Round 10 Preview and Ground Irrationalisation

Greeting one and all, Welcome to Round 10,

This Friday night we have yet another blockbuster, but yet again the “Best Fit” policy has not come into play.  The Saints have crossed the line in the sand and Tiger army is roaring but how many will not be able to see the game live due to the stubbornness of Ian Collins and the lack of will of the AFL.  Any reader of this spiel would know of my dislike of the Loungeroom, in my opinion mistakes were made not just in the ticketing system.  The playing arena is too small and the game tactically becomes more akin to Soccer or Basketball – that is a subjective view point.  Take a look at the challenges Get Stuffed Lyon now has with his Dockers trying to close up Subiaco, the players are all exhausted and the Eagles opened them like a sardine can last week.

However of more relevance is the design and capacity to only allow 54,000 fans in to watch the game.  The thing replaced a much maligned venue at Waverley, but at least they could get 70,000 into the joint – in fact the Hawks and Pies played before 92,000.  The issue was getting them out of the joint and back home.  Whilst that stadium was fraught with challenges most due to plans being made around government dishonoured promises it did have capacity.  All they needed to do to make the Docklands right was fit an extra 20,000 in and we would not have situations like this Friday – and probably next Friday – and virtually every Essendon game now that they have turned the corner.

The fact that the Blues play rubbish there doesn’t help – but in reality that is no excuse if you play over 40% of your games at a venue you better learn how to play it.

Last week saw a pretty good effort from the scribe – failing to foresee the Tiger resurgence and forgetting just how strong Collingwood are on the road and especially in Adelaide where they remain undefeated since 2006.  I did indicate they represented good value.  Some really interesting comments heard from one of the Tiger assistant coaches on how they attacked Hawthorn – did not hear the whole interview.  However point one was that their defense cab be marked against – nothing really new there.  The other weakness identified was the poor defensive transition of the Hawthorn midfield – tough and uncompromising around contested ball but not a lot of chase if they lose.  The next few weeks will be interesting to watch.

So let’s start watching this week!

Watters Rising ($1.92) vs All Aboard the Tiger Express ($2.06)

What a rollicking few weeks it has been for both these clubs and fantastic for them both to hold prime time Friday Night – it is a long time since this clash has had such anticipation.  To me this is a real flip of the coin game, however I am with the Saints this week.  They play the loungeroom as well as anyone, whereas Richmond are 4 from 14 since 2009 mind you that is close to their overall record anywhere in that time.  The other reason is the head factor – and often young teams coming of meritorious victories fall over the following week.  However the Tiggers are good value should they get out to $2.20.

Domesticated Tabbies ($1.01) vs Kitty Litter ($65)

With all favours GWS were going to get you’d think Vlad would make them visit the Cattery!  Geelong.

North Tasmania ($1.30) vs South Tasmania ($4.20)

Astonishing Hawthorn are still 2nd pick for the flag, but are odds against to finish in the top 4.  This is a real anomaly and whilst on paper the team looks great – on form and on projection they will have to win four finals to be crowned.  A very safe lay bet against Hawthorn premiers.  But for this game I am projecting them to bounce back and get over the mythology – I hope for the Tasmanian crowd they get a good contest.  A no bet game for me.

Boring, Boring , Arsenal ($2.52) vs Ricky & The Barbarians ($1.64)

Well haven’t these two mobs made it in the media.  Get Stuffed Lyon having a crack at the doyen of Sports Radio KB and various Crows blowing gaskets over a couple of good wins and retaining a player.  Wanting to be known as Barbarians and the club that everyone will want to go to!  Yep, you do need to talk Adelaide up – but that is in the realm of fairyland.  I do note that the Barbarian has been dropped.  The question for this game is can Freo keep Adelaide’s goals in single figures.  Freo have much to play for after last week and at home I think they will prevail.  The odds on offer are very enticing and they will make this an ugly scrap.

The June Spooners ($1.06) vs The August Spooners? ($15.00)

Looks like the Bombers will beat their recent June Hoodoo being pitted against the team with great chance to take the kitchenware at the end of the season.  Melbourne did try last week, it will take more than that to beat the rampaging Bombers.

If it ain’t Boak ($3.40) vs Going for Boak ($1.39)

But will he be the difference in this match.  I doubt it – The Blues should be too strong for Port Adelaide even though they have been less than impressive in the last few weeks.  It is important that they eke out wins whilst they are undermanned.  Carlton have also developed a thing for travelling and have won their last four encounters at Football Park.  At least now though the Blue wallets have taken some sort of reality check and Port are not without a chance – however even if I was not a Blue supporter I’d be hunting for closer to $4.00

Enfant Terribles ($5.00) vs The Corporation ($1.24)

Or should that be terrible infant, bouncing the baby Simon Black goes out with knee injury!  Had to check the ladder when I saw these odds though – I expected the Lions to be around the $7 mark even though they were meritorious at the end of last week’s game.  Eagle should win.

Horse Feathers ($1.28) vs Moving Forward ($4.30)

The early knock on the Dogs was their lack of keys forwards – and whilst there is still work to do it is good to see them persisting with their young targets.  They will be tested though this week by the well-organised Bloods defense with Grundy and Richards leading the way.  By the same token I am sure the Bloods would like to see more from their own developing key forward in Sam Reid – but I suspect patience will be a virtue for both these clubs in building these careers.  Anyway Swans to win back on their own dunghill.

Premiership Favourites ($1.02) vs As the Suns Set ($34.00)

A cruel and unusual round with Suns having to encounter the Pies at the G during the witching hour.  Pies

Group 1 Racing

Brisbane is the scene and last week saw Sea Siren solute again – but again the Temple provided great value running a place at generous odds.  This week we have the Queensland Oaks over the classic Mile and a Half distance – the field resembles the who’s not who of the 3yo fillies.  However the race can throw up a good spring performer as a 4yo mare – Ethereal being an outstanding example.  Nothing stands out, however Robert Smerdon trained Red Typhoon was a last start winner over 2500m has some appeal at long each way odds.

The better race is the G2 Queensland Guineas – which Mental seems to have to its mercy.  However I am interested in the Danny O’Brien pair Adamantium and Shopaholic.

Go Blues, Go Friars,

Cheers, Sal

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