Kevin Rudd

Australia faces the prospect of first hung parliament since 1940

The Australian opposition leader, Tony Abbott, is a keen triathlete who rarely shuns a physical challenge. Yesterday he set himself a new endurance test: to campaign for 36 hours straight in a last-ditch attempt to win government in tomorrow's federal election.

Brown saves the world: Mark II

As the first political leader to be welcomed by Barack Obama, Gordon Brown will be seeking support for his recession-busting plans. Brian Brady reports

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Australian bushfires kill 171

Weary firefighters and rescuers pulled the remains of dozens of people from charred buildings today as the toll from Australia's deadliest bushfires rose to 171.

Australia may follow British lead on Olympic funding

For years, Britain has envied the efficiency with which the Australian sporting structure turns out elite athletes who excel on the international stage. Now, following Britain's historic success at the Beijing Olympics, the boot is, so to speak, on the other foot.