something a little bit silly, girly and fun but at the same time, we’re in our early 30s. we weren’t about to go to a strip club or something.”
From some options, Abbott chose a dinner and cabaret theatre harbour cruise for her and her 10 girlfriends. Hanson made the booking and Abbott paid More the Merrier for the tickets later by PayPal.
Dair says apart from the concierge fee, individuals won’t pay more than if they organised the reservation themselves because More the Merrier has “relationships” with venues. The duo plan to extend the service to Melbourne this year and Dair wants to be organising at least 30 parties a week to make the business financially successful.
Abbott says More the Merrier’s service solves the issues of time and complexity, when it comes to organising something special for a group of friends to do.
“I think the value that they’re adding is they’re bringing together reviews, recommendations and booking,” she says.
“I thought I could spend the rest of my time reading Time Out or I could go through More the Merrier.”
As part of an ever-interactive launch campaign, Carnival Cruise Lines are inviting Aussie kids to design the ‘Power Drencher’ that will feature as part of the SplashZone aboard Carnival Spirit. Reflecting the theme ‘Water Fun’, entrants must be aged between five and 12 years and can download a template online as their base to create an artistic masterpiece that, if selected, may be the featured design on the ‘Power Drencher’. The winning designer and two runners-up will also win an overnight cruise for themselves and their families aboard Carnival Spirit when she arrives in Sydney in October this year. “Designing the ‘Power Drencher’ is just one of the ways we’re getting the nation to bring the Aussie Spirit to Carnival Spirit and I’m so excited that Aussie kids can make the SplashZone their very own,” Carnival Cruise Lines director Jennifer Vandekreeke said.
“The Power Drencher is smack-bang in the middle of the SplashZone, right on top of the ship – so the winning design will have prime position for all to see!” Carnival Spirit’s ‘WaterWorks’ will also feature tipping cones, water wheels, ‘Mini Racers’, the ‘Twister Waterslide’ and the recently unveiled ‘Green Thunder’. Entries are open until 22 April 2012 with designs posted on the line’s Facebook page weekly. Click here to see the ‘Power Drencher’ in action.
The Lion King will Return to Sydney, Australia
by Andrew Gans07 Feb 2012
the Tony-winning musical The Lion King will return to Sydney, Australia, in 2013.
the international hit musical will play Sydney’s Capitol Theatre beginning in December 2013.
In a statement Thomas Schumacher, producer and president Disney Theatrical Productions, said, “Australia – and Sydney in particular – have embraced our Disney stage musicals as warmly as audiences anywhere in the world and we are thrilled that the Lion King is being invited back. we look forward to re-introducing Sydney to Julie Taymor’s singular, captivating vision.”
When last in Sydney, the musical ran for almost two years and played to 1.35 million people.
The Lion King is the seventh longest-running musical in Broadway history and one of only six productions in theatre history to play for ten years or more both on Broadway and in the West End.
the Broadway score features Elton John and Tim Rice's music from "the Lion King" animated film along with three new songs by John and Rice; additional musical material by South African Lebo M, Mark Mancina, Jay Rifkin, Taymor and Hans Zimmer; and music from "Rhythm of the Pride Lands," an album inspired by the original music in the film, written by Lebo M, Mark Mancina and Hans Zimmer.
the book was adapted by Roger Allers, who co-directed "the Lion King" animated feature, and Irene Mecchi, who co-wrote the film's screenplay. other members of the creative team include Steve Canyon Kennedy (sound design), Michael Ward (hair and makeup design), John Stefaniuk (associate director), Marey Griffith (associate choreographer), Clement Ishmael (music supervisor).
Directed by Taymor — who became the first woman to ever receive a Tony Award for best Director of a Musical — The Lion King has become an international hit with productions playing all around the globe. In fact, the Elton John-Tim Rice musical has won over 30 major awards. those include six Tony Awards, including one for best Musical; eight Drama Desk Awards; six Outer Critics Circle Awards; two Sir Laurence Oliviers; the Evening Standard Award for best Theatrical Event; and three Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards.
for more information visit www.DisneyOnBroadway.com.
Princess Cruises is looking for 1000 passenger-submitted cruise holiday photos to showcase permanently onboard its new Royal Princess when the ship launches in autumn 2013.
The cruise line has launched a ‘1000 Memories at Sea’ competition inviting passengers to submit their best cruise holiday shots, which will be displayed on the walls of hallways between staterooms and in other locations around the ship.
In addition, one lucky photographer will win a cruise for two on Royal Princess.
Whether they captured the perfect New Zealand fjord or the ideal lineup of Sydney Harbour icons, caught Alaska wildlife in action, found a breathtaking rainbow over Hawaii, or snapped a meaningful moment onboard, passengers can submit their favorite cruise photos on Facebook, at princess.com/royalprincesscontest or submit by post. The ‘1000 Memories at Sea’ competition is open to Australian and New Zealand residents aged 21 years and over, along with entrants from the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. The winning holiday snaps will be judged by a panel which is looking for creativity, originality, style, and images that capture the spirit of what it means to “escape completely.”
