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Seven Nightly News -

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(generated from captions) If it was right. The correct answer is Gretel.
Gretel Packer.

Chaser needs five. 18 on the clock. And your time...restarts...now. Lifting incurs a warning
in which athletic discipline? Um... (SIGHS)

Pass. I can't think of it.
Stop the clock. Valuable seconds.
OK, yep. Yep, go for it. We'll say walking. All the way to the bank
at this rate. Walking is the answer.
Nice work, team. Pushback number five.
Chaser needs six. Your time...restarts...now. What is the common name
for the young of a bear? Cub.
Correct. Which US musician
had the '90s hit single Loser? Beck.
Correct. Which actor replaced Matt Smith
in TV's Dr Who? (SIREN WAILS)
(APPLAUSE) Team, you've done it! $22,000, Adam and Tim! The teachers are taking it home. Well done to you, fellas.
Congratulations. Shark? Yeah, I wasn't listening to
some of those questions properly. But well played.
They pushed me back. Oh, they certainly did, sir. And
thanks for being with us, people. We'll see you next time
on The Chase Australia.

This program is live captioned
by Ericsson Access Services. On Seven News tonight - a Sydney tornado's
trail of destruction. Winds over 200km/h
whack the city's south - Kurnell the worst hit. Tonight, dozens of homes badly
damaged - a disaster zone declared. Elsewhere, floods, a shopping centre evacuated as wild storms
tear through the east. A horrific scene as a mother jumps
into the path of a train, a toddler in her arms -
now fighting for life. The cruise from hell. 180 passengers struck by sickness
and stomach churning wild seas. And those Christmas charity
collectors - where your money is really going. VOICEOVER: This is Seven News
at 6:00 with Mark Ferguson.

Good evening. Many residents across
Sydney's south and east are trying to recover tonight from one of the worst storms
in years. It started with a tornado which hit with winds of 213km/h -
the highest ever recorded in NSW. This is Kurnell.

Officially a disaster zone,
dozens of homes wrecked. The suburb has no power
or sewerage tonight. Some families left with nothing. We begin our extensive coverage
with the moment the storm hit.

Incredible pictures
that capture the fury of the storm as it slammed into Kurnell.

Rain not falling
but driven horizontally by winds gusting to 213km/h.

Any of that debris
potentially lethal. And this is just some
of what it did. The Kurnell desalination plant - there to produce drinking water
in drought - smashed by too much wind and water. Roofing was shredded, flung into
power lines like metal confetti. (SIREN WAILS) At least one worker
was taken to hospital but not seriously injured. Elsewhere,
on Sir Joseph Banks Drive, a truck was tossed on its side. (ALARM SOUNDS) A fire brigade car racing to help crashed and rolled
on Captain Cook Drive. Damage too
at the Caltex fuel terminal.

Elsewhere, roofs torn from houses,
trees uprooted, wires down. The roofs were gone,
half the upstairs office is gone. These flashes are arcing powerlines. described as a tornado but those winds -
over 200km/h - are officially well over
hurricane force. You could just see the trees
bending over in the wind and then it just swirling around
in the sky. Its first target - Cronulla. Flash flooding in local parks,
stormwater gushing into the surf. That's incredible, man. Wind, rain and massive hail. It just hit your car bad, Mum! Golf ball sized. Some even bigger.

That's at least 1.5"! This astonishing hailstone
the size of a cricket ball. Big enough to easily smash
plate-glass windows at these Cronulla apartments. The storm powered north,
through Green Hills, into Kurnell, soon declared a disaster zone. Power to the area was cut. A building in Bridges Street
reportedly collapsed. This photo shows it wasn't alone. Then it crossed Botany Bay,
into La Perouse and Little Bay. We had a 2.5" hailstones
hit the car, very large hail, very strong winds. We got numerous trees down.
Trees down everywhere. Talk about blocking roads. We did warn about trees. There's your tree! Anzac Parade was flooded,
cars submerged. (SIREN WAILS)

The storm eased long enough
for essential repairs to begin but it proved a temporary ceasefire. 2.5 hours after the initial front,
Kurnell was smashed again, this storm cell dumping
torrential rain before residents could even
think about cleaning up. Within minutes, the Kurnell
peninsula went from this... ..to this. On the local waterfront, moored yachts were at risk
of being driven ashore. But that, too, eased and emergency services penetrated
deeper into the southern suburb to find incredible destruction. Trees, roofing metal and
insulation littering the streets. Car windows smashed by
flying debris. A roller door
ripped from its tracks. Evacuated workers described the
terrifying intensity of the storm. It was like it is just now then all of a sudden,
it just turned black. Wind, rain all over the place. Debris just flying through the air. We knew it was a tornado
straightaway. Here on the waterfront,
Prince Charles Parade, modern homes were torn apart. A policeman came up to me and said, "Do you have a Colorbond roof
with solar panels?? And I go, "Yeah." And he goes, "Well, that's it
down the road there." The water's starting to cave in. Just packing away
some Christmas stuff.

