$40 million Powerball win came after syndicate organiser changed process: court

Brendon King is in court fighting for a share of the $40 million jackpot. Photo: Ben Rushton

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$40 million Powerball winning syndicate was a one-off, court told

Had the lotto ticket not scooped the $40 million jackpot, Brendan King would have been expected to cough up the funds to pay for his entry into the draw.

But when his fellow factory worker Robert Adams discovered the ticket was a winner he determined to exclude Mr King from a $2.7 million share of the prize money.

This is the case put forward by Mr King’s lawyer Lachlan Gyles in a NSW Supreme Court battle over whether he should be considered part of a workplace lotto syndicate that struck gold in May.

Mr King, a father of five and production supervisor, argues that he faithfully contributed to a lotto syndicate run by his then colleague Mr Adams at the Liverpool factory where they worked together.

He argues that he believed there was only one lotto syndicate operating at the factory and that all its members would be automatically entered into draws unless they opted out.

During cross examination on Tuesday, it was put to Mr Adams that he had purchased the winning lotto ticket with the intention that the 12 regular members of the syndicate would contribute to the cost.

Mr Gyles put to Mr Adams that he even used funds leftover from his regular contributors to cover the cost of buying the ticket.

But when Mr Adams discovered he had landed the jackpot, he “ringfenced” the syndicate to preserve the pool of money. He told Mr King, the court heard, that the ticket had been purchased by a separate group that comprised all the regular contributors excluding him.

When Mr King asked him why he was not part of the winning syndicate, Mr Adams allegedly said: “Shit happens. I run a lot of lottos.”

The court heard that although Mr Adams had a regular process of recording the details of his one-off syndicates on cardboard, he had written the names of the contributors to the winning ticket into an exercise book usually reserved for his regulars.

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Nick Kyrgios out of reach of Tennis Australia influence, bemoans Todd Woodbridge

Todd Woodbridge says Tennis Australia struggles to influence talented youngsters once they go on tour. Photo: Elesa KurtzTennis great Todd Woodbridge continues to be frustrated by Tennis Australia’s inability to influence its young stars beyond their teenage years.

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Woodbridge’s lament comes in the wake of troubled talent Nick Kyrgios being handed an eight-week suspension from the ATP for tanking in his second-round match at the Shanghai Masters last week.

Woodbridge, who was running TA’s development program when Kyrgios was coming through, doubts he could have done more to help the 21-year-old and said the governing body’s hands were often tied when it came to sanctioning their players for misdemeanours.

“I’ve done media courses with Nick when he was a teenager, I’ve done all sorts of things to be able to put those (coping) mechanisms in place,” Woodbridge told SEN on Tuesday.

“The funding comes in the junior years when we send them off on world tours – we don’t fund him now.”

Woodbridge said management groups in particular ensured players like Kyrgios were kept out of TA’s reach.

“What you’ll find in our sport that is interesting is that when we have good athletes we are able to influence them up until around 16, 17, 18 (years of age),” he said.

“By then if they are touted as world class, like Nick was, then there are management groups that come in, they put a wedge between what an organisation can do and become intent with families and all types of issues like that that we can’t control because they are, in essence, an independent contractor who runs their own business once they are fully fledged to hit the tour.

“That’s where it gets frustrating for someone like myself because we know what’s in place and we try and give as much good advice as we can and we continue to try to do that but you do get tied.

“We are not a footy club who has an ability to be able to sanction in the way that some people would like us to.”

Woodbridge said the ATP had no choice but to suspend Kyrgios for his latest episode of petulance but described the sanction as an “essential lifeline” for the three-time title winner.

The ban will be reduced to three weeks if Kyrgios seeks help from a professional psychologist for his behavioural issues.

“I think it’s probably good to put the racquets up and go do some work on what they’ve put forward to him,” Woodbridge said.

“So they’ve given him a bit of a lifeline, really, but it’s an essential lifeline that I think is important for Nick to improve.

“He’s got this part of his game that he has to learn how to deal with. It’s not just his game, mind you, it’s about his health as well so that the stresses that he puts on himself can allow him to just be a happy, young lad.”

