Round 22 Preview – Reaching The Penultimate

Greetings all,

There would appear to be much movement and posturing on the Essendon issues, but information is thin up here in the Harbour City.  As I said last week – enough.  Onto matters for the fans.  The league have often said they fixture to maximise attendances and to a certain extent so they should, but not at the cost of an unfair fixture.  Much has been said of the fixture, however what concerns me is that the fans at the ground are not being treated as well as the followers on TV.  There are plenty of benefits of being there: the full perspective of the game, banter between the fans, the atmosphere, but not sure about the $6 bottles of water and overpriced fried offerings.  The TV gives us proximity, access, analysis, but it also gives us Brian Taylor and/or any other commentators that give us the irates!

But the one thing that gave me the irates at the games last week is the delay in delivery of game information.  TV and Radio audiences are informed immediately of injury concerns and I can understand why such details are not broadcast across the arena.  However there is no reason I know of why a substitution can’t be notified to the crowd immediately rather than seeing the sub pick up 5 possessions before the crowd is informed of who they replaced.  The fan in the stand deserves better.

Last week I made the error in trusting the Tigers and they let me down along with Adelaide.  Not sure I can say West Coast let me down against the rampaging Cats.  But it is onto this week we go.

 

Daisy Cut ($1.13) vs The Corporation ($8.00)

The Pies will go into the finals without Dale Thomas, but overall they are looking healthy.  I suspect when this match was fixtured the league was not expecting the Eagles to be making up the numbers, but they are so a bit of gloss comes off this clash.  Both sides lost to the two top teams in the competition last week, but the Pies at least were in the game at some stage.  Going for Collingwood who have something to play for and being at the MCG doesn’t hurt.

 

Charddy Sippers ($1.03) vs Watts Next ($30)

Should not take too long before the Stelvin Closures can be unscrewed to toast an Adelaide win, and their last at Westlakes.  Kudos to Jack Viney for a great lone hand performance against the Dockers last week.

 

Holy Spirit Batman ($3.65) vs Haughty and Hopeful ($1.35)

A great test for the Hawks against the Roos who have been very good late in the season, that Shinboner Spirit can’t quite get them in the eight but they might be the best outside.  Whilst it is a test particularly in the Loungeroom, Hawthorn will have too many guns warming up for their tilt at redemption for last season.  Still give the Kangas some hope and are fair value at the quoted price.

 

Barwon ($1.46) vs Bondi ($3.05)

Extraordinary scheduling with what could be the Grand Final preview in the Saturday twilight zone time slot.  But none of that takes away from what should be a terrific contest.  The Cats have only lost two matches since the “crisis” match in early 2007 where Bomber was halfway out the door – but the team rallied and since then they have proven to be enduring team of great success.  But the last of those losses was to the Swans – can they repeat it?  There is much to play for with a home final up for grabs.  I am selecting Geelong on their home deck, but rate Sydney a great chance especially considering the doubts around Hawkins and Chapman.  The $3 is a fair bet on the Bloods, but they will need to spread their targets.

 

Kruezing Along ($1.40) vs Cordial Sippers ($3.40)

What flavour is the Kool Aid Jimmy is serving up to his cult?  Sure has galvanised the supporters, but not quite having the effect on the playing group.  After poor performances over the last few weeks, there are many questions about the wheels on the Bomber bus, the questions are fair and evidence damning.  The return of Ryder and Hurley could be a big help, however the loss of Heppell will be significant.  The Blues enter a must win game with an experimental structure that has not worked so far with 2 ruckmen in the lineup.  The top four clubs all have at least one ruck who knows their way around the forward line, Kruezer must develop this in his game.  My confidence is not completely restored in the Blues, but given the last couple of Bomber efforts and some off-field distractions Carlton should win.

 

Boston ($1.18) vs Kochies Angels ($5.80)

The Stranglers were in fine form last week and get to take on Port Adelaide who will be primed for this test.  Port not without a chance here, but the loss of Hartlett will hurt and that Freo can still smell a top two finish is likely to make it too high a mountain.  Freo to win.

 

Deep Watters ($1.87) vs 2014 Premiers ($2.04)

With both teams looking to 2014 this is a dangerous game for selection.  Without conviction I reckon the Suns will be primed for a good performance in the Loungeroom and are my selection.

 

New Coleman ($26) vs Old Coleman ($1.03)

Getting very tired the lads, but they will do everything they can to feed Jeremy Cameron and deliver him the Coleman medal.  But the Tigers and their own Coleman medallist will be keen to atone for last week’s loss.  Will be interesting to see how Dusty plays in front of his suitors, given his devaluation performance last week.

 

Kings of the Jungle ($1.61) vs 2014 Runners Up ($2.44)

The Doggies are flying and are playing as well as anyone and will be looking to next year with great confidence.  But they travel to the Gabbatoir where the Lions have been playing pretty good footy – both teams will be looking forward to this test.  Whilst Brisbane are going well at home, I reckon the Pups will continue on their winning way and certainly at the $2.40 they are great value.

 

Friar Time

The Under 19s sealed their spot with a win over Old Camberwell, but the seniors were unable to hold out the rampaging CYs in the last quarter.  They head to Hampton in a game they must win, to ensure their place in the four.  The Under 19 play AJAX, in what could be a 1st Semi Final preview, but a win would give them a chance to grab 2nd dependent on other results.

 

Go Friars, Go Blues,

 

Cheers, Sal

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