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Volume 6 No. 196


National Rugby League club Cronulla Sharks' NRL future "has received a massive boost with news property developers at their Woolooware home base have offered to throw in an extra" A$10M ($9.3M) cash, according to Phil Rothfield of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. Sharks directors "have been in finance talks for several weeks to raise funds" to pay off a A$3M bank loan and form a war chest to deal with Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority expenses. Sharks Chair Damian Keogh said that "the cash advance is an option the club’s board is seriously considering." Cronulla was always guaranteed A$28M from sales at the A$300M redevelopment over the next five years. Under a new arrangement, A$10M "would be upfront" and then A$18M in stages. The gain for developers is that "the money would immediately clear" a A$3M St. George Bank debt and "release any rights the bank had over land" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 9/30).

Serie A Napoli President Aurelio De Laurentiis said on Saturday that "he will take the club away from the city unless the local mayor agrees to tell him next week how much the city wants for the council-owned San Paolo Stadium," according to Terry Daley of REUTERS. The film mogul "wants a new ground on the San Paolo site," and he told a radio station that if Mayor Luigi de Magistris "doesn't give him a price by Tuesday then he will make arrangements to build a new home 45 kilometres away in Caserta in January." He said, "I am very worried because the mayor said that he would sell me the San Paolo, but I do not think that with the biblical times with which the politicians handle things they will be able to tell me how much they want for it by Tuesday." The Corriere Della Sera newspaper also reported de Laurentiis said that he will leave Italy for the U.S. "if he doesn't get what he wants from the city council." The issue of new stadia "is a vexed one in Italy, where most clubs play at grounds owned by the local authorities" (REUTERS, 9/28).