Round 3: Preview – Let’s just get to the footy.

Greetings All,

A couple of days at the mothership in Sydney means little time for pontification.  Good to hear that Smith, Bancroft and Warner have accepted their penalties.  I do appreciate having a Friday Night start to the round and having teams selected – much more material to work with!  It is straight into the footy!


Kreuze Control ($2.62) vs Less of Moore ($1.61)


The Blues without Kreuzer were extremely poor, he not only provides for them but also sets the tone for competitiveness within the group.  They don’t have enough skill, they don’t make good decisions and without any competitiveness they were smashed.  The Pies lose some flexibility with the injury to Darcy Moore.  They simply lack consistency, whether that is effort, structure or capability they just cannot be relied on.  If they put up the effort from last week they win, if they don’t the Blues stand a chance.  Going with that chance out of loyalty more than sound judgement.


Duck Hunters ($1.10) vs McStay McGone ($10.00)


Port were stunning against the Swans, in a performance we have seen from them before early in the season.  They have gone “All In” and perhaps it will pay off especially if their young defenders can hold up as they did last week.  The Lions were admirable against the Demons last week with only Daniel McStay out making way for Mitch Robinson.  I expect they will competitive be for most of the season at the Gabba.  This one is at Adelaide and Port will be too good.


Kangaphobia ($1.39) vs Deestroyers ($3.50)


What the Blues lacked North showed in their Good Friday outing!  They will need to produce that and more against the Dees who got the job done well over Brisbane despite a bit of scare.  In North’s favour is their record over Melbourne, undefeated in the last 17 clashes.  Should give them plenty of confidence.  Surely Melbourne should have the weapons to overcome the hoodoo, the MCG should also be of some benefit.  By the same token the satchel-swingers are offering extraordinary value on the Roos.


May Day ($2.84) vs Que Cerra Cerra ($1.52)


Plenty had the Dockers and Suns lingering at the bottom of the competition and maybe that’s how it will play out.  The one thing that will get the Suns up the table is if their spine of Thompson, May, Day and Lynch stays strong and healthy.  Lynch was terrific last week against poor opposition and a few Joe the Goose’s don’t hurt the goal tally.  He needs to play big games against the best teams to establish his true value.  Freo have unearthed a couple of nice types in the opening couple of weeks including Adam Cerra who has plenty of talent and confidence.  They are a formidable at home and this one has been gifted to them because of the Commonwealth Games.  Keen to see the Suns backup, suspect Freo at home will be good enough.


Outfoxed ($1.74) vs Don’t Play the Perryman ($2.34)


What a prospect this game is?  The Eastern Suburbs mob were valiant last week but were simply out-sydneyed by a desperate and willing opponent. They welcome Sam Reid back into the lineup at the expense of Robbie Fox.  A critical in for Sydney with someone to be genuine ruck alternative to back up Callum Sinclair.  Charlie Dixon monstered Sydney in the second half last week.  The Western Suburbs mob are missing their Mummy too and while Lobb will continue to improve it is probably their achilles heel.  Injuries have forced them to play Perryman – can he get them to the other side?  This being played in the east has me doubting it in what should be a pretty keen contest.  The Swans should be able to lock down the small ground and restrict the Giants run – if they can’t then the Giants could prevail.


Sinners ($3.55) vs Crouch Down ($1.38)


The Crows got their revenge last week, I am not really sure it counts.  The joker who heckled Hardwick needs a bit of perspective.  Yes his team is good in Adelaide – but the Grand Final is played at the MCG.  They lose the other Crouch this week which will put some pressure on the midfield.  This week they take on the Saints whose form belies its moniker.  They have now lost their leading ruckman to injury.  Even in the Loungeroom, this is not really a trip that puts much fear in the opposition.  The Saints have some handy players but just not enough good ones.  Adelaide to notch this one away from home.


Rance-id ($1.66) vs Sicily by Name ($2.48)


Roughead and the Hawks made a point on Monday, this week another one to prove facing the premiers.  They lose Sicily to suspension, I have other knocks on him as a player but he really needs to control himself on the ground.  The Tigers came up short against a desperate opponent who loves playing at home.  Not taking too much from that result.  The Tigers will present a more difficult defense to get through than what Geelong dished up, suspect Rance will bounce back after a torrid night last week.  Both forward lines love turning up the pressure so it will make for a good contest.  The big test for the Hawks will be in the middle.  Mitchell has been the standout midfielder in the competition in the first two weeks, he and his cohorts have another formidable foe with the likes of Dusty and Cotchin.  Will the Tigers put some time into Mitchell or roll the dice?  This one should be a ripper – I am selecting the premiers to bounce back and we will know much more about the Hawks at the conclusion of the game.


Junkyard ($3.05) vs Give ‘em a Razz ($1.47)


The bad news Dogs have fallen a long way since the heady days of September 2016 – or have they?  They did finish 7th that year and had an extraordinary finals series.  Nevertheless they are playing way below expectations and some reputations are diminishing.  They take on the Bombers who flew back from Perth without the points, not that many team will bring them back this season.  Fantasia back will boost the forward line, they should account for the Bulldogs and get on the right side of the ledger.


