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Ashes: England pick Jake Ball as Australia call up Glenn Maxwell

Jake Ball has taken two wickets at an average of 114 in three Tests
Australia v England, first Ashes Test
Date: 23-27 November Time: 00:00 GMT Venue: Gabba, Brisbane
Coverage: Ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio 4 LW and the BBC Sport website. Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app. Full coverage

England have named seamer Jake Ball ahead of Craig Overton in their side for the first Ashes Test against Australia in Brisbane.

Ball, 26, has recovered from the sprained ankle he suffered on 10 November and which kept him out of England’s final warm-up game last week.

Australia have called up all-rounder Glenn Maxwell as cover for David Warner, who has a stiff neck, and Shaun Marsh, who has a sore back.

The opening Test at the Gabba starts at 00:00 GMT on Thursday.

England team: Alastair Cook, Mark Stoneman, James Vince, Joe Root (capt), Dawid Malan, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Stuart Broad, Jake Ball, James Anderson.

Nottinghamshire’s Ball has bowled only 15.4 overs on the tour, having fallen in his delivery stride during England’s four-day tour match against a Cricket Australia XI in Adelaide.

Overton, who has not played a Test, featured in all three of England’s tour games, taking eight wickets.

“It wasn’t an easy decision,” said captain Joe Root. “Craig has come into the squad and everything asked of him he’s done really well.

“Jake has bowled well when he’s had his opportunity on the tour and the way he goes about things on these surfaces could be really challenging for the Australians.”

England will name their batting order on the morning of the game, with Moeen Ali thought to be line in to move above wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow to number six.

On Tuesday, all-rounder Moeen said he expected to bat at seven, but Root told reporters on Wednesday to “wait and see”.

Warner ‘confident’ despite neck injury

David Warner averages 44.95 in Ashes Tests

Warner, 31, has had limited time in the nets in the final two days before the Test, but Australia captain Steve Smith said he expects him to be “OK“.

“Warner is still a little bit stiff but he’s feeling better and very confident,” said Smith.

“He’s a pretty talented guy and he finds a way no matter what’s going on.”

Left-handed Warner, who averages 47.94 from 66 Tests, is due to open with the uncapped Cameron Bancroft.

Warner faced only two throw-downs in the nets on Tuesday but had a longer session on Wednesday, batting without a helmet.

“He was hitting them well in the nets,” said Smith, who joked that Warner may be forced to copy the open-chested style of former West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

“He had to open his body up a little more, but he’s confident he’ll be fine.”

Root said: “I don’t think we need to change our plans. We’ll be ready for him to play.”

Smith confirmed that seamers Jackson Bird and Chadd Sayers will miss out, meaning pace bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood will feature in the same Test side for the first time.

Australia squad: Steve Smith (captain), David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, Jackson Bird, Pat Cummins, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Tim Paine (wk), Chadd Sayers, Mitchell Starc, Glenn Maxwell.

Vaughan’s guide to surviving the Ashes down under
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Married couple and ‘supermum’ among those graduating from Bradford College

TWO Bradford College students have proved to be a first class couple by both graduating with first class honours from its University Centre.

Michael and Christine Hustler, from Clayton Heights, scored the top grades in BA (Hons) degrees in Social Nutrition and Health, and both graduated yesterday.

Their achievement is all the more remarkable considering that during their degrees the couple got married, had two children, moved house and held down part-time jobs – and in Michael’s case changed jobs.

The effort proved worth it, as the couple were joined by family – including 18-month-old Emily and five-month-old Isla – and friends at their graduation ceremony in Bradford’s Life Church yesterday.

Mr Hustler, 34, an exercise referral officer, said: “We both started the degree as we thought we had time on our hands and that it would benefit us both in progressing in our respective fields. Little did we know of the huge changes that were ahead.

“At times we both struggled with deadlines looming, however we both knew that giving up wasn’t an option considering we had invested some much time and effort.

“Getting married helped make us stronger by being able to share this experience with each other.

“Christine has done an amazing job considering she has been pregnant for almost all of the time through this course. Maternity leave has helped her with having some extra time to complete her studies and her parents have played a vital role in allowing us to have some time to concentrate on our studies.”

Also graduating was supermum Paige Rogers who completed a Foundation Degree in Early Years while working and caring for her four children and stepson.

The 27-year-old from Bradford has four children, aged 10, eight, five and two, a stepson and a job in a school but somehow managed to find time to study for the degree she hopes will help her reach her goal of being a teacher.

Paige, who has now started a BA (Hons) degree at the college, said: “I was working in early years and ran my own business for six years and then realised that to get paid more I needed to get qualifications so I decided to come and do a degree.

