Clarke won’t be rested during ODIs

Australia have no plans to lighten the load on captain Michael Clarke during a crowded one-day schedule in the UK in a bid to manage his chronic back problem.

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In a further sign Cricket Australia’s rotation days are long gone, coach Darren Lehmann says Australia will pick its best team to win every match against England and Scotland.

That includes Clarke, who missed the Champions Trophy due to a flare-up of his back injury and also suffered some discomfort early in the Ashes series.

“We won’t be resting him. If he’s fit he plays,” Lehmann told AAP.

“It’s a simple fact of life and that’s what we want to do with all our players.

“You want to get the best team on the park each and every day but, having said that, if he’s not 100 per cent fit then he won’t play.”

Australia will play six 50-over games in the next two weeks.

While England have rested a host of big names from the five-match one-day series with a crowded schedule and the return Ashes series in mind, Lehmann says Australia “won’t be going down that path.”

“Every time we’ll be picking our best team to win that game,” the coach said.

Australia have made some forced changes for the one-dayers, starting with a one-off ODI clash with Scotland in Edinburgh on Tuesday, after Mitchell Starc joined Steve Smith in being released from the 15-man squad due to minor injuries.

CA said Starc had back pain and he joins a growing list of injured Australian paceman including Ryan Harris, James Pattinson, Pat Cummins and Jackson Bird.

Lehmann admitted the situation wasn’t ideal but said it was a side-effect of having a young pace attack.

“At the end of the day you have injuries. It’s part and parcel of being a fast bowler,” Lehmann said.

“Hopefully that settles down as they get a bit older and a bit stronger.”

Lehmann and his players have ruled out any chance of complacency against the Scots on Tuesday.

“We’ve got win as many games as we can,” wicketkeeper Matthew Wade said.

“We haven’t had that much success on this tour … we want to win all these games.”

Scotland coach Pete Steindl says his side was expecting an “extremely motivated” Australian outfit but welcomed another chance for the non-Test nation to get some valuable experience.

“The more times you can play against teams who are higher-ranked and better than you it teaches you where you have to get to,” Steindl said.

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Hewitt’s US Open run fires Cup team

Lleyton Hewitt’s run at the US Open is inspiring his Australian Davis Cup teammates to end three years of World Group qualifying heartbreak.

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Captain Pat Rafter’s team – minus Hewitt – has already left New York to train in Munich ahead of the World Group promotion tie against Poland later this month.

But team trainer Josh Eagle said they were closely following the progress of team veteran Hewitt who was preparing to face Mikhail Youzhny in the Open fourth round for a likely quarter-final berth against world No.1 Novak Djokovic.

“He’s just such a competitor and just such a warrior,” said Eagle.

“The guys will be in Munich watching his next match and they watched him when they were here and you know he’s just such an inspiration to the team.

“We’ve seen it for 10 years, so many times when you think he’s down and out he finds a way to win.”

Hewitt is in his tennis heaven right now.

The two things that keep the 32-year-old former world No.1 playing the game are the grand slams and Davis Cup and he has the chance to achieve big results in both in the next fortnight in New York and then Warsaw.

He’s already ousted sixth seed and former champion Juan Martin del Potro from the Open.

And he’s fiercely motivated to get Australia back into the Davis Cup World Group after the team fell agonisingly just short for the past three years – losing from 2-1 up going into the final day of the promotion playoff tie against Belgium (2010), Switzerland (2011) and Germany (2012).

“People probably don’t realise how much energy and effort and focus he puts into every tie,” said Eagle.

Hewitt is expected to partner doubles specialist Chris Guccione in Cup doubles rubber in the September 13-15 tie.

The veteran is also likely to play at least one singles match – with Bernard Tomic the other singles player – but backing up on consecutive days has been problematic for him.

Win or lose in Warsaw, Eagle can see Hewitt continuing to play Davis Cup for some time now that he has finally overcome injury worries that plagued him in recent seasons.

“The fact that he is healthy to me I see no reason why he won’t continue on playing for the foreseeable future,” he said.

