What’s the difference

07/05/2021

What’s the difference between an athlete born a girl who takes drugs to enhance her performance and an athlete born a boy who goes through puberty as a male then become a trans woman?

International sports bodies have spent years trying to get rid of performance enhancing drugs but now are too cowered by people who deny scientific reality and scream transphobic at anyone who dares to point out the biological fact that such competition is unfair.

But how can this be fair?

An IOC rule change could see Kiwi weightlifter Laurel Hubbard become the first transgender Olympic athlete.

Inside the Games website reports Hubbard is effectively guaranteed a spot in the women’s super-heavyweight category, after the International Olympic Committee approved an amendment to the qualifying system, due to disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hubbard, 43, competed in men’s weightlifting competitions, before transitioning in 2013.

She has been eligible to compete in the Olympics since 2015, when the IOC issued new guidelines allowing any transgender athlete to compete as a woman, provided their testosterone levels were below 10 nanomoles per litre for at least 12 months before their first competition.

Weightlifting has been at the centre of the debate over the fairness of transgender athletes competing in women’s sports and Hubbard’s presence in Tokyo would attract huge media attention, as well as criticism from fellow lifters and coaches. . .

Women and men do not compete against each other in sports for very good reasons – male hormones make men faster and stronger than women and competition between them could never be equal because of that.

A trans-woman who has transitioned after puberty has the same natural advantage a man has which makes competing in women’s competitions unfair.

That shouldn’t be construed as being trans-phobic but it will be.


Rural round-up

23/01/2021

Stronger business investment by farmers too – is essential for New Zealand’s post-Covid recovery too – Point of Order:

In  its Thursday editorial  the NZ  Herald  speaks an important truth:  “Investment important to  stay  on  track”.  This  won’t  have  startled  its  more literate  readers but  in  its text  it notes  the  strong result  in the latest  Global Dairy Trade auction, which  prompted Westpac  to raise  its  forecast  for  dairy giant Fonterra’s payout  to its farmers to $7.50kg/MS  this season.

“If  this turns  out to be correct,  it will represent the highest  payout in  seven years for  a  sector of  the economy that is arguably still  NZ’s  most  important, even before international  tourism was effectively suspended by Covid-19”.

The  Herald editorial  goes on to make the case that despite the buoyant mood,  the  only  realistic  way for  NZ to remain   in such  solid shape in the  post-Covid era  is  through stronger  business  investment.

This  is  the theme  which  Point  of  Order  set  out  earlier  this  week when it  contended  Fonterra  should go hard  with this  seasons’s payout  to  encourage  investment  by its farmer-shareholders  in expanding  production. . . 

Drought conditions and fire: which regions have reason for concern? – Katie Doyle:

It was a hard summer for many last year, with widespread drought crippling some regions.

Fire bans and water restrictions were in place throughout the country, and with February coming up, there are worries that could happen again.

Northland principal rural fire officer Myles Taylor is already on high alert amid a region-wide fire ban.

“At the moment things are still quite dry, not as bad as they were last year,” Taylor said. . .

A different way of life – Tony Benny:

A North Canterbury family has embraced permaculture to feed themselves and teach others how to do the same. Angela Clifford and Nick Gill talked to Tony Benny.

New Zealander Angela Clifford and her Aussie partner Nick Gill were highfliers in the Australian wine industry when, 17 years ago, Nick was offered a job in New Zealand. They left corporate life behind in favour of getting their hands dirty and creating a different way of life.

“I thought the customs guy at the airport was going to give me a hug and high five. He literally said to Angela, ‘You’ve brought one back’,” laughs Nick, remembering the day they arrived in NZ. . . 

Growing demand for wool fibre – Annette Scott:

A big year is planned for the Campaign for Wool New Zealand Trust as it shifts its focus to drive the demand for wool fibre.

New chair Tom O’Sullivan says while the mandate of the trust is to promote the education and awareness of wool, the focus must go further to support the strong wool industry.

“I feel it goes further than education and awareness, we must be focused on supporting commercial entities to create and sell wool products to drive the demand for wool fibre in general,” O’Sullivan said. . .

Expat workers ready for New Zealand :

Dairy industry recruitment company Rural People Limited is seeing a huge increase in overseas interest to fill New Zealand farming roles.

Rural People director Paula Hems says these overseas workers will be key to keeping the economy in a healthy position. While there has been an increase in Kiwis applying for farming roles since Covid-19, Hems says they often do not have the experience or the right attitude to fill the many roles available. This has seen a need to expand and consider overseas workers.

