Round 2 – Sal’s Preview: Freed Willie, Round 2 tips, and Turf Time


Greetings All,


Not sure how Matt Rowell was not awarded a freekick in the first place but then for Willie to only get one week and then get exonerated beggars belief.  The potential for damage needed to be taken into account and that Willie’s hip did not contact Matt’s face was by good fortune and not by any duty of care.  The AFL appealed the Toby Greene decision because of the optics of the incident, if they are serious about protecting the head them this is no different.


As for Mitch Robinson, he was stationary as Duursma lead in with his melon – that should have just been a coaching moment for Xavier.  Not to mention the fine to Sam Draper for a pretty basic act of thuggery.


And now for Round 2


A Calming Beverige ($1.63) vs Blue Heaven ($2.56)


Beverige is a master of deflection, his performance in the press conference last week removed any discussion of the short comings of his team.  They have a star up forward in Aaron Naughton but reckon he needs a foil, at the other they have great talent on the deck but will be challenged by good tall forwards.  The Blues have a couple of those that will be hungry after last week with McKay kicking the only goal among them.  The Blues bigger issues will be losing Cerra, Martin and the senior coach to the dreaded lurgy.  They do get their best back in Sam Walsh, are they taking a risk?  Structurally reckon the Blues have the edge but the Dogs will be snarling after last week.  Going the Blues using loyalty over logic plus the loss of Smith and the question mark over The Bont’s fitness.


Giant Slayers ($1.79) vs Bomber Bullies ($2.22)


The focus on Buddy let Luke Parker loose to take care of GWS, while the Cats were simply too strong for the Bombers.  How will the Buddy factor play out?  The Cats lose Sam de Koning but generally have options to play on him, will the Swans have other avenues to goal again?  At the other end there will be Hawkins to deal with, however the Cats were equally dangerous on the ground with Stengle, Close and Dalhaus.  The mids are more evenly matched and whoever holds sway there probably wins.  Reckon the home ground will give Sydney the sway.


Daicos ($1.40) vs Rachele ($3.25)


A great win from the Pies last week should have them primed to take on the Crows.  Great debuts on both sides last week from Daicos and Rachele respectively.  If they produce anywhere to the level of last week then the Pies are better and helps at the Mighty G.


Bombed Out ($2.92) vs Joe Blow ($1.50)


An intriguing contest Essendon coming off an embarrassing effort and the Lions wanting to assert their credentials after a tough game at the Gabba.  The Bombers did unveil a ripper in Nic Martin but he will be missing due to lurgy protocols and Stringer is still doubtful.  Meanwhile most of the Lions injury concerns are good to go.  Joe was the “girl with curl” last week, not sure how Essendon match him up.  The Bombers will be proud so expect a better effort this week, just not sure they will quite have the personnel to take this out.


Not a Problem ($1.26) vs A Nice Day ($4.30)


Port were super last week despite going under at the Gabba in particular the efforts of Dan Houston.  It rated a better performance than their opponents in the Hawks who beat North.  They are likely to welcome back their brightest young talent in Will Day.  Just think at Adelaide Oval Port will be too strong.


Touk for Granted ($4.30) vs Salem’s Lot ($1.29)


What a combination Touk Miller and Matt Rowell might become, especially being served by Jarrod Witts.  It’s the premiers who need to deal with it this week and do so without Christian Salem, they are missing a few premiership defenders noting that Trent Rivers may return.  The Suns will be feisty but happy to be on the premiers.


Xerri Bomb ($2.18) vs Winged ($1.81)


The wooden spooners take on the wounded Eagles.  North took in an unbalanced line up last week and paid the price, expect one less big man this week.  For the Eagles it is about getting a team on the park with Josh Kennedy out on lurgy protocol, we may see the Shuey and Darling selected.  Until we know though going with the Kangas on the assumption they choose to restructure to just the two rucks.


Under the Thumb ($1.99) vs UnreWarded ($1.99)


The Tigers don’t have a big injury list but it is one of quality with Jack Reiwoldt’s thumb and Dion Prestia’s hamstring complementing Lambert and Vlastuin on the sidelines.  The Tigers pride themselves on winning the ball back but could not often enough against the Blues, if the Giants can maintain possession they will be a real threat here.  Like the Blues they have a big bodied midfield with the likes of Hopper, Taranto, Ward and Green which will challenge the Tigers.  The rucks of Soldo and Nankervis need to enforce themselves on the game better than they did last week, if they do and playing in front of the faithful I expect they will level the ledger.


What’s the Point? ($1.52) vs Lenny for Jack ($2.82)


The 20 point margin flattered the Saints last week but at least they have found a another handy Hayes in the Jack variety.  If he can develop a good partnership with Marshall that will help remove the dependence on an aging Paddy Ryder.  However reckon they have a few other issues to sort and especially a lack of pace in the midfield.  That won’t help against Freo who have Serong, Brayshaw and the indefatigable Mundy.  Going with Freo at home.


