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Round 7: Sal’s Preview

Greetings All and a Happy Mothers Day also,


The AFL raised the prospect of a final ten this week, which pretty much means that it will be in for next year.  Not sure what they are trying to achieve.  Why add more teams to a series where history has shown that what we really have is a final four with a few extra games to raise some revenue.  North might disagree as they have reached preliminary finals from below the top four, but they have not really threatened to win it all.


Not sure having more than 50% of the teams playing off is the way to go.  Yes the last couple of years have seen teams right down to 11th have 50-50 records or better, but that says more about the quality (or lack thereof) in the tail of the competition.  Perhaps some of those bottom teams had other motivations as the seasons wore on.  (but that is a whole other topic)


Before the League changes the finals – it needs to explain what it wants to achieve.  Do they want teams outside the four to have a better chance?  Are they just trying to fill the ridiculous bye they have introduced before the finals?  Is is just revenue?  Attendances at some of the early finals have been pretty ordinary in recent times.  Then there is the other mantra “if it ain’t broke….”


Last week’s results were pretty much all foreseen but tough to get them all, whilst the Hawk demise to the Giants was foreseen I doubt many expected such a margin.  Does it say more about Hawthorn or GWS?  But that is done and another round awaits, with a couple of critical games.


Daniel ($5.10) vs Cyril ($1.23)


Daniel’s Tigers have won 3 of the last 4 over Cyril’s Hawks but their form is horrible.  They go in without Cotchin and dropped Maric who was expected to make a big difference. But hang on Hawthorn have their own personnel issues with Hodge and Frawley out plus another debutante.  The media raved of their ability to blend in new “soldiers”, the “soldiers” coming in do not seem that good – their depth is really being tested.  However, they have not lost two matches in a row since May 2014 and only once more since 2010.  The Tigers will be better than last week, but I don’t think they will be better enough for long enough so Hawks for mine but Richmond fair value at $5 plus.


Giant Sooks ($1.61) vs Triple Up? ($2.58)


And the Blues have not won three on the trot since 2013 – up against Collingwood they should have some chance but losing Weitering will hurt down back and the hurt up forward is well documented.  The Pies have their own set of challenges as Bucks searches for the right formula, while the honchos sook and moan about any recruits the Sydney team have.  They have done OK out of the Giants with Adams and Treloar.  As for the game it is closer to a flip of the coin game than the odds suggest and with that my Blues bias has me selecting them, but with little confidence


Moorabool St ($1.56) vs Fear of Flying ($2.72)


A clash of significance with West Coast really needing to put in a decent performance away from Subi, there are not many tougher opponents than Geelong at Geelong.  No wonder they are screaming for finals at their boutique stadium!  What bollocks they just won’t fit; the only finals they have played at the MCG with crowds under 50,000 since 2000 have been against Fremantle.  Last week put their imprimatur on the competition smashing the Suns and I expect them to deal with Eagles but maybe not quite as convincingly.


The Lynch Mob ($1.86) vs Off the Couch ($2.14)


The Dees succumbed to their twin terrors in St Kilda and the Loungeroom last week and north to the paradise that is the Gold Coast.  They will be smarting after turning up their toes at Geelong last week.  The loss of May hurts the defence and it may give Hogan some advantage but he will need more assistance than he got last week.  At the other end the Suns have some handy fire power with Lynch and co, but it is the middle that counts.  Gazza has put his hand up to win more contested ball suspect he will butt heads with Jack Viney.  But the ruck swings me Melbourne’s way as I suspect Max will have a much easier task up against Daniel Currie.


Stretched ($1.03) vs The Substitutes ($29.00)


Brisbane made Sydney work hard to win and even that came to conjecture with “stretchergate”.  I doubt Essendon will make them work as hard or for as long.


Herman’s Home ($3.25) vs Mummy’s Boys ($1.41)


Eventually Freo will retake ownership of their house but it might be pretty hard this week facing the rampaging Giants who are keeping their Mummy for another couple of years.  Noting also that Sandilands has also stretched his commitment to the Dockers for 2017.  Giants for mine.


Loungeroom Lizards ($1.84) vs Charddy Sippers ($2.12)


The Dogs complete their tenure in the Loungeroom hosting the Crows in what promises to be another beauty.  The Footscray defence was challenged last week by the North tall forwards and it does not get easier facing Tex, Jenkins and McGovern.  I doubt Eddie will get the free reign as in last year’s elimination final.  The addition of Redpath provides an extra tall to play up forward for the Dogs.  Suspect Beverige will try and get the Dogs back to playing their game and if they can achieve that I suspect they will prevail.  But a very tough game to select.


Tipster’s Nightmare ($3.30) vs The Dish ($1.38)


Drew Petrie reached the 300 game milestone this weekend.  They experimented with him down back earlier in his career, but has been the lynchpin of the North attack for many years and now shares the load with Brown and Waite with devastating effect so far this season.  They face the Saints who are causing all sorts of grief to tipsters across the land.  The best is good but still lack consistency which makes them hard to catch.  They will need to be better than good against North, but I suspect won’t be quite good enough.  Well Played Drew Petrie.


Port Adelaide ($1.47) vs Beam Me In ($2.96)


Brisbane were terrific taking it right up to Sydney last week, this week they are on the road to Adelaide where they are averaging 100 point defeats.  I don’t think Port are quite in 100 point victory form and Brisbane with Beams in look better still.  But their record away from the Gabba is pretty poor so far this season and I expect Port to continue the trend with a victory.




The minnows have prevailed with Leicester claiming the EPL title in a great story for the little guys.  I suspect a huge challenge from the big clubs next season but great to see the fairytale come true.  Bit of a shame how hard it will be for anyone to watch next season.


Friar Time


A hard fought battle with PEGS last week in very windy conditions, but in the end the Friars could use that wind to the same effect as the home side.  This week the Catholics go head-to-head as Old Paradians visit Friar Park.  The Under 19s put up a great showing against one of the pacesetters in the competition in St Bedes/Mentone but still returned home without the four points.  This week they open a triple header at Caulfield Grammar, kicking the dew off Glenhuntly Oval at 9:20.


Go Blues, Go Hammers, Go Friars,


Cheers, Sal







  1. the inclusion of Hartung and the loss of cotchin. expect to see Hampson win lots of taps but Mitchell et al shark them, or hassle us into turovers, and the likes of Hartung to run away from our plodders.

    both sides nervous early 17-15 Hawks early, but a 10-goal plus win looms large on the horizon.

    Vlastuin Chaplin Batchelor

    Houli C Ellis Deledio

    ouch ouch ouch

    and Griffiths over McBean. yawn…

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