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Ten News -

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(generated from captions) Tell me it is not my daughter... ..that it's not Bridget.

Tell me. Tell me it's not... Oh, God, no.

Not Bridget. No, no, no. No! www.auscap.com.au the Australian Caption Centre Supertext Captions by This program is captioned live. Tonight - natural disaster zone - devastates Armidale. a freak hailstorm with Christmas coming up. We need help badly Stabbed in her cot - a 9-month-old baby. a man charged with murdering And fury from Bali bombing survivors Abu Bakar Bashir. over the decision to clear and Deborah Knight. Ten News with Ron Wilson Good evening. over Britain's prostitute murders. Also tonight, a truck driver charged And signing off - Sydney radio. shock jock Stan Zemanek farewells But first this evening,

cops a pounding. the northern NSW city of Armidale up to half a metre of ice A freak hailstorm has dumped in just five minutes, and destroying the exhibition centre. damaging hundreds of homes and cars a natural disaster area, The city has been declared State Government assistance. triggering at Thredbo - No, this isn't the middle of winter it's summer in Armidale. battered the New England city, The freak afternoon hailstorm with up to half a metre of ice. blanketing the ground

At the peak of the storm, were as big as golf balls. some of the hailstones our roof. It just, like, kept hitting

really heavy rocks, It just sounded like rocks,

just whacking our roof. of their leaves, The wind and ice stripped trees others were uprooted. a devastating hailstorm before Armidale has experienced but none so destructive. to the previous This would probably measured up

a good 20 minutes, a half-hour because this went for of nonstop heavy hail. this morning Much of the ice was still there surveying the damage - as bewildered residents began shattered roofs and broken glass, dozens of homes left with cars also bearing the brunt. especially the SES, Emergency services, to make houses liveable. are currently doing what they can has been left a crumpled mess - Armidale's Exhibition Centre brought it crashing to the ground. the weight of the hailstones the town's racing club. The storm damaged until after Christmas. It could be shut down what we can at the moment, We're just trying to clean up fix a few windows,

and then we'll go from there. a natural disaster zone, The areas has been declared to accelerate the clean-up meaning more resources and help for families. with Christmas coming up. We need help badly to get the clean-up done I think people need to be able

in the next few days

a good Christmas. and we hope they'll enjoy James Boyce, Ten News. in Sydney's south-west this morning, A shocking murder the victim a 9-month old girl. over the crime Police are questioning a man and police. that has sickened neighbours stormed the home in Campsie, Police with guns drawn arresting a 53-year-old man, who is now being questioned over the murder. when she was stabbed in the neck. The 9-month-old girl lay in her cot by frantic 000 calls Police were alerted from several neighbours. covered in blood. The mother ran from the home Ther child's grandfather emerged in his arms cradling the baby's limp body and were taken to hospital. before both collapsed from shock of child victims Laws protecting the identity from being identified. prevents anyone from the family at the hospital said But family members arriving

was a family friend the alleged killer who boarded at the home. The family says for a psychiatric illness the alleged killer was being treated for the past three months. and had been in a mental institution to go home for Christmas. He was released earlier this week when the child was allegedly killed. The mother was hanging out washing and tried to enter the home She heard a noise but found the doors were locked,

to gain entry eventually breaking a window and discover the crime. of circumstances, obviously, It's a horrendous set

when young children are involved. more particularly It is difficult on the police on any witnesses and it's obviously difficult on the family. and most particularly it's difficult visiting family. The victim's father is in Fiji in hospital under sedation. The grieving mother remains John Hill, Ten News.

for victims of the Bali bombings There's more anguish of the terrorists with the alleged spiritual leader his latest court victory. crowing about There are now concerns might never see justice. the bombers on death row

year after serving only 26 months, Released from prison earlier this has been overturned, now Abu Bakar Bashir's conviction give the go-ahead to the bombings the Supreme Court saying he didn't in Bali and Jakarta. for its courage. He's praised the court Australian victims are disgusted. Nothing's true about Bashir. Totally corrupt. a devastating effect It is going to have and the victims on many of the families

led to believe all the way along because they have been a major stakeholder in the tragedy. that this person was beyond the control of our Government. The decision of a foreign court of another country But of course it is the court system doesn't stop us feeling upset. and we can't change that, but it We now have deep concerns of Abu Bakir Bashir in Indonesia about the ongoing role he will give to militant Islamists. and the continued inspiration

