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John Thompson looks for Tattersall’s Cup win for Jiayuguan at her favourite Randwick trip

Cup hope: Jiayuguan scores with Tye Angland up at Rosehill last month. The duo will unite again at headquarters on Friday. Photo: bradleyphotos苏州美甲美睫培训学校419论坛Wizard of Odds: Live Odds, Form and Alerts for all Racing

John Thompson took a while to work out Jiayuguan but the secret might have been the 2400m journey of Friday’s Tattersalls Club Cup at Randwick.

The imported mare has had her past five runs at the extended trip for three wins, a second in the Christmas Cup last time and a hard luck story in the sister race of the listed New Year’s Day affair – October’s City Tattersall’s City Club Cup – where she finished sixth.

“That was her first go at it and she didn’t have a lot of luck and got blocked at the wrong time. Once she has got to this trip she has flourished and even though she has been up a while she is thriving,” Thompson said.  “She is very strong and stays and there is more in store for her.

“It was great to get some black type last time because when she got here she took a long time to settle in and we started to worry.

“Being a mare these black type races are important to her value as a broodmare and she is meeting a similar field to last time and it was a blanket finish.”

There were only heads and necks between Christmas Cup winner Sir John Hawkwood, Jiayuguan and Lucky Lucky Lucky and the trio meet again on Friday.

“She gets the chance with a pull in the weights to turn the tables. It would be good to tick another box with her with a listed win,” Thompson said. “I think the way she is racing she is only going to get better with a bit more time but this race comes at good time for her.”

Thompson has a strong hand at Randwick but will look for a two-state double.  He will send debut Canterbury winner Mossin’ Around to Flemington for the first day of 2016.

“She has really come on from that first win and there is an Inglis bonus race for her there in a couple of weeks, so I wanted to her to have a look down the straight and this is the right race,” Thompson said. “The worry is the straight but [she] hasn’t stopped improving.”

Meanwhile,  Bullrush kept his unbeaten record winning at Canterbury on Wednesday and Saturday company beckons  for the four-year-old gelding.

“We have been patience with him and given him time even though he is a gelding,” co-trainer Michael Hawkes said. “He has raw ability and is only going to get better.”

Hawkes told Tommy Berry to count to 10 on Bullrush but the jockey admitted he didn’t get that far when the leader skipped clear turning  for home.

“I only got to five and had to go,” Berry said. “He is a nice horse [and being ridden like] that is not his go.”

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Adelaide Strikers coach Jason Gillespie backs Alex Ross for T20 World Cup

Adelaide Strikers coach Jason Gillespie says former ACT Comet Alex Ross “100 per cent” could take his game to the next level for Australia at the Twenty20 World Cup in India in March.

And Gillespie says the hard-hitting Jono Dean is the “next cab off the rank” if the Big Bash League team needs to bolster its batting stocks.

Ross has been in good form this summer, starting with a strong one-day domestic season, some good form in the Sheffield Shield and then a great opening two games of the BBL – where he’s scored 65 runs off 31 balls, 38 off 29 and seven off seven.

His form caught the eye of Aussie selector Mark Waugh, who described him as the “most improved player in Australia”, and Gillespie had no qualms about backing his middle-order batsman.

Gillespie said the keys to Ross’ success this summer were his fantastic work ethic and that he understood his own strengths.

He simply said “100 per cent” when asked if Ross was good enough to represent Australia.

“It wouldn’t be a shock to me if he got picked in the not too distant future for higher honours. He’s certainly playing some very good cricket,” Gillespie said.

“He’s learning his game and he’s understanding his strengths and how he goes about his work. His work ethic is fantastic.

“He deserves the bit of success that he’s having at the moment because he’s been working incredibly hard at his game.

“He’s got clear thoughts about how he wants to go about it. He’s practising specifically and going out and performing his skills so it’s really pleasing to see.”

With the Strikers’ batting line-up failing against the Sydney Thunder on Monday night, Dean could get his first opportunity of BBL05 in Adelaide’s next game – the Sydney Sixers at Adelaide Oval on New Year’s Eve.

The hard-hitting ACT Comet dislocated his finger playing club cricket in Canberra at the end of November, but Gillespie said he was fully recovered and fit to play.

Dean’s been named in the Strikers’ 13-man squad for the opening three games of the BBL, but yet to get a chance.

With Adelaide’s openers yet to hit their straps, he could be brought in for the final game of 2015.

Gillespie said Dean’s versatility made him a valuable asset for the Strikers.

“Jono is basically next cab off the rank really … Jono has trained the house down, he’s a quality lad and someone who is performing really well at training and I’m sure if an opportunity arose at some point during the tournament he’ll grab that opportunity with both hands,” Gillespie said.