Woodbridge insisted that Kyrgios actually hated the way he behaved and the 16-time grand slam doubles champion hoped the youngster could turn things around and become a role model like Andre Agassi did.

“It comes down to dealing with the expectations of the tour, what the media expects of you, what the fans expect of you and also what he expects of himself and how he manages that,” Woodbridge said.

“If he puts all that together – it’s a pretty big basket, mind you – he can improve for next year.

“If you give him some time and he starts to get some performances he can do some really good things that’ll be great to watch.

“He can ultimately become a role model potentially like an Agassi. Agassi had his troubles in his career … but he didn’t get past them until he was closer to 30, not closer to 20.”

Psychologists Stephen Joseph and Lynne McCormack speak about post traumatic growth at the University of Newcastle

Looking ahead: Professor Stephen Joseph and Dr Lynne McCormack work together in the field of post-traumatic growth. “Depending on the trauma, the nature of growth may be different,” he said. Picture: Jonathan CarrollLEGISLATION should be changedto remove the hoops that police, paramedics, firefighters and military personnel have to jump through to receive workers compensation, according to a psychologist who said the move would be formal recognition ofthe trauma associated with thosejobs.

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University of Newcastle senior lecturer and clinical psychologist Lynne McCormack specialises incomplex trauma and said first responders with post traumatic stress disorderwere usuallyaltruistic people whose jobs had changed them forever.

“We should not be putting these people through the same constraints [as employees in other sectors]to prove they need compensation,” Dr McCormack said. “They give more than in almost any other jobbecause they are serving their community in a complexway, where they are chronically exposed to anticipatory trauma as well as real trauma.Any Joe Blow knows being exposed to that six times a day every day of your life is going to break down your resilience and mental health if you’re not cared for.”

Dr McCormack said many young people thought signing up to an organisation was like joining a family.

“But once they crack at the seams it’s as if they get discarded, they get throw out of the nest,” she said.

She said organisations needed to provide more training about psychological wellbeing;encourage people to come forward when they weren’t coping; and offer stigma-free support and pathways to treatment.

Dr McCormack said the Herald’s recent reports – about first responders who were required to see numerousspecialists and felt re-traumatised by the compensation system–showed“a cruel part of the litigious system that keeps people stuck in their illnesses”.

“They should not have to go out as a crumbled human being, they have the right to be believed,” she said.“We as a society need to do this better because people can grow fromthistrauma.But it has tobe all over before they can reflect back and make sense of it –that’s when the post-traumatic growth can start to kick in.”

Dr McCormack will introduce Belfast-born Professor Stephen Josephto students and clinicians on Wednesday, when he will discuss incorporatingpost-traumatic growth in therapy.

Professor Joseph said between 30 and 70 per cent of survivorsreported experiencingsome sort of positive changes afterwards, such as realising their own strength.

“But that does not mean itis instead of distress or suffering–more commonly it’s alongside it,” he said.“Clinical psychologists can provide better help if they understand the full range of reactions, rather than only oneside of the coin.”

Professor Joseph said “everybody has the capacity to move towards and find new meaning after traumatic events”, regardless of the individual, type of trauma or support available.

“People who are more reflective in life, flexible in the way they cope with things and have better support systems are probably in a better place after events to deal with what’s happened,” he said.

“But it’s not that some people have capability for growth and others don’t.

“Having people –family, friends or a professional –who areempathetic, accepting, non-judgmental, can really listen and understand from their point of view, that’s the most important thing.”

New Hunter Water managing director Dr Jim Bentley says he is unaware of any agenda to privatise the region’s water servicepoll

Task: “It’s not necessarily well oiled but it’s capable … and if we need to do the things we need in this next decade then we need to become more agile,” says Hunter Water chief Dr Jim Bentley of the utility. Picture: Jonathan Carroll. NEW Hunter Water managing director Dr Jim Bentley will notbe drawn on the potentialprivatisation of the utility, saying his only agenda is to make it“the best it can be”.

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Dr Bentley said he hadworked in both the public and private sectorand could see the good and bad in both.

“No one is having a conversation with me at the board or government about the privatisation agenda,” he said, “so if it’s a topic, it’s not why they brought me in.”