to build evidence against Bashir. Federal Police worked for years still believes Commissioner Mick Keelty admits the case was circumstantial. Bashir authorised the attacks, but

that he was involved Being convinced of the fact is different to evidence before the court. The Commissioner still has faith in the Indonesian authorities. We should recognise that Indonesia has convicted more terrorists in the last five years - some 230-odd - than any other country in the world. But one victim fears the Indonesian courts will also release the Bali bombers now on death row. The three bombers which are in jail at the moment waiting for execution, I guess in a lot of ways we could be standing here in a year's time talking about the same thing. Australians have been advised to reconsider travel to Indonesia,

including Bali, over the Christmas period. Greg Turnbull, Ten News. A breakthrough tonight in the serial killings that have rocked Britain -

police have charged a man with the murder of five prostitutes. He's expected to face court in the next few hours. A second suspect has been released.

This is the man police allege is the Ipswich strangler - 48-year-old Steve Wright, pictured here with his ex-partner. He was arrested two days ago and has been extensively interviewed over the killing of five street workers whose naked bodies were found dumped on the outskirts of town. We've made the decision and authorised that Stephen Wright should be charged with the murders of Tania Nicol, Gemma Adams, Anneli Alderton, Annette Nicholls and Paula Clennell. Wright, a former forklift driver on the docks, lives on the edge of Ipswich's red-light district. Police have spent the past 48 hours searching around his home. A second man, Tom Stephens, who was arrested the day before Wright, has now been freed without charge. The 37-year-old man from Trimley was this evening released on police bail pending further inquiries. Steve Wright will face the Ipswich Magistrates' Court in the next few hours. Stephen Wright stands accused of these offences and has the right of a fair trial before a jury. But already the London tabloids have begun digging the dirt, claiming Wright trawled for street workers wearing a wig and high heels. Daniel Sutton, Ten News. A compromise tonight on changes to the State's helicopter rescue services. CareFlight has been thrown a lifeline, offered an ongoing role caring for people whose lives are on the line. The only one really smiling about the compromise deal seemed to be the Premier. The battle for control of the medical choppers has taken a toll on front-line staff.

It's been a really hard time and I'm really glad it's over. Morris Iemma was accused of trying to kill off the service when the Government awarded the overall contract to Canadian-owned CHC. The outcome that has been achieved is a win-win.

We get the best of both worlds - we get new and improved services with CareFlight still retaining involvement. I'd say to everybody in the community - keep signing those petitions because I will save CareFlight if we win the election in March. I will reverse the decision of the Government and reinstate the services with CareFlight. Negotiations between the Government and CareFlight continued into last night. It's heartfelt disappointment. You don't achieve as many of the doctors and flight crew who've worked with us all these 20 years

and established and built up a service that has that community reputation and that community appreciation without being disappointed at having to compromise.

Treating roadside head injury patients will be the service's main focus but the final details have yet to be worked out. CareFlight's workload will be less than half of what it's famous for. Many doctors and staff will now leave for the Canadian service when that starts up from May next year. The service won't close at the end of the month

and there will be a smooth handover when the new operators take over. Kevin Wilde, Ten News. Tim Webster joins us with a look at sport, and Glenn McGrath can't stop speculation he's about to quit Test cricket. Yes, the veteran paceman was at best cagey when pressed on whether he'd follow Shane Warne into retirement. Glenn McGrath's has his bags packed, but for business, not retirement. It's business as usual. En route to Melbourne for Test number 123, the star paceman was guarded when responding to reports he is about to hang up his baggy green. Just preparing for another Test match and hopefully win these next two Tests and into the one-dayers - nothing different to what I've said for the last couple of months. The 36-year-old wants to play on until the World Cup in March. However, his future beyond that remains in doubt, with a possible tour of Zimbabwe and Test series against Sri Lanka to round out 2007 for the Aussies. Well, it's interesting Warney came out and announces his, and apparently I'm to follow suit. Three days before Christmas, and the soon-to-be-retired Shane Warne's popularity is rivalling Santa's. Go, Warney! Up to 500 fans queued for up to eight hours to share a moment with their hero at a Melbourne book signing. A piece of history for me. It will be nice to have that and say I met him the day after he retired from international cricket.

Generous with his signature - Warne not keen to share his thoughts on the reaction to his retirement. Look, mate, I've done all I wanted to do yesterday. Today is just about signing these for these guys.

