March 2017

The Weekender 25/03/2017

Hello, the weather is getting colder and darker!


Sport

In Super Rugby, the Crusader jumped to the top of the table with a bonus point 45-17 win over the Western Force and they are likely to stay there with the Chiefs having a bye this week. The Blues are trying to stop a three-match losing streak and are 7-7 against the Bulls at half-time. Last weekend the Hurricanes thrashed the Highlanders 41-15.
In other rugby news, it was all smiles over here when the Irish beat England meaning they equalled - but didn't break - the All Blacks' record for the most wins over tier one opposition.

The cricket tests against South Africa continued with the final match here in Hamilton. At the end of the first day, South Africa are 123-4, however, the weather isn't looking good and I'd be surprised if there is much more play.

In football, the All Whites beat Fiji 2-0 in a World Cup Qualifier.

In rugby league, Kiwis player Jason Taumalolo has signed a 10-year, $10 million deal to stay with the Cowboys.

After nine years at the NZ Breakers, they have parted ways with Corey Webster, with Corey not being offered a new deal.

Lydia Ko has had her third consecutive top 10 finish on the LPGA tour when she finished eighth at the Founders Cup in Arizona.


NZ News

John Key has given his farewell speech from Parliament this week.

The opposition politicians were jumping up and down this week over Nicky Hagar's new book indicating that a New Zealand military operation in Afghanistan was responsible for a number of civilian casualties. It all caused quite a stir, however, as long as you don't immediately discount anything a non-opposition politician says, it had quite a clear answer. The event happened in 2010, and there was an inquiry then. The result was that those events may have happened, but they certainly weren't the result of any actions of any New Zealand soldiers. Prime Minister Bill English said the claims in the book, don't provide any new information, so really it just seems to be someone trying to stir things up to make some money.

After my note last weekend that Auckland had failed to save enough water, the reports have been coming in thick & fast about how well they are doing! First, they hit 391m litres, which was below the 400m litre target. Then on a typically busy day, they only used 406m litres and are now back down to 397m litres.


The Numbers Game

10.5: % support for Jacinda Ardern as preferred Prime Minister, more than her party leader Andrew Little on 8.3%, Winston Peters on 8.9%
25: % support for Bill English as preferred Prime Minister - well ahead of the opposition
361: kg and 4.2m long swordfish for finishing show host Nicky Sinden - an expected world record
26,000: Adele fans took the train and 6,000 took the bus home after the busy concert - but it took some over three hours


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5619 (-0.0042)
EUR 0.6506 (0.0000 !! a first?)
USD 0.7020 (0.0020)
AUD 0.9209 (0.0105)


The Weekender NZer of the week

We don't know their names but three good samaritans saved a woman at Port Waikato this week. She was in trouble when a 43-year-old man saw and swam out to her. She was unable to support herself and he kept her afloat, while two surfers, aged 18 & 19, came to their aid and helped them all back to shore on their surfboards.
There was no doubt that the three men had saved her life.


Joke of the Weekender

5 Lies Job Applicants Tell
Gilding the lily is a job seeker’s birthright. Here are a few doozies, where the applicant claimed …
… to be a former CEO of the company to which he was applying.
… to be fluent in two languages—one of which was pig Latin.
… to be a Nobel Prize winner.
… to have worked in a jail when he was really in there serving time.
… he was fired “on accident.”


Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 18/03/2017

Welcome along. Last weekend saw quite a bit of flooding in various parts of Auckland, but the week has seen some lovely blue sky, roof off days.


Sport

Last week the first cricket test match against South Africa ended in a draw, and Kane Williamson made it to second on the test cricket batting rankings.
The second cricket test match has just been wrapped up with South Africa winning by eight wickets. The Black Caps looked ok after the first innings having South Africa on the ropes at 6-94, before rolling over and allowing them to reach 359 (!), and then being bowled out for 171 in the second innings.

The NZ Warriors were beaten 12-24 by Canterbury Bulldogs in Dunedin last night.

Following up Super rugby from last weekend, the Crusaders were 20-7 behind the Reds at the three-quarter mark before winning 20-22, although Israel Dagg was injured in the match. The Brumbies beat the Western Force 25-17, the Highlanders beat the awful Blues 16-12, the Cheetahs beat the Sunwolves 38-31, the Stormers beat the Southern Kings 41-10, the Sharks beat the Waratahs 37-14, and the Jaguares beat the Lions 36-24.
I may have said the Chiefs were the only unbeaten NZ team in Super rugby, but that remained not the correct this weekend as the Crusaders pulled off yet another miracle comeback to beat the Blues 33-24, after being 5-21 down at half time. Tonight Beauden Barrett's brother Jordie put on a great game as the Hurricanes thrashed the Highlanders 41-15.
Table after 4 rounds: Chiefs 19, Crusaders 16, Hurricanes 15, Stormers* 13, Cheetahs*/Sharks*/Jaguares*/Lions* 9, Blues/Brumbies*/Reds* 6, Highlanders/Bulls*/Force* 5, Kings*/Waratahs* 4, Sunwolves 1, Rebels 0 (* played 3 games)
In other news, All Blacks and Chiefs scrum-half Tawera Kerr-Barlow has signed with French club La Rochelle for three years from the end of 2017. All Blacks and Hurricanes fullback Nehe Milner-Skudder has been ruled out of rugby for six weeks with a fractured foot.
The All Black Sevens team was knocked out of the Vancouver Sevens by England in the quarter-finals.

