Round 14 – Sal’s Preview: The prognosticator’s nightmare


Greetings All,

Another week of prognostication with limited information, just one of things against Thursday night footy.  Would think the crowd would have at doubled to 45,000 if Richmond played Port at a weekend timeslot, but what would the TV audience have been?  And that is the conundrum and what the AFL should make clear on its intent – if Thursday Night Footy is mainly for TV and sacrificing the fans that want to go then just say so.

The TV watchers love an extra prime time slot where no decision is required about which streaming service to run for the night!  The fans need to get there early after a work day and then need to get up for work the next day – oh, and the kids on a school night.  As a past president of a local footy club I despised it.  Thursday night is selection night and meal night and a time when the whole club gathers.  Now there will be a few that miss training to attend the game, announcements might be restricted to breaks in the game on TV and all conversation is focused around that game rather than the usual club banter.  It might not have destroyed club atmosphere, but it has certainly changed it and not for the better in my opinion.

Happy for the opening week Thursday Night game to continue – local footy has not started and also the eve of Good Friday as most local competitions have Easter off.


Feeling Dusty ($1.80) vs Cripptology ($2.22)

A real test for the crowd with a couple of big drawcards, although one missing with Martin out with the flu.  The Blues though lost a couple more in Cerra and the ever unfortunate Marchbank missing for another extended break.  Interesting that Richmond have left out Soldo going with the one ruckman against de Koning, the Bombers did well last week stretching the Blues with two genuine ruck opponents.  The return of Lynch should ensure a baptism of fire for Sam Durdin who was lining up for the palindrome three weeks ago.  Should be a ripping contest and as expected tipping the Blues to prevail in Patrick Cripps 150th.


The Butler Did It ($1.34) vs Strung Out ($3.80)

 The Bombers had plenty of non-contributors last week, Stringer just one of them , so thought Rutten’s public attack on him bizarre.  If Jake was fully fit surely he needs to spend more time in the middle – or is there something else at play? They face the Saints who came out of the Brisbane encounter battered and brave but without the points.  This is one they need to put away to escape the chasing pack.  Suspect they will be able to do so unless the Bombers can find some dare to move the ball and a greater contest from the forwards when they do.


Holler for a Marshall ($1.96) vs A New Lad In Town (1.94)

Port are battling for a ruckman – wouldn’t they love to have the Ladhams trade reversed.  Peter takes on whatever combination Kenny throws up this week, mind you the Findlayson-Dixon combination competed well against the Tiges.  The other good competitor they have is Todd Marshall who is stretching defences as the extra tall and was superb last week – not sure the Swans will leave a rookie on him for too long.  They also have Lance returning to throw a couple of challenges at the other end.  What makes this tough is that while form says Sydney they have lost their last five to Port – they match up well and reckon Kenny might be singing with his boys at the conclusion.


Accidently Kelly St ($10.50) vs De Koning Artist ($1.10)

 Extraordinary statement from Trevor Nesbitt on the failure of the Tim Kelly trade – reckon Tim is going a bit better than most of his teammates.  He will have plenty to hold up against his former club.  The Cats just have too much depth and quality for this Eagles outfit.


Up a Cog ($2.10) vs No Butts ($1.84)

 No doubt the Giants have lifted in the last couple of weeks.  However reckon they won a Benchmark 58 last week so going to take too much from it for either the team or Steve Coniglio.  They host the Dogs who they share a mutual disrespect for.  How will the Bulldogs cope without Bailey Smith?  GWS may get Tim Taranto back to bolster the midfield.  This will be the genuine test for the Giants and an important one for the Dogs to have any hope of retrieving the season.  Just think the Giants at home might prevail.


Easy Sunshine ($1.20) vs Return to Texas ($5.60)

 Not sure a 50-50 record at this stage gives the Suns a chance of making the eight, but there are a few who reckon they’re a chance.  If they are then they should dispose of the Crows who have indicated they will take on Tex for at least another season.  His form warrants it – whether it is the right strategy in developing other forwards is another discussion.  Suns to shine.


Go Blues, Go Friars

Cheers, Sal


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