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Round 17 Sal’s Preview – A lot of white noise, but we do have Buddy and Cyril!

Greetings All,

 

Another short week with pressure on deadlines for tipsters, but no shortage of news on the footy front.  But very little of it being actually newsworthy!

 

So let’s get straight into it.

 

Buddy ($1.67) vs Cyril ($2.48)

 

A mouth-watering opening to the round with the two most watchable players in the competition. The Swans have entrusted themselves to John Longmire and hard to see why they wouldn’t – although there may be cause for disruption in his lieutenant’s seats.  Not necessarily a bad thing!  They host the Hawks who have lost their tackling dynamo in Liam Shiels, his defensive capabilities are important in the midfield where Hodge, Mitchell and Lewis tackle OK but lack leg speed to chase.  The replacement Brendan Whitecross is like for like, but has been out of prime time for a while now.  Clarko might not give a toss about contested footy, but he needs to against Sydney especially on the SCG however his speed issues are not as important in those confines.  The Hawks look good at 12-3, however they are 4-3 against top eight sides.  Three of those wins were by less than two goals and the win over the Eagles almost doesn’t count as top eight as it was not at Subi.  A win here is critical for them, but I don’t think it will happen.

 

Don’t Come Mundy ($5.70) vs Sledge-o-rama ($1.20)

 

Freo are sweating on the availability of David Mundy as much as they were sweating in Darwin, but I doubt it will have any effect on the result despite the cat fight that came to light this week.

 

Icebergs ($1.17) vs Gatlin ($6.40)

 

The Tigers exposed a couple from under the sea-level of the iceberg last week and while they didn’t get the chocolates maybe Dimma was right, but there is still a bit more to melt off the top.  They face the Bombers who only have a handful of games left before the end of the nightmare that is 2016, it should provide the Tigers a real chance to show their flair although a few Bombers are doing the same.  In particular, the Daniher colt, lots of talent but a bit wayward.  A prime target for gelding if he was on the track, but bloodlines are pretty strong.  Tigers should prevail.

 

Unwells ($1.43) vs Shaping the Eight ($3.15)

 

For the most part the season has been pretty honest, teams beat who they are supposed and lose when they are supposed to.  (Except Geelong) North again have been subservient to the order of things and the last few weeks have exposed exactly where they are in the pecking order.  Their Achilles heel has been Daniel Wells, he adds creativity to the midfield but just can’t stay on the park.  They host another team that is performing as a bellwether in Port who may talk about shaping the eight but have been equally subservient apart from losses to the Blues and Dockers.  They talk of shaping the eight, those losses are the reason that all they can really do.  They get their opportunity for some sculpture work here in a very hard game to call despite the satchel swinger’s numbers.  On form I think Port are going better, but there is so much more on the line for North that I am selecting them, though the $3+ on Port is great value.

 

Love Him Jong Time ($1.19) vs Twilight Zone ($5.90)

 

Well they are prepared to for at least two more years, will the Pies love him a bit more.  The Lin Jong saga says much about the sheer volume of footy media and the challenge of dissecting what is important and what is noise.  This is just noise.  Lin Jong is in Jack Dyer terms a good ordinary player fighting at the edge of the Bulldogs line up, great attributes particularly in courage and flexibility.  He is not a headline act.  He will have chance to stamp his capability in Cairns against the Suns who have surely now set.  A disastrous outcome despite winning their derby with season ending injuries to Ablett and Rischitelli.  Time for Rocket to mothball a couple, do some list assessment and rise up in the draft order.  Doggies to win.

 

Bollinger Time ($1.20) vs Gloves are off ($5.90)

 

If Lin Jong has had too many column inches then what about Travis Cloke’s mitt?  Days of discussion and conjuring that has led to a $1,500 fine – lucky they kept their Holden sponsorship!  It does raise the question of gloves in footy and whether or not they should be allowed.  Prefer they weren’t unless in case of injury and subject to independent medical assessment. Quentin Lynch’s finger at right angles and Matthew Lloyd’s return from a ruptured tendon seem OK, but Tony Campbell’s help with ball handling just means he was not good enough.  They play the “action attraction” in the Crows, after seeing them first hand they are a well drilled unit who play the kind of footy we want to watch – except against your own team.  A proactive defensive, tough midfield and plenty of firepower – the Crows should win this – could they win the whole thing?  The drinks are getting better!

 

The Boult Unhinged ($5.10) vs The Corporation ($1.20)

 

Timing was not great for Levi to lose it last week – but signs were there that he is looking for a spell.  Or more to the point he is looking for some support, the Blues forward line has become worse than at the beginning of the year and very one-dimensional.  Kicking long to Casboult is too predictable especially when the team is devout of anyone to crumb or apply pressure.  Goals only came through lowering the eyes and finding spare targets – in Dennis Armfield.  Love his endeavour and application, but like Sam Rowe at the other end – he is not the answer.  They try again against West Coast who have started to win away in games they should and much to my chagrin this will be one of them.

 

Heaven ($2.04) vs Hell ($1.81)

 

St Kilda will not be able to afford to butcher the footy as they did last week as they host the Demons back from a great win at the top end.  The venue is heaven for the Saints and hell for the Demons, the Loungeroom is certainly a factor.  Concerned about the Saints form – but they can turn around better than anyone but it could be in any direction.  Any game in Darwin will be energy sapping – so in a tough game to predict I am favouring the Saints.

 

Jungle Boys ($12.50) vs Swooped ($1.07)

 

The Lions found something to challenge their down the highway rivals last week, but will need to be even better this week.  Hosting a chastened GWS who were completely exposed by the Magpies last week.  As for Leon’s chook feeding saying the loss will be good for them – I am still waiting for a coach to lament a victory!  I don’t think he will lament this one.

 

Friar Time

 

Was a good weekend for the Ammos to have a break!  This week the Friars travel to Bundoora to face the resurgent Parade in what will be a critical game for both clubs in the D1 survival race.  The Under 19s travel to Old Melburnians who are sitting second and will present a great challenge to the lads.

 

Go Blues, Go Friars

 

Cheers, Sal

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