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One change for Ireland ahead of England clash

Jordi Murphy will replace the injured Jamie Heaslip for Ireland. Credit: PA

Ireland number eight Jordi Murphy will replace the injured Jamie Heaslip against England on Sunday in the only change to the champions side ahead of a potential Six Nations decider.

Heaslip cracked three vertebrae in Ireland's 18-11 victory over France two weeks ago in an incident that earned French lock Pascal Pape a 10-week ban, and Ireland hope he will be fit for their next game against Wales in Cardiff on March 14.

Teen pregnancy rates lowest since records began

UK teen pregnancy lowest since records began Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Rates of conception for under-18s in England and Wales are at their lowest since records began in 1969, new official figures show.

Pregnancy rates for women aged between 15 and 17 were 24.5 conceptions per thousand, according to a report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

  • The figures show a 13% drop in the estimated number of conceptions for women under 18 in 2013, down to 24,306 in 2013 compared with 27,834 in 2012.
  • For the under-16s, there was also a 14% drop in the number of conceptions - an estimate of 4,648 in 2013, compared with 5,432 in 2012.

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ICC admit umpiring mistake at finish of Australia vs England World Cup match

The International Cricket Council has confirmed that James Anderson was incorrectly given out at the end of England's heavy defeat to Australia in their World Cup opener.

James Anderson (left) and James Taylor trudge off at the end of the match. Credit: JULIAN SMITH/AAP/Press Association

Anderson was adjudged run out in a farcical conclusion to the match, as both sets of players were left unsure by the ruling of the on-field officials.

James Taylor had correctly reviewed an lbw decision, but replays also showed that Anderson was short of his ground, so Kumar Dharmasena gave him out.

The ICC revealed in a statement that the ball should have been called dead and that they had met with the England management to confirm the error.

"Following Australia's 111-run victory over England in the Group A ICC Cricket World Cup clash at Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday night, the Playing Control Team (PCT) met and reviewed the final ball of the game which resulted in James Anderson being given run out," the statement read.

"Article 3.6a of Appendix 6 of the Decision Review System (DRS) Playing Conditions states that the ball should have been deemed dead when the batsman (James Taylor) was given out leg before wicket (lbw). No further runs or dismissals were possible."

Tories unveil plans for 'English votes for English laws'

The Conservative Party laid out its proposals for "English votes for English laws" today.

House of Commons leader William Hague said the planned devolution of more powers to the Scottish government creates "imbalances" that do not favour English MPs.

ITV News' Political Editor Tom Bradby reports:

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Hague 'English votes' plans face backbench battle

William Hague tried to draw Labour further into the English votes debate as he accused them of "betraying" voters as he set out the Conservative blueprint for delivering "English votes for English laws."

However the proposals still face a tough battle with some in the Conservative party who believe the plans are too weak and would make the situation worse by providing nationalist MPs with a "battering ram against the Union".

Leader of the House of Commons, William Hague. Credit: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

Under the Tory manifesto proposals - which Mr Hague is seeking to put to a Commons vote before May's general election - policies affecting England alone would be scrutinised by a panel made up only of MPs representing English seats.

A "grand committee" of all English MPs would then have to approve the legislation. Welsh MPs would be included on matters not devolved to the Cardiff Assembly.

A large section of Tory backbenchers are angry that the final - Third Reading - vote on Bills would still include MPs from the rest of the UK, in what they say is a watering down of David Cameron's promise to act.

Ukip slam English votes 'back room stitch-up' plans

The deupty leader of Ukip has slammed Conservative palns for English MPs to be given vetoes.

Paul Nuttall says the proposals panders to the culture of "back room stitch-ups."

UKIP MEP for North West England, UKIP Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall Credit: EMPICS Entertainment/EMPICS Entertainment

We cannot have the tail wagging the dog.

It would create chaos where one group of MPs were being pitted against another. It would be cleaner and fairer for English only issues to be voted on by MPs in English constituencies.

It is likely that after the General Election there will be more SNP members of parliament sitting in Westminster whose concern will be Scotland and not what is best for England. In that situation these plans would add layers of process and confusion to legislating and lead to back room deals being made far away from the voters eyes.

Why are the Tories are climbing down for English only votes? Is there already a back room stitch-up?

– Paul Nuttall, North West MEP

Conservatives plans for English MPs 'veto' on English laws

MPs representing Scottish constituencies would be stripped of the power to "impose" income tax rate changes on the rest of the UK under a parliamentary shake-up planned by the Conservatives.

It would give an effective veto to MPs for seats in England - and Wales on some policies - over matters that are decided north of the border by the Scottish Parliament, but would still require a majority of all UK MPs to pass legislation.

House of Commons Credit: CROFT MALCOLM CROFT/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Under the preferred option, only English MPs would consider the amending stages of legislation that relates only to England and have a veto via a procedure known as a legislative consent motion.

English votes for English laws 'would be fair all round'

William Hague has described how English votes for English laws would work in the UK Parliament.

The former Foreign Secretary told Good Morning Britain that: "If we're proposing to change the level of health spending in England then that does have an affect on Scotland and that is for all MPs to vote on. But if we're voting on how to share out the health spending in England in the different parts of England that should require the agreement of the English MPs."

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