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Munro’s swashbuckling century helps NZ level T20 series

By Associated Press
Published: 14:15 EDT, 4 November 2017 | Updated: 14:15 EDT, 4 November 2017
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By Associated Press

Published: 14:15 EDT, 4 November 2017 | Updated: 14:15 EDT, 4 November 2017

RAJKOT, India (AP) – Colin Munro smashed an unbeaten 54-ball hundred as New Zealand beat India by 40 runs in the second Twenty20 on Saturday and tied the series.

The opening batsman scored 109 not out, including seven fours and seven sixes, as the visitors set an imposing 196-2 after opting to bat.

India could only manage 156-7 in reply, Virat Kohli top-scoring with 65 off 42 balls. Trent Boult took 4-34.

New Zealand's cricketer Colin Munro bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's cricketer Colin Munro bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

The third and deciding T20 is on Tuesday at Thiruvananthapuram.

On a very flat pitch, Munro put on 105 runs for the opening wicket with Martin Guptill. They first 50 came off 39 balls and their 100 off 66 balls.

"A few chances went my way. You need luck," Munro said. "I love batting at the top of the order."

Guptill holed to long on off Yuzvendra Chahal. But Munro kept up his assault on the India bowling and reached his half-century off 26 balls.

Munro put on 35 runs with Kane Williamson (12), the only other New Zealand wicket to fall. Munro added 56 runs with Tom Bruce (18 not out) for the third wicket.

The duo put up 50 off only 30 balls. Munro did the bulk of the scoring and brought up his second T20 hundred in style.

India debutant Mohammed Siraj proved expensive with his 1-53. India's tight death bowling didn't allow the Black Caps to cross 200.

In reply, Boult struck two major blows after a floodlight malfunction delayed India for 10 minutes. He bowled Shikhar Dhawan (1), and Rohit Sharma (5) was caught behind.

"It was a contrasting performance from the last game," Williamson said. "We need to play well to beat this Indian side.

"It was a great opening partnership and a fantastic hundred from Colin Munro. Our two spinners are pretty experienced in this format and they bowled well during tough phases of the game."

From 11-2, Shreyas Iyer (23) and Kohli added 54 runs for the third wicket. Iyer was promoted to No. 3 and attacked, but he holed out trying to up the run rate. Munro turned wicket-taker as he accepted a return catch from Iyer.

It became a double blow as Ish Sodhi then bowled Hardik Pandya (1) to reduce India to 67-4.

Kohli scored his 19th T20 half-century off 32 balls. He became the second-highest scorer in T20 cricket behind former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum.

He added 56 runs for the fifth wicket with Mahendra Singh Dhoni (49), but the asking rate kept creeping up and even they couldn't pull off a salvage job.

India fell to its third-biggest loss by runs in T20s.

New Zealand's cricket player Colin Munro bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)New Zealand's cricket player Colin Munro bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's cricket player Colin Munro bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's Colin Munro, back right, and captain Kane Williamson celebrate after winning the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)New Zealand's Colin Munro, back right, and captain Kane Williamson celebrate after winning the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's Colin Munro, back right, and captain Kane Williamson celebrate after winning the second Twenty20 cricket match against India in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's Trent Boult appeals successfully for the dismissal of India's Rohit Sharma during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)New Zealand's Trent Boult appeals successfully for the dismissal of India's Rohit Sharma during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

New Zealand's Trent Boult appeals successfully for the dismissal of India's Rohit Sharma during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Indian cricketer Shikhar Dhawan is bowled out by New Zealand's Trent Boult during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)Indian cricketer Shikhar Dhawan is bowled out by New Zealand's Trent Boult during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Indian cricketer Shikhar Dhawan is bowled out by New Zealand's Trent Boult during the second Twenty20 cricket match in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Indian cricketer Virat Kohli bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against New Zealand in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)Indian cricketer Virat Kohli bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against New Zealand in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Indian cricketer Virat Kohli bats during the second Twenty20 cricket match against New Zealand in Rajkot, India, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

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Australia

Australia election: PM Morrison’s security team in car crash in Tasmania

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A car carrying the Australian prime minister’s security team has crashed in Tasmania during an election campaign visit.

Four police officers were taken to hospital with “non-life threatening injuries” after the car and another vehicle collided, authorities said.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison was not in the car, but the accident prompted him to cancel the rest of his campaign events on Thursday.

The other driver involved was not hurt.

Tasmania Police said initial investigations suggested the second car had “collided with the rear of the police vehicle, while attempting to merge”. It caused the unmarked security vehicle to roll off the road.

The two Tasmania Police officers and two Australian Federal Police officers were conscious when taken to hospital for medical assessment, the prime minister’s office said.

“Family members of the officers have been contacted and are being kept informed of their condition,” a statement said.

“The PM is always extremely grateful for the protection provided by his security team and extends his best wishes for their recovery and to their families.”

Australians go to the polls on 21 May. Mr Morrison – prime minister since 2018 – is hoping to win his conservative coalition’s fourth term in office.

Polls suggest the opposition Labor Party, led by Anthony Albanese, is favoured to win. However, Mr Morrison defied similar polling to claim victory at the last election in 2019.

Mr Morrison’s Liberal-National coalition holds 76 seats in the House of Representatives – the minimum needed to retain power.

Political observers say the cost of living, climate change, trust in political leaders, and national security will be among key issues in the campaign.