Willy or Won’ty ($1.98) vs Porous Another ($1.98)


Great to see another Rioli hit the ground with Willy making some headlines last week, named as an emergency but surely gets a run.  His Eagles take on the leaking Cats this week.  The Geelong defense looked a shaky one even at full strength, without Taylor or Henderson it just lacks key structural players.  While the midfield will get plenty just meagre supply the other way can swing the result.  Geelong do go well in the west, just don’t think they have the right team balance at the moment and West Coast are flying.


It’s Championship Time


The Sydney carnival is in full swing with four group ones kicking of the Royal Festivities, it just does not get any attention with four footy codes up and going.  Not sure how they get this timing right but at least this year the weather gods appear to smiling.  Another tripod Quaddie last week and much tougher this week with some terrific fields.


Race 6


The Sires Produce Stakes (G1, 1400m, 2yo SW) stretches the babies out another furlong.  The Melbourne edition was won by Not a Single Cent (3) who is looking to get Ciaran Maher’s return to the track off to a flyer.  Could win but poorly drawn so has me going with the maiden Oohood (13), yet to miss a placing including the Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper.  She is well drawn and perhaps that extra 200m gets her to the top of the podium.  Outrageous (8) failed last start but prior for was good, that failure might help get some value.  Seabrook (15) ran well in the Slipper and would have rated Encryption (1) in the top four if not for the poor draw.


Selections – 13-3-8-15


Race 7


The blue riband classic ATC Derby (G1, 2400m, 3yo SW) kicks off the quaddie with a quality field.  This Derby is always challenging with the attack from across the ditch, all the best three year olds from NZ coming off their own classic season.  Tough to get it down to four.  Putting the obvious on top – Ace High (1) won the VRC Derby, gets to his right distance and is drawn perfectly.  Trying to sort out the Kiwis and Mongolianconqueror (4) appears well credentialed – Opie Bosson on board, last start failure from a wide barrier followed a close 2nd in the NZ Derby.  The winner Vin de Dance (2) is also in the race, just think the four-horse might be better value.  Astoria (7) has always been around the mark and Furore (8) is fresh on the scene with an excellent record.  Would have promoted Salsamor (9) and Belfast (14), they will need luck from wide draws.


Selections – 1-4-7-8


Race 8


The TJ Smith Stakes (G1, 1200m, WFA) has become just about the premier sprint race in the country, the Everest arrangers may disagree but that is contrived and convoluted field construction.  This is pure although we are missing Chautauqua who has lost his barrier manners and Redkirk Warrior.  Everest winner Redzel (1) is in the field and will be tough to beat at the scale.  Giving the DKWeir import Brave Smash (3) the best chance to do that and In Her Time (8) is flying.  Trapeze Artist (12) coming back from 1600m is an interesting runner, a colt loaded with talent.


Selections – 1-3-8-12


Race 9


The time honoured Doncaster Mile (G1, 1600m, HCP) has a great field assembled with a rising star down in the weights with a great chance.  That one is Kementari (9) and is a deserved favourite after serving it up to Winx in the George Ryder.  If Winx is the yardstick then Humidor (1) rates highly, a superb first up win in the Blamey at Flemington.  Handicap conditions aren’t in his favour but no doubting his class.  Just as there is little doubt that Happy Clapper (3) would have the whole grandstand cheering if he were to salute, spends his life chasing Winx between wins.  Then going with Egg Tart (12) well down in the weights and nicely drawn.  Hasn’t won for a while but was good first up before a challenging run last start, could be a peak run 3rd up and not too many CJWaller runners run around at such odds.  Would have almost had the 3yo D’Argento (16) on top but for a poor draw.


Selections – 9-1-3-12


Quaddie Time


A tough quaddie with a pretty wide open 1st leg.  We will go wide in that leg and also in the Doncaster and narrow it down to a couple in the final leg, might not be a big percentage but surprises do occur on this day.  Would also consider a 2nd effort with favoured runners in the Derby and Doncaster in case there is no surprise.


Main Quaddie


Leg 1 – 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15

Leg 2 – 1, 3, 8

Leg 3 – 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 12, 16

Leg 4 – 1, 4


420 Combinations, $30 Investment, approximately 7% of the dividend.


Second Effort


Leg 1 – 1, 2, 4, 8

Leg 2 – 1, 3

Leg 3 – 1, 3, 9

Leg 4 – 1, 4


48 Combinations, $10 Investment, approximately 21% of the dividend


Friar Time


The lead up is done and game one is finally here.  The Seniors take on the Turtles from Eltham College for the very first time out at Eltham on Saturday.  The Under 19s kick the dew off the grass at Pitcher Park in Fairfield against Parkside.  Finally the Friars Women’s team have their first official game against Yarra Valley in a twilight fixture at the famous Leeds St Oval in Doncaster starting at 4:45pm.  Next week is the home opener with four games at home and the gathering of past players and officials.


Go Blues, Go Friars,


Cheers, Sal





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