Region’s fire danger looms withchanges to burn permits

REGION – The Country Fire Authority is advising communities and residents of the changes to the issuing of permits to burn stubble.
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The Country Fire Authority has advised residents and communities of changes to the issuing of permits to burn stubble.

Northern Grampians Shire Council has commenced issuing permits, with Ararat Rural City and Pyrenees Shire Councils to follow in coming weeks.

CFA District 16 operations manager, Chris Eagle said all three council areas have the same permit conditions, but they have changed since last year.

“The big change is that people can now get a permit that will last for the entire danger period,” he said.

“We are looking to encourage people to apply for permits well in advance, rather than when they are ready to burn to alleviate the pressure on shires to issue permits on the day prior to correct weather conditions, thus the change to non-date range limitations on permits.”

Conditions (stage 1) for burning are as follows:

Three units.

3600 litres of water.

Six responsible people in attendance.

Three metre break.

14.00 hours ignition (daylight saving time), 13.00 hours (commencing Sunday, April 6).

Permits will be open dated (that is, cover remainder of fire danger period) and are guaranteed to be returned within five business days if approved.

It will be a requirement that a fire break around the entire perimeter is free of flammable material, then mechanically turned.

“When planning to burn off, if landowners could take into account the fire danger of days following the day of the intended burn,” Mr Eagle said.

“For example, if they planned to burn on Sunday (and conditions were right (less than 33 degree Celsius and less than 15 kilometre an hour winds), but Monday or Tuesday had expected higher temperatures or higher winds, that consideration be given to delay the burn until the next lull in the weather pattern.”

Mr Eagle said for the first time in 70 years the Fire Danger Period has been altered to remain in place an extra month across District 16 until the onset of winter on June 1.

“The Fire Danger Period is in place until midnight on May 31, which is another change from last year,” Mr Eagle said.

“It may be lifted prior to this, but it all depends on rain over next few weeks.”

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League heavyweights turn out for Dave Sheldrick Cup

Rugby league
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THE second round of the Dave Sheldrick Cup was watched over by some rugby league administration heavyweights on Wednesday night.

NRL head of football Todd Greenberg, and CRL chairman John Anderson, chief executive Terry Quinn and operations manager Robert Lowrie, had been touring the Riverina this week and spent time watching the school-age series.

The tour, which also took in Temora, West Wyalong and Griffith, was a chance to inspect facilities and game development programs, as well as competitions.

It was Greenberg’s first rip to the MIA as second-in-charge of the game.

“It is bit of a learning trip for me, to meet the people on the ground and understand the challenges,” he said.

“We want to know how we can give assistance. We are meeting a range of parties to concentrate on the work we can do in country areas.”

With an eye on resources, infrastructure development, there was some discussion of upgrades to the No. 1 Oval changerooms.

“We’re looking at a number of different facilities,” Greenberg said.

“The quality of the field itself is fantastic. It will be great when you can put in new dressing rooms.”

The group had found “a lot of passionate people working extremely hard” for the game in Leeton.

“Rugby league is an important part of the community, not just playing on the field, but also what we do off the field,” Greenberg said.

“There are a lot of volunteers and we owe them a great debt of gratitude.”

School-age rugby league

LEETON High is the new Dave Sheldrick Shield champion after a 10-4 win over St Francis College at a sodden No. 1 Oval on Wednesday night.

Playing in damp conditions, Leeton continued the winning form it found the week before to claim its first shield title since 2006.

It is also the first time the school has won the shield outright after a countback was needed when all three schools won a game that year.

While the rugby league has been decided, the league tag is still alive after St Francis downed Leeton High 12-4 in at-times torrential rain.

THE Dave Sheldrick games at No. 1 Oval on Wednesday were watched by (from left) NRL head of football Todd Greenberg, CRL chief executive officer Terry Quinn, CRL chairman John Anderson, CRL operations manager Robert Lowrie and NRL game development manager south west region Adam Perry.

LEETON High School’s Rheanna O’Connell.

ST FRANCIS College player Billy Dickinson is tackled by Leeton High’s Lachlan Eldridge.

The win came in front of a capacity crowd, packed into the two grandstands out of the rain.

NRL game development officer Tim Del Guzzo said despite the conditions, there were not many mistakes caused by the wet.

“Both sides defended well,” Del Guzzo said.

“St Francis had a chance at the end when they scored with two minutes to go … but they took too long to kick.”

Unlike game one, the forwards held each other. “In the end, it was the backs that got the job done for Leeton High,” Del Guzzo said.

“They created room outside. Tereapii and Corey Graham steered the ship out there.”

Because the girls competition is still alive, the Dave Sheldrick Shield will be presented to the Leeton High boys at the conclusion of next week’s game.

St Francis College will host Yanco Agricultural High School at No. 1 Oval from 6.30pm on Wednesday. While each school will want to win the tag title, both will be playing for pride in the league.