We are not going to have a Christmas. Some knew - or hoped -
this was a once-in-a-lifetime event. (LAUGHS) You got a souvenir? Yes, I'll be keeping this one,
this will be going in my man shed. Workers were eventually
allowed back inside to retrieve their belongings. Many grateful to have escaped
with their lives.

Virtually every house in
Prince Charles Parade, Kurnell, was hit by the tornado. Tonight Alex Hart is inside one
of the worst. Alex, what's the damage like?

It is an absolute mess. There is water everywhere, rope and glass, this sulky yellow installation spread everywhere. I am standing on part of the roofing plasterboard. A piece of it landed on the couch where the 16-year-old resident was lying at the time the storm hit. Incredibly he was not hurt. Santa has taken a tumble and all of the roof is ripped off. This is one of the worst damaged houses. About 25 sustained serious damage. For some it will take days and for others it could be months to repair. Just 1.5 weeks before Christmas, it could not be worse Thanks, Alex. Damien Smith is at Bondi Junction. Damien, a section
of Westfield's roof collapsed? Mark, there was panic as part of it
gave way in a busy shopping crowd.

A woman suffered
head and elbow injuries

we are told

we are told she is now okayed. The drama forced evacuations and the closure of as many as 100 shops. As the rain pounded outside
Westfield Bondi Junction inside, there were screams
as part of the roof caved in.

(SCREAMING)

Scared shoppers were evacuated
from two levels. CHILD: Mum, can we...? (SIREN BLARES) but a flooded car park
made getting out almost impossible. At Rose Bay,

there were knee-deep waves
on New South Head Road as laneways become
raging suburban rivers, and a walk to the shops proved a
little more challenging than usual. The wind did this at Maroubra - blasting a brick wall,
window and roof frames to shreds. Nearby, a four-wheel drive
was crushed in a car park. It wasn't only the wind and rain. MAN: They've been called,
the fire brigade. A lightning bolt set this tree
on fire at Waverley. Locals braced as the second major storm
roared through. It's really ripping in now,
as you can see. The area was pounded with hail, whiting out the view
from this Bondi Junction high-rise. (BLEEP) It's tornado, mate! At Wanda Beach,
winds sent the bins for a wander. This is the most intense part
of this storm. The rain now appears to have changed
into hail. Starting to hurt. Better take shelter. The storm then rolled across
the city, the CBD virtually vanished,
pelted with blinding rain. Those caught in the downpour
put up a fight but for many,
their brollies weren't up to it. Others braved the hail
with little more than hope. The super storm cell also proved bad
for business. Tornado warnings about, mate. Well, we'll have to wait
and see what happens. What happened was
the start of a big clean-up. At Bondi, garages have gone
from under-ground to under-water There's a four-wheel drive
in there, there's three cars, lots of old photos. At Coogee

some locals found
a way to make the best of it with mattress races in the car park. SES volunteers are heading
into a long night - fixing roofs and helping with downed trees
and powerlines. Greg, you have a huge challenge
ahead.

Good evening. It has been a Good evening. It has been a busy day. We have got over 50 SES teams in the field responding to the damage, particularly in the Kurnell area. Across the areas up to Maroubra and Bondi as well. The area that was probably the most seriously impacted is Kurnell. A number of properties quite extensively damaged. 25-30 properties. SES volunteers along with fire rescue NSW and the fire service our -- are assisting and addressing other hazards that might exist such as damage to the electricity supply, possibly as best DOS.We wish you and your team is the very best in what will be a very long night ahead, thank you. Cath Turner is at Sydney Airport where the storm
caused delays earlier. Cath, a very tough day for flying.

Mark, there were
several delays and diversions. Sydney-bound flights
were held on the ground in Brisbane and Melbourne. 10 planes were diverted
away from Sydney. Six international
and four domestic flights. But as we've already seen,
the real problems were on our roads. Cars were submerged
along Beach Road, Bondi. Sid Einfeld Drive was also closed
due to flooding just before 2pm. It reopened 90 minutes later
but it's still slow going. In Rose Bay, traffic lights are flashing yellow
on New South Head Road. Water on Pennant Hills Road is affecting northbound traffic
in Carlingford. And in Smithfield, traffic lights
are out causing problems around Wetherill Park
and Fairfield west. The worst hit area was Kurnell. The only road in and out is
Captain Cook Drive and it's still closed
at Elouera Road. So it will be a slow trip home
for drivers tonight, Mark.

