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October 11, 2012

Daniel Vettori out of New Zealand’s Sri Lanka tour

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Daniel Vettori, the former New Zealand captain, will miss New Zealand’s tour of Sri Lanka scheduled in October-November 2012, after failing to recover from an Achilles strain picked up at the World T20 2012. A statement from New Zealand Cricket (NZC) said “Daniel Vettori has not recovered sufficiently from his Achilles injury and was not considered for the tour.”

New Zealand will play two Tests, five One-Day Internationals and one Twenty20 International in Sri Lanka between October 30 and November 29. The selectors have picked two squads for the tour – one for the Test matches and one for the limited-overs matches.

Vettori’s replacement in the Test squad will be Todd Astle, the uncapped legspinner. That leaves Jeetan Patel, with 15 Test caps, as New Zealand’s most experienced spinner for the tour. Although Vettori’s loss for a tour to a country renowned for spin-friendly wickets is a major blow, Kim Littlejohn, the National Selection Manager, was confident that Astle, 26, had the ability to contribute well to the team.



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Roy Bates, \’Prince of Sealand\’, dies

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Paddy Roy Bates, founder and ruler of the self-proclaimed Principality of Sealand, died Tuesday.

Bates, a World War II veteran who had worked as a wholesale butcher, fishing fleet owner, and operator of an off-shore pirate radio station, occupied the abandoned gunnery platform Fort Roughs in 1967, located approximately thirteen kilometers off of England‘s eastern coast, proclaiming it a sovereign nation on September 2, 1967.

Although the nation-state was never officially recognized by other nations, it issued stamps, coinage, a flag and nation anthem, and has even become the official sponsor of a number of athletic groups, including football and roller derby teams, as well as selling noble titles from its national website.

He died at the age of 91 after suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for several years. He is survived by his wife Joan, their son Michael, and their daughter Penny.

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USA raises tariffs on inexpensive China solar panels

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

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This Wednesday, the United States Department of Commerce issued a ruling to set tariffs on Chinese-made solar panels ranging from 18% to 250% for different solar panels manufacturers. China protested against the new tariffs on Thursday claiming that they make export of solar panels to the USA unprofitable.

A US-German company SolarWorld and a group of other companies complained and initiated the tariffs change. Some manufacturers claimed China’s subsidies are an unfair advantage for the Chinese solar panel manufacturers, and challenged whether China’s economy is a free market.

Wang Shuai, a spokesman for the Yingli solar energy company, commented that 30% tariffs are unprofitable. He claimed that in the solar industry, gross profit margins are about 10 percent. “A tax rate of 30 percent is the same as 200 percent. Both of them mean the door is closed for exporting to the United States. No one does business to lose money.”

The tariffs would not go into effect until the International Trade Commission confirms the Chinese pricing hurts the U.S. solar industry.

The tariffs occur as the Chinese solar panel manufacturers have reported losses this year of hundreds of millions of dollars, according to AP.



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