On the verge of claiming his 700th Test wicket, Warne went close to 700 autographs today. Cameron Baud, Ten News. And while our Ashes heros head to the door, NSW welcomed their newest recruit. League star Andrew Johns received a touch-up from the Blues bowlers today, while one cricketing great has called on South Australia's quicks not to hurt him. And we'll also visit a couple of kids who really are like Mike - how the sons of Michael Jordan are faring as they attempt to make it in basketball. Two young women charged with murdering a teenage girl and dumping her body in a bin - that's next. Also tonight, Sydney's homeless facing a bleak Christmas - the State Government accused of not doing enough to help. And with just three more sleeps,

the last-minute rush is on to find that special gift. Domino's introduce three new to-die-for dipping sauces. Experience the wonder of white chocolate, the gooey goodness of caramel and the exotic blend of choc jaffa. Come on, take another dip on the dark side. MEN: Domino's.

You're facing a massive test of endurance. Who do you trust? Duracell Alkaline or Eveready Super Heavy Duty batteries? One by one, the Eveready Super Heavy Duty batteries fall - victims of exhaustion. Down they go. Up and up he goes. Two teenage girls have appeared in court

charged over Perth's wheelie bin murder. It's believed the 16-year-old victim was known to her killers. She was reported missing just days ago. Police were still at the scene today where the body of the girl was found dumped in a wheelie bin,

scouring the property for more clues. Investigators are yet to identify the victim. but it's believed to be missing 16-year-old Stacey Mitchell, who phoned her parents last Sunday but hadn't returned home since. It's one of those circumstances

where again the victim was known to the offenders and we have a terrible outcome. Last night police made a breakthrough in the case, arresting the two teenagers in a central Perth suburb.

19-year-old Jessica Spaninowski and Valerie Parshumti, 18, have both been charged with wilful murder. Spaninowski's family members were visibly distressed

outside a Perth court today. Family. (Beep) off. During their brief court appearance, 19-year-old Jessica put her hands over her face

to try to shield her identity, while her 18-year-old co-accused Valerie sat quietly in the dock. Apart from confirming their identities, no details were given on the case.

The Parshumti family refused to make any comment while leaving court. Both teenagers were remanded in custody and will be back in court in early January. Ebbeny Faranda, Ten News. For most of us, Christmas is a time to relax at home,

but 26,000 people in NSW have nowhere to go. Welfare groups say homelessness is on the rise and the Government needs to do more. It's unsafe, uncomfortable, and it's where hundreds of Sydney's homeless sleep every night, whatever the weather. In the lead-up to Christmas, night patrol food vans are busier than ever. A lot of people here want to find somewhere they can call their own place but they can't afford it. The Council of Social Service claims Morris Iemma did promise an affordable housing strategy but hasn't delivered. When he became Premier

he said his three big issues were disability, mental health and affordable housing and we've been waiting for that statement for the last six months. It better be good when it comes. But the Premier says he's made two public housing commitments already - for the elderly and the inner west - and a third is in the pipeline. We've had a number of non-government organisations put forward ideas to the Government and we are working through a number of those.

Social workers fear it's not enough. We're not preventing homelessness in the first place, we're putting bandaids on it while people are experiencing it and, at the end of the day, we don't have enough affordable housing for people to live in long-term. Charity groups say the need to address this problem has never been more urgent and they're happy to prove it.

They've invited Morris Iemma, or any of his ministers, to spend the evening with them, handing out food to the homeless. Or, more importantly, be able to spend some time overnight and see what the conditions are like and see if they could cut it as well as what these people do. The Premier says he's well aware of the efforts of night patrol volunteers. We all applaud and appreciate the work that they do. Danielle Isdale, Ten News. A timely warning to parents to be vigilant with their little ones after a 10-month-old baby almost died after swallowing a piece of Lego. Small Christmas items otherwise considered innocent are causing some children to choke. Peanuts are the worst because peanuts release an oil which causes inflammation which breaks down the peanut into smaller pieces and the peanut then spreads out in fragments through both lungs.

