Warren Spinks.NEW Cooks Hill United football coach Warren Spink is delighted to be back in the Hunter.
The Herald reported last week that the former Newcastle Breakers and Socceroos striker would guide Cooks Hill in their first year in Northern NSW Football’s second-tier competition in 2015.
“I absolutely loved it up here,” Spink said of his time at the Breakers in the early 1990s.
“I’d just signed a new two-year contract then the club went down for a year in 1995, so I had to move.
“Otherwise I would have probably never left Newcastle.
“I’ve played and lived in many countries, but Newcastle was always my favourite place.”
IT has been a frustrating start to the summer for Ruben Zadkovich.
The former Jets skipper missed the first six games of the A-League season with his new club, Perth Glory, after pre-season knee surgery and a back complaint.
Then on Friday night, in his debut in Glory colours, the feisty midfielder was shown a straight red card for a sliding tackle on Wellington midfielder Vince Lia in Perth’s 2-1 victory over the Phoenix at nib Stadium.
Coming off the bench in the 61st minute to replace Rostyn Griffiths after Andy Keogh had given the league leaders a 2-0 advantage, Zadkovich was on the field for all of 17 seconds and will now spend at least the next week on the sidelines cooling his heels.
The 17-second dismissal is believed to be an A-League record but, on recent form, the sloppy studs-up challenge was out of character for the one-time bad boy.
Before Friday night, 28-year-old Zadkovich’s last send-off was while playing for Newcastle against Brisbane on September 5, 2010.
WINNING NSW coach Laurie Daley will be in town next month, and he is bringing the State of Origin shield with him to put smiles on the faces of some special young lifesavers.
Daley will be at Cooks Hill Surf Lifesaving Club between 10am and noon on Sunday, December 7, to help good mate John “Choc” Anderson oversee the club’s “Same Waves” nippers program for children with disabilities.
Anderson, who has replaced the late Jock Colley as Country Rugby League chairman, is a Cooks Hill life member and long-time nippers co-ordinator.
“All those kids love their sport and they love their State of Origin footy, and I know they’re going to be excited to see Lozza and the Origin shield,” Anderson said.
WELL travelled Knights forward Clint Newton joined the ranks of Twitter last week and wasted little time taking a swing at the Seven Network for leaving his famous father, Jack, off their commentary team for the Australian Masters at Metropolitan.
“This may be seen as bias, but when there’s Aussie golf on TV @JackNewtonCC should be commentating #bringbackjack,” Clint tweeted from his @c_newton11 Twitter handle.
THE Men of League Foundation’s Upper Hunter committee will hold a fund-raising bowls day on Saturday, December 6, at Scone RSL Club.
“The bowls day is a great way for local league fans to come together to celebrate as we enter the festive season and will also test their bowling arm as we raise funds for Men of League,” Upper Hunter committee president Peter Ford said.
Bookings can be made by contacting Ford (0421 805 235) or Ian Ingle (0416 145 260).
GEORGETOWN heptathlete Sophie Stanwell proved she is more than just a good sport last week when she was awarded the NSW Institute of Sport award for academic excellence.
The 23-year-old multi-sport specialist, who finished fourth at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow this year, was recognised at the annual NSWIS awards presented at the Australian Turf Club.
The awards acknowledged the accomplishments of athletes in the categories of academics, career progression, coaching and performance.
Stanwell edged out other world-class athletes including Jo Brigden-Jones (canoe sprint), Jarrod Geddes (track and field), Steven Solomon (track and field) and Matthew Levy (swimming) as the institute’s best academically.
The Rio Olympic aspirant was awarded the University of Newcastle Faculty of Health and Medicine Medal last month, graduating with a Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics degree.
Apart from finishing fourth in her Commonwealth Games debut, in the past year Stanwell has been named University of Newcastle sportsperson of the year, won her second Australian heptathlon title and represented Australia at the World University Games.
Her next goal is to make the team for the 2015 world championships in Beijing.
WIGAN chairman Dave Whelan will quit the Championship club if the English Football Association punishes him for the controversial comments which led to him being labelled a racist by Cardiff owner Vincent Tan.
Whelan sparked the row in a newspaper interview in which he was defending his decision to hire former Cardiff boss Malky Mackay.
Mackay was recruited by Wigan despite being under investigation by the FA for allegedly sending racist and anti-semitic texts, and Whelan responded to criticism by telling The Guardian: “I think Jewish people do chase money more than everybody else.”
Whelan also said he did not view the word “chink”, the term by which Mackay allegedly referred to Tan in a text message, as offensive.
Malaysian businessman Tan, who sacked Mackay in December, told Sky Sports News: “Here we have a racist chairman hiring a racist manager. All the fans in Wigan now think it’s OK to be racist.”
The FA says its investigation into Whelan’s comments will be treated “as a priority”.