Gigs’ Stats Round 21: Ignoring the obvious

Stats Entertainment – Round 21

by Andrew Gigacz


Well, the top 8 is settled, if not exactly in order, then at least in its composition. Or so the media would have you believe. But they seem to be ignoring one obvious point. It will only take a couple of games to fall a certain way and the final 8 WILL change.

A simple 238 point win by Fremantle over Carlton will mean that all North will to do in the last match of the home and away season is to beat Melbourne by the same margin.

Sure, the Roos will have to beat Fitzroy’s 1979 biggest margin in history but let’s not forget that the side that lost that match was Melbourne. And it’s only 20 years ago that John Longmire beat the Demons’ score off his own boot as North smashed Melbourne to smithereens. (20 years is not that long is it? Certainly not according to any Collingwood supporters I speak to.)


On the other side of the coin, if the margin in either of those games is less than 238, then we will see Freo hosting Carlton in consecutive weeks. To me that’s a good thing. But not as good as all four first-week finals being the same two sides meeting for a second consecutive week. An extra win to Hawthorn during this season would have meant a Collingwood v Hawthorn clash as a week one possibility and may have seen us with two such games.

Historically, we’ve had a quite a few such “back-to-back” encounters. Here’s a summary:

2001 – Round 22: Richmond 17.5 (107) d Essendon 12.11 (83)

2001 – Qualifying Final: Essendon 17.11 (113) d Richmond 5.13 (43)

1990 – Round 22: Melbourne 17.14 (116) d Hawthorn 15.14 (104)

1990 – Elimination Final: Melbourne 10.13 (73) d Hawthorn 8.16 (64)

1983 – Round 22: Essendon 18.10(118) d Carlton 8.19 (67)

1983 – Elimination Final: Essendon 17.12 (114) d Carlton 12.9 (81)

1974* – Round 22: North Melbourne 16.10 (106) d Hawthorn 10.17 (77)

1974* – Qualifying Final: North Melbourne 15.13 (103) d Hawthorn 8.17 (65)

1968 – Round 20: St Kilda 16.14 (110) d Geelong 8.11 (59)

1968 – First Semi-Final: Geelong 19.13 (127) d St Kilda 11.17 (83)

1963*^ – Round 18: Geelong 13.12 (90) d Hawthorn 6.16 (52)

1963*^ – Second Semi Final: Geelong 14.17 (101) d Hawthorn 11.16 (82)

1962^– Round 18: Melbourne 11.9 (75) d Carlton 5.10 (40)

1962^– Second Semi-Final: Carlton 11.12 (78) d Melbourne 11.10 (76)

1956*^ – Round 18: Melbourne 10.13 (73) d Collingwood 9.6 (60)

1956*^– Second Semi-Final: Melbourne 11.14 (80) d Collingwood 8.16 (64)

1949^ – Round 19: North Melbourne 15.18 (108) d Carlton 7.10 (52)

1949^– Second Semi-Final: Carlton 15.13 (103) d North Melbourne 14.7 (91)

1943† – Round 16: Fitzroy 12.12(84) d Carlton 10.9 (69)

1943† – First Semi Final: Fitzroy 13.16 (94) d Carlton 5.13 (43)

1943*^† – Round 16: Richmond 18.10(118) d Essendon 8.19 (67)

1943*^† – Second Semi Final: Essendon 13.16 (94) d Richmond 9.17 (71)

1941^– Round16: Carlton 16.17 (113) d Melbourne 11.22 (88)

1941^– Second Semi Final: Melbourne 16.13 (75) d Carlton 11.16 (82)

1940 – Round 18: Essendon 16.16 (112) d Geelong 7.10 (52)

1940 – First Semi Final: Essendon 13.14 (92) d Geelong 10.14 (74)

1931*^ – Round 18: Geelong 11.17 (83) d Richmond 8.8 (56)

1931*^ – Second Semi Final: Richmond 15.9 (99) d Geelong 10.6 (66)

1921^ – Round 18: Carlton 9.10 (64) d Collingwood 5.7 (37)

1921^– Semi-Final: Carlton 9.11 (65) d Collingwood 7.10 (52)

1916† – Round 12: Collingwood 11.9 (75) d Fitzroy 8.9 (57)

1916† – Semi Final: Fitzroy 9.9 (63) d Collingwood 8.9 (57)