Sal, will we see any more
wild weather on the way? Mark, Sydney is safe now
after a very intense day. The system that triggered the
extreme storms has moved north, unleashing tornados as it moved through Bathurst
this afternoon and damaging squalls
to the north-west of Canberra. Sydney saw the worst of it though with a tornado whipping up 213km/h
winds off Kurnell. There's no record of a storm ever
doing that before not just here, but right across Australia. But it could have been worse. The bulk of the system today
was actually offshore Tornados form when columns of
rising air within cloud combine with a change of wind direction. That creates a vortex
within the storm which then increases in speed
and tightens, becoming a tornado and funnelling towards the ground. Right now there are storms around

There is the chance of another storm in Sydney tomorrow and I will have the details at little later on. Now to a tragedy
on a western Sydney rail line where a mother has died and her daughter
has been critically injured. Leonie Ryan
is at Harris Park station. Leonie, how did this happen? Mark, it was just after 2pm that the 30-year-old woman was
waiting on the platform here, when witnesses say
she walked out in front of a train, with her young daughter in her arms. The driver hit the brakes
and emergency services were called. Fire and rescue had to free the pair because they were trapped
underneath the carriage. Tragically, the mother was killed
instantly, while the 3-year-old girl was rushed
to Westmead Children's Hospital with critical head injuries. There's no suspicious circumstances
at least. There's CCTV footage
of the incident. However, detectives are preparing
a report for the coroner. The hospital has been unable
to tell us the latest
on the little girl's condition until they find her next of kin but I understand her injuries
are life-threatening. Mark.

Two of Sydney's most notorious
public housing blocks are to be demolished and replaced
by a Metro railway station. The buildings in Waterloo are part of the complex
known as 'Suicide Towers' where residents have long complained
about drug and alcohol abuse as well as violence.

The Government's announced
the area will be transformed with thousands of new homes.

The 31st stop on Sydney's
new metro train line - Waterloo. Today is another exciting day
for Sydney. With a new train line
comes a new design for the area too. The government plans to transform
it from this... to this.

This is an opportunity
to renew Waterloo. There's additional housing, up to 10,000 additional housing
dwellings, there's more jobs. Notorious Housing Department towers
stand in the heart of 13 hectares of land owned
by the state government. All of it will be rezoned
and rebuilt. But not everyone's celebrating. Luis Minaca has lived here
for eight years. It's my home. When I come here I am quite happy. He worries what will happen
to his neighbours when they are forced out. If they pull down these buildings
people are going to cry, they are going to be jumping
from the windows. The government says the 2,000 public
housing residents who call this area home

will be moved out in two years' time but when the new precinct
is finished they will be guaranteed a spot
back here. Right before Christmas to be told
that they will lose their homes it's devastating. It's expected the transformation
will send property prices soaring and the government will use that
to help fund it. By using land already owned
by the taxpayer the uplift can go directly
into paying for the renewal. The decision is a blow
for Sydney Uni which had wanted the station
next to its campus. With the Waterloo option we can better cater for that entire
precinct and beyond. Light rail is likely
to run along Parramatta Road while Redfern station
will also be upgraded.

Ambulances were ready this morning
as a cruise ship docked in Sydney after more than 180 passengers
and crew suffered in a gastro outbreak. Compounding their ordeal, the ship was also smashed
by an intense storm at sea. Some passengers may now be offered
a full refund. High seas, high drama,

this is the moment Explorer of the Seas
was hit by a freak storm. The 140,000-tonne liner listed
for almost two minutes. I thought it was going
to completely tip over. It was really scary. Massive waves and gale-force winds
battered the ship. One girl got swept straight out
of the pool, into the side wall. Some passengers and crew
had already been feeling sick, suffering from an outbreak
of gastro. 182 were struck down with norovirus, including
Cynthia Lewis's entire family. I'd never go again. I had the cruise ship from hell. One of our friends
actually contracted it. She was confined for four days
in a cabin. A poor holiday
for those quarantined. with many of the 1,200 crew boarding
the ship from all parts of the globe including Southeast Asia. It's not the first outbreak
on the Explorer. Last year,
600 people reported gastro. More than 400 passengers and crew also fell ill on three other ships this year. The Circular Quay terminal
and the ship were fumigated no doubt hoping
for smoother sailing. Doctors say patients will pay more
for medical tests such as x-rays and MRI scans after new budget cuts
by the Treasurer. The AMA is furious
it wasn't consulted about the move and is calling the cuts as bad
as Joe Hockey's budget last year. The only thing more uncomfortable
than a blood test is the bill

and doctors warn
that pain is about to get worse after yesterday's budget update
cut $650 million from pathology
and diagnostic services. That new gap is going have to be
funded out of a patient's pocket. patients can expect increases
ranging from $6 for an X-ray to $62 for an MRI.

