The Weekender 14/07/2018

Hello, we've had a reasonable week but another storm is coming! 


Last weekend Damian McKenzie was key to helping the Chiefs to a tense 24-19 win over the Brumbies in Hamilton. The Hurricanes retained their spot with a 42-24 win over the Blues with Laumape bagging four tries. The Blues hung in there for most of the game but couldn't quite help the Chiefs up a spot by tipping the Canes over. This weekend the Queensland Reds have finished their most successful season after a 48-27 win over the Sunwolves - coach Brad Thorn must be happy. In Hamilton, the Chiefs left a number of top players out, and a few more were injured but they still managed to beat the Hurricanes 28-24 - even with a 63-minute red card. The game will be replayed next weekend for the quarter-finals but will be tougher as it's in Wellington.

The top eight are looking like: Crusaders, Waratahs, Lions, Hurricanes, Chiefs, Highlanders, Jaguares, and either the Sharks or Rebels. But that is due to the conference system. With points, four NZ teams may actually be ahead of all other teams.
Former Auckland and North Harbour coach Wayne Pivac will replace Warren Gatland as head coach of Wales after Gatland finishes up his term.

New Zealand riders have been making history in the Tour de France this week with Dion Smith becoming the first Kiwi to wear the polka dot King of the Mountain jersey. The very next day Patrick Bevin helped his team (BMC Racing) to the win for the "team time trial", so was on the podium as well.

Ryan Fox finished runner-up at the Irish Open after losing a play-off. He still picks up $1.5m for his efforts.

Scott Dixon didn't do too well in Iowa finishing 12th but retained the series lead.

New Zealand has another shot put champion with Maddison Wesche winning the Women's Under 20 World Champs in Finland.

The White Ferns (NZ women's cricket team) lost the first two ODI's against England but won the last by four-wickets.

NZ News

So last weekend it appeared the nurses liked the latest DHB offer and were prepared to accept, but against the advice of their union, they rejected the offer and this week they went on strike while Prime Minister Winston Peters said: "this is the best we can do".
And what do you think the Health Minister was doing in the lead-up? Having late night meetings trying to avoid the strike action perhaps? No, he took his family on an overseas holiday.
When Labour was campaigning before the last election, they said they would be transparent, and there was a group of people who hated John Key, believing everything he did was secretive and terrible. But every week we seem to hear stories about how Labour is pretty much doing the same sorts of things or worse. This week it was a secretive meeting with Google that despite official ideals, no meeting notes were taken. The National MP said he had a few such meetings but only with other countries & never with corporates.

The Opportunities Party started by Gareth Morgan has decided that it won't contest the next election. The party was formed in 2016 and got 2.4% of the vote. Always good for a quote, Morgan said: "When 20 per cent of the vote moves in 48 hours simply on the back of a change of leader, with no improvement at all in policy being offered, what makes the New Zealand voter tick is clear."

The Numbers Game

2: whales found washed up on a Northland shore are so rare they've only been seen at sea 30 times before
90: % of NZers filled in the census form, down from 94.5% in 2013
4,000: MBIE and Inland Revenue staff went on strike for two hours this week - they must think they deserve more than 34% more they get than public staff in similar roles
158m: $ infrastructure loan for Tauranga from the government - that's a 10-year interest-free loan
2.3b: $ announced by Prime Minister Winston Peters to replace the ageing Air Force fleet

Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5109 (-0.0038)
EUR 0.5785 (-0.0031)
USD 0.6762 (-0.0078)
AUD 0.9105 (-0.0096)

The Weekender NZer of the week

Brian Brake
design of the image

Joke of the Weekender

I want to die peacefully in my sleep like my grandfather did, not screaming in terror like the passengers in his car.


Darren Harrison:
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