The West

Drilling by Sandfire Resources at Doolgunna. Picture: Tim Lewis.
Drilling by Sandfire Resources at Doolgunna. Picture: Tim Lewis.

UPDATE 2.35pm: Investors are punting on the discovery of a DeGrussa-like mineral deposit as Talisman Mining begins drilling at the Springfield project adjacent to Sandfire Minerals' celebrated mine north east of Meekatharra.

Talisman said today diamond drilling had begun at Springfield to test an electromagnetic conductor 400m below the surface, 5km east of DeGrussa.

"A single diamond drill hole has now commenced with the aim of intersecting the modelled conductor at a target depth of 400m below surface," the company said.

The exploration program is part of a joint venture with Sandfire Resources, which last year agreed to a $15 million exploration farm-in deal with Talisman at the Springfield and Halloween projects.

The Springfield project comprises a 303sqkm ground package about 150km north-east of Meekatharra.

Talisman boasts former Jubilee Mines boss Kerry Harmanis as one of its significant shareholders. Mr Harmanis turned Jubilee Mines from a $1m tiddler in 1987 into a $3.1 billion takeover target in 2007 through the discovery of the Cosmos nickel deposit near Leinster.

Xstrata, which took over Jubilee, put Cosmos on care and maintenance in September 2012 citing weak nickel prices and the strong Australian dollar.

Talisman shares closed up 1.5 cents, or 10 per cent, at 16.5 cents. The shares have been on a steep rise from a six-month low of nine cents last week. Sandfire shares closed up two cents at $6.05.

Meanwhile, Sipa Resources also announced today it had begun drilling at the first of four target areas in the Enigma prospect at its Thaduna copper project, 25km east of DeGrussa. Its shares were up 0.2 cents, or 5 per cent, at 4.2 cents.

The West Australian

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