I know that competitive demand
will make sure that doesn't happen. The Minister insists the funding - bulk billing incentive payments
introduced by Labor - wasn't working. They expected the rate of bulk
billing to increase, but it hasn't. Concession card holders and children
will continue to be bulk billed but doctors fear
the increased cost to other patients will force them to skip
important tests. We're going to get
delayed diagnosis, we're going to get sub-standard care and we're going to get
even more people ending up in queues to the public hospital. There's no evidence that
that will happen. Doctors are angry
they weren't consulted on the cuts and warn the impact will be similar
to the failed GP co-payment. Just like that co-payment, these measures have to get through
a hostile Senate and the prognosis there
isn't too rosy. Our initial instinct is to stand up
in defence of Medicare. That's what Labor does. The Labor Party
doesn't want to pay for anything but they want
to spend on everything. The Treasurer says, though,
he's willing to negotiate... If other parties have
better savings, different savings, that can replace
those we've put forward - well, put them on the table. ..on the budget operating table.

An email threat has shut down
every school in LA. Next, did officials overreact? And why New York
ignored a similar threat. Kitted out and ready for Rio - how Olympics officials expect
the team to double the medal haul. A mother's desperate bid
to deal with her son's ADHD. It's illegal,
but she says it works. But is it doing him more harm? And Christmas charity collectors - our investigation
into where your money really goes. We're back in 60 seconds.

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A Sydney man has admitted trying to fund
Islamic State terrorists. Omarjan Azari pleaded guilty to attempting to make US$9,000
available to IS. A witness, whose mother found
the cash stuffed in his cargo pants in the laundry, testified today. He said Azari had told him
to send the cash to Pakistan. He'll continue giving evidence against Azari's co-accused,
Ali Al-Talebi, tomorrow. A year after they'd been forced
together as frightened strangers the survivors
of the Lindt Cafe siege were together again last night. To remember, to talk, and check
how they'd all come through, at a ceremony outside the very
building that holds so many memories from their face-to-face encounter
with terrorism.

(WE ARE AUSTRALIAN PLAYS) Last year

floral tributes covered the
granite tiles of Martin Place. Last night they covered the walls, and beneath that
spectacular light show the siege survivors and
victims' families gathered again. John O'Brien was the oldest hostage. Fiona Ma the youngest. Here, Marcia Mikhael
and Louisa Hope, From her relatives. We're just blessed
that we still have them. Tori Johnson's mum, Rosie, back in the city for
the first time since. And here, hugs for his father Ken
and partner Thomas. Survivor Selina Win Pe met Harriette Denny's baby Billie. Harriette was 14 weeks
pregnant when she was taken hostage. She made barista Joel Herat
the godfather. The siege has tied
some of them together forever. They remind us that a great city
can overcome its darkest hours. In the short and simple service, they also performed a favourite
of Katrina Dawson's children. (SING SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW) Also featured - a tiny sample of the over 40,000
messages and cards left last year. To remind each of us
that love is greater than hate. Tori Johnson's family revealed to us
that the two years he was manager here he was pushing authorities for Lindt to be a part
of the Vivid light festival. The family say they were delighted
that tonight he finally had that wish granted.

School was cancelled today for
700,000 students in Los Angeles after an email threat was sent
warning of a terror attack. Authorities took no chances, given it came less than two weeks
after the San Bernardino massacre. Based on past circumstances,
I could not take the chance, as it relates to one student or
our staff that serves our students. New York officials
received a similar threat but judged it to be a hoax.

We could be on track to just about
double our Gold medal tally from the London Olympics at Rio
next year. The experts are forecasting
13 outright wins. And as our athletes were fitted
for team uniforms today, that number sounded very good. Getting measured up
for the Olympic uniform is a small step for athletes
hoping to fly in Rio. But even for an experienced
Olympian like Caroline Buchanan, this little thing is a big deal. Today, it's just
that one step closer and each time you're preparing
more and more for the Olympics. She's looking good for gold
in the BMX and according to an Australian
Olympic Committee analysis, Caroline's not alone. Those athletes know how they are who
have a chance of winning a medal, and they're the ones that need
to deliver on that. In Sydney, Australia took home
16 gold medals, then 17 in Athens, 14 in Beijing and a disappointing 7 in London. We're now expecting 13 golds in Rio. You've got to aim high. You can't set limits on yourself, you've got to get there
and really work hard. The rewards are a place
in Australian sporting history. Those athletes on track for Rio
came together in Sydney to get a taste of what's to come. A big focus - social media
and the cost of getting it wrong. I think some athletes
would be the first to admit that it cost them medals. The competition will be tough but so will the city. The athletes were today told
they were banned from visiting the city's famed favela districts. They're also urged to only walk
around in groups of three or more and female athletes were told
never to walk alone. Rio will be colourful, hopefully with plenty of bronze,
silver, and gold. More on the rare tornado
that smashed Sydney's south. Next, we're on board
the Seven News helicopter with our pilot
who witnessed the destruction, triggered by those 200km/h winds. The drag-race that ended in death. The reason the killer driver could
be out of jail in just two years. Which western Sydney public school
had more students in the HSC top 10 than any other. And we have breaking news on one of rugby league's
most notorious players.