“It has been very hard work. There have been ups and downs but it is also very rewarding. I have no regrets about coming back into education. It opens your eyes, broadens your horizons and it is great to pick up knowledge and new skills. It is also good to show my children the value of education.”

A total of four ceremonies are being held over two days at the centre. The college is awarding 435 bachelor degrees, of which 14 per cent are first.

And 176 postgraduate awards are being awarded, of which 14 per cent are distinctions.

Can you help? Urgent appeal for 1,000 more blood donors

BRADFORD needs 1,000 more blood donors to come forward and fill its empty appointment slots between now and New Year’s Eve.

The centre in Manor Row made the appeal in the run-up to Christmas as its stocks are expected to start to fall because of winter bugs and donors’ booked-up festive diaries.

Yesterday NHS Blood and Transplant chief executive Ian Trenholm was at the centre to give blood and was joined by 34-year-old nurse Laura Woods from Clayton Heights who has given patients hundreds of blood transfusions over the years and whose own life was saved by a blood donor when she had a kidney transplant 12 years ago.

Mrs Woods, who works at Westwood Park Community Hospital, in Bradford, said: “If it wasn’t for the blood I was given during my transplant the surgery might not have been so successful and I would not have had my daughter Phoebe who is eight now.

“I had to have two units of blood during the surgery. Before the surgery it wouldn’t have been possible for me to have a child.

“I’ve seen how vital giving blood is from both angles, a nurse and a patient, and that’s why I’m so passionate about getting others to become donors. It’s life-changing if people can get the donation and is life-threatening if they don’t.

“I’ve seen the difference it makes. I was a nurse in gynaecology where women needed transfusions after major surgery or miscarriages when they had lost lots of blood – a mentally traumatic experience as well as a physical one for many of them.

“I’d urge people to do something really amazing in the run-up to Christmas and fill one of these empty slots in Bradford and give blood.”

There are only two people booked in to give blood on Boxing Day and between Saturday, December 23, and Saturday, December 30, there are 220 empty appointment slots.

Mrs Woods said: “There’s nothing to worry about coming to give blood. It’s quick and easy and the staff are lovely at the centre. They’ll take good care of you.”

In May the NHS Blood and Transplant service in Bradford moved in to historic Kenburgh House after nearly 50 years of being in Rawson Road.

Mr Trenholm said this was a time of year when stocks could fall. “People are busy, there are lots of colds and bugs about, and the weather can put people off. However there is need for lifesaving blood donations 365 days a year,” he said. “We’re urging people to make and keep an appointment.”

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He said blood was mainly used by maternity and cancer wards but the Bradford centre particularly needed O-type donations and donors from the black and Asian community, to treat patients with sickle cell disease.

He said the Blood and Transplant service was campaigning nationally to get more donors from those ethnic backgrounds.

To make an appointment, go to blood.co.uk

Jack Maynard leaves I’m a Celebrity to defend himself

Jack MaynardImage copyright ITV/PA

YouTuber Jack Maynard has left I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! due to “circumstances outside camp”.

His exit comes after a series of his tweets – in which he used inappropriate language – were published in the Sun newspaper while he was in Australia.

His publicist confirmed he was leaving the ITV show so he could be made aware of any allegations against him and have the right to defend himself.

They said he agreed with the decision “made by his representatives and ITV”.

A spokesperson for the show said: “Due to circumstances outside camp Jack has had to withdraw from the show.”

The 22-year-old is one of 10 contestants taking part in the programme, which started on Sunday.

Maynard appeared on Tuesday night’s show but presenters Ant and Dec confirmed his removal half-way through the programme, telling viewers they could not vote for him in Wednesday’s bushtucker trial.

‘Better to bring him out’

A statement from his publicist said: “In the last few days Jack Maynard has been the subject of a succession of media stories which, given his position as a contestant on I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! – filmed in the Australian jungle, with no contact with the outside world, he has been unable to respond to.

“Since it is only fair that everyone should be aware of any allegations made against them and should also have the right to defend themselves, it was agreed that it would be better to bring him out of the show.”

The 22-year-old has more than 1.2m subscribers to his YouTube channel and is the younger brother of singer Conor Maynard.

He has faced allegations of racism and homophobia in recent days after old tweets using insulting language emerged online – the majority of which were posted in 2012 and have since been removed.

His representative said Maynard was “ashamed” of those tweets and the star realises now that the language used was “completely unacceptable”.

