Joey Barton is back from suspension and captains QPR against his boyhood team, while Mauricio Isla has been passed fit to play despite nursing a knee complaint.Everton are without the suspended Gareth Barry and the injured Bryan Oviedo, Tony Hibbert and Steven Pienaar. QPR: Green; Isla, Onuoha, Caulker, Yun; Phillips, Barton, Sandro, Hoilett; Austin, Zamora.Subs: McCarthy, Hill, Ferdinand, Kranjcar, Henry, Vargas, Taarabt. Everton: Howard, Coleman, Stones, Jagielka, Baines, Gibson, McCarthy, Osman, Lennon, Kone, Lukaku.Subs: Robles, Naismith, Besic, Barkley, Browing, Garbutt, Alcaraz.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
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Low-cost long-haul carrier, AirAsia X, has vowed to continue its expansion into Indonesia, despite botching the launch of its first service from Australia to Bali at the end of last year.The airline began notifying passengers of the service’s cancellation on Christmas Day – the day before the four-times-weekly A330 Melbourne-Denpasar service was to begin.A new division of AirAsia X, AirAsia Extra, has been formed to launch services from Indonesia to Asia-Pacific destinations – first from Bali and then from Jakarta. The venture had Indonesian government permission to operate the new Melbourne-Bali services, but it simply hoped that Australia would also rubber-stamp them in time for its proposed launch date.However, Air Asia Extra is using a completely new airline licence, its so-called air operator’s certificate, and Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has previously warned new airlines that their approvals can take six months or more.There are also unofficial reports that the crash of Indonesia AirAsia flight QZ8501 on December 28 – two days after the notional launch of AirAsia X flights from Melbourne to Bali – with the loss of 162 lives is weighing on the minds of Australian air safety inspectors.Internally, AirAsia X is in turmoil after losing more than $A100 million last year – nearly half of it on routes between the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur and Australian destinations.As AirAsia X began cutting back Australian services to stem losses, the seven-year-old airline’s founding chief executive Azran Osman Rani was sacked at the weekend.But new chief executive, Dendy Kurniawan, has reaffirmed the carrier’s strategy of building long-haul hubs in markets where its affiliate AirAsia’s subsidiaries have a domestic presence such as Indonesia (AirAsia Indonesia) and Thailand (Thai AirAsia).Even though the airline has had to indefinitely suspend the launch of Melbourne-Denpasar while CASA conducts its evaluation, Kurniawan, in answer to questions submitted by AirlineRatings.com, says the service will proceed.“Indonesia AirAsia X is still working closely with relevant authorities to get the required approvals in place,” he says. “The delay in receiving approval was unexpected. AirAsia has a good relationship with the relevant authorities and will continue to lodge applications as the group has done in the past.” Kurniawan says the airline is “very aware of and apologetic for the inconvenience this has caused guests”. “AirAsia has successfully been flying between Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur since late 2008,” he says. “Melbourne has been one of AirAsia X’s strongest performing routes in Australia and we’ve worked hard to build a good following. “We certainly aim to continue to provide a great affordable option between Australia and Asia and hope to resolve the Denpasar-Melbourne route as soon as possible.”CASA declines to provide details about AirAsia Extra’s case and won’t comment on reports that the crash of QZ8501 is material to its investigation.“CASA still needs to complete its assessment of safety and regulatory information relevant to that application and cannot make a decision about the matter until we have done so,” a spokesman says. “Indonesia AirAsia Extra (IAAX) is part of the AirAsia group, but it is not the same airline that operated the aircraft that crashed, QZ8501.”While it waits for its CASA permission, IAAX has begun a single weekly A330 service between Denpasar and Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, in preparation for the launch of four weekly flights from March 29 and says it will soon launch services from Jakarta.“Indonesia AirAsia X is currently in the final stages of preparing for a new route out of Jakarta and we expect to proceed shortly and will continue to look for other opportunities,” Kurniawan says.Meanwhile, the airline continues to develop its hub at Bangkok’s Don Muang airport. “Thai AirAsia X has been considering Australia closely whilst its initial focus has been on North Asia and existing AirAsia ports there,” Kurniawan says.