Rural People hires, on average, 100 Kiwi and overseas workers annually to work on dairy farms throughout New Zealand, as more farmers face urgent labour needs. . . 

Les Everett’s epic quest to uncover Australia’s ‘lost’ cricket pitches – Toby Hussey:

West Australian amateur historian Les Everett is on a mission to document the relics of Australia’s cricketing past, no matter how many kilometres he has to cover.

So far, he has travelled thousands of kilometres and spent hundreds of hours poring over maps and newspaper archives to locate WA’s “lost” cricket pitches.

Mr Everett, 65, says each one has a unique story to tell.

Many of those he’s found are now overgrown or surrounded by fields of crops that have sprouted in the decades since they last heard the echo of willow striking leather. . .

 


Megan Whitehead new world champ

14/01/2021

New Zealand has a new world champion:

 

 


NZ top cricket test team

06/01/2021

The Black Caps have had a very good series:

We could have listened to the commentary on Magic Talk but a whole lot of people who would have watched it on television didn’t/couldn’t because Spark won the TV rights.

It was a business decision by NZ Cricket, we might never know whether what they gained from that compensated for audience loss.


Argentina 25 – NZ 15

14/11/2020

Rugby history was made in Sydney tonight – Los Pumas beat the All Blacks for the first time.

We were in Japan last year when England beat New Zealand in the World Cup semi-final and it looked much the same – the ABs didn’t seem to have a plan for when the game didn’t go their way. When the pressure went on they just kept doing the same things that hadn’t worked before and they kept making errors.

This is the first time the ABs have lost two games in a row since 2011.

That isn’t good for them but it is good for Argentina and it is good for rugby.


Melbourne Cup picks

03/11/2020

The lowest payout for a winner in the Melbourne Cup when I checked a few minutes ago was $7 which strikes me as high and I take it that means betters have no more idea about which horse will win than I do.

Using my usual completely untrustworthy method of picking a winner by the jockey’s colours I’m backing:

TIGER MOTH (23) to win 

And for a place

SIR DRAGONET (14)

 

 


Two races

03/11/2020

Today the race that is said to stop two nations will be run as never before.

The Melbourne Cup will still get attention on both sides of the Tasman Sea but without  the fashion and fun that are usually the focus at Flemington Racecourse.

The race is another victim of Covid-19 and will be run with no spectators.

The other race which has world-wide attention, and the outcome of which is far more important,  is the one for the President of the USA.

Polls favour the Democrat challenger Joe Biden over the incumbent Republican Donald Trump but the polls four years ago favoured Hillary Clinton.

Whether or not the polls reflect the outcome this time, they won’t answer a question about the quality of the candidates.

We have only five million people which is a relatively shallow pool from which to fish good leaders.

How, when the USA has a population of more than 300 million can these two men be the best candidates the country can come up with?


Olive and Mabel

11/07/2020

Company meeting:


Olive and Mabel

04/07/2020

From the sporting archives:


Not cricket

21/02/2020

We were in Vejer de la Frontera, a wee village in south west Spain when New Zealand was playing England in the final of the Cricket World Cup last year.

It was early evening there and we were listening to the commentary on my farmer’s phone as we went for our pre-prandial walk.

When we got to the main plaza I heard some English accents from four people sitting outside one of the bars. I asked them if they were following the cricket, they said they’d tried but couldn’t get any commentary from England.

I said we could get it from New Zealand, they asked us to join them and we sat there in Spain, about as far away as we could be from Radio Sport and listening as if we were at home.

We might be able to listen to overseas international matches in future but it’s unlikely anyone will be able to listen to home internationals and domestic games now NZME hasn’t been able to come to an agreement with New Zealand Cricket for the broadcast rights.

New Zealand Media and Entertainment’s Radio Sport has today announced it has chosen not to renew the rights to broadcast live commentary of New Zealand Cricket’s domestic season (domestic and international matches played in New Zealand) next summer.

Radio Sport will continue to keep Kiwi cricket fans in the know across next summer with match updates, robust opinion, in-depth analysis and plenty of talkback.

NZME’s Head of Talk Jason Winstanley said, “Radio Sport has enjoyed being the ‘Home of Cricket’ for over 20 years and we treasure our connection with New Zealand cricket fans. We have been in discussions with New Zealand Cricket for some time but haven’t been able to reach agreement on the rights. Our cricket coverage has run at a loss – something we’ve previously been prepared to wear, but we’re now taking the opportunity to rethink our offering in this space. . .