“The beauty with Jono Dean is he’s very flexible, that’s the advantage we’ve got, he can adapt to any situation.

“He can come in in the middle order or he can go in near the top, so it allows us flexibility with the team because he’s such a versatile player.”

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Australian actress Eliza Szonert set to leave Malaysia with son after passports returned

Australian actress Eliza Szonert and son in Malaysia Photo: Supplied Eliza Szonert holds her son after taking him from a suburban Kuala Lumpur restaurant. Photo: Supplied

Actress appeals to Julie BishopDramatic scenes in Kuala Lumpur restaurant

An Australian actress stranded in Malaysia after snatching her son was set to return home with the boy within 48 hours, according to the child recovery company involved in the operation.

Former Neighbours and Underbelly actress Eliza Szonert and her young son had been unable to leave the country after the boy’s father, the Australian businessman Ashley Crick, allegedly refused to release their passports after the boy was snatched from him at a restaurant on December 10.

On Wednesday, Col Chapman from the child recovery agency involved in the operation, said Mr Crick had handed over the pair’s passports to the Australian High Commission.

He said the move followed extensive  legal action in Australia and had resulted in Ms Szonert’s family and Mr Crick’s parents agreeing to accompany Szonert and the child on the flight back to Australia.

Szonert was stranded in Malaysia and sparked controversy earlier this month after a video of her grabbing the child was circulated.

After the incident she came under pressure to hand the child over to Malaysian authorities – a request she refused leading to her being locked up overnight in a Malaysian jail.

She was released within 24 hours after the authorities conducted a welfare check on the child who was being cared for in Kuala Lumpur by Szonert’s mother, Kay.

Szonert and Mr Crick had been separated since 2012 but had moved back in together with the boy in Malaysia after Szonert spent time at a rehabilitation facility called The Cabin, sometimes known as the “Betty Ford Clinic of Asia”.

Szonert was staying with Mr Crick and their son in Kuala Lumpur when a dispute occurred between the pair leading to Szonert allegedly being locked out of their accommodation without the child and both their passports.

The 41-year-old actress, then engaged an Australian child recovery operative to assist her to snatch the child from Mr Crick while he ate breakfast with the boy at a restaurant in the capital.

Mr Crick, 43, who is an executive with iflix, a video streaming venture in Asia, last week told Australian media that he had filed a statement with Malaysian police after his son was snatched.

He said it was a parent’s worst nightmare and he expressed fears for his son’s safety. He is understood to be taking legal action in a bid to obtain greater access to the child.

An anonymous source has been circulating a document purporting to show Szonert had spent time at The Cabin for treatment for methamphetamine and depression.

The document dated October 23, 2015, is headed “To Whom it may concern” and appeared to link Szonert to having received treatment for “Methamphetamine dependence”.

The document prompted a furious response from Szonert  saying that: “I deny these false allegations. This letter purporting to be from The Cabin has obviously been doctored and is very clearly photoshopped or fabricated. I am mortified that someone could do such a thing.”

Previously,  Szonert and her family have denied she received any treatment for drug addiction at The Cabin, saying it was only for exhaustion and depression.

Mr Crick has previously said he hoped Szonert would comply with authorities to allow him to return to Australia with his son where he would fight for custody through the Australian court system.

The case sparked controversy after a video of the snatch was circulated.

The experience, captured on video given to Fairfax Media, showed Szonert calmly walking into the restaurant, picking up her son and walking out again, as Mr Crick stood talking with the burly man who accompanied her and was thought to be working for the child recovery agency.

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Trade unions royal commission: Turnbull prepared to take union shake-up all the way to election

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Attorney-General Senator George Brandis address the media after the release of the final report from the trade union royal commission. Photo: Janie BarrettThe royal commission into trade unions was always Tony Abbott’s baby.

It had two political goals. The first was to go after Labor leader Bill Shorten, one-time leader of the Australian Workers Union. The second was to expose the union movement for what Abbott thought it was: a movement run by corrupt officials.

It failed on the first point but succeeded on the second. Shorten escaped an adverse finding, but the commission uncovered despicable behaviour by union officials across the country.

We should thank Abbott for that.

According to royal commission head Dyson Heydon in his final report: “It would be utterly naive to think that what has been uncovered is anything other than the small tip of an enormous iceberg.

“It is clear that in many parts of the world constituted by Australian trade union officials there is room for louts, thugs, bullies, thieves, perjurers, those who threaten violence, errant fiduciaries and organisers of boycotts.”

The commission has presented the Federal Parliament with a genuine opportunity for reform.

Where do we go from here? Next year’s politics have become clear.

The Turnbull government will keep the issue simmering by extending Taskforce Heracles, a joint state-territory union-corruption taskforce that was set up to examine allegations referred to it by the royal commission.