“He’s just hasn’t been 100 per cent (previously) which has really hurt his ability to prepare and train properly and you know the game’s changed.

“Ten years ago when he was No.1 in the world he could run every ball down.

“Now these guys, they’re six foot five. They hit the ball bigger and stronger so he really needs to be able to train just to match it with these guys.”

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Merrill Lynch ‘settles’ prejudice lawsuit

Lawyers for hundreds of black financial advisers have reached a $US160 million ($A180 million) settlement in a lawsuit accusing Wall Street brokerage giant Merrill Lynch of racial discrimination, a plaintiffs’ lawyer says.

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If approved by a federal judge in Chicago, the payout by Merrill Lynch to around 1,200 plaintiffs would be one of the largest ever in a racial discrimination case, Chicago-based lawyer Suzanne E. Bish said.

Speaking from his Merrill Lynch office in Dallas, one of the first plaintiffs from the earliest days of the suit, Maroc “Rocky” Howard, said he wished he and his fellow black brokers never had to resort to litigation.

“Working in a fair environment, I would have made more money than this settlement is going to make me,” Howard, 55, said in a phone interview. “But it is a positive thing.”

Another plaintiff who has since left the firm, Marshell Miller, 58, of Arkansas, also welcomed that eight years of litigation was drawing to a close.

“It’s been a long struggle,” Miller said. “But it was something that needed to be done.”

Bank of America-owned Merrill Lync”h – one of the world’s largest brokerages with more than 15,000 financial advisers – issued a statement Wednesday saying only, “We’re not at this point commenting on the existence of the settlement nor the status of a settlement.”

Lead plaintiff George McReynolds accused Merrill Lynch of steering black brokers away from the most lucrative business and so, under a compensation system emphasising production, they earned less than their white counterparts. They made 43 per cent less in compensation on average in 2006, plaintiff filings allege.

The settlement coincides with the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr’s I Have a Dream Speech, Bish noted. She said she hopes the case will help ensure the kind of equal opportunity King spoke about in Washington, D.C.

Bish said the settlement should force changes beyond the company singled out as the defendant.

“They are leaders on Wall Street,” she said. “And increasing opportunities for African-Americans at Merrill Lynch should spill over to the rest of Wall Street.”

In its own filings in the case over recent years, Merrill Lynch denied the discrimination allegation and staunchly defended its compensation programs.

“All (financial advisers), regardless of race, are judged by the same metric,” one of the company’s filings argued. “The rule is simple: produce more, earn more.”

Settlements don’t necessarily imply that a defendant accepts any wrongdoing. Bish said she could not discuss detailed terms of the agreement with Merrill Lynch.

But plaintiffs claimed discrimination pervaded Merrill Lynch, at least partly because the company employed relatively few African-Americans overall. In a 2009 plaintiffs’ filing, they contended that fewer than two per cent of the brokers at Merrill Lynch were black.

“Far from being a colourblind meritocracy, race permeates policy and practice in a way that creates substantial obstacles to equal employment opportunity for Merrill Lynch’s African-American employees,” William T Bielby, a professor of sociology, said in the filing.

Merrill Lynch sometimes relied on stereotypes, the filing also asserted, once allegedly suggesting managers encourage black brokers to “learn to play golf or other activities designed to learn how business gets done in manners (they) might not be familiar with.”

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Souths hold on to beat Bulldogs 28-20

Adam Reynolds with one foot and Greg Inglis on one leg combined to all but secure South Sydney a top-two finish with a 28-20 win over Canterbury in a sumptuous NRL finals entree.

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In a result which will virtually put paid to the Bulldogs’ top-four hopes, the Rabbitohs finished the stronger in an absorbing duel – the two sides alternating tryscorers in a second half in which Souths never managed to get more than 10 points in front.

It was down to just a converted try when Mitch Brown scored his second of the night nine minutes from fulltime, but the Bulldogs’ inability to hold onto the ball during the opening half-hour proved costly.

It was only fitting then that their last crack at the Bunnies’ line ended with Michael Ennis innocuously knocking-on from dummy-half with five minutes to go.

