Chris Paterson retires from international rugby

first_img“I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to many great players I’ve been proud and honoured to play alongside and those off the pitch who help to get a team ready, especially the medical teams led by Dr James Robson.“Most of all I want to thank the supporters.  When I think of some of the cheers I’ve had at Murrayfield over the years I get goose-bumps, and I’ll never ever forget that feeling.” The last hurrah! Al Kellock congratulates Chris Paterson after his conversion against England during the RWCChris Paterson, the most capped Scotsman in the history of the game, is to retire from international rugby with immediate effect.In a stellar 12-year international career, Paterson wrote his name into the annals of Scottish Rugby by breaking just about every conceivable record. His size eight and a half right boot was the most consistently prolific weapon in Scotland’s arsenal for a decade.Yet for a man that was 12½stone his ability to excel against the 6ft 5ins, 18st monsters that now regularly appear in back divisions, was a source of equal pleasure.In an exclusive interview with Paterson said: “I’ve always said I wanted to bow out at the highest level of the game, while I still had the ability to go on. It was a massive goal for me to play for Scotland at my fourth Rugby World Cup, especially after the injury on the day of my 100th cap.“I did get to New Zealand, not only that, I felt I played well and my final game, against England at Eden Park, was a special occasion, a brilliant atmosphere and such an intense game.“Since coming back (from the RWC) I’ve had a while to think about it and I believe now is the right time to make my decision, especially when I’ve still been playing well at that level. My biggest fear would be devaluing what I have achieved and devaluing the jersey.  You have to stop at some point and this is the right time for me.”Paterson, who turns 34 in March, will continue to give his all to his club, Edinburgh Rugby, for the remainder of his contract, which concludes at the end of this season, although he does have the option to extend for one year. The twin peaks of his achievements, statistically, are his caps and points for his country, 109 and 809, both records.But for those of us who have been privileged to watch him go about his business, it’s the manner in which he has performed both on and off the pitch that has made the biggest impact – the ultimate model professional and ambassador for all that is good about Scottish rugby.Paterson has set goals throughout his career and has never been one for any hoo-ha but alongside his 100th cap, there are other obvious highlights.“Everyone remembers their first cap.  My ambition was to experience what I’d watched both at Murrayfield and on the TV when I was growing up.  I wanted to know what that felt like and desperately wanted to make a good job of it and I’m so lucky to have done that 109 times. I also thoroughly enjoyed the Rugby World Cup in Australia in 2003. The whole experience in Australia was special.” LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – OCTOBER 01: Alastair Kellock of Scotland congratulates Chris Paterson (L) of Scotland after his conversion during the IRB 2011 Rugby World Cup Pool B match between England and Scotland at Eden Park on October 1, 2011 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images) While the debate raged about his credentials in the number ten jersey, Paterson largely kept his own counsel.  “Yes, I grew up as a stand-off but I’ve played most of my rugby in the back three and, whether it sounds cheesy or not, the truth is I would have played anywhere for Scotland.“It’s not a topic that I have any regrets about.  My gut feel is that if I’d stayed at stand-off I don’t think I would have had over 100 caps as you need to be in the (defensive) frontline a bit more at ten. I believe I’ve maximized what I could have done, had an amazing time and always given everything in representing my country,” he said.He captained Scotland on twelve occasions, too, and it seemed was always one of the trusted lieutenants to whom a coach would turn. His longevity in international rugby has been all the more remarkable when the era has been characterised by physicality, power and big athletes and his return from the kidney injury that he sustained on the day of his 100th cap against Wales, yet again epitomised his single-minded determination to strive for the next game and improvement.“That’s always been my focus – to think about the next game.  Now I’ll be able to look back.  Ian McGeechan always said that as a player you don’t own the jersey, you just fill it for the time you’re lucky enough to have that duty and you seek to make the people who filled it before you proud and also your family, friends and supporters proud.“I have to thank everybody that’s helped me along the way – from Gary Parker and Garry Callander, my first coaches at Gala, to all those at professional and representative level, especially Geech, Jim Telfer, Frank (Hadden), Mick Byrne and the current Scotland coaches.“The absolute stand-out has been Rob Moffat.  He helped me through school and in my professional career and it didn’t matter whether Rob was my coach at Edinburgh or whether he was elsewhere.  He was always on the end of a phone if I needed to chat something through with him, an absolute inspiration.last_img read more

Richard Brown, longtime NYC DA who prosecuted Karina Vetrano case, dies at 86

first_imgiStock Photo/deberarr(NEW YORK) — Longtime Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown died late Friday.He was 86 years old.In January, Brown announced that he would not seek re-election and step down on June 1, “due to increasing health problems associated with Parkinson’s Disease,” according to a statement from Queens Chief Assistant District Attorney John M. Ryan.Brown was first appointed Queens County District Attorney in 1991 by then-Governor Mario Cuomo and stayed in office for nearly 28 years. He was re-elected to six terms, Ryan’s statement said.Brown’s office prosecuted a number of high profile New York City cases, including that of several police officers who shot Sean Bell, an unarmed black man who was killed after his bachelor party at a Queens strip club, which resulted in no convictions.Most recently his office prosecuted and won a conviction against Chanel Lewis for the 2016 murder of Karina Vetrano, a 30-year old woman who was beaten, sexually abused and strangled while jogging near her home in Howard Beach, Queens.Brown is survived by his wife Rhoda, and their three children.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Wisconsin man ordered to pay $450K to Sandy Hook father for saying son’s death was a hoax

first_imgChris Ryan/iStock(NEW YORK) — A Wisconsin man who claimed that the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting never happened was ordered to pay $450,000 to the father of a boy killed in the massacre.Lenny Pozner, whose son, Noah, was killed in the shooting at the Connecticut elementary school that left 26 dead, filed a defamation lawsuit against James Fetzer in November 2018.On Tuesday, a Dane County jury decided on the amount Fetzer must pay Pozner, according to one of Pozner’s attorneys.Fetzer co-authored a book titled Nobody Died at Sandy Hook. In it, he argued that the shooting was a hoax meant to promote gun control. Fetzer has made similar claims on his website.Fetzer maintained his position Tuesday in a statement to ABC News, calling those who died in the shooting “alleged ‘victims’” who had their death certificates fabricated. He also said the law was used against him “as an instrument of oppression.”He plans to appeal.Pozner thanked the jury “for recognizing the pain and terror that Mr. Fetzer has purposefully inflicted on me and on other victims of these horrific mass casualty events, like the Sandy Hook shooting,” according to the Wisconsin State Journal.“Mr. Fetzer has the right to believe that Sandy Hook never happened,” he said. “He has the right to express his ignorance. This award, however, further illustrates the difference between the right of people like Mr. Fetzer to be wrong and the right of victims like myself and my child to be free from defamation, free from harassment and free from the intentional infliction of terror.”Emily Feinstein, one of Pozner’s attorneys, said the team was very pleased with the outcome. She also applauded Pozner’s courage for testifying in the two-day trial, which was attended by many supporters of Fetzer.“I can’t even imagine how hard it was for our client,” Feinstein said.Pozner created his nonprofit, HONR Network, to end the continued harassment he said he faced online from people claiming Sandy Hook was a hoax.“People like Fetzer who hide behind their computer screen and terrorize people grappling with the most unimagined grief were put on notice today … We will continue to stand up for our rights to be free of your attempts to use our tragedy and our pain to line your pockets or gain internet ‘likes,’” he said in a statement back in June.Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more