Lydia Ko has moved into third on the all-time list for the most weeks as World No.1 in woman's golf. She has held the top spot for 92 weeks.


NZ News

Aucklanders were told last week that they needed to take drastic water saving measures - which they all ignored, although Z and Caltex closed their car washes. A few days later it was announced they had failed to save enough water to meet their targets.

A Northland sheep farmer was named the countries best cheesemaker this week.Cathy Oakley of Kerikeri won in her first attempt, with a sheep cheese described as "a semi-hard sheep cheese with a delightful texture and feel in the mouth" finished off with "delicate savoury and mildly spicy flavours".


The Numbers Game

70: % increase in American's applying for NZ citizenship after Donald Trump's election win
94: % of kiwis now have access to the Vodafone 4G network. Spark (nee Telecom) claim 90% coverage
67,850: $ paid for a rare NZ stamp by an overseas collector - one of only seven known surviving copies
1.6m: $ for a diabetes study will be provided by the New Zealand Health Research Council


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5661 (-0.0022)
EUR 0.6506 (-0.0005)
USD 0.7000 (0.0087)
AUD 0.9104 (-0.0083)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Alan MacDiarmid
Plastic Fantastic
For a hundred years young graduates have been told that “there’s a great future in plastics.” That exhortation continues to have currency today, thanks to the work of New Zealand born and educated scientist Alan MacDiarmid who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2000 for his and his colleagues’ “discovery and development of electronically conductive polymers.” The Nobel Prize recognised advances that are seen to be the future of the technology fuelling the age of information. Alan, the model of a scientist, lives by the sign in his study: “I am a very lucky person and the harder I work the luckier I seem to be.”
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/alan-macdiarmid/


Joke of the Weekender

When my coworker answered his phone, the confused woman on the other end asked, “Who is this?”
“This is Steve. With whom did you wish to speak?”
After a pause: “Did you just say whom?”
“Yes, I did.”
The woman replied, “I have the wrong number,” and hung up.


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 11/03/2017

It has been a busy weather week with massive storms, and huge rain over the North Island. Many Coromandel roads were closed as well as schools.


Sport

The NZ Warriors kicked off their season with a 26-22 win over Newcastle last weekend, but this weekend in the storm, the Melbourne Storm were too good, winning 10-26.

In rugby sevens the Black Ferns beat Australia 28-5 in the final to win the Las Vegas title. For the men, South Africa beat Fiji 19-12, with the All Black Sevens edged by Fiji 19-14 in the semi-finals.
The big game of Super rugby this weekend was the two unbeaten kiwi teams, the Chiefs hosting the Hurricanes. It was very wet, but the Hurricanes just never seemed to be in the game. The final results was 26-18 after the Canes had a late try, although the Chiefs Michael Leitch will face the judiciary for a dangerous tackle.

The White Ferns couldn't quite finish off the series, with Australia chasing down 271 to win the final game.

In the Aussie V8s Shane van Gisbergen had back to back wins in Adelaide for a perfect start to defending his title.


NZ News

The government has agreed to back a Green Party proposal to give domestic violence victims extra leave from work. National reversed its original decision.

For the first time, a ship has been ordered to leave New Zealand because it was found to be severely contaminated. From 2018, all ships will have to have a clean hull.

A third group has quit the Land and Water Forum to protest the Government's freshwater policy. There are still 54 groups in the Forum, but the government might have some issues.

In political news, Labour confirmed Jacinda Ardern as deputy leader. 
Prime Minister Bill English announced that National would be looking at the superannuation age. The cost of NZ Superannuation is expected to triple in the next 20 years as more people reach the over-65 age group, and live longer. So Bill English's proposal is to raise the age to 67 in 20 years. The experts have said that even raising the age to 67 is not enough, while the politicians - especially Winston Peters - jump up and down saying it is a terrible thing to be doing.