This is a business decision from both NZME and NZ Cricket and one the latter might come to regret because there is no obvious successor to NZME.

It’s business, but there will be a lot of fans who think this decision is hardly cricket.

 


All equal?

03/11/2019

The All Blacks played their best in the quarter finals.

England played best in the semis.

South Africa saved their best for the final and now hold the Rugby World Cup for the third time.

But, since the All Blacks beat the Sprinboks, England beat beat the All Blacks and the Sprinboks beat England, are we all equal at the top?


Not so much the loss

27/10/2019

It wasn’t so much the loss, as the way the All Blacks lost that made last night’s Rugby World Cup semi-final such a disappointment.

Last week the team was on fire against Ireland, last night they looked like they’d lost their spark.

My heart has been backing Wales to win this evening but I’d rather face them than South Africa in the Plate match for third so might have to go with my head.

In other news North Otago won the Meads Cup, and this afternoon the Silver Ferns will be doing their best to beat the Diamonds in the deciding match for the Constellation Cup.


Gotta love the Irish

20/10/2019


Farmer’s Voice – Jack Jordan

20/10/2019

On this month’s Farmers Voice Wiggy head’s up to Taumarunui to catch up with 6-time underarm wood chopping world champ Jack Jordan, and has a chat about his passion for farming, rugby and woodchopping.


Farmer’s Voice – Roland Smith

13/10/2019

Craig Wiggins talks to Rowland Smith about his 12-month highlights. Title holder of Golden Shears, NZ Shears, 8 hour record and becoming a master shearer.


Rugby explained

12/10/2019

Jordan Watson has expanded his repertoire from How to Dad to how to play rugby:


Sir Brian Lochore 3.9.40 – 3.8.19

04/08/2019

All Black, captain, selector, coach, farmer, community stalwart and good man, Sir Brian Lochore has died.

Lochore, All Black #637, represented New Zealand in the black jersey on 68 occasions, including 25 Tests. He was the All Blacks Captain in 1966 and went on to lead the team in 18 Tests.

In 1985-87 Lochore become the All Blacks coach, with his crowning achievement winning the 1987 inaugural Rugby World Cup.

He was made a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to sport and the community and also inducted to the International Rugby Hall of Fame in 1999. On Waitangi Day in 2007, he received the country’s highest honour, the Order of New Zealand.

New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said Sir Brian passed away surrounded by family.

“It is with great sadness and grief that we announce that Sir Brian succumbed to his battle with cancer, earlier today. We have lost a genuine legend of our country, an unwavering figure on the field, and a highly respected figure off it. His family has lost a devoted husband, father and grandfather and for many of us, a great friend.

“It is not over-stating the facts to say that Sir Brian Lochore, was the saviour of New Zealand rugby on several occasions and many of us have lost a great mate. Our hearts go out to Pam and their children.”

All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “It’s with great sadness that we have heard that one of New Zealand’s tallest kauri has fallen.

“Sir Brian Lochore is one of of the most respected men in New Zealand, not only in rugby but all facets of New Zealand life, as well as being hugely respected and held in high regard around the world. . . 

Lochore’s standing in the community, not only in rugby but also in farming, saw him involved in many committees while he also served a term as chairman of the national sports funding organisation, the Hillary Commission and his contribution to New Zealand across all fields was acknowledged in 1999 when he was knighted and he received the country’s highest honour, the Order of New Zealand in 2007. His contribution to New Zealand Rugby was acknowledged when he received the Steinlager Salver for distinguished service in 2003, an award repeated on the international stage when he received the International Rugby Board’s (World Rugby) Vernon Pugh Award for distinguished services in 2006.

He was also a trustee of the New Zealand Rural Games Trust which I chaired for a couple of years.

Working with him was a pleasure and a privilege.

His death leaves a big hole, not least among his family and friends to whom I offer sincere sympathy.


NZ 52 – Aust 51

22/07/2019

The Silver Ferns have won the Netball World Cup, beating the Australian Diamonds 52 – 51.

It’s New Zealand’s first World Cup title in 16 years and fifth overall; the last time they tasted glory was in Jamaica in 2003. . .

 


Can the Blackcaps storm the barricades?

14/07/2019

France will be waking up to Bastille Day.

And the Blackcaps will be mentally preparing storm the barricades of English cricket in front of a home crowd.


If NZ could win only 1 World Cup…

13/07/2019

If New Zealand could win only one World Cup this year which should it be?


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