Dr Bentley plansto give the utility a stronger voice in future planning and infrastructure in the region.

Almost three months after his appointment, the British-born executive said while he is stillexamining Hunter Water’s performance, “there are not things that need fixing, everything works well”.

However, the 50-year-old flagged change in examiningits approach to serve the community, alongside shaking upworkplace culture.

“The thing that I really want us to focus on is that I want us to understand the part of our purpose that relates to the community we serve,” he said.

“We have a responsibility beyond the customer and consumer, but that’s the bit that is in grey and I think that is what will help Hunter Water become even better.

Dr Bentley said he wanted the authority to have a greater say in future regional planning, without overstepping its mark.

“It’s a grey area and great businesses understand how far into the grey they are supposed to go,” he said.

“So it’s incredibly important we comply with everything but I don’t think compliance is sufficient, it’s essential but not sufficient.

“So it is understanding for Hunter Water what are those essential things that we should get involved in, where should we take a leadership role or a supporting role.”

Dr Bentley, whobegan his appointment on July 27,has more than 20-years experience in the infrastructure sector, including 12 years at the Thames Water, theUnited Kingdom’s largest water utility.

For the past decade he has worked at various companies in New Zealand and was most recently dividing his time betweenconsultancyand academic work.

Dr Bentley said another focus would be to foster a “curious” workplace culture.

“We don’t do it for our own gratification but for the benefitof the community. It’s being curious about where we can add more value,” he said.

While the region’s water storage is sufficient, Dr Bentley said action was required in the “medium term –more than 10 years and less than 20–to ensure its security.

“It’s too early to say what we need, but not to say what we must do, which is work with community,” he said.

Boy, 5, survives crash that killed three on Waverley Road outside Scone

5yo survives crash that killed three Police Rescue at the property on Tuesday. Picture: Brodie Owen

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Real estate agent Adam O’Regan.

A five-year-old boy survived the accident. Photo: Brodie Owen

TweetFacebookA five-year-old boy has survived a horror car crash at a rural property in the NSW Upper Hunter that killed three men including his father and grandfather.

The child’s relatives issued a statement on Monday after they “lost a father and a grandfather” in a single tragic accident near Scone.

“Our son, who thankfully sustained non-life threatening injuries, is understandably shaken and it is our family’s number one priority to be there and care for him as he recovers,” the family said.

“As we support our son through his recovery we are also grieving the loss of two loved ones.

“We request peace and privacy at this incredibly difficult time for our family.”

Police confirmedlate on Monday that three men had died and a five-year-old boy had been left with a broken arm following a crash at a property in Gundy, near Scone.

Emergency services were called to the property on Waverley Road about 5pm when the car was found by a neighbouring landowner.

It is believed the car drove off a cliff and rolled down an embankment. All four people on board were ejected from the car, police said.

It is understood the boy’s father and grandfather were killed in the crash, along with Sconereal estate agent Adam O’Regan.

The men were believed to be inspecting the remote property on Monday morning.

Police said concerns were raised for the men’s welfare on Monday afternoon when they failed to return from the trip.

Police and neighbours on quad bikes returned tothe property on Tuesday morning, where investigations are still underway.

Glen Ramplin, an air crewman for the Hunter Region Westpac Rescue Helicopter,told Fairfax Media on Mondaytwo helicopters were dispatched to the accident – one from Newcastle and one from Tamworth.

A five-year-old boy survived the accident. Photo: Brodie Owen

“The first call that the aircraft from Newcastle got was [Tamworth] had been called to a property up there for a car that had gone off a cliff,” Mr Ramplin said.

The Tamworth medics arrived at the crash site first, about 6pm, and called off the second crew when they realised the boy was the only survivor.

Ambulance crews had to use quad bikes to get to the scene, he said.

Mr Ramplin said the boy was flown to Scone Hospital, where he was transferred in an ambulance to Newcastle’s John Hunter Children’s Hospital.

He remained in the hospital in a stable condition on Monday night.

Police began to examine the scene on Monday and will resume their investigation on Tuesday morning.

It is not yet known what caused the crash.

A report will be prepared for the Coroner.

– The Herald, Newcastle with Georgina Mitchell