Returning to our coverage
of Sydney's record storm where tonight work crews are still trying to
patch up dozens of damaged houses and restore power in Kurnell. The suburb's been declared
a disaster zone, after a tornado hit, with gusts packing 213km/h.

The storm also caused chaos
in the east. Our Seven News helicopter pilot
Andrew Millet is over Kurnell now. This is what we're seeing live as crews and families get as much
repaired as they can while it's still light. Many have been told they'll
have no power until tomorrow. Andrew was flying this morning
when the storm arrived.

It looks quite wild from the air, the scene of devastation. It was amazing seeing how beforehand things the scene of devastation. It was
amazing seeing how beforehand things were quite calm and peaceful and all of a sudden things changed very quickly. It all became fast and strong and it looked like it was getting a lot closer. There was a lot of lightning that started to occur in the area. We could start feeling turbulence in the helicopter. It felt at some stage, it felt like we were in a washing machine, a roller-coasters. It moved three fast. We could see the rolling cloud formations occurring, a clear indication of just how violate the storm was going to be. The clouds are changing in colour from very dark grey too, we could see lots of green colours, colours that indicated there was going to be hail. From a distance we could see quite a big area of debris and devastation caused by the storm. We could see the roofs of buildings, emergency personnel working in the area. It was becoming quite stressful. If we stayed another five minutes, it would have put us in a much more dangerous position and it is a place that, as a pilot, you do not want to be.A very tough day in the skies over Sydney. A limousine driver has been arrested accused of chauffeuring drugs
- not clients - around the CBD and eastern suburbs. The 41-year-old man
was stopped by officers after allegedly selling 2 grams
of cocaine in a Haymarket car park. He's ben charged
with multiple drug offences and will face court next month.

A driver involved in a drag race
which left another man dead has been jailed
for at least 2.5 years. They'd been darting
in and out of traffic until one hit a truck
and several cars near a busy intersection
at Villawood.

Mangled cars, crushed trucks, Police survey the horrific aftermath
of a crash on Woodville Road, that claimed the life
of 24-year-old Yousef Barry. He bears high moral culpability
for the loss of a life of a young person in our community. Earlier this year Milad Saad was found guilty of
dangerous driving occasioning death for his involvement in the crash. It was September 2013 when the two men were driving
at speeds of up to 80km/h in a 60 zone.

Saad changed lanes - their vehicles collided,
leaving the trail of destruction. All I remember is just moving into
the lane and into the right lane and getting hit by a car. During the trial, one witness said the
cars were going: Another described the scene as:

Saad maintains the collision
was an accident but the judge said both men showed
little regard for other drivers on the road. The victim's mother was in tears as Saad was sentenced
to at least 2.5 years behind bars. Yousef's family told Seven News no amount of jail time will bring
back their loving son.

The Duchess of Cambridge
became the drumming Princess when she visited
a London community centre for young people
with mental health issues. She was very much
in the festive spirit with her red
Alexander McQueen outfit. Thank you, everyone. It's so fantastic to see
you all again, so keep it up, and Merry Christmas
and thank you again for having me. At the same time across London the Duchess of Cornwall
was hosting some sick children at Clarence House. You'll find them across the city -
hitting you up for a donation. Next, those Christmas
charity collectors and where your money
is really going. Sydney's top HSC schools revealed and the school in our west
that topped them all. The countdown almost over
for Star Wars fans. What the critics are saying
about The Force Awakens. Sydney could see
more storms tomorrow. I'll have details
with the full forecast soon.

Fruit Mince Pies - a citrus-infused butter pastry. just $6 a pack. together at Coles.

(Upbeat instrumental music) Cooling off just got colourful
at Hungry Jack's.

With five frozen flavours. All large, and all just $1.

It's got cruise control,
App Connect, all for just -
wait for it - $16,490. (COOS)
I know! VOICEOVER: Volkswagen Polo
from $16,490. You like the blue? You'll want to tell everyone.

or pork for Christmas? Sow Stall Free smoked ham together with my sweet, tangy barbecue glaze? Sow Stall Free just $6.50 a kilo. Coles Fresh roast pork together with my spicy salsa tacos? Sow Stall Free just $7 a kilo. For Curtis' recipes, visit taste.com.au. for Christmas at Coles.

A seasonal investigation now at a time when you might be tempted
to be more generous than usual. We give billions to charities and it can be a windfall
for the fundraising companies. Most pass on more than 80%
to those in need. But some spend nearly half
of what they get on themselves. Street collectors
are out in force again, this one spruiking
the Children's Cancer Institute. His take on donations is... 15% to 20%, something like that.