Increasing the danger is that some tiny toys or food can't be detected by X-rays. Just three more sleeps until the big day -

Sydney retailers are bracing themselves

for a weekend of last-minute shopping as the city heartily embraces the Christmas spirit. On what for many was the last working day before Christmas, what better way to be reminded of what's in store. (All sing) # Santa Claus is coming to town. # Santa's annual sing-song on Manly's ferry put commuters in the spirit ahead of what will be the traditional last-minute rush. As some families prepare to see loved ones,

this year we're not taking as much leave and working through the festive fun. In NSW, workers have over 22 million days of accumulated leave, so we're encouraging them to take that leave and reduce their stress. That may be unlikely this weekend as retailers prepare to be swamped, with two full trading days falling on the weekend. Most people aren't too stressed out about it at the moment but I dare say come Christmas Eve we're going to have some pretty stressed-out people. It may be punters leaving it to the last minute, but the lead-up for shops has been slow this year. The sector's seeing slimmer spending, according to the Chamber of Commerce. Nearly 70% of Sydney shoppers are saying that they're going to spend less for Christmas than they had originally intended. One thing that never changes over Christmas is how much we eat, and this year at the Sydney Fish Markets at least they're saying it's all about seafood. They'll take two months worth of trade here over the next week. That'll mostly be prawns, at between $14 and $40 a kilo. They're very abundant. We've got varieties of prawns from all over Australia and the imported ones. Quality's fantastic and the volumes are great this year

and the price is just right. 9 tonnes will be bought in this outlet alone. Josh Murphy, Ten News.

Time for a check of the weather.

What a beautiful day in Sydney.

That is the sort of weather we

normally get at this time. That's

correct. It may be a bit similar on

Christmas Day. The temperatures we

were predicting earlier in the week

are changing. We may get into the

mid-20s on the day the jolly Santa

Claus arrives to bring all our

gifts. At the moment, we are still

doing about 25 degrees around the

greater West. We are here in the

north-west at K13 park at

Carlingford. Can you believe the

bureau is is still predicting the

possibility of some snow in the

snowy mountains on Christmas day.

Is it has been rather windy today

as well. Got up to 65km/h at

currentel and 60km/h down south.

We'll look at the sky watch. It was

cloudy for the first couple of

hours. Then it went absolutely bang.

hours. Then it went absolutely bang. Cleared up and the sun really

kicked in. Got up to 35 degrees in

the west. The pollution levels -

medium across most parts in the

Sydney Basin. It is all about

Christmas Carrolls at the moment.

We know that and we have our

favourites. Gather the family

around. You're about to hear

around. You're about to hear something very special in about 10 minutes. Don't miss it. The vicious war of words between two big American stars,

and it's all over the Miss USA scandal - that's next. And the ultimate Christmas gift from one sister to another. SPLASH! Over the past five years, 87 lives have been lost in boating accidents in NSW. More than 90% were not wearing life jackets. So at times of heightened risk, like crossing coastal bars, boating alone, or when the going gets rough... ..put your life jacket on. Don't wait until it's too late.

It's Mitre 10's last-minute Christmas Super Buys. 6-million candlepower spotlight, $45.

Let's check the traffic. This is

the first opportunity people have,

especially working people, to get

away on the holidays. How is it

looking on the roads out of sidsni?

We've had a lot of calls for

traffic heading north wondering

about the details on the F36789

very heavy traffic at Wahroonga

earlier this afternoon. Now is the

best time to head out all the way

through to the Central Coast. There

are some delays towards Newcastle

and then further north of Newcastle. But

But leading out of Sydney it is

problem free. There are dramas

heading to the Southern High lands

via the Hume Highway. We'll bring

you an update after the sport. ASIO has been called in to help check the army's supply of rocket launchers amid claims several have been stolen. The Defence Minister has ordered a national audit of weapons and ammunition after reports up to eight anti-tank launchers can't be accounted for. It's feared they've been sold to criminal gangs or terrorists by rogue soldiers. Issue of the launchers has been suspended until inquiries are complete. Eight US marines have been charged over the massacre of unarmed civilians in Iraq. 24 people were killed in the town of Haditha when soldiers stormed their homes and opened fire. Among the victims, seven women and three children. A Marine Corps squad leader has been charged with murdering 13 people and ordering troops under his command to murder six others. Another day of misery for airport passengers across the UK. Thick fog has grounded hundreds of flights, leaving 40,000 people stranded. So far, all planes heading to Australia have been able to take off but many travellers are worried they won't make it home for Christmas. We've been from queue to queue to queue to get re-ticketed. We've been on stand-by and missed out a couple of times. The foggy conditions are expected to continue tomorrow. And blizzards in the United States are causing havoc for thousands of people travelling home for Christmas. Snowstorms in Colorado have stopped all flights in and out of Denver airport, stranded passengers told they won't be able to leave for days. Motorists too have been affected.

