Round 23 – Sal’s Preview: Told to Get Stuffed

Greetings All,


As critical as I am of the fixing, the fact that every spot in the eight can change this week makes life interesting.  Imagine how interesting it would be if all the games were on at the same time!  Instead many fates will be decided before game time as dependent games are completed.  OK there is that annual gripe out of the way.


The coaching landscape certainly got the hit this week with the removal of Get Stuffed Lyon from Fremantle – very pleased the Blues pulled the trigger on Teague last week.  A look at the coaching landscape sees four “anointed” coaches at their clubs, two going OK, two going horribly.  John Longmire was anointed by Paul Roos and has been ultimately successful so must be considered a success, he will be tested now with some list challenges but has proven his capability.  Nathan Buckley was not really anointed by his predecessor in fact probably despised, however he was Eddie’s choice and while not ultimately successful it is hard to argue his credentials, were he to depart the Pies I suspect there would be a queue forming for his services.


The other two are going poorly and seem pretty good arguments for clubs to go through a more thorough process in their search.  The Demons have had a terrible year under Simon Goodwin and the entire coaching department has been rearranged with several departures.  While up at GWS the Maserati driver might have shown the odd glimpse, his team seems to lack the desire and care to fight when things are not going their way as we have seen in the last two weeks.  They will make the finals but seem unlikely to pose any threat and likely to diminish unless they can halt the tide of players departing, not Leon makes them a destination club.  Get Stuffed could make a difference at both of these clubs, their lists are mature they both need to toughen up and love him or loath him that is what he has delivered to both the Saints and Dockers.


He at least has this week off as we look for the barrier positions for the finals


Knackered ($1.28) vs Just Joking ($4.50)


Steele’s testicles are not made of that as he suffered a similar fate as Scott Thompson did a few weeks ago, he will be missing from the lineup who take on the Bombers getting Darcy Moore back is a plus.  Essendon have sealed their finals berth with the win over Freo despite being crushed around contested footy, there are plenty of ways to win this game!  Just not sure that is a sustainable model and suspect they will be pleased enough to finish in the top eight as suggested with their selections with Tom Jok making his debut.  The Pies will be eyeing the potential to climb into the top four, they should win contested footy and be more efficient than Freo to beat the Bombers and keep the pressure on the teams above.


Showtime ($1.42) vs Final Audition ($3.30)


The spectre of Ross Lyon makes this a critical game for Brett Ratten’s aspirations to coach the Saints, he and the team will need a more inspired effort than last week’s.  That prospect won’t be helped with Buddy Franklin returning for the Swans to play his 300th game.  What a player he has been, suspect he will be looking forward to next season with a bunch of cygnets that look pretty promising.  Of note Sam Rowe plays his first for the Saints and his 100th after many years at the Blues, has had more than his share of challenges for his sake hope he doesn’t get Buddy this week!  On form this will be tough for St Kilda and picking Sydney to close out the year on a positive note.


Ben Ten ($1.28) vs Not a Good One ($4.30)


Mason Wood is back in for the Roos in a game of little consequence against the disappointing Demons, they have signed Goodwin for another couple of years – they might be long ones.  Is Big Ben up for another 10?  He will kick enough to win this one.


Lionised ($1.19) vs Jack Backed ($6.00)


The Cats slipped into second place last week succumbing to the rampant Lions undone by one their own past players in Lincoln McCarthy, they return home to face an in form Carlton who will be keen to make a good showing in their final game for the season.  Weitering back for the Blues will be handy and while Levi was terrific in defense last week Hawkins will be a tough proposition coming off being held goalless last week.  Jack Silvagni’s improvement was further rewarded with a further commitment from the club.  Expect a feisty effort from the Blues, however if Geelong are really a contender they win these games at home and should stake their claim for pole position.  If the Cats lose a trip west beckons.


The Corporation ($1.28) vs The Final Throw ($4.40)


The Hawks have maintain their position around the edge of the eight, but never really getting invited to the party this is last chance to gatecrash and it would be a mighty effort against the reigning champs on their home turf.  The Eagles were good against the flag favourites last week and I suspect held a few cards up their sleeve.  Great send off for Rough and could not have had a better opponent, this one is a couple of levels higher – expect the bouncers to deal with the pesky intruders.