There it is
in fine print on his badge - 20% of the gross proceeds go
to the charity, the rest goes to the collector and the fundraising company - Interactive Distribution Services. If it's a charity
you've never heard of and someone is soliciting,
you should ask, "Are you being paid
to do this fundraising "or are you doing it in a
voluntary capacity for the charity?" The top five money-making charities
are World Vision, Australian Red Cross, Compassion Australia, the Cancer Council
of New South Wales and the Smith Family. The best way to help a charity
is donate directly to them or to volunteer for them. charity dinners or balls,
telemarketers and the ever-increasing army
of street collectors. You can check
if a charity is legitimate, searching online
through the regulator. Details are on our website. They direct you to their website
to donate. And the Salvos are unpaid volunteers
pass on every dollar. The vast majority of it, something like 80 cents in the
dollar goes to the services and we're very proud of that. But if someone asks you
to do a personality test. Hello! Hello. Filming you filming me,
this is great! That's Scientology - run!

More than 68,000 Year 12 students were awarded their
High School Certificates today. Despite the nerves, the final marks show
a record breaking number, are eligible for an ATAR,
and entry ticket to University. (TEXT MESSAGE BEEPS) Mum! I got it. (LAUGHS) It's 6:00 in the morning and Emma Kaye's up early
to get her final marks. Oh, my goodness!
I'm so proud of you! ..after coming first in the state
in visual arts. I was just hoping for the best
but kind of expecting the worst. It's been a year of a lot of stress but in the end,
it's really, really worth it. (TEXT MESSAGE BEEPS) Oh, there we go. At the same time,
Sebastian Shwartz gets his. Fantastic, well done! Oh, thank you.
Awesome! It's good to be able to relax a bit
and put a full stop on it, I guess. Selective schools again dominated
the top results, James Ruse High boasting the number one spot again - 74% of students ranking in the top 10%. North Sydney Girls, Sydney Girls, North Sydney Boys and Sydney Boys rounding out the best five. In contrast,
some missed out on an HSC. About 5% of kids really didn't do
as well as they might have if they'd put in a genuine effort. As much as there's excitement
and relief for many students, there's also disappointment
and anxiety for others who've applied to come to university Not happy with mine. Pretty, pretty damn disappointed
with mine. The HSC is preparation for life. It isn't life itself.

After all the build-up, the Australian premiere
of the new Star Wars movie is just minutes away. Celebrities are walking
a soggy red carpet at Moore Park to be the first to see
The Force Awakens. This is the one everyone's been
waiting for this year.

The force is calling to you. The first public screenings
will be at midnight. Critics have praised the film
in early reviews. A desperate mum has turned
to breaking the law to help ease her son's ADHD. She says it works but is she doing him more harm
than good? Don't miss that story soon
on Seven News. Plus, the zoo arrivals taking cute
to a whole new level. In sport with Ryan Phelan, we have breaking news on the playing future
of Dragons prop Russell Packer. And could the maligned Nick Kyrgios
be turning over a new leaf?

There is no wrong side
of the right bed and there's no better place
to find the right bed than Forty Winks, because when you go to sleep
on the right bed, you'll wake up wonderful.

She has a rash on her neck... ..which is so stiff and sore...
and a... ..pain, um, in my leg.
It's like a... ..a circumcision. Just not sure whether
it's gonna look... ..like an old dinosaur. But I'm...I'm having... ..painful periods,
and it's giving me... ..nightmares about... ..my cat allergy from Tiggles,
who has... ..menopause, so I'm taking... ..ice. I was at this party with my mate
and he... ..hits me.

And I'm so scared of... ..tingling in my arms. ..that are all broken. And I was... ..like, I don't know, hoping... ..you could help me. Sure. OK, let's have a look. VOICEOVER: The good GP is with the Royal Australian College
of General Practitioners, because the good GP
never stops learning.

Good evening. St George Illawarra prop
Russell Packer is free to stay in Australia and resume his NRL career. Seven News can reveal he's won
his fight against deportation to New Zealand, after he was convicted for assault
in 2014. Russell Packer
spent 12 months in jail for a sickening assault
in Martin Place. When he was released last year, the NRL forced him
to play the season in reserve grade before registering his contract. There were calls for him
to be deported back to his native New Zealand in line with government policy
for violent offenders but Seven News can reveal Immigration Minister Peter Dutton
will allow him to stay while he honours a 2-year contract
with the Dragons. Media heavyweight Alan Jones
and high-profile lawyer Chris Murphy have led the chorus of support, clearing him to make his return
as early as February in the Auckland Nines. COMMENTATOR:
He can't believe his luck. Another twist in Robbie Farah's
turbulent relationship with the Tigers

with the club confirming
he's staying put and will be part of their
leadership group for next season. We are sincerely apologetic for the way
this has played out publicly. Both him and Jason Taylor
are committed to working together to make sure we have
a successful 2016 and beyond. Ricky Stuart is sticking
with the Raiders too, We're growing and growing and you hear people talking about
the Canberra Raiders that never mentioned our name
two years ago. And Johnathan Thurston
can now add 'doctor' to his list of honours after a university award for
his contribution to the community. Just another reason
for his family to be very proud. (LAUGHS) Yeah, I think so.
No doubt they are.