The whole city is virtually shut down, with up to 60cm of snow dumped in the past couple of days. Other states are now bracing for bad weather as the storm moves east. Another American beauty queen has fallen from grace, caught up in a sex scandal. Explicit photos of Miss Nevada have surfaced on the Internet, showing Katie Rees in a series of compromising positions. The pictures, including shots of her kissing other women and exposing herself, were taken on a drunken night out five years ago. Pageant officials say her behaviour is unacceptable and have stripped her of the crown. They say Donald Trump personally approved her dethroning. The first-runner up will now take on her title. And a vicious war of words has erupted between two US heavyweights over the Miss USA partying scandal. Pageant owner Donald Trump is threatening to sue talk show host Rosie O'Donnell after she publicly attacked him.

They've never been known for their close friendship, but even Rosie's co-hosts were surprised with this outburst on her talk show, 'The View'. So he held a press conference to announce whether or not she was gonna retain her crown and then she started to cry, going, "I just want to thank Donald for giving me a second chance," and there he is going, "Everyone deserves a second chance." It came just a day after Donald Trump gave Miss USA Tara Conner a second chance to clean up her image. But the attacks didn't stop there. He annoys me on a multitude of levels. He's the moral authority? Left the first wife, had an affair, left the second wife, had an affair, had kids both times. But he's the moral compass for 20-year-olds in America? Rosie's a loser, she's always been a loser. I've always understood it. She failed with her magazine, she failed with her show. As you know, at the end, it was doing very poorly in terms of the ratings. A pageant owner for many years, Trump knows beauty when he sees it. Apparently Ms O'Donnell isn't tiara-worthy. She's unattractive in every sense of the word. From a physical standpoint she looks like hell. Inside she's far worse than she is on the outside.

Who knew a unknown from Kentucky could cause this much drama. Donald, sit and spin, my friend. Gemma Riordan, Ten News. The ultimate Christmas gift for one happy couple - an act of sisterly love has delivered the Bowdens a much-wanted baby. A baby has always been top of the wish list for Jacqueline Bowden. But, after 10 rounds of IVF, she'd almost given up hope, until her younger sister stepped in, donating her own eggs. When she offered I said "Yes, please" so quickly and I gave her the biggest hug. Tanya's eggs were removed, fertilised with her brother-in-law's sperm and implanted into Jacqueline. Nine months later, two proud parents and a very special aunt. I did not know how emotional I would be. I'm a pretty strong person and she's just so precious.

I've tried to say thank you enough but it's just something that you can't ever say thank you to someone so special. Maya-Rose has the DNA of her aunty and father but no genetic connection to her mum. She may, however, grow up to look like her mother because the egg has been donated from within the family. I can see some of my features in her, some of Jacqueline's features in her and some of Tanya's features in her so that's a very special situation. This priceless gift arriving just in time for Christmas. It's not about presents and money, it's about what you can give,

whether it costs anything or nothing. Gabrielle Boyle, Ten News. Some welcome rain has residents in Victoria's bushfire belt dancing in the streets - that's next. Also, signing off - shock jock Stan Zemanek farewells Sydney radio. And the "heir Jordans" - Michael's sons following in his very big footsteps. Righto, mate. We're gonna pick teams. I'm gonna have him, him and him. You've got the girls. (Laughs) Yeah! You're gone! You're gone! Nice take, Clarkey!

You beauty! Whoo-hoo! That's tea. KFC's Backyard Bucket - heaps of variety for the whole team, plus... How pumped are we, boys?! ..one of three inflatable Aussie fielders to collect. KFC's Backyard Bucket. SONG: # Can't beat that taste. # TYRES SCREECH INTRIGUING MAGICAL MUSIC VOICEOVER: This Christmas, Target's Wish Patrol are checking everybody's list twice... Thongs, new bike. CHILD: I want some new games and a... Got her! ..to make sure Target's got gifts for the whole family, Target. For all your Christmas wishes. This program is captioned live. The top stories we're following this news hour - Bali bombing survivors are outraged at an Indonesian court's decision

to clear Muslim cleric Abu Bakar Bashir. There are now fears the bombers on death row might never see justice. A man is being questioned over the murder of a 9-month-old girl in Sydney's south-west.

The baby was stabbed while lying in her cot. And Armidale has been declared a natural disaster area after a freak hailstorm hit the city.

