Round 21 – Sal’s Preview: Time to Retire

Greetings All,


It is straight into the games as we enter the home straight for the season, plenty of retirements announced and a not so subtle reminder that the Spring Carnival is nigh.


All Boyd to go ($2.24) vs Orphaned Again ($1.79)


A rematch of last year’s game of the season!  The Dogs will be keen to put on a show for their retiree in Matty Boyd as will the Giants for the Mercurial StevieJ.  Both have been magnificent servants to the game despite their disparity in styles.  The Giants have lost their Mummy again, but get back their other regular recalcitrant in Toby Greene along with Jonathan Patton.  The Dogs took a while to get over Brisbane who are proving a handful at the Gabba, while the Giants hit top gear against Demons who didn’t know what hit them!  Based on that form, the Giants will be very hard to beat despite playing in the Dog’s loungreroom and I think they may just make the premiership defence more difficult.


Reid About It ($1.09) vs Purple Hazed ($11.50)


The Swannies claimed their big man with Sam Reid sticking with the club, they don’t lose too many.  They take on Freo who did as expected over the Gold Coast which in turn became the last straw for Rodney Eade.  Sydney are just going too well and should put themselves right in the hunt for a top four finish.


The Definition of Insanity ($2.14) vs Get the Lotto Ticket ($1.76)


If you keep on being suspended for jumper punching, then the solution is simple for Tomahawk!  He just needs to stop it – might not be easy now all his opponents know his pugilistic tendency.  He is out along with Selwood and Duncan, sort of balanced by the return of Dangerfield.  For the Tigers it is time to invest in the lottery, they have regularly been the recipient of good fortune due to opposition injury and suspension – this week takes it to another level and add the return of Jack.  Geelong will be tough at home and they will know the windy conditions better than the Tiges – but I reckon the lucky ones will get up and just about lock up a Qualifying Final berth.


In the Den ($1.61) vs Rocketed! ($2.56)


Rocket’s time had come and this week he was put out of his misery.  His chairman put it down to simply wins and losses, they matter but there has to be more to it than that.  They fired Bluey a couple of years ago, but from my perspective made no discernible changes to club.  Probably difficult given the market they were in.  Their opponents this week are in a similar market, they have won less games however with the appointment of Chris Fagan their seems to be discernible differences.  They have re-established their presence in their own den, players are enjoying each other’s company, they are resigning their young talent and seem to have more players wanting in than out.  That lack of change was Rocket’s failing, as for Tony Cochrane he comes across as a loose cannon and the next coach will want to be wary.  This one is at the Gabba, Gazza and Lynch are out, Brisbane nearly got the Dogs last week – they will get the Suns this week.


Home Boys ($1.16) vs The Army ($6.40)


Clubs and people develop habits – these two clubs have very bad habits.  The Eagles simply can’t win away from home and somehow need to break that cycle – twice recently they have been close enough but failed.  Winners win and Losers Lose – Carlton fits fairly and squarely in the latter category and while we have green shoots popping up everywhere they will fade away unless the team is not just competitive but win when they have the chance.  Let’s hope they do this week for Dennis Armfield who announced his impending retirement this week.  Not the most gifted player but has given his all to the club and community.  Unfortunately the habits will kick in and West Coast will win at home.


Jobe’s Vagabond Shoes ($3.35) vs Champagne Guzzlers ($1.41)


Jobe Watson announced this will be his final year before he becomes a part of it in New York pursuing his next venture.  Copped more than most through the saga – was compelled to as the leader of the players.  Taking that aside Jobe was challenged early in his career, he worked hard on his deficiencies and become one of the elite players in the competition.  His Bombers host the Crows who absolutely poleaxed their bitter rivals last week, fans would have enjoyed their tipple now being the pride of South Australia.  They have set themselves up well to clinch that crucial home ground advantage in September.  This could be a danger game, however the Bombers have lost a couple of key players in Merrett and Fantasia and suspect the Crows will take this one.


Could be Gawn ($1.64) vs A bit Longer ($2.52)


The first elimination final, with loser to fall out of contention for September footy.  The Saints being dealt a major blow, Nick Riewoldt ruled out with concussion.  This removes the third tall threat that he plays so well, Membrey and Bruce are better when the threat of Nick is in the vicinity.  Really though this will come down to Gawn vs Longer and the midfield contest, the Saints bat deep but the Dees have the X factor in Petracca who can split a game open in a few minutes.  Am just going with Melbourne as I think their best is slightly better plus they have finally broken their 10 year hoodoo against St Kilda. – the winner will get a bit more than the bragging rights.


Boags ($1.29) vs Cascade (3.80)


The on-field battle for Tassie is on Sunday, but the real battle is ongoing.  The Island State should just have the one team playing home games down there and unless Hawthorn are willing to move at least six games there, then it should be North Melbourne splitting games between Hobart and Launceston.  In Sunday’s battle the Hawks have the edge in particular with the return of Luke Hodge.


Blackout ($1.41) vs Flat Lining ($3.20)


Another team with poor habits is the Power they consistently shut down in challenges against other finals aspirants, last week they were absolutely spiflicated by the Crows.  Their intensity in a contest between what is supposed to be the games’ fiercest rivalry was pathetic, somehow the vagaries of the draw has them likely to host a home final.  They get their chance for redemption against the Pies who appear to have bottomed out and likely to finished 12th again, they only need one more win to surpass 2016.  Surely worthy of a multi-year contract for the super coach!


Amateur Hour


The abacus is still out for Friars despite the losses to all sides at the hands of PEGS last week at what has to be the most windswept ground in Melbourne.  This week the Seniors take on NOBSP Brunswick at Friar Park a win is vital for any chance to survive in D1.  Win, lose or draw though the Friars are well into plans to bounce back in 2018!  It will also be largely on the back of the Under 19s who are in a dogfight for a finals berth and must defeat Parkside on Saturday to remain any chance.


Go Friars, Go Blues,

Cheers, Sal



  1. It’s the third quarter and the Eagles and Blues are level.

    How did the Eagles only kick five goals at half-time… I do not know.


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