1916^† – Round 12: Carlton 12.10 (82) d Richmond 9.11 (65)

1916^† – Semi Final: Carlton 10.15 (75) d Richmond 10.12 (72)

1909 – Round 18: Carlton 6.13 (49) d Essendon 4.10 (34)

1909 – Semi Final: Carlton 14.8 (92) d Essendon 9.2 (56)

1905 – Round 17: Fitzroy 11.14 (80) d Essendon 4.13 (37)

1905 – Semi Final: Fitzroy 12.7 (79) d Essendon 4.12 (36)

1903 – Round 17: Fitzroy 5.4 (34) d Geelong 3.9 (27)

1903 – Semi Final: Fitzroy 11.15 (81) d Geelong 4.5 (29)

* These two sides met again later in the finals series, making it three meetings between the two in four rounds

^ For all you pedants out there, the finals system in these years meant there was a two week break between these meetings but they were consecutive meetings for those sides as they both had the intervening week off.

† In 1943 and 1916 both semi finals were re-matches of last round games. While the 1943 occurrence could be considered statistically interesting, the 1916 one was hardly surprising, as only four team competed in that year! (In fact that was the year that Fitzroy infamously finished last and won the flag. That may seem a little unfair, but given that two of the other three sides were Collingwood and Carlton, I think it turned out quite well.)


Yeah, what does all that history tell us? Well it tells us that the team that wins in the final round has a 60% chance of repeating the dose in the following week.

More specifically, for Carlton, who have been involved in an amazing 8 out of the 20 occurrences of this phenomenon, it means that if the lose to Freo on Friday and play them again, they have a 50% chance of reversing the result. But if they beat Freo, they have a 75% chance of defeating Freo again the next week.


Well, here we are four days after my last update and any one of my three tips could still come to pass. For those who missed it, I foresaw three possible outcomes:

  • A hung parliament.
  • A win to the Julia, which would mean a “hung-Rudd-out-to-dry” parliament.
  • Or a win to Tony and his budgie smugglers, which some might see as a well-hung parliament.


Something else that was not resolved on the weekend was the issue of whether the 2.2 hoodoo has been broken. Readers of last week’s column will recall that there was uncertainty about whether the curse has been lifted or if, indeed, St Kilda is immune to it. Alas, in Round 21, not one team was sitting on 2.2 when the quarter-time sirens sounded. I have attempted to seek a ruling, or at least an opinion, on the matter from Messrs, Bandt, Katter, Oakeshott and Windsor but have been advised that are unavailable due to other, more pressing matters.

For the life of me, I cannot work out what those matters would be.

1 vs 100

Controversy reigns in Eddie’s favourite race. 100+ drew level again with 1, courtesy of Hawthorn’s 116-point demolition of the Fremantle Ad-hockers. The odds on a 100+ victory in this race shortened dramatically before the weekend, following a huge plunge on the margin by several anonymous punters based about 20 kms south-west of Perth. A spokesperson from the betting agency that specialises in the 1 vs 100 competition, Rorts-Bet, said the agency was seeking legal advice.


Sincere apologies to the number 9 for failing to mention last week that it joined 3 and 36 as the leading margin of 2010. The three margins have been registered six times apiece thus far this season. Hot on their heels are 8, 19 and 29 (five each).


Yes, it’s a line from the Doggies’ club song, and on current form, it will be the only good memory Dogs fans will have for some time yet.

But I am in fact referring, in this instance, to the final score 54. It’s been registered three times this year and, despite the fact that there have been only 22 scores lower than that for the entire season, it has been a winning score on two of those three occasions. The first was when Port Adelaide upset St Kilda 7.12 (54) to 6.4 (44) In Round 5.

And the second was on Saturday night, when the sharp-shooting Magpies overcame the Crows at the death 6.18 (54) to 7.9 (51).

And that got me wondering: when was the last time 6.18 (54) was a winning score.

For a start, prior to Saturday night, the score had only been registered twice in the last 25 years, by Port Adelaide when they lost to Richmond in Round 14, 2006 and by Fremantle who lost to Geelong in Round 8, 1998.

But to find the last occurrence of that being a winning score, one must go right back to 1961. And who was the winning team? Collingwood of course, when they defeated Richmond, who scored 5.8 (38) at Punt Rd in Round 13 of that year.