Hundreds of homes and cars have been damaged and the exhibition centre destroyed. The baby boy who drowned when his pram rolled into an Adelaide river has been laid to rest. 300 friends and family took part in an emotional ceremony to farewell 5-month-old Leonardo Legrand. The flame that burns half as long burns twice as brightly. Leo's mother, model Kerry Lucas, had momentarily let go of the pram to answer her mobile phone. Anger in Victoria and Tasmania as four people are charged with arson over recent bushfires. While a welcome downpour

had some locals singing and dancing in the rain, there was also disbelief

several blazes have been deliberately lit. Because people like that, they don't deserve to live, in my book, because you could end up killing people because of it. A cool change is providing some relief, New Zealand firefighters returning home with a familiar last hurrah. The Australian share market ended the week in positive territory,

although mining stocks took a beating. An historic evening ahead for Sydney radio - top-rating shock jock Stan Zemanek is calling it a night. The 59-year-old is quitting radio to concentrate on the fight of his life.

Look up 'shock jock' in the

dictionary and you should see a

photo of Stan Zemanek. If you don't

like t don't listen to it. I

couldn't give a stuff. But after 17

years on the radio, only one thing

could make him hang up his

headphones, his health. It wasn't a

hard decision. I think that, you

know, when you have an illness like

I've got, you've got to concentrate

on that. Last May, Stan was

diagnosed with a malignant brain

tumourment Originally when I was

first diagnosed, I had basically

about two weeks. Then it was

stretched out to a couple of months

and now here we are, six or seven

months down at track. Very sad news.

We've been listening to you for

many, many years. Thank U it's nice

to be missed . I'm so sorry you

will not be on the air tonight but

I will be watching wherever you G I

think you're the greatest. The

radio was the greatest medicine of

all time. You forget about what

happens in the daytime, what

happens at nighttime and all the

terrible thoughts that might go

through your head. And as he gets

ready for his final show tonight,

the dark truth is emerging.

Zemanek is actually a nice guy.

When 12-year-old Nathan Webber

needed a hand with a fundraising

swim, Stan was the man. I ended up

swim, Stan was the man. I ended up with $51,000. Stan will continue

with TV show 'Beauty and the Beast'

and has a book deal in the works

but it is radio that has always

been closest to his heart and in

this country, where only a hand

frlful of people achieve any kind

of legend status on the air wives.

Stan dem neck is one of them. Are

you coming back? You'll see. You

never know your luck. The name of the long-awaited final Harry Potter book

has been revealed. It will be called 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows', which will only fuel speculation author J.K. Rowling is planning to kill off her schoolboy wizard hero. But her millions of fans around the world will have to wait a bit longer for the seventh instalment - a publication date is yet to be announced.

Let's look at the weather again. It

is a little-known fact that Ron

wanders around here at 10 humming

tunes and I think the 'Little

Drummer Boy' is his favourite. It

is up there. I march to my own beat,

you Z We've heard that. We have a

treat for you botd. We have Alfie,

a rare tal ept standing with us. He

has a Christmas album. It is out

now. If you want to get a late

Christmas present, we'll tell you

where you can go. We'll talk about

it a little later. 'Little Drummer

Boy'. Do you want to give it a go?

# Come, they told me, a newborn king to see

# Our finest gifts we bring

# That's pretty good. Want some

more? We'll do it a little later.

We'll go to the temperatures in the backyard of NSW.

Christmas day will be windy with a

top of 25. But some more Christmas

cheer coming up thanks to this guy

at 5:55. Very good. Sport with Tim Webster after the break, and Glenn McGrath - will he or won't he retire? It's still a guessing game at the moment, Deb. He headed down to Melbourne today for what could be his second-last Test.

Glenn will tell us about his future, shortly. And is Andrew Johns a knight needing more armour in his cricket debut?

ALARM BEEPS With 12 delicious breakfast items on the menu, you can make breakfast at McDonald's

This program is captioned live. Still no word on Glenn McGrath's future beyond this Ashes series. He says he's not considering retirement

but the rumours just won't go away. The McGrath clan heading south for Christmas amid speculation Glenn is about to quit the Australian cricket family. He says it's news to him. It's interesting, you know. Warney comes out and announces his and I'm apparently to follow suit. Like I've said the whole time, I haven't even mentioned retirement. But a Sydney Test farewell in the new year still appears likely. If that's the case, Ricky Ponting claims no-one's told him. How would I know, mate? I'm the last to find these things out usually. I've heard nothing from Glenn, so that probably indicates that it mightn't happen, I suppose. McGrath insisting he wants to play at next year's World Cup, where he's expected to end his stellar career. He'd be the third senior player to retire this month alone and maybe not the last. I'm sure over the next week to 12 months there'll be a number of guys who will ask themselves that same question at some stage.