The Numbers Game

163.4: kg Black Marlin caught off the Northland coast, by former Olympic swimmer Moss Burmester
1,280: houses without power in the North Shore
424m: $ for the NZ video game industry after a 4% increase in revenues


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5683 (-0.0056)
EUR 0.6511 (-0.0165)
USD 0.6913 (-0.0122)
AUD 0.9187 (-0.0112)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Kate Sheppard
Suffragist
The leader and main figurehead of the suffragist movement in New Zealand – the first country in the world to grant universal adult suffrage to men and women equally. Kate was a source of inspiration to suffragists and campaigners for equality between the sexes, both in New Zealand and throughout the world.
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/kate-sheppard/


Joke of the Weekender

Harry Hill on Dog Enthusiasm

Why do dogs always race to the door when the doorbell rings? It’s hardly ever for them.


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 04/03/2017

Hello, we had some lovely days this week - even though it's now officially autumn.


Sport

Last weekend the Crusaders hung on to beat the Brumbies 17-13. This weekend in the battle of the Bombays, the Chiefs were just ahead before half-time, when the Blues' Steven Luatua had an off the ball, swinging arm resulting in him getting a red card. The Chiefs piled on the tries & points and although the Blues got three consolation tries, the Chiefs won 41-26. The Hurricanes continued their easy wins against easy opposition this weekend with a 71-6 win over the Melbourne Rebels, and in the southern derby, the Highlanders were well in control 27-6 ahead before the Crusaders stormed back to win 27-30.

In cricket, the White Ferns put on a record run chase against Australia in the Rosebowl 3 match series, for a five-wicket win. Australia looked good for 300 until some excellent death bowling restricted them to 275. NZ had never chased down that many but an unbeaten 102 by Amy Satterthwaite and some good scoring by others resulted in the win. Unfortunately, Australia levelled the series with a 16-ball win in the second ODI.
In men's cricket, the Black Caps thrashed South Africa in the fourth ODI in Hamilton. South Africa batted first a reached a healthy 279-8, but opener Martin Guptill was in absolutely amazing form and ended up unbeaten on 180 for a seven-wicket win with five overs to spare.
The final ODI has just finished in Auckland and South Africa rolled NZ for 149 and won by six wickets to win the series 3-2.

Eliza McCartney broke her own National record in the pole vault at the Auckland Track Challenge, setting a new record of 4.82m.

Defending champ Shane van Gisbergen has won the opening race of the Aussie V8's at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide, with fellow kiwi Fabian Coulthard finishing second.

The sad news of the week is that former Silver Fern Tania Dalton passed away, aged 45, after suffering an aneurysm while playing touch rugby.


NZ News

The government and the unions reached an agreement this week to give pay equity and jump-start after the government accepted the recommendations of a joint working group of Business NZ and the CTU. The changes mean that if you think you are underpaid in a field dominated by women, you can raise a pay equity claim with your employer.

In political news this week, Prime Minister Bill English has defended the high numbers of immigrants arriving in NZ, saying that businesses are struggling to fill roles with young kiwi workers because drug tests are required these days. He said businesses raise the issue with two or three times a week. The funny thing is that political opponents complained 10 years ago when 35,000 people were leaving for Australia every year because the government wasn't doing enough to keep them here. John Key said he would give those people a reason to stay - and he did. Now the political opponents are complaining because so many people want to come into the country.
The other big political news of the week is that after Jacinda Adern's big win in the very safe Labour seat by-election, there was talk that she should be the Labour deputy leader. That didn't look likely with Annette King having lots of union support. However, King has decided to step down and retire from Parliament.


The Numbers Game

5.2: Richter scale quake near Cheviot in Canterbury
20: % of kiwis no longer have a land line phone
24.6: % of cars registered in 2016 were white
43: % jump in Auckland's Ateed staff travel costs - prompting a promise from Auckland Mayor Phil Goff to crack down on it
218: people have reoffended in the last two years, out of the 660 kiwis deported from Australia
466: failed pre-employment drug tests in the three years since it was introduced
466: kg blue marlin was pulled in by a first-time angler off Ahipara in Northland
721: households without power in Auckland's Ponsonby area this evening
50,000: households without power in Northern Canterbury after a major power cut
240m: $ applied for by Hamilton City Council from the Governments $1b housing funding - while Auckland tries to decide what to do


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5739 (-0.0020)
EUR 0.6676 (-0.0143)
USD 0.7035 (-0.0182)
AUD 0.9299 (-0.0075)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Alexander Aitken
The Human Computer 
Alexander Aitken was the greatest mathematician of his era and possessed an astonishing computational brain that could complete challenges that today are reserved for the most complex computers. As one of the most remarkable mathematical brains of all time, Aitken could recite Pi to 707 decimal places, multiply two nine-digit numbers in his head in 30 seconds, and render fractions to 26 decimal places in under five seconds.
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/alexander-aitken/


Joke of the Weekender

The joke for this week was a story from the paper about a couple of American's who got chatting to a woman at Wellington Airport.
The details are here -> http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11808882&ref=rss


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}