Joe Burns has dismissed concerns
about his technique, insisting he's not paranoid about his position
in the Australian side. Burns says there's no need
to talk with Darren Lehmann either, despite the coach suggesting
Usman Khawaja For me to be kind of going to people
and asking about my spot in the team it's just a waste of time and waste
of effort. Dwayne Bravo is another West Indies
star choosing the Big Bash over the test series and has slammed the Windies board
for not moving on from the glory days. What we have now -
we don't have anything. We don't have proper grounds,
we don't have proper nets. We don't have proper academy. The Thunder take on the Sixers in
the Sydney Derby at Spotless Stadium tomorrow night. West Indies import Andre Russell
showed what he'll bring to the Thunder - hitting Shane Watson
out of the ground at training. The Greater Western Sydney Giants
are targeting a maiden AFL finals appearance
in 2016. GWS have begun a week-long training
camp in Noosa and hit the beach
for an iron man challenge. Next year will be the
Giants' fifth season and players know expectations
will be high after they narrowly missed out
on playing finals footy in 2015. We're well aware of where we're at and where need to improve and we're just continuing to go down
that path of constant improvement. Obviously next year
we wanna take another step and try and play some finals footy. The Giants finished 11th
this season. The nerve-wracking wait
for Mick Fanning continues at the Pipe Masters, with a fourth straight
lay day called. Fanning will need to be
at his absolute best when the competition
gets back underway, to keep his push
for a fourth world title alive. His opponent in the sudden-death
third round, Jamie O'Brien, is a Pipeline superstar. Jamie's clearly better at Pipeline
than basically everybody, so you don't really want this
to be a Pipe battle. The contest is set
to resume tomorrow. Nick Kyrgios is showing he's anything but the divisive
in locker room as some of his rivals claim. Roger Federer and Andy Murray
took centre stage in the latest round of the International Premier
Tennis League exhibition series, and Kyrgios was the life
of the party. Got guys like Nick in the team
which make it entertaining. (LAUGHS) He's been calling me God today,
I don't know why. We were all chatting last night
and we just put the faith in him and just rode him all the way,
and he came through. One thing's for sure, it'll be a lot more serious
at next month's Australian Open.

That is where I will reserve my

judgement until I believe he has turned the corner. We will see in the Australian Open. Now to a mother who believes she's
found a short-term medical solution but doctors think
it could cause damage, long-term. She's giving medicinal cannabis,
in drinks, to her son, who has ADHD. A boy who in the past has become
very violent, very quickly.

(YELLS) No!

This isn't your usual
childhood tantrum. When Wyatt Dell is angry,
he can tear the classroom apart.

We got to the point where he was
constantly threatening to kill us. This may look like a milkshake but
it's laced with medicinal cannabis - a desperate bid

to try and control the very worst
of Wyatt's ADHD behaviour. No matter what I have tried,
it just doesn't work. Mum Cherie has been dosing her son
with cannabis after seeing the positive effect
it had on her daughter, who suffers violent seizures. Whilst legal for kids
with her condition, it's illegal for kids with ADHD. It clearly has a major
impact in terms of mood, behavioural and
structural development. There isn't scientific evidence to
know what the benefits of using it. The risks are known. I would not do anything
to harm any of my kids. He is not as violent. ADHD-approved drugs like Ritalin
do have side effects but the difference is they've been
through years of vigorous testing and human trials, trials that are still in their
infancy for medicinal cannabis. Are you concerned about
what the authorities might do? Of course I am. The alternative is
literally lose the plot or have one of the other kids
seriously hurt. The Department of Family
and Community Services says any decisions about the use
of cannabis-derived medicine had to be supported by
strong science. The day's finance is coming up
in Seven News. Plus, cuteness overload - the new arrivals
helping their species survive. Sydney's wild storms have cleared but there's a chance
they'll reappear tomorrow. The 7-day forecast is next.

Hi everyone Daniel Gibson with you hope you're well how did you cope with the showers and storms around this afternoon. It pelted down at the studios here in Watson...and then to our north around the Eaglhawk
servo, blue ski and dry roads at one point. Tomorrow, it should in the main be a mostly fine day warm again, around 29 degrees The weekend though is looing very hot with light winds would you beleive 37 on satruday and sunday .