Cricket Australia desperate to avoid the same mass exodus of players that occurred through the mid-'80s Dennis Lillee immortalised in bronze today at the MCG, none forgetting the hole left in the Test side

when he departed on the same day as Greg Chappell and Rod Marsh. I think this time it's sort of just happening and I think the guys that come in are very ready for it now.

It can't be as good with Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath, if he goes. They can be replaced, but obviously not by anyone as good at this stage. And he wants to be captain. Paul Cochrane, Ten News. A net session with a difference for the NSW cricket team today - league legend Andrew Johns padded up as he prepares for his debut in next month's Twenty20 clash with South Australia. Former Test captain Mark Taylor has called on the Redbacks to take it easy on the Blues' rookie. As he drove Blues spearhead Nathan Bracken with impeccable style... ..Andrew Johns learned his first valuable cricketing lesson - fast bowlers don't like being hit around. Knights fans can relax - just a healthy bruise for their champion number seven. But, with self-preservation kicking in, Johns wisely decided to be nice to the bowlers. Good ball. It was frightening. I've been pretty nervous all week thinking about it, but just to build a bit of confidence to make sure I don't get seriously maimed when I get the opportunity if I do bat. The thing that impressed me was that he got in behind there and didn't back away. You get guys playing first-class cricket who back away from balls and he didn't back away from one. Johns revealed the Twenty20 match will be his first cricket game for quite some time.

I got a scratchy 14 for Merewether Fifths about three years ago - nothing to write home about. That was on cement wickets too. I think I'd had about eight beers by that stage. Former Test captain Mark Taylor urging the Redbacks to show Johns similar hospitality. Look, I've heard stories about how they're going to come out and try and intimidate him, bowl short. I don't think the game's about that. I'd like to see South Australia get in the spirit of the game and enjoy the game the way Andrew Johns is going to enjoy the game. To finish up, Taylor helped Johns work on his fielding with mixed results... Thankfully for NRL fans, Johns hasn't caught sport's retirement bug but the 32-year-old knows the end is nearing. Just trying to get through the off-season at this stage. It's pretty tough at this time of year so I'm just concentrating on that and see how I'm going and I'll make the decision mid-year. Adam Hawse, Ten News. Being the child of a famous sports star

can often make life difficult for young sportsmen and women, especially if the name in question is Michael Jordan. But it appears Jeff and Marcus Jordan are doing just fine as they follow in the footsteps of their legendary dad. The Loyola Academy Ramblers

are currently on an unbeaten run of eight games and can also boast the fact the greatest basketballer ever to play the game is a regular spectator, the team's success thanks in no small part to the efforts of his teenage sons. And both appear to be handling the pressure of carrying the Jordan name in their stride. Yeah, it's always tough, it's always the pressure of being a son, but over the years I've kind of gotten used to it and been able to look past it. There's definitely a bullseye on my back, but, I mean, I'm used to it now. Growing up, it was a little hard, but I'm used to it now, so it's nothing. Jeff is in his last year of high school and 188cm tall. Marcus is two years his junior and 2cm taller. Both possess plenty of talent and their father's competitive spirit. They can create chances for their team-mates, you know, they can score on their own if we're having a hard time. And, like I said, they're competitive. That they can run it through really gives the team a spark. While Brian Tucker is the team's coach, not surprisingly, their father has passed on a few tips himself. We go over film and watch NBA games, just analyse point guards and just mental stuff and then he'll give me some drills

and I'll go out and do them on my own. So he's definitely a big influence. On this occasion Michael chose to not to be interviewed, preferring to let his boys have their moment in the sun. Neil Cordy, Ten News. To Michael Sullivan's picks for tomorrow's races at Randwick.

That's it for now. Plenty more in 'Sports Tonight'. Have a lovely Christmas.

You too. You are the keeper of very

important information, as the

holiday period gets into full swing.

Where are you? What is the traffic

doing? We've been flying around and

checking all the major roads in

Sydney. We are over Parramatta. It

has been a very quiet Friday

afternoon ont roads. We are not

complaining from up here. Can you

seat M4 zoomming along at the speed

limb. If you leave now and head out

to your holiday destination, will

you get there in reasonable time.