“With the upcoming launch of Royal Princess, we wanted to acknowledge our passengers and the holiday memories made onboard our ships,” said Jan Swartz, executive vice president for Princess Cruises.
“This contest will be a fun opportunity for 1000 of our passengers to be permanently recognised onboard our new ship, so we hope they’ll start sifting through their travel photos now, and submit a remarkable shot for the competition,” she said.
The ‘1000 Memories at Sea’ contest runs until March 31, 2012.
Conference & Meetings World: Three consortia shortlisted for Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct
AUSTRALASIA – three consortia have been shortlisted for the contract to build and operate the proposed 12-hectare convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct at Darling Harbour, Sydney. new South Wales state Premier Barry O’Farrell said the consortia were a mix of local and international players with a depth of experience in construction and maintenance as well as operations and events.
The three consortia are ‘Destination Sydney’ comprising AEG Ogden, Lend Lease Project Management and Construction, Spotless Facility Services, Lend Lease Developments, Capella Capital and InfraRed Capital Partners; ‘Key Partners’ comprising LaingO’Rourke Australia Construction, John Laing Investments, Macquarie Capital Group, GL Events and Honeywell; ‘VeNuSW’ comprising Plenary Group, Brookfield Multiplex, Brookfield MultiplexServices and Suntec International Convention and Exhibition Services.The redevelopment of Sydney’s events facilities include the refurbishment of the existing Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre. The expanded site has been named the Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct and is intended to provide Australia’s largest event facilities.Construction is set to be completed by 2016, resulting in exhibition space of at least 40,000sqm and flexible plenary spaces with a combined capacity of at least 10,000 delegates. Facilities would also cater to sporting, musical and theatrical events for at least 12,000 people.Infrastructure NSW (INSW), which is managing the project, received expressions of interest from the three proponents following a six-week ‘Expressions of Interest’ period at the end of 2011. INSW has invited all three proponents to move forward in the tendering process following a thorough evaluation of their submissions against the published criteria. The three consortia now enter into a negotiation phase with the NSW Government. An official Request for Proposals is expected to be issued in March 2012, with the preferred tenderer selected by the end of 2012. “we are working to a tight timeframe, with completion of the expanded and new facilities by 2016, so it is important that views are taken into account and we have a facility that makes us competitive in the longer term,” said O’Farrell. any conference-related news? Email email@example.com
The English rugby league team Warrington Wolves this week continued the long tradition of football teams cross-training with other codes in the off season when they joined the Sydney Swans in Sydney for a skill and fitness session.
Canadian Mike Pyke can be seen in the background of the Fox Sports video below and looks like he might rightly be as comfortable with the Rugby League players as with the Swans or his former code of Rugby Union.
And speaking of Mike Pyke, he featured today on the Swan’s website and is said to be trying to develop himself into a ruckman/forward “That new ruck/forward role is really taking shape in the AFL, and a lot of people are saying there is not going to be two ruckmen anymore, so I need to add that extra forward string to the bow," he said. “I think we saw last year the return of the big pack marks, so as a big guy, you have got to have good hands and be able to take grabs so that’s probably number one on the priority list."
SYDNEY — Dredge a harbour channel and good things can happen.
the company which has operated the former Sysco bulk terminal for the past 10 years is poised to invest $75 million in its operations here.
Provincial Energy Ventures Ltd., whose parent company is X-Coal of Pennsylvania, announced late last week upgraded operations and facilities will come about as a direct result of Sydney’s recently completed $38-million harbour dredging.
Ernie Thrasher of X-Coal told an economic development conference the upgraded Atlantic Canada Bulk Terminal will be able to handle and store more coal for shipment to other countries. he said a strong market for coal and the dredged harbour mean it will be a good investment.
Thrasher was travelling outside the country Monday and not available for comment.
but the interim president of Sydney and Area Chamber of Commerce was more than glad to discuss his announcement and its implications for this region.
“This is big — really big,” said Joyce MacDougall during a telephone interview Monday.
“This is completely private-sector money being invested because they see the opportunity,” said MacDougall.
“They’ll be doing some dredging of their own so that it will be the same level as the dredged area and the ships will smoothly move into the area where the coal will be loaded and unloaded.”
the investment will cue other industries and businesses to look at Sydney Harbour with renewed interest, she suggested.
“Provincial Energy Ventures knows the workforce after being here for 10 years and they’re putting up $75 million to say we believe in this area and that says a lot,” she added.
After engineering and design work at the site, the construction phase will bring in welcome jobs.
“This is just fantastic news for this area and we believe it’s just the beginning,” MacDougall said.