In recent weeks, the prime minister has faced accusations of being a bully and once sabotaging a rival’s career by suggesting the man’s Lebanese heritage made him less electable. Mr Morrison has denied the allegations.

Mr Albanese stumbled into his own controversy this week when he failed to recall the nation’s unemployment or interest rates.

Read from: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-61103987

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Sydney airport warns delays could last weeks on third day of travel chaos

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Long queues at Sydney airport’s domestic terminals have continued for a third day, with some passengers missing international connections, as the airport warns delays resulting from a surge in travellers and a shortfall in security staff could continue for weeks.

Chaotic scenes were reported in the departure halls as early as 4.30am on Saturday, with some frustrated travellers, many of whom heeded the pleas of airport chiefs to arrive at least two hours before their domestic flight was due to take off, claiming only one security line was operating.

While the queues that formed early on Saturday are understood to have cleared later in the morning, the airport apologised to affected travellers.

“Traffic numbers are picking up and the close contact rules are making it hard to fill shifts and staff the airport. We appreciate your patience,” Sydney airport said on its Twitter account.

A wave of families travelling as the term two school holidays begin this weekend, combined with close contact rules that are understood to be taking out about 20% of security shifts in any given day, are driving the problem.

Certis, the company that Sydney airport contracts for its security operations, is desperately trying to recruit personnel, while the airport has reallocated back office, IT and retail workers to the departure hall to comb queues so they can prioritise passengers at risk of missing their flight.

“We are working around the clock to resolve these issues and have teams in the terminals bringing passengers forward in order of priority,” a Sydney airport spokesperson said.

He added that the airport is “anticipating it will [be] busy right through the school holiday period and peak over the Easter and Anzac Day weekends, in some cases at 90% of pre-Covid passenger levels”.

“We’re deeply grateful to passengers for their ongoing patience and we’re sorry to everyone who has been inconvenienced,” the spokesperson said. “We would also like to thank passengers for getting to the airport early and treating staff and each other with kindness and respect.”

The Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce was forced to clarify comments he made on Friday that passengers were “not match fit” and that those forgetting to remove laptops and aerosols from their bags at the security check contributing to the delays.

“Just to be clear, I’m not ‘blaming’ passengers,” Joyce said. “Of course it’s not their fault,” he said.

Qantas shed thousands of staff during the pandemic, and outsourced ground crews in a decision that was challenged in court.

On Saturday, Qantas also apologised to a Melbourne family left stranded in Sydney, after domestic flight delays caused them to miss an international trip.

Javiera Martinez, her partner Daniel Capurro and their three children were supposed to be flying to Chile on Friday to visit relatives they had not seen in three years.

But after their 8am Qantas flight from Melbourne was delayed by half an hour, baggage handling and airport transfer delays in Sydney meant they couldn’t make their 11.30am LATAM Airlines flight to Santiago.

Martinez said the airline’s procedures at the airport were chaotic.

“We think Qantas didn’t behave appropriately. I got berated by the person at the counter – they never apologised, they never assumed any responsibility at all,” she said. “It was a rude conversation. We have been mistreated badly I would say.”

The PCR tests they need to travel have now expired and they will have to take them again as they wait for seats on the next flight to Santiago from Sunday.

The airline has apologised and paid for a night’s accommodation in Sydney.

“We sincerely apologise that the family missed their connecting flight on another airline due to delays moving through Sydney airport on Friday,” a Qantas spokesperson said.

The family is among many affected by hold ups amid the busiest travel period in two years, with Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane airports warning passengers to arrive two hours before domestic flights.

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Australia

Grace Tame says caller ‘threatened’ against criticising PM

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An Australian of the Year and sexual abuse survivor has said she received a “threatening” call warning her not to criticise the prime minister.

Grace Tame made the allegation in a speech on Wednesday, where she said she’d been called by a “senior member of a government-funded organisation”.

She added she was asked to promise not to say anything “damning” about Scott Morrison.

The government has denied knowledge of the call and said it will investigate.

On Tuesday, Mr Morrison made a formal apology to former political staffer Brittany Higgins more than a year after the young woman went public with the allegation that she had been raped by a male colleague in a ministerial office.

Her story sparked national anger, and an inquiry into parliament’s culture which found more than a third of workers had been sexually harassed.

Both Ms Higgins and Ms Tame have been heralded this past year for prompting a national conversation about abuse, power and gender inequality.

On Wednesday, the pair delivered a highly anticipated joint address at the National Press Club in Canberra.

Asked by journalists if she could name the threatening caller and their organisation, Ms Tame said: “if I was willing to name either, I would have put them in the speech”.

But she said the caller had been concerned about what she would say on the evening her successor as Australian of the Year was named.

She said the caller had described her as an “influential figure” and that Mr Morrison would “have a fear” about what she might say “with an election coming soon”. Australia is due to hold a general election before 21 May.

“Sound familiar to anyone? Well, it does to me,” Ms Tame said, before drawing a comparison with her former abuser – a teacher who had raped her as a child and pressured her to stay silent.

Mr Morrison’s office said it had not been aware of the call before Ms Tame’s speech, adding “the individual should apologise”.

“The PM and the government consider the actions and statements of the individual as unacceptable,” a spokesperson said.

But Ms Tame said launching a probe “misses the point entirely”.

“Stop deflecting, Scott. It’s not about the person who made the call. It’s the fact they felt like they had to do it at all,” she tweeted.

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