Bomber’s brother ‘was plotting terror act in the UK’

Abu Musa al-BritaniImage copyright Other
Image caption The court was told Mohammed Awan’s brother Rizwan appeared to have joined the Islamic State (IS) group

The brother of a suicide bomber killed in Iraq was caught by police preparing to commit an act of terrorism in the UK, a court has heard.

Mohammed Awan, 24, was arrested days after buying 500 ball bearings, and possessed extremist material advising they could be used in home-made bombs.

It is alleged the dentistry student from Huddersfield owned a guide book on how to form a sleeper cell in the West.

His brother Rizwan Awan killed dozens in a bomb blast in Iraq in 2016.

Sheffield Crown Court was told Rizwan had travelled from Manchester to Istanbul on 17 May, 2015 and appeared to have joined the Islamic State (IS) group.

Image caption Anti-terror police carried out a raid at the family home in Huddersfield

The court heard anti-terror police swooped on 1 June this year after Awan, a Sheffield University student, had bought a bag of ball bearings on the internet.

They were delivered to the family home in Rudding Street, Huddersfield.

More material was discovered during a raid at his flat in Sheffield, including a terrorist publication titled ‘How to Survive in the West’ which was found on a memory stick headed ‘My Stuff’.

The court was told the document is a guide book on how to create a sleeper cell, including advice on using ball bearings as shrapnel and how to make bombs.

A review of images and audio files taken from a mobile phone included pictures of the Boston marathon bombing and a man wearing an orange jumpsuit about to be executed.

Awan claimed the memory stick belonged to his dead brother and he had kept it for sentimental reasons.

But the prosecution said Rizwan Awan’s own digital services had been reset to factory settings and wiped clean before he left the country.

Mohammed Awan denies preparing an act of terrorism and two charges of possessing terrorist-related documents.

The trial continues.

‘Ice Maiden’ team aim to break ski record

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionHow female explorers face challenges of south pole trek

Six women from the British army are attempting to become the first all-female group to ski coast-to-coast across Antarctica.

The Ice Maiden team began the 1,000-mile expedition on Monday, pulling an 80kg sledge behind them.

The journey is expected to last between 75 and 90 days, with winds of up to 60mph and temperatures as low as -40C.

Lt Jenni Stephenson said she hoped the trip would “inspire and encourage” other women.

The team was chosen from 250 applicants, with the only requirements being that they were female and serving in the Army as a regular or reservist.

They were then put through rigorous tests in the UK and Norway before the final six were picked.

Image copyright British Army
Image caption The team left Heathrow on the 25th October for Chile for final preparations before heading to Antarctica on 3rd November

The expedition was due to start on 3 November, but poor weather conditions at the Union Glacier camp delayed them.

However, they still held a two-minute silence and played the Last Post on Remembrance Day at the camp, marking the moment on the quietest continent on earth in front of a cross made of skis.

The team will not return until after new year.

Image copyright British Army
Image caption The team held a Remembrance service on 11 November

Lt Stephenson said: “I feel incredibly lucky to be part of a team of confident, aspirational and positive women.

“We’ve all sacrificed various parts of our lives to focus on the expedition, but the most important part lies in its aim to inspire and encourage other people to find their own Antarctica.

“I hope we can go some way to achieving this.”

May welcomes Zimbabwe’s ‘brighter future’ after Mugabe

Robert MugabeImage copyright AFP/Getty
Image caption The resignation of Robert Mugabe comes after Zimbabwe’s military took over the country and put him under house arrest

Theresa May has welcomed the resignation of Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe, saying it offered an opportunity to “rebuild the country’s economy”.

The president stepped down after 37 years in power via a letter that was read out to the country’s parliament.

It followed a takeover by the Zimbabwean military, who put Mr Mugabe under house arrest last week.

Boris Johnson called the end of Mr Mugabe’s reign a “moment of hope.”

The 93-year-old had resisted calls to step down, despite the intervention of the country’s military and protests across the capital of Harare.

However, on Tuesday, parliament speaker Jacob Mudenda read a letter from the former leader of Zanu-PF, which said his decision was “voluntary” and “arising from my concern for the welfare of the people of Zimbabwe.”

Responding to the announcement, Mrs May said: “In recent days we have seen the desire of the Zimbabwean people for free and fair elections and the opportunity to rebuild the country’s economy under a legitimate government.

“As Zimbabwe’s oldest friend, we will do all we can to support this, working with our international and regional partners to help the country achieve the brighter future it so deserves.”

The foreign secretary also welcomed the announcement, but warned it should not mark “the transition from one despotic rule to another”.

Mr Johnson said: “I think it’s very important at the moment that we don’t focus too much on the personalities.

“Let’s concentrate on the potential, the hope for Zimbabwe – an incredible country, a beautiful country, blessed with extraordinary physical and human potential.”