VOICE-OVER: Get a $1 hash brown
at Macca's and get more...

..get more bang for your buck with
a golden hash brown for just $1. One of many breakfast deals
at McDonald's.

or pork for Christmas? Sow Stall Free smoked ham together with my sweet, tangy barbecue glaze? Sow Stall Free just $6.50 a kilo. Coles Fresh roast pork together with my spicy salsa tacos? Sow Stall Free just $7 a kilo. For Curtis' recipes, visit taste.com.au. for Christmas at Coles.

ALL: Ahhh! VOICEOVER: This Christmas at Myer, you'll find great offers, of toys. Conditions and exclusions apply. Ends Thursday, 24 December. a little bit fabulous.

after the suburb was hit
by a tornado this morning. Up to 30 homes have been damaged,
as well as local businesses including the desalination plant. A community meeting is just about
to get underway in Cronulla for affected residents. Samantha Brett joins us now
from the Sharks Leagues Club. Sam, what will happen there tonight? The Leagues Club
has been the evacuation centre for those residents affected
by this extreme storm. Shortly, they'll be briefed by
police and other government services on the plans for Kurnell
in the coming days. Around 800 homes in the area
are still without power. They've already been told
those services won't be restored before tomorrow. accommodation is being urged to come here to the Leagues Club.

Checking finance now. The market surged back above
the 5,000 barrier today. The ASX 200 added 119 points.

Symbio Wildlife Park
is celebrating the arrival of two cotton-top Tamarins. The tiny twins will stay tightly
latched to their mother for several weeks, while they're gaining strength. Because of their size, zookeepers don't yet
know what gender they are. Gold Coast's Dreamworld
also has two new additions. The twin sister tiger cubs made their first public
appearance this morning. With the very latest on Sydney's
wild weather, here's Sally. It's been a wild day across
Sydney but it's over now for now. We've got severe storms
to the north, around Port Macquarie,
Armidale and Dubbo. The city saw very little
of the stormy weather. Only 10mm in the gauges and a muggy top of 23 today. It was the coast
that was in the firing line today. Around 4:00 this morning some showers and storms developed
south-east of Kiama. These moved north-west, initially into Wollongong
before hitting Kurnell where a very destructive down-draft
triggered a tornado. A second line of storms
developed behind this, bringing further damaging wind gusts
of up to 111km/h. Heavy falls occurred
along the coast, including 79mm in Little Bay and 73mm in Bondi. The intense cold pool of air
tracking up the NSW coast today was responsible for today's
widespread storm activity. Tonight, that cold pool of air
will push northwards bringing some showers and storms up
into north-east New South Wales. Around the nation, expect fine and hot weather
in Melbourne. Adelaide,
fine and very hot with a top of 42 degrees. Moderate conditions on the water with easterly swell around a metre. Tonight will be mostly fine with the chance of a brief shower
or two. Tomorrow will see a morning shower
or two The slight risk of a brief storm
tonight and tomorrow. Around the suburbs, should be fine by tomorrow
afternoon. Maximums reaching 29 in Penrith.

Looking ahead,

fine conditions will occur
on Friday. Dry skies across the weekend as things heat up. Some isolated showers may develop
on Monday. In our west,

34 and sunny on Friday.

Wet weather next week. Let's hope it dries up by Christmas! Our Christmas lights display tonight
is from Caringbah in Sydney's south. A number of homes along
Burraneer Bay Road are lighting up the neighbourhood. They seem to be attracting plenty
of interested people every night. If you have a display
we should know about send an email to:

That's Seven News
for this Wednesday. We'll have updates for you
throughout the evening. I'm Mark Ferguson.
Hope you have a great night. Live captions by
Ericsson Access Services.

# Life keeps getting better
all the time # Live the good life. #

Hello. With Christmas just around
the corner, we've get recipes, decorating ideas and a whole lot
more to inspire you tonight. The Christmas ham. Could it get any better? Too right.
And this one's a classic. Turn up the dazzle. Really quick and simply magical. A letterbox with star attraction. I think even Snoopy would be proud to call this home. And helping Barney face his fears. What is it that turns a big, bold retriever like Barney
into a timid little pussycat? # Life keeps getting better
all the time... #

Now, this place is called Merribee. It's just outside Nowra on the
South Coast of New South Wales. And just looking around you can see,
definitely, that topiary is king. And there are some wonderful shapes
here that I can show you.

Now, if you've been clipping
a hedge like this one here you've already started into topiary. Now, there are lots
of different buxus. They're the most common topiaries
right around the world. But the Australian lilly pilly,
maybe even rosemary, there are so many different plants. What you've got to look for is something that's got really
small leaves and twiggy growth. Then you can start
creating a topiary.

Well, here's just a beautiful
little example of what you can create
in quite a small space. Little clipped hedges,
lots of different ideas.