Turf Time


Went early last week as there is one more big race in Melbourne this week with The William Reid to close out the night racing season at the valley before the Victorian focus heads to Mornington on Saturday.  A quieter day in Sydney with just the two races at the top level, just how to sort the form when they will be running on another bog.


Friday – Moonee Vallley


Race 7 – William Reid Stakes (G1, 1200m, WFA)


Marabi (9) has justifiably stifled the market here and unless Maher-Eustace have gone one run too many she wins, they are masters of placement so I am with them.  So who could cause the upset or add value to the tricks.  The Freedmans have Zouzarella (14) in here, she only gets ½ kg off the favourite but is 2 from 2 at the Valley, reckon Generation (12) could also feature.  Of the older brigade The Inferno (3)  has a good pilot and will be burning down the 173 metre straight.

Selections – 9-14-12-3


Saturday – Rosehill


Race 7 – Tancred Stakes (G1, 2400m, WFA)


The race run out of order with those targeting the Lizzie have to come back 400m, but this should be one of the prime races in Australia WFA over the classic distance.  As for selections reckon we will see the same three from the Australian Cup repeat the dose here.  Much will depend on how the track plays but if leaders have an advantage that will make Spanish Mission (2) hard to get past, the way Duais (11) did so in the Australian Cup says she could do it again and Think it Over (1) doesn’t so that he just tries his heart every time.  If the track gets to a real bog then will include Stockman (4).


Selections – 2-11-1-4


Race 8 – Vinery Stud Stakes (G1, 2000m, Fillies SW)


A tougher assignment this one, but happy to be with the Waller pair Hinged (2) and Pretty Amazing (7) with the former being proven at the level.  Gypsy Goddess (6) comes down from Queensland undefeated so commands respect and Pink Ivory (12) steps up from the provincials but looks promising.


Selections – 2-7-6-12


Quaddie Time


Going to stick in Victoria for this week’s quaddie and the card at Mornington.  The cup starts it off with two obvious favourites – going to stick in Defibrillate as the potential shock.  Wider in the next but like Astrologist if he runs (also nominated Friday Night).  Ancient Girl is also a dual acceptor, she will be hard to beat if she stays here and we close with a couple who look well suited here.


Leg 1 – 1, 2, 4

Leg 2 – 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 9, 12

Leg 3 – 12 (2, 5, 8, 13 if Ancient Girl is scratched)

Leg 4 – 4, 7


42 Combinations with the Girl (or 168 if she is out), $30 investment returns 71% (or 18%) of the dividend.


The big event though is The Chokers tournament on the peninsula just to see which of us can snatch defeat from the jaws of victory!  Expect some best on ground performances in the evenings.


Go Blues,


Cheers, Sal



To become an Almanac member for Season 2022  – CLICK HERE.


To return to our Footy Almanac home page click HERE.



Our writers are independent contributors. The opinions expressed in their articles are their own. They are not the views, nor do they reflect the views, of Malarkey Publications.



Do you enjoy the Almanac concept?

And want to ensure it continues in its current form, and better? To help things keep ticking over please consider making your own contribution.



Become an Almanac (annual) member – CLICK HERE.

One-off financial contribution – CLICK HERE.

Regular financial contribution (monthly EFT) – CLICK HERE.




  1. Agree with you wholeheartedly on the Rioli non-suspension. From a couple of perspectives. Most importantly long term brain damage. I don’t want a sport that sees champions like Platten, Frawley and Williams as depressed vegetables in middle age. It’s the repeat small head knocks that do the damage more than the “knocked silly” big hits.
    The science of quality improvement tells us we learn best from the high volume of “near misses” rather than the rare disasters. Time for the AFL Tribunal to change membership and penalise the dangerous act (Rioli leaving the ground with his back/hip to the oncoming opponent) and not just the dangerous result. Rowell doesn’t have a broken cheekbone and severe concussion by good fortune rather than any skill on Rioli’s part.
    From my Eagles perspective I am amazed how clubs always take the short term view. The Eagles got a goal from the turnover created by the non-penalty of the Rowell hit. With the game in the balance in the last quarter Rioli gave away a 50 metre free that resulted in a decisive Suns goal after a Rioli late hit. Doubtless emboldened by his “hard man” bump on Rowell in the third quarter.
    Rioli is a football savant with amazing skills and judgement who plays instinctively. But he constantly displays poor judgement on and off the field that disadvantages the team. Spare the rod and spoil the child. He would have benefited from some humiliation for his on field recklessness.
    I’m sure the Eagles successful appeal will come back to haunt us.

Leave a Comment