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionForeign Secretary Boris Johnson says Robert Mugabe’s resignation as president is a “moment of hope” for Zimbabwe

Asked about what he thought should happen to Mr Mugabe and his wife Grace – who the former leader had been priming as a successor – he added: “[Mr Mugabe] played an important part in the birth of the independent nation of Zimbabwe.

“And yet, tragically, he allowed that legacy to be squandered and his country went to rack and ruin and in some cases his people were driven to the brink of starvation.

“It’s time now for a new future and how Robert Mugabe spends the rest of his years is very much a matter for his countrymen.”

‘Family dynasty’ failed

Labour MP and former Africa minister, Peter Hain, said the president’s attempt to ensure Grace Mugabe would follow in his footsteps was his downfall.

He told BBC News: “It was his determination to create a family dynasty and protect himself that finally meant his party gave up on him and the ruling elite gave up on him as well.

“The Zanu-PF party, that Mugabe had controlled with an iron fist, reacted against it and would not accept his wife being ushered in as his presidential replacement.

“The military said we have had enough and we are not going to put up with this, although they had ruled with him and supported him at times in murderous extermination of the opposition.

Image caption Lord Peter Hain met with Mr Mugabe when he was the minister for Africa in 1999

Lord Hain added that the people of Zimbabwe had the chance for a “fresh start“, and called on former vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is expected to will be sworn in as president in the coming days, to take the country “in a different direction”.

Salil Shetty, secretary general of London-based Amnesty International, said Mr Mugabe’s leadership had allowed “grotesque crimes to thrive”, but his resignation was a turning point.

She said: “After more than three decades of violent repression, the way forward for the country is to renounce the abuses of the past and transition into a new era where the rule of law is respected and those who are responsible for injustices are held to account.”

Charles Bronson refused parole at HMP Wakefield

Charles Bronson in 1992Image copyright PA
Image caption Charles Bronson in 1992 – that year, he spent 53 days outside prison before being arrested again

One of the UK‘s most violent prisoners, Charles Bronson has been refused parole.

A board ruled that Bronson, now called Charles Salvador, should not be released from HMP Wakefield or moved to an open prison.

The 63-year-old is serving a life sentence for robbery and kidnap and has gained notoriety for a history of violence inside and outside jail.

He must now wait another two years for a review of his case.

Bronson’s bride: ‘We’re very similar creatures’

Luton-born Bronson recently got married to former Emmerdale and Coronation Street actress Paula Williamson inside the West Yorkshire prison.

Image copyright BBC, Paula Williamson
Image caption Paula Williamson wrote to Bronson in 2013 after reading his book on living in Broadmoor psychiatric hospital

Speaking after the decision, his 37-year-old wife said: “He’s not going to be released any time soon.”

She told Talk Radio: “Charlie has admitted his wrongdoings and he’s served his time for every single offence that he’s committed, and well over that time, and it’s time now for him to move forward. He’s an OAP.”


Bronson’s jail history

  • 1974 First jailed, age 22, for armed robbery and wounding
  • 1975 Attacked a fellow prisoner with a glass jug
  • 1985 Carried out a three-day rooftop protest
  • 1988 Returned to prison for robbing a jewellery shop
  • 1992 Released, but found guilty shortly afterwards of conspiracy to rob
  • 1994 Holds a prison librarian hostage, demanding a helicopter and tea
  • 1998 Takes three inmates hostage at Belmarsh
  • 1999 Given a life sentence with a three-year tariff for kidnapping
  • 2014 Assaulted prison governor Alan Parkins

The parole hearing was on 7 November.

A Parole Board spokesman said: “We can confirm that a panel of the Parole Board has not directed the release of Charles Salvador.

“Under current legislation, Mr Salvador will be eligible for a further review within two years. The date of the next review will be set by the Ministry of Justice.”

Jail for man who faked £7m will to cheat charity

Paul CoppolaImage copyright CIARAN DONNELLY
Image caption Paul Coppola was jailed for two years for faking the will of his relative Desiderio Coppola

A man who faked a relative’s will to prevent a charity benefitting from a multi-million pound legacy has been jailed.

Paul Coppola, 65, admitted forging the signature of Desiderio Coppola just days before his death in October 2011.

The deceased had wanted his £7m estate to be divided between his family and the balance left to the charity, Medecins Sans Frontieres.

Coppola was jailed for two years at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

The court was told that Coppola had known his second cousin, Desiderio Coppola, all his life and that the accused had referred to him as “uncle”.

In July 2010 Desiderio Coppola made a will bequeathing much of his estate to his friends and family, including £100,000 to Paul Coppola.