Dew Diligence ($10.00) vs I’ll ‘ave ‘alf ($1.09)


Six changes for the Giants but probably gaining more than they lose, they need to be a whole lot better than last week where for the second game in a row were held goalless in a half of footy.  They head to the Mansion where the Gold Coast will put a miserable season to rest having last their last 17 matches.  The Giants should notch this one, but the way they are going another capitulation would not come as a shock.


Handball Club ($1.38) vs Jacob’s Creek ($3.40)


While the Giants capitulated take nothing away from the Bulldogs who have been rampant in the last couple of weeks and with a real sniff of 2016, not sure they have seven in a row in them but it is fun to watch.  They host the Crows whose fans drop of choice will have descended at the end of a very disappointing season.  However for all that lamenting get over the Doggies by enough and they are in!  Their best is good enough and maybe in that weird Adelaide cycle this could be their week on, quite frankly it would be shame if they made as they are likely to fold up once in a final.  With the Bulldogs anything could happen.  Picking the Dogs, however certainly not discounting an upside game from the Crows.


8 in row ($1.45) vs 9 in a row ($3.15)


What a contest on Sunday the 8 in a row Tigers hosting the 9 in a row Lions – not sure the fixers quite planned that blockbuster!  Everything has fallen into place for the Tigers – huge MCG run home, being healthy, uncovering a few rippers when the injuries hit and wet weather.  Richmond are pretty good in dry conditions, but their game stands up much better against the opposition in poor conditions and Sunday could deliver again.  Even better for the Tigers is the zest that Dustin Martin is playing with, after going through the motions early in the season he is on song now.  Then there is Brisbane who have been brilliant this season playing and aggressive style of footy and highly entertaining.  Win this and they host a final at the Gabba, lose and it will probably be percentage that separates the top four.  The Tigers win and the likely scenario will be a final against the Cats at the G, otherwise they will be heading to the Gabbatoir.  Just think the Tiges have more in their favour this week.  Interestingly if Geelong lose, the result of this game could be inconsequential unless West Coast gain enough percentage to get over Brisbane into first.


Haven’t got a Clurey ($1.37) vs Stuffed ($3.50)


Port Adelaide last a lot more than Tom Clurey last week in an abysmal performance they get to make up for it against the Dockers.  Going for the Dockers here just on the form of teams that sack coaches!



Spring is in the Air


The first group one race of the season is at Royal Randwick and for a race named in honour of Winx it has drawn a crack field.


Royal Randwick


Race 7 – Winx Stakes (G1, 1400m, WFA)


An outstanding field of with 10 runners with eight of them first up, 4 from the Waller yard, 2 from GSOB and 2 from Kris Lees.  Reckon there are two stars of the spring here and if they are close to being ready could dominate this race and many more, the question being if they are forward enough.  Avilius (1) is the pick here coming off a win in his last trial, first time over 1400 is a question mark but he has answered most in his Australian career.  Verry Elleegant (10) is the other who also has one over the distance but not be as advanced.  Happy Clapper (2) will appreciate not having to chase Winx and Invincible Gem (7) has the benefit of being second up.


Selections – 1-10-2-7


Quaddie Time


Moonee Valley is the local venue and we will see if we can get the first one up.


Leg 1 – 3, 6, 7, 9

Leg 2 – 1, 2, 3, 4, 8

Leg 3 – 8, 9, 11

Leg 4 – 4, 6


120 Combinations, $30 investment will return 25% of the dividend.


Friar Time


A big win for the seniors over Ivanhoe who were unable to get team up for the reserves and had to forfeit.  In the final round the Friars head to Bulleen-Templestowe who will be fighting to hold on to fourth position in the seniors.  The mathematics has the reserves a chance to get second, the reality of the fixture is that they will finish third.  The Under 23s had a good win over Old Brighton with results locking in the Friars to fourth.  They take on Old Scotch who are gunning for second with St Kevins half a game ahead but playing the undefeated Old Xavs.  A Friar win will see a rematch next week, while a loss could see a rendezvous with SKOBs in week one.


Go Blues, Go Friars,


Cheers, Sal


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  1. The fixer not the fixture. Love it. Though I think Freo pulled the trigger not Carlton. Pesky metaphors.
    You are right about the timing of key final round games Sal. While everybody will be flat out given the way the cards have fallen, we could have seen the Tigers happy to have a quiet one to stay at the MCG rather than travel interstate. We accept teams resting injured or tired players in the final week when they have nothing to gain on the ladder, but venue manipulation would be a dilemma for Gillon.

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