New Zealand

New Zealand 'has responsibility to protect Pacific from coronavirus'

The death toll from the coronavirus sweeping through China has increased to 17 to six and more than 500 people are confirmed to have the illness, which began in Wuhan.

Health authorities say the current risk to New Zealand is low.

But Otago University's Michael Baker says the virus has already spread to several other countries, and monitoring and preparation has to be stepped up. 

He says the recent spread of the measles to the Pacific highlights the obligation New Zealand has to the region.

Australia claim series win

New Zealand wilted in the Melbourne heat at the MCG, where Australia wrapped up a crushing 247-run win on day four of the second Test on Sunday.

Blundell rallied for the Black Caps, celebrating his second Test hundred in three matches with a resilient 121 runs, but he had no support from his team-mates after Nathan Lyon (4-81) and James Pattinson (3-35) starred.

Marnus Labuschagne (1-11) ended Blundell's unforgettable innings late in the evening as Australia only required nine wickets to skittle New Zealand for 240 – Trent Boult not batting due to a fractured finger.

NZ defeat Great Britain 12-8

No tries were scored in the first half with the sides locked 2-2 at half time, but the Kiwis took charge after the break as Jamayne Isaako and Corey Harawira-Naera crossed over.

Daryl Clark replied late on, but Great Britain would fall short and suffer a second loss at the start of the 2019 tour, having lost to a Tonga Invitational XIII last weekend.

Changes to NZ border rules kick in today

Up to 1.7 million travellers from 60 countries who previously didn't need a visa will now be required to declare their passport details and any criminal history before they can travel.

The government has spent $5 million on a domestic and international marketing campaign to make sure people aren't stopped at the gates.

Board of Airline Representatives New Zealand executive director Justin Tighe-Umbers said about 4000 to 5000 travellers would need an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) each day.

NZ declares war on coconut rhinoceros beetle in the Pacific

A new strain of the beetle, CRB-G, is resistant to traditional control methods, and the government said it could cause $US150 million dollars to be lost from the Pacific's coconut and palm oil industries every year.

CRB-G is established in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands where it is damaging palm trees.

New Zealand is contributing about $US11 million dollars to the fight, some of which will go to science institute AgResearch.

Football Ferns striker Hannah Wilkinson completes Sporting Lisbon move

The 27-year-old has signed a one-year contract with Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon and said there are pictures of Ronaldo everywhere she turns.

"That was one thing that kind of gives me chills every time I step into the academy because in the meeting room it's just his face and pictures of him playing at the same place you're training in right now and how he developed through the ages at that very place," she said.

Diamonds beat Silver Ferns in cliffhanger

Australia have dominated New Zealand in recent times, winning seven of eight clashes since the start of 2018.

But the Silver Ferns are a new-look unit and refused to give up after being down by as many as nine goals at one point.

Coach Noeline Taurua started with her strongest line-up, with Maria Folau at GS and Ameliaranne Ekenasio at GA.

It was fairly evenly poised early on but the Diamonds ended the first quarter with a burst, leading 13-10 at the first break.

NZ RSE scheme boosting employment in the regions

Business expansion has boosted employment in regional areas, with RSE employers hiring more New Zealanders from the local community, including through Work and Income NZ.

Immigration New Zealand (INZ) Pacifica Labour and Skills Manager, George Rarere says the 2019 survey highlights the positive impact of RSE workers on businesses and the local community.

“A stable seasonal workforce has meant more employers have been able to grow their business operations and put more investment into plant equipment and offer job opportunities to locals,” Mr Rarere says.

Australia, NZ voted onto Pacific Games Council

The Trans Tasman neighbours were first invited to compete in four sports at the 2015 Games in Papua New Guinea, with that number doubling to eight sports for the current Games in Samoa.

But the CEO of the Pacific Games Council, Andrew Minogue said under that arrangement both countries, who also took a limited part in the 2017 Mini Games, had no standing at all in the Council framework and constitution.

"What we did today was we formally admitted both Olympic Committees as associate members of the Council, so they now have a much easier pathway to competing. "

New Zealand stun India to reach World Cup final

India's top order collapsed as the Black Caps reached the showpiece match for the second World Cup running, leaving the dreams of Virat Kohli's side and their army of followers in tatters.

With play having carried into the reserve day after rain on Tuesday, the Black Caps resumed on 211-5 and added another 28 runs for the loss of three wickets in 3.5 overs.