January 2017

The Weekender 07/01/2017

Welcome along to a new year. This is a bit of a one-off catch-up, as I'll be away for next couple of weeks.


The Wellington Phoenix had some good news with Shane Smeltz signing for the rest of the season. The former golden boot might help them end well.

The Chiefs had some not-good news with Wales coach Warren Gatland turning down the chance to take over as head coach. It might have been a step down from Wales to the Chiefs but it's closer to home!
Owen Franks has re-signed with the NZRU until 2019. Owen is the second most capped All Blacks prop.
Charlie Faumuina has signed a deal with Toulouse, beginning at the start of the next European season. He has played for the All Blacks 46 times.

Steven Adams had an outstanding month, well ahead on his averages and almost continually setting scoring records. Unfortunately, the OKC Thunder aren't doing quite so well with the results.

Bangladesh are touring NZ at the moment and in the first ODI, NZ reached 341-7 with opener Tom Latham scoring 137, then Bangladesh were all out for 264 for a 77 run win. In the second ODI NZ reached 251 with an unbeaten 109 from Neil Broom and Bangladesh were all out for 184 for a 67 run win. In the third ODI Bangladesh reached 236/9 and NZ had an eight-wicket win with Kane Williamson reaching 95 not out and Neil Broom scoring 97. In the Twenty20 series Bangladesh scored 141/8 and NZ made it with six wickets and 12 balls to spare. In the second Twenty20, NZ reached 195/7 with a Colin Munro ton, and Bangladesh were all out for 148. The third Twenty20 is tomorrow and then there are two test matches.

NZ News

Kiwi Rail announced that they would be replacing their ageing electric fleet with diesel trains. The decision was criticised by the Greens and Labour - but of course, it's a business decision, not a political one.

A Canadian woman was sent home after she tried to smuggle her pet cat into the country in her handbag. That is the sort of people customs has to deal with. Now that I ponder it, any air travel involves lots of scanning of all hand luggage - how did she think it was going to work?

A kea was found dead after a 1080 drop down south, however, DOC investigated and it was found to have died from chocolate poisoning.

The New Years honours were announced and Valerie Adams was made NZ's youngest Dame or Knight. The sailing duo of Peter Burling and Blair Tuke were made Members of the New Zealand Order of Merit, as was Paralympic gold and silver medalist Liam Malone.

The Numbers Game

3: cruise ships visited Tauranga in one day, and after Christmas, we joined tens of thousands of other people to farewell the world's fourth largest cruise ship
5.5: Richter scale earthquake in central New Zealand, and there was a 5.3 a week or two later
19: people died over the holiday period (Christmas and New Year)
130: people caught in a month-long sting operation aiming for drunk drivers in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty
320: people died on our roads last year, the most in six years
10,000: $ found in a bag by Auckland man Nigel Edwards - and he went to great lengths to track the owners and return it to them
32,828: earthquakes in the Shaky Isles last year - the most recorded in GeoNet's 15-year history
1m: $ more from the government for Syrians affected by war
3m: $ more funding for Geonet to improve how it monitors and reacts to earthquakes
410.6m: $ spent at shops in just one month in the Bay of Plenty
10b: $ (around) has been spent on travel by NZers in the last year

Finance NZ Dollar

Since the 18/12/2016
GBP 0.5665 (0.0098)
EUR 0.6622 (-0.0029)
USD 0.7004 (0.0050)
AUD 0.9561 (0.0048)

The Weekender NZer of the week

Maurice Wilkins 
A Nobel Prize winner in Physiology and Medicine in 1962 for his contribution to the discovery of the structure of DNA – the very essence of life itself – and a New Zealander by birth, Maurice Wilkins is among our greatest achievers.
Research undertaken by Maurice Wilkins, with support from Rosalind Franklin, led to the discovery of the DNA molecule structure. This discovery, by American geneticist James Watson and British biophysicist Francis Crick in 1953, revolutionised biology and medicine.

Joke of the Weekender

No Dumb Questions (Except This One)
Just before the final exam in my college finance class, a less-than-stellar student approached me.
“Can you tell me what grade I would need to get on the exam 
to pass the course?” he asked.
I gave him the bad news. “The exam is worth 100 points. You would need 113 points to earn a D.”
“OK,” he said. “And how many points would I need to get a C?”


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}