We have double demerit points in

force. Have a great and safe

Christmas and please take care on

our roads. Thank you. We'll see you

in the new year. Stay wus. Frank Colletta has the all-important Christmas Day weather forecast next. Inflows into our dams have never been this low. In fact, in 2006, we've received almost 90% less than the average. So, tough new Stage 3 Water Restrictions now apply in the ACT. Daily water consumption must come down much further to give us the best chance to avoid even tougher restrictions in the future.

For full details of the restrictions, contact ACTEW's Water Conservation Office or visit actew.com.au. If you're caught speeding or not wearing your seatbelt these Christmas/New Year holidays, you'll lose at least half your licence. And if just one of your passengers isn't wearing theirs, that's your licence gone. Remember - double demerits for seatbelt and speeding offences.

Time for a check of all the weather

details now on this Friday before

Christmas. It's so exciting.

Christmas won't be the saiment

without a little music in the

background. I think you have done

well tonight. Thank you very much.

We have Alfie with us here at

Carlingford at K13 park. It is all

about this - the Christmas edition.

His CD has just hit the stores. He

is very much a local boy made good.

It must make you feel very proud.

Very happy indeed. Very happy. You

have been doing this caper for a

while? Absolutely. Singing songs

all my life. It is good to have my

Christmas songs out there. 'Little

Drummer Boy' and Silent Night and

'When a Child is Born' and along

with the other songs from the

original album. There it is. There

is plenty there. It is my favourite.

We'll hear more in a few minutes.

We will take a look at the surf and

beach report. This weekend, it

looks pretty good. The surf report

show that is there is a swell and a

north-north-east terly. The tide is 0.5m

Let's check the current conditions.

A bit blustery around town. It is

getting up to 32km/h in the north-east.

A cloud band is crossing the east

with a trough, causing rain and

isolated storms. There is cloud

forming over the northern parts of

WA. They are triggering storms

there. Tomorrow's weather map - a

slow moving trough causing rain

over NSW, the western parts of

Queensland and the north-west

tropics. The rainfall for tomorrow

lsh rain and thunderstorms across

NSW, western Queensland and the

western tropics. There will be

showers in Tasmania and the

Victorian and southern coasts as

well. A bit more of 'Little Drummer Boy'.

# I have no gifts to bring

# That's fit to give a king #

# Shall I play for him?

# What a way to get into the

Christmas weekend. A round of

applause here. We have a huge crowd

here. This is what it's about. It

is in the stores now. If you are

heading into Brisbane - they'll

give awe mostly cloudy 28-degree day.

Send them off. Where are we going?

Merry Christmas to everyone on

Channel Ten.

# It's a beginning to look a lot

like Christmas,

# Toys in every store

# Merry Christmas. Shall I shut pup

now? No Merry Christmas to you.

Merry Christmas to you too. A zoo in Britain is expecting its very own virgin birth this Christmas. Flora, a Komodo dragon, is having eight babies, but has never mated or even mixed with a male dragon. It's the first time that such a large and charismatic species such as this has been shown to be able to have a virgin birth. The discovery gives new meaning to the term girl power. That's the news at 5:00. Wishing you all the best after another big year for Ten News, thanks for your continued support. I'm Ron Wilson. And I'm Deborah Knight. Thanks for your company. Supertext Captions by the Australian Caption Centre. www.auscap.com.au WHO WAS THE LAST PRESIDENT TO HAVE A BEARD? NIXON. NO, I MEAN A REAL THICK BEARD. HIS WAS THICK. NO, I MEAN, LIKE, A FULL, LONG BEARD LIKE SMITH BROTHERS COUGH DROPS. FALKMORE. WHO? ARTEMIS N. FALKMORE. YOU MADE THAT UP, RIGHT? LIKE A PRESIDENT'S NAME, YEAH, BUT IT SOUNDS IKE A PRESIDENT'S NAME, DOESN'T IT?P YEAH. WHY DO PRESIDENTS ALL HAVE THESE BAD NAMES? WOODROW, GROVER, MILLARD. THE PRESIDENCY ATTRACTS THE BADLY NAMED. THEIR AMBITION IS BASED ON PERSONAL INSECURITIES. CLASSIC MALE OVERCOMPENSATION. ARE YOU WEARING LIFTS IN THOSE SHOES? CAB! THEY HAVE THIS CLOCK NOW WHERE YOU PUNCH IN YOUR AGE AND ALL YOUR RISK FACTORS,