Prior to that, 6.18 (54) has not been a winning score since the First World War.

And so what good news can be gleaned from that? Well, firstly, Collingwood after kicking that winning score in 1961, did not go on to win the flag. They didn’t even make the Grand Final.

Secondly, the Bulldogs DID make the Grand Final in that year, albeit as a losing side to Hawthorn. So perhaps that allows Footscray fans some hope, as they not only “remember 54” but also “recall 61”.


Was it a case of sending boys to the a man’s job with the side that Fremantle put forward to take on the might of the Hawks. Well combining Freo’s three-quarter-time score (1.7) and their final score (5.9) perhaps gives us a clue. For it was in 1759 that William Pitt the Younger was born. He became Britain’s youngest ever Prime Minister, aged just 24. His appointment was widely ridiculed, as was Freo’s performance on Saturday.

Mind you, Mr Pitt went onto serve for 17 years! Whether this is the beginning of a reign of such proportions for Fremantle remains to be seen.


What? You want a “year of the week” AND a “postcode of the week”? OK, I’ll give you an ironic postcode. Carlton scored 5,3,2 and 2 in each of their four quarters against Geelong on Friday night. 5322 is the postcode of GOLDEN HEIGHTS, a place that it would seem the Blue are still a long way from reaching.

(Apologies to Josh B for still not being able to squeeze in the postcode for Waaia.)


Congratulations to Brent Harvey on reaching the magical 300 game milestone on Sunday. “Boomer” is a Kangaroo through and through. Can you imagine him in anything other than a North jumper? I can’t. So it’s hardly surprising that


About Andrew Gigacz

Well, here we are. The Bulldogs have won a flag. What do I do now?


  1. Being chronologically challenged I well remember the ’68 set Gigs. I copped heaps from the Saints supporters who still had the taste of the premiership plonk in their mouths. The first semi was quite satisfying but of course the Cats failed to convert.

    They went on to get the treble against the Hawks in ’63. That was before I was interested so I claim the 2007 Cats flag as my first. That is why I want more.

    It’s not a greed thing. It’s a need thing.

  2. Gigs – your election projection prediction was spooky

  3. Excuse me for thinking out side the two party circle but I am loving this current time.

    Watching both parties openly squirm after an election at the moment is wonderful. Especially having all their promises scrutinised before they get a chance of getting the gig.

    Short term neither party can afford to not go with the flow as it will put them out of the game and long term neither party can afford it to work as it will show people the true benefits of democracy and true democracy is not what the two parties are about.

    And to make matters more interesting we have footy finals next week.

    My old team in Launceston are in two grand finals and are a chance for a double double on Saturday week.

    Queens Park Rangers have bolted to the top of the English championship table after twenty years in the doldrums.

    And….. there are thousands of beautiful daffodils smiling at me when I go into the garden.

    Don’t you just love the Spring time.

  4. Which Launceston team Phantom?

  5. Peter Flynn says


    In 1963, Ian Scott (back pocket) played his 1st game for Geelong against Carlton in Round 17.

    His next three games were all against Hawthorn (R18, 2nd SF and GF).

    He only played against Hawthorn on one more occasion in 1964.

    It appears that 35,500 went to Glenferrie Oval for that Round 18 game. Extraordinary!

    The ladder coming into R18 was as follows:

    HW 17 54 136.9
    GE 17 50 125.9
    ME 17 48 147.1
    ES 17 48 136.9
    SK 17 48 133.3

    Melbourne, Essendon and St Kilda all won in R18. If Geelong lost their R18 game, they would have missed the finals.

  6. Tim #4 Old Scotch

    Peter #5 Bring him back. Any person who could help inflict that much pain on Hawthorn in such a little time is a real hero.

  7. Freo winning by slightly less than the 238 points mentioned above means that North’s task of making the 8 has been made a little tougher. They will need to defeat Melbourne by about 460 points to displace Carlton from eighth spot.

    Not something the AFL would be overly happy about because:

    (a) it would be a bit embarrassing for them, given that they’ve already announced the week 1 finals fixtures and

    (b) it would mean a Sydney v North final at ANZ Stadium next week. In the corresponding fixture in 2008, the crowd was 19,127.

  8. Sydney here we come.

  9. -8
    GO NORTH!!! ;)

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