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Can Berry repeat one day final performance?

SHOALHAVEN Ex-Servicemen’s and Berry-Shoalhaven Heads will face off this weekend in the Shoalhaven District Cricket Association third grand final at Lyrebird sports park.
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Both teams competing this weekend would feel relieved to be competing for the title after some close affairs during their semi-final clashes.

Ex-Servo’s just scraped home against Ulladulla by 17 runs and Berry came from behind on the first innings against Batemans Bay to win with only three balls remaining in the match.

Ex-Servo’s are the favourites going into this game having defeated Berry in every match during the regular season.

But Berry did surprise them in the one day final, taking the honours there.

Ex-Servo’s will rely on their tight bowling attack with Ben Philpott, Andrew Wilson and Luke Stevenson leading the way.

Aaron Van Essen will lead from the front with the bat with plenty of support from Nathan Dobeson, Kurt Regan and Shawn Higgins.

Ex-Servo’s took out all the association awards in this grade and have no less than four batsmen who have made centuries.

Berry will need to be at their best to cause another upset in the final but they do have the tools to do so.

Tom Parish and the Mitchell brothers will be key for Berry with the bat, while Joe Rogers and Daniel Troy will need to be on the spot with the ball.

Shane’s tip: Ex-Servos

Pat’s tip: Ex-Servos

Gillian’s tip: Berry

MAN ON A MISSION: Shoalhaven Ex-Servicemen’s second grade captain Shawn Higgins will need to make an impact against Berry. Photo: PATRICK FAHY

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Batsmen equal record of centuries

GLENN Brandon’s match-winning 138 for Berry-Shoalhaven Heads was the 14th century made in first grade matches for this season.
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TEAM EFFORT: Berry-Shoalhaven Heads batsman Glenn Brandon added to this season’s record-equalling centuries.

This equalled the record for the period since all matches have been played on turf wickets, now in its 50th season.

The record was established in 2008-09 when the 14 hundreds came from all seven competing clubs.

History repeated itself this season with the knocks coming from all eight clubs, the number increased by the inclusion of Batemans Bay.

Brandon, Matt Sethi (Batemans Bay) and Harley Bell (Ulladulla United) each scored two, while grand finalists Ex-Servicemen and Berry-Shoalhaven Heads provided three apiece.

There will be talk before the toss is made tomorrow, about the chances of the record being beaten in the grand final, but history suggests that to be a long shot.

Over the past 50 years there have been only three grand final centuries – by Eddie Jarrett (Berry) in 1964-65, John Austin (Bomaderry) in 1969-70, and Trevor Lillico (Ex-Servicemen) in 2000-01.

However of the three, only Austin was in the winning team.

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Sapphire Coast karters tearing up the track

BEGA kart racer Jack Loftus showed visitors a thing a two at the Sapphire Coast Kart Club’s (SCKC) Sapphire Cup race meet recently.
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• Frogs Hollow kart racer Jack Loftus (right) leads the final of the senior national pro class ahead of Leigh Johnston-Crawley and William Lucas during the Sapphire Cup recently.

Jack raced to three national class wins recently with the club now excited to host endurance racing tomorrow.

Club secretary Janelle Loftus said it was a “very successful event” with a huge number of visiting racers.

“[We had] karters coming from Bairnsdale, Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong and Canberra,” Janelle said.

“Bega karters had great success with many finishing on the podium.”

Janelle said she was proud of her son Jack, who took out three divisions during the event.

“Jack made his debut in the senior division.

“[He] won the senior clubman pro class, rotax 125 restricted class and our major class the senior national pro with $1000 in prize money,” she said.

Jack scored himself $1200 in overall winnings for his efforts.

Janelle said other Bega karters also performed well.

“Bailey Cooper finished third in the cadets class … Clifton Young [was] second in the tag pro.

“All three placegetters in the tag restricted were from Sapphire, with Jack, Lance Ogier and Tom Cruickshank.

“There was great racing between these members,” she said.

Another local, Dylan Peters, also claimed third in the clubman pro series.

Janelle said she was thrilled to see local karters doing well against strong national competition.

She is now looking forward to endurance racing events this weekend – weather permitting.

“We are hosting endurance karts [tomorrow],” Loftus said.

“It will be six hours endurance racing in a team event.”

The endurance races are made up of teams of drivers who share time on the track.

Janelle said there would be a strong field of racers for the event, but only one local team taking part.

“We have one local team entered of Jack, Brad Cole and Cliff Pistorius.

“They will be flying the flag for the Sapphire Coast,” she said.

Janelle urged anyone interested in watching the races to head along as spectators are more than welcome.

“There is free entry and a canteen is available.

“Come out and support your local karters,” she said.

The club is expecting to see big fields for the event with many teams travelling to race.

“We have teams coming from Sydney, Wollongong, Canberra and Newcastle,” Janelle said.

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