On its website, Provincial Energy Ventures Ltd. describes the bulk terminal as a “strong link in the Europe/Great Lakes route” and a viable transfer point for commodities. the 44-hectare site has direct waterfront access to Sydney Harbour.
January 13, 2012, 1:04 AM EST
Jan. 13 (Bloomberg) — Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index climbed 0.4 percent to 4,195.90 at the close of trading in Sydney today, taking its gain this week to 2.1 percent. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index advanced 0.2 percent to 3,227.46 in Wellington. It lost 0.8 percent for the week.
the following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.
QBE Insurance Group ltd. (QBE AU) fell 3.1 percent to A$11. the insurer was downgraded to “hold” from “buy” by Kieren Chidgey, an equity analyst at Deutsche Bank AG.
Fletcher Building ltd. (FBU NZ), a New Zealand maker of materials for the building industry, climbed 2.1 percent to NZ$5.93 in Wellington after saying it raised $300 million issuing debt in the U.S.
Linc Energy ltd. surged 18 percent to A$1.33 in Sydney, the most since August 2010. Linc in October narrowed discussions to sell a coal project in Queensland state to two bidders, Chief Executive Officer Peter Bond said at the time.
National Australia Bank ltd. (NAB AU) gained 1 percent to A$23.80. the lender increased capital at its U.K. unit, Clydesdale, by 400 million pounds ($614 million).
Santos ltd. (STO AU), Australia’s third-largest oil and gas producer, advanced 0.8 percent to A$12.85. the Adelaide-based company approved its A$490 million ($506 million) Fletcher Finucane oil project off the West Australian coast.
BHP Billiton ltd. (BHP AU) rose 0.6 percent to A$36.60. the world’s biggest mining company gained after the London Metal Exchange Index of six metals advanced 2.2 percent yesterday. Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU) climbed 0.7 percent to A$65.21.
White Energy co. ltd. (WEC AU) advanced 14 percent to 53 Australian cents. the company said it isn’t aware of any information that hasn’t already been announced that could explain the increase.
–Editor: John McCluskey
To contact the reporter on this story: James Paton in Sydney at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at email@example.com
Feast on a glorious 80-minute lunch-cruise on the world's best Harbour for a teeny tiny $27 and save 51%! Buy as many as you like!
Can there be anything more insidious than visiting relatives from interstate or overseas? They'll entrench themselves at your place, often for weeks on end, and can certainly test the mettle of human cohabitation to its very core. and what do you do with these inconsiderate freeloaders? So often you’re not just playing host, but tour guide too! and if you’ve got unwelcome out-of-towners or you fancy a little touristy treat yourself, then today’s Cudo is the nautical answer to your prayers. So slip on the boat shoes and hang on tight to the poop deck because Cudo’s joined forces with the Sydney Harbour Cruise specialists at Fusion Cruises. and for the rather gracious sum of only $27 per head, you, friends, even unwanted visiting relatives get to climb aboard their wonderfully sleek 400-passenger catamaran, the MV Fusion, for this unforgettable lunchtime Harbour cruise. and immediately eradicate any thought of paying the typical price of $55, because today, for a mere $27, you’re getting all this. and even better you can buy as many vouchers as you like, meaning you can bring as many unwanted visitors as you like or anyone else you possibly fancy. Here’s what’s included in your $27 sea-passage fee… an 80-minute lunchtime cruise departing from Darling Harbour’s Pier 26 at 12.30pm. The cruise guarantees to get up close and personal to all of the Harbour’s sites making it the perfect cruise for visitors or anyone who’s after an afternoon of fun. So bring the camera! Lunch is included too. enjoy a full buffet including Roasted herb potatoes, Penne Pasta with basil tomato sauce, Seasonal stir fired vegetables, Roast beef with traditional gravy, Cold meats, Seafood salad with dill mayonnaise, Fresh cooked prawns, Rich chocolate mud cake and more (Note menu may change on the day).
and for Cudo voucher holders, the ever-hospitable folk at Fusion Cruises will even throw in a glass of wine too. choose a Beelgara red, white or sparkling. and if you do prefer something stiff while taking in the sights, the MV Fusion has two fully licensed bars to really get this party started. Please note bookings are essential and only availably by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org The MV Fusion is a modern three-level catamaran that guarantees a smooth ride no matter the conditions. it offers 360-degree views and plenty of outside deck space so you can get right out among the action and take plenty of great photographs too. The cruise departs from Darling Harbour at 12.30pm daily and should have you back to the wharf in 80-minutes or so (please check T&Cs for full boarding details.) again, that’s lunch, a cruise and a glass of wine all for the staggering price of only $27 per head! Now that’s value! and whether you’ve got visiting relatives in town or you’ve lived in Sydney for eons, you can’t deny that’s one great price for one awesome – and tasty – afternoon of Harbour fun.