And never the seasons shall meet

Greetings again to all,

Much talk over the last couple of days regarding extending the season to allow the players to have two byes during the season and this is to come at the expense of Cricket Victoria giving up its claim to the MCG for the potential to host the Sheffield Shield final.  Anyone who writes this clearly loves their footy, but enough is enough, football has its allocated time and the potential for an extra week in the case of a drawn Grand Final (which should remain).  It needs to work within those boundaries to fit the season in.  As for the player demands for an extra week off during the season, I reckon there are 1000s of park footballers that would love to be doing what these blokes do for a crust.

Last week Carlton looked a chance for a while at good odds but experience, professionalism and horrendous kicking allowed the favoured Cats to hold out.  But got the Tiggers all wrong, with difficult conditions favouring the Freo style (or lack of it).  Hawks, Pies and Saints rolled on as predicted – but the Swans proved great value falling over the Dons who still keep their June record intact.  But 5 from 6 a pretty good return.

Now for this week’s encounters:

The Corporation ($1.30) vs Baggers – of the Coach ($4.20)

Yet another critical game for the Blues, but against mighty opposition on their home turf.  But desperate teams and men do desperate things.  One thing I hope is that in Ratten’s desperation he is not risking Carrazzo before he has fully recovered, another week off and a bye would seem a better option from my outside view.  The Blues at the price is reasonable, however West Coast rested and primed won’t allow themselves to drop this one.

Gift Horses ($1.46) vs What’s in the Watters ($3.10)

The Crows have taken full advantage of their fixture and then some, while the Saints have appeared to have exorcised the demons from their time with Get Stuffed Lyon and are playing much more watchable footy.  Makes this an enticing encounter except that it is being played at Moron Park at night in the middle of winter – usually throws up a very slippery and difficult playing surface reducing the skills of the game and often turning it into a 12 goal slog.  GSL loved that!  Selecting Adelaide purely on home ground basis – Saints at the $3 mark represent decent value.

The General’s in Town ($15.00) vs Repair the Wheels ($1.06)

The Tiger wagon overloaded last week, but it should be ready to take the horde again with nice little romp over the Giants who may unveil the Prime Draft Pick Jonathon Patton.

Sundowners ($6.00) vs The Cable Guys ($1.06)

The Kangas were the other recipients of the gifted draw and have one of their “bonus” games this week against the struggling Suns.  Unfortunately for the Roos they have wasted their advantage by lacking competitiveness in the other games they have to play.  But they will win this by plenty.

Challenger Number 1 ($1.11) vs Back in the Jungle ($9.60)

Hawks look back on track and should be too strong for Brisbane on the G.  Could they sleigh another giant, maybe but not for mine.

The Scraggers ($1.54) vs Back in the Shack ($2.76)

The Doggies with their first game after the death of their legend, Charlie Sutton, should have them high in the emotional stakes.  Port on the hand have been good although the Hawks got their measure last week.  This is a key game for Port – they would rate themselves at least on a par with the Dogs and to win away would be a real feather in their cap.  I reckon they will have a real crack here and am prepared to make them my upset for the week.

Bye, Bye

No 1 Contender (Flag $3.95, Finals ($1.03)

A couple of early season hiccups have been negotiated with the next 8 on the trot to lead the competition, they do have a few tough games coming up but all on the MCG.  Credit to them for becoming the benchmark for depth – have been hit by injury but have developed a culture and capability to cover any losses so far.  Should finish in the top 2 after 22 matches up from the original prognostication of 3rd.  Justified as favourite to win the lot, how much the Cloke sage impacts is yet to be seen.  It would be a Travisty if it were to cost them!

What Month is it? ($15.50, $1.40)

The Bombers are rejoicing that at least the Bye is in June!  However overall they must ecstatic with their position, yes their draw has not been the toughest but they have made the most of it whereas plenty of other haven’t.  The last two weeks have hurt though and they have gone from a top four lock in to a hopeful at best.  Not bad from an initial assessment of 9th and now projecting to finish 5th or 6th.

Get Stuffed Lyon ($110, $2.64)

Ross has taken the life out of Freo, but they have managed to fashion a few unexpected wins but have failed to clog up Subiaco on a couple of occasions to drop games unexpectedly.  The loss of Herman for 10 weeks could have a further impact.  After a bullish prediction of 5th – I am now projecting them to finish in 10th place.

Fading Champs ($14, $1.54)

The initial projection of 2nd was tempered with the question of the Cats hunger and motivation – it would appear those concerns were well-foundered.  They are doing just enough to stay in touch, however it will a massive effort to make the top 4 from their current predicament.  A finish alongside the Bombers at 5 or 6 is more likely – but they could be a dangerous opponent in September, although I can’t agree with the coach that they could win it from the bottom half of the Eight.

Deesasterous ($1000, $75)

A horrid start for the club and the coach after a very bullish lead up to the season.  We have a much better idea of their personnel now – will be better in the back half of the season but not that much.  Projected for 16th after originally predicted to be 11.

Horse Whispering ($12.50, $1.09)

The Horse has the Bloods playing a much more positive brand of footy and are going great guns.  The defense looks vulnerable but Richards has led them admirably.  Finding it hard to fit them into 5 or 6 but one them, Essendon or Geelong will fall to 7th after selecting the Swans to finish 8th at the start of the season.

Group 1 Racing

The group one action leaves our shores with the focus heading the Ascot where plenty of our neddies are looking to make an impact on the world racing scene, none more so than Black Caviar.  No predictions from me, however maybe some advice.  If your backing the Australian contingent make sure you do so into international pools or Betfair to get the best value – if you’re going against them then the Aussie pools should offer good value with the weight of parochial money helping the dividends.

Go Blues, Go Friars!

Cheers, Sal

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