The Rabbitohs will have some concerns over the health of Inglis, however, the Queensland and Australian Test star limping noticeably throughout the second half after copping yet another knock on the right knee.

It is the same knee which caused him to miss four games after Origin III – of which the Bunnies lost three matches – but he was good enough on one leg to set up second-half tries for Isaac Luke and Bryson Goodwin.

If Inglis dominated the second stanza, it was Reynolds who controlled the first – on the same ground and against the same opposition that a hamstring injury in last year’s preliminary final ended the Bunnies’ premiership hopes.

A year on and the Rabbitohs appear a more formidable prospect, with Reynolds again a key – a crucial 40-20 in the lead-up to Dylan Farrell’s opening try backed up by a deft grubber to set up Dylan Walker for a 12-0 lead.

The Bulldogs scored either side of the break as an epic arm wrestle ensued, the Rabbitohs with the final say when Reynolds made it a perfect six from six with the boot with a penalty on fulltime.

In more bad news for the Bulldogs, both Frank Pritchard and Josh Reynolds were both put on report for shoulder charges, while Tim Browne could be in strife for a leg pull on clearly incapacitated Inglis.

Souths coach Michael Maguire admitted the health of Inglis remained a concern, but he refused to buy into the leg-pull drama that also cost his prop Jeff Lima a one-week ban.

“I’m not going to make a comment about those,” he said of the incident.

“I need to give him (Inglis) a bit of a rap … Greggy’s battled with that knee all week.

“We’ve got to really be aware of how we’re training him.

“He hasn’t trained a lot this week so to get out and do the things he did tonight is a real credit to all the players.

“They want to be out there.”

Asked if he would consider giving Inglis a week off in the lead-up to the finals, Maguire said:

“We’ll assess it after tonight and go through the week and if there’s that chance we’ll have a look at it.

“I know Greg wants to play.”

Bulldogs coach Des Hasler said his side paid the price for its first-half struggles.

“There’s no doubt about the effort there but I think we’ve probably got about five bullets in our foot at the moment,” Hasler said.

“We just kept shooting ourselves in the foot.”

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Peace talks off over deaths in Palestine

Peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have been cancelled after Israeli security forces shot dead three Palestinians during clashes in the West Bank, a Palestinian official said.

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“The meeting that was to take place in Jericho … today (Monday) was cancelled because of the Israeli crime committed in Qalandiya today,” the official said, referring to the refugee camp where the clashes erupted before dawn.

He did not set a new date.

“What happened today in Qalandiya shows the real intentions of the Israeli government,” Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas’s spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina, told AFP as reports of the shooting started to emerge.

He called on the US administration to “take serious and quick steps” to prevent the collapse of peace efforts.

Medics earlier reported three Palestinians shot dead and 19 wounded by Israeli security forces in Qalandiya camp, between Ramallah and Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, very early Monday.

They named the dead as Rubeen Abed Fares, 30, and Yunis Jahjouh, 22, both shot in the chest, and Jihad Aslan, 20, who died of brain damage.

The hospital officials said all the casualties had been hit by live ammunition.

An Israeli police spokeswoman said that border police used “riot dispersal means” to disperse a stone-throwing crowd of 1,500 people, but she did confirm the use of live fire.

“In the early hours of the morning a border police team went into Qalandiya camp to arrest a hostile terrorist activist,” spokeswoman Luba Samri told AFP.

“After his arrest a mob of about 1,500 residents began a disturbance, throwing petrol bombs and stones, endangering the lives of force members, who responded with riot dispersal means,” she said.

She said that three border policemen were lightly injured by stones.

The peace talks formally resumed this month after a hiatus of nearly three years, thanks to an intense bout of shuttle diplomacy by US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Palestinian sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, had at the weekend said they expected a new round of talks to be held Monday in the West Bank town of Jericho, but there had been no official confirmation from either side, in accordance with a US-imposed news blackout.

The talks have been overshadowed by Israeli plans to build more than 2,000 new homes for Jewish settlers on occupied Palestinian territory.

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