Round 17 preview: It’s not going home! Sal’s picks and musings

Greetings All,


Welcome to the final Thursday night game for the regular season!  The Blues have copped their right whack after a pitiful effort against the Lions, there were a few other poor performances that missed scrutiny because of the Bad News Blues.  Maybe Freo copped it in the west, but not much here.  Haven’t been a fan of Get Stuffed Lyon and his style of footy (a shame Bolton seems to be a disciple with a team ill equipped), I do respect his forthrightness and club first attitude.  As he said sometimes the team is not good enough, definitely the case without Fyfe and Sandilands.  He forced rule changes when he effectively tanked the final game of the season when his team had top spot signed, sealed and delivered.  We now have a week off because of Ross and I reckon he would still do the same thing.


The league was worried by the sanctity of the competition in that final game, Ross quite rightly doesn’t care and has pretty much admitted that this week indicating that with veterans Michael Johnson and Danyle Pearce.  He might give them a send off game, far more interested in getting games into the players that will be the future of the club.  It should be the path taken by most of the clubs out of the finals race, the problem being that if too many teams are no good then the experience they get will not be that great.  A few other coaches should make the same pragmatic calls for the benefit of their club – stuff the sanctity.


The World Cup has destroyed sleep patterns but we are nearly there, although England aren’t – got a bit sick of the “It’s Coming Home”.  They played well but not being able to score in open play was a flaw, being dependent on set pieces is not a complete enough game.  Now for our footy it is on to this week.


Evil Roy Sloane ($1.89) vs Injection Rejection ($2.10)


Rory putting pen to paper has dashed hopes for some clubs, with another of players being thrown into the media mix.  Meanwhile the Cats get back Dan Menzel from injury after an errant injection.  Gives Geelong a handy forward line and Adelaide’s also loaded up.  While the venue holds no fears for Geelong, Adelaide are getting some quality back and is my selection at home.


Breathless ($1.37) vs When Harry met SOS ($3.60)


Jake Carlisle back from a punctured lung will boost the Saints who lose a couple including Paddy McCartin, while the Blues seemed to be listening to media roar and have committed to playing Harry McKay.  Suspect he will have to do some ruck duties as playing Casboult would surely make them top heavy, but not necessarily any worse.  The Saints are playing aggressive and attacking footy, the Blues are not.  Saints to win.


Lip Service or Just Lip ($1.25) vs Fagan’s Feast ($4.70)


Jeff has laid the threat to Tassie, not sure he spoke to Clarko who really appreciates the four gimmes a year in Launceston.  Hawthorn gets the benefit not Tasmania, with only 7 games away from either Launceston or the MCG for the season.  They faced the rampaging Lions who have feasted on teams in their own weight division over the last two weeks.  Their best is good enough to beat the Hawks as they proved earlier in the season, the Hawks best was on show last week and is better.  In Launceston – Hawthorn.


Top of the Top End ($1.14) vs Tough choice for Clay ($7.60)


Clay Smith had to make the tough choice and announce his retirement after a myriad of knee injuries.  Will always be a premiership player and a fine one throughout that magical September of 2016 for the Doggies.  They go to the G to face the Demons coming off a sound win in the tropics.  Going to apply my Darwin Theory here, recovery from that environment will be tough.  Footscray are mixing their form and reckon they might get up in this one.


Ain’t no Sunshine ($4.60) vs Extinguished ($1.24)


Nothing bright about the Sun’s shooting for 11 losses in succession against the Bombers whose fire was put out by the Pies last week.  The Suns were OK against St Kilda at home, Essendon need to get back on the winners list to maintain any hope of a final.  Too much to lose, Essendon to win.


Not Easy Being Greene ($2.72) vs Not so Dimma ($1.52)


We may finally see Toby Greene return for the Giants – a needed commodity against the competition benchmark.  The Tigers have lost all three on the road, all against good opposition.  They have an extra challenge in that they actually have an injury list, lost some solid contributors.  Houli, Vlastuin and Townsend are handy ins.  The Giants have their own challenges without Cameron who is a key to their structure.  Should be a beauty, just think Richmond are too well organised for the makeshift attack the Giants will present.


Where’s the Lid ($1.49) vs Getting the Band Back Together ($2.86)


A few Pies have been very sprightly after last week’s win over Essendon.  The Bombers were playing well so it was certainly a meritorious victory.  They take on the Eagles at the G – stats say the Pies will win with West Coast’s poor record at the venue.  They could get Kennedy, Barrass, Darling and Le Cras back – not sure it will be enough at their “House of Pain”.


Sundowners ($2.12) vs Shot Ducks ($1.86)


North did their job against the Suns last week a tougher test this week against the Swans.  The Swans though have been decimated by injury losing players to injury who were already injured – they will face a tough test to stay in contention over the next few weeks.  Not sure North’s form is that great and expect a close game with Sydney prevailing.


Lyonised ($4.40) vs Second Seed? ($1.27)


Get Stuffed Lyon assessed his team honestly and also publicly, the reaction on the ground will be interesting as they host Port Adelaide.  Playing good footy and appear to the team best equipped to challenge the Tigers, the next few weeks will see if that’s true.  If they are that team then they beat the Dockers even in Perth.


Friar Time


A week off saw a few magnificent Peninsula Pinots tested and quaffed, it is back to the action this week with the Friars hosting the Turtles from Eltham College.  They have had a tough year but managed to notch a victory a couple of weeks ago amid some improved performances.  The Under 19s travel to East Caulfield to take on the all-conquering Old McKinnin/Glen Eira and the ladies head across the Mullum Mullum Creek to face traditional foes Aquinas.


Go Blues, Go Friars,


Cheers, Sal



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