No mention

It also gave instructions that tenants of business premises that he owned were to be offered the chance to buy them.

Mr Coppola also stated that the residue of his estate was to go to Medecins Sans Frontieres, the charity that provides medical assistance in war torn regions and developing countries.

However, days before his gravely ill relative’s death, the court was told that Paul Coppola presented a new will to the family that made no mention of the charity.

It also made no reference to the business premises and instructed that the remainder of the estate be paid to Coppola, of Waverley Park Terrace, Edinburgh.

Image copyright Scottish Courts
Image caption Coppola was jailed for two years at Edinburgh Sheriff Court

Fiscal Ann MacNeill told the court that the day after Desiderio Coppola’s death, the accused contacted his goddaughter, Elvira Fearn, to tell her about the content of the faked document.

The fiscal said: “Although she had no knowledge of the wills or the deceased’s intentions, she was suspicious of the will because she was aware that the deceased hated to pay tax and she did not believe that he would have omitted Medecins Sans Frontieres completely and left the residue to the accused as there would have been a large tax liability to pay.”

She added: “Elvira Fearn was of the opinion that the changes to the will reflected the accused’s allegiances rather than the wishes of the deceased.”

Several days after the death, friends and family held a meeting with Coppola, where he was asked how the new will had come about.

‘Much grief’

The fiscal said: “The accused explained that he found out that the deceased was due to leave the majority of his wealth to charity and that he had persuaded the deceased to change his will.

“He said the deceased had agreed to change the terms of his will.”

In June 2012 confirmation of the will was granted and a total of £1.2m was paid to friends and family who had been bequeathed specific amounts.

By March 2013 Coppola had received a property from the estate in Edinburgh’s Raeburn Place, which he sold for £290,000. He also received a further property in the city‘s Waterloo Place.

Coppola also received more than £270,000 from the estate into his bank account in October 2013.

However, weeks later lawyers went to the Court of Session in Edinburgh and successfully raised an action to have the will set aside.

Coppola chose not to defend the action.

The police were informed and lawyers then took over administration of the estate and began trying to recover money that had been due to the charity.

Coppola later admitted to officers that he had forged the signature of his relative.

Sheriff Frank Crowe told him: “Your actions caused much grief, inconvenience and disappointment to the other legatees and your friends and uncertainty to the tenants of properties which were rented from the deceased.”

The sheriff told Coppola he would have faced a three-year jail sentence if he had been convicted after trial, but it would be reduced in view of his early guilty plea.

Out now: Animal Crossing Pocket Camp, your new mobile gaming obsession

Just when you thought you’d got over your crippling Pokémon Go addiction, along comes Nintendo’s latest mobile phone game.

And judging on first impressions, it’s great.

Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp came out today on iOS and Android and is set to be the next big thing in mobile games.

It’s a mobile spin-off of Nintendo’s Animal Crossing console games, which gave you a virtual house in a picture-postcard cartoon town populated by adorable animals, gave you a virtual mortgage to pay off (yes, really) and then gave you the freedom to potter about at your own leisure.

For this mobile outing the setting has changed to a camp site but the general idea of the game – wander around, make friends with animals, shake a tree to pick apples, maybe do a little fishing – is very familiar.

It’s a little oasis of calm in your pocket and exudes charm in spades.

And going mobile has made it much easier to interact with friends – you can visit their camps, they can visit yours (although inevitably they all look pretty much the same at this early stage) and you can buy and sell unwanted items.

However, AC:PC is also afflicted with one of the less savoury aspects of mobile gaming: in-app purchases.

Nintendo describe the game as “free-to-start“, and as far as we could gather in our limited play time so far it seems pretty much everything in the game can be accessed without paying real money.

But that comes at the cost of waiting for stuff to happen.

For instance, pick an apple for your new pal Goldie the golden retriever and a timer appears over the tree showing how long it’ll take them to grow back – three hours in real time, or you can use a bag of fertiliser on the apple tree to speed things along. The fertiliser costs ‘leaf tickets’, which can be bought using real-world money in transactions ranging from 99p to £38.99.

In the early game this doesn’t seem too much of a worry, but experience in similar games suggest the waiting times will get longer and longer for the more desirable items later on.

Parents will want to make sure in-app purchases are turned off.

But much of the charm of earlier Animal Crossing games has always been the leisurely pace, and waiting for events in real time – certain insects only come out at night, or events only happen on certain days of the week. Even the in-game seasons progress at the same pace as real life.

So unless you’re impatient, you’ll be able to enjoy Pocket Camp in small doses – and there’s plenty to enjoy.