Its life has been extended until December 31, 2016, to pursue further lines of inquiry.

The longer it keeps working, the greater the chance to uncover more wrongdoing. It will help to keep the heat on Bill Shorten, because every time something is found, someone from the Coalition will remind voters that Shorten was leading the AWU when dodgy behaviour was taking place (but they will not be able to point to a specific example of corruption on Shorten’s part, because the commission didn’t find any).

The government will also establish a specialised cross-agency working group of 11 Commonwealth departments and agencies, led by the Department of Employment and including such agencies as Austrak, the Australian Crime Commission, ASIC and the Australian Tax Office.

It will investigate the 45 significant breaches of civil law by union officials identified by the commission that could attract civil penalties.

Turnbull says he wants to push legislation through Parliament that will affect how unions are registered and run.

If he can’t get the legislation passed, he’ll make it an election issue.

And this is how he will prosecute the case: Unions are a vital part of the economy. It is in everyone’s interest that they are open and transparent. The Coalition wants to make that happen. And please remember, the Coalition is not anti-union; it is anti-corruption among the union leadership. The Coalition is fighting for everyday union members against their corrupt leaders. Anyone who doesn’t support the Coalition’s attempt to clean out the corrupt union leaders obviously wants their corruption to continue.

This is where Labor comes in.

Turnbull says this is a chance for Shorten and his deputy, Tanya Plibersek, to show some leadership. They can either support the Coalition’s legislation through Parliament or they can opt to fight it as an election issue. Does Labor really want that?

“This is not a battle between workers and the bosses,” Turnbull said on Wednesday. “It’s a battle between workers and union bosses, and Mr Shorten’s got to decide whose side he’s on.”

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Trade Union Royal Commission refers former HSU national secretary Kathy Jackson to prosecutors

The Trade Union Royal Commission referred Kathy Jackson, former national secretary of the Health Services Union to prosecutors for possible charges over obtaining property and financial advantage by deception. Photo: Louise KennerleyRoyal commission refers Kathy Jackson to prosecutors

How swiftly fortunes turn. Less than two years ago, Kathy Jackson was lauded by the then Abbott government as a “lion of the union movement” for lifting the lid on union corruption. On Wednesday, she reached a new nadir in her descent from hero to zero.

The Trade Union Royal Commission referred Ms Jackson, the former national secretary of the Health Services Union, to prosecutors for possible charges over obtaining property and financial advantage by deception.

It said she used union funds for her own expenses and might have “committed a crime by obtaining $250,000 from an employer by false pretences”.

Travel expenses were the biggest cost. Between July 2003 and August 2011, the commission found Ms Jackson took 24 overseas trips and 10 domestic trips, some accompanied by a family member. The HSU said her union credit cards were used during many of these trips for personal purposes.

The retail sector also benefited from Ms Jackson’s spending prowess. She racked up bills at Myer and David Jones, at electrical, computer, camera, clothing and shoe shops, on accessories and children’s wear. She splashed out on homewares and furniture, at a party warehouse and car dealerships.

In her defence, Ms Jackson pleaded retail expenses were “work related, properly incurred and properly approved”.

The same defence was used for purchases at supermarkets and liquor stores near her home, and large sums spent at restaurants and bars in Melbourne. The commission found no details were provided to demonstrate the restaurant bills had anything to do with her work.

Ms Jackson’s partner Michael Lawler​ has admitted he benefited from the HSU paying for airfares and accommodation. Mr Lawler pockets a $430,000 taxpayer-funded salary as Fair Work Commission Vice-President, a job from which he has been on extended paid sick leave.

HSU members are paramedics, scientists, aged care workers, disability support workers, nurses, doctors, clerks and hospital cleaners. Some are among the lowest-paid workers in the country.

Ms Jackson was ordered by the Federal Court to pay about $1.4 million compensation to the HSU. This was increased by a further $900,000 this month to cover interest and legal costs. She also faces criminal investigation.

The commission found Ms Jackson, along with disgraced former HSU officials Michael Williamson and Craig Thomson, misappropriated more than $2.7 million of HSU members’ money.

The trio lacked scruple. They were “intelligent, determined, forceful and dominating” – a characterisation supported by Ms Jackson’s witness box performance.

In February 2014, Coalition frontbencher Christopher Pyne lauded Ms Jackson as a “lion of the union movement” for blowing the whistle on former Labor national president Michael Williamson.

While her systematic theft made Ms Jackson the architect of her own misfortune, the commission noted she deserved some kudos.

It said she “was instrumental in revealing the conduct of Michael Williamson and Craig Thomson to the authorities. For this she is owed much praise.”

Ms Jackson did not respond to request for comment.

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