2016 Round 9 AFL Preview & Bets

AFL 2017

Welcome to the Round 9 AFL preview. As we edge closer toward the midway point of the home and away season, the ladder continues to take shape with some gaps beginning to appear. North Melbourne and Geelong have both developed game breaks in their respective positions in the top two, while GWS, Sydney, the Western Bulldogs and Hawthorn are all two games clear inside the top eight. The contenders are beginning to emerge, but the competition as a whole is still extremely tight. There are upset results occurring each and every week, making it extremely difficult to pin point trustworthy trends. While unexpected results are very likely to occur, it is becoming increasingly tricky to identify which matches are eligible for such outcomes. Momentum swings throughout games have been extreme and that could be credited to the interchange rule adjustments, but it will be interesting to see if patterns in games become more dependable as the season goes on.

BEST BET:  
Richmond head to head @ $1.95 

OTHER BETS:
Adelaide -70.5 Line @ $2.25
Essendon +33.5 Line @ $1.92

HAWTHORN ($1.53) VS SYDNEY ($2.50)

AT THE MCG, FRIDAY 20/05, 19:50
Line: Hawks -12.5, Swans +12.5
Hawthorn continue to win games and are sitting pretty at 6-2, but the doubts continue to grow throughout the AFL community. The Hawks are no longer premiership favourites and have suffered a further blow with Jarryd Roughead’s return from injury derailed by a melanoma reoccurrence. While his health is the most important aspect of this terrible situation, his indefinite absence hurts Hawthorn’s premiership chances enormously. An 8 goal third quarter set up a comfortable victory for the Hawks against a battling Fremantle side, but the other three quarters certainly didn’t convince many. It finally won a contested ball count, but the Dockers have dropped away in that area just as drastically. Rioli will return for the Hawks.
As we could tell during the coverage of the game, John Longmire would be furious that his side dropped the match against Richmond. The Swans held the momentum at the 24 minute mark when leading by 11 points, but it was the final minute of the game that would have frustrated Longmire the most. Dean Towers had the perfect opportunity to kill the clock when gaining possession on the wing, but decided to kick long inside 50 towards the corridor. It lead to a flurry of rushed possessions and a lucky bounce which ultimately resulted in Sam Lloyd’s winner after the siren. Coaches hate nothing more than dumb football that costs games.
The Swans beat Hawthorn at the MCG in Round 8 last year and will be looking to bounce back after a disappointing loss. Sydney will back themselves at the stoppages and contested situations against the Hawks, especially with the return of Josh Kennedy.

SYDNEY TO WIN BY 8 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Swans 1-39 @ $2.95

COLLINGWOOD ($4.85) VS GEELONG ($1.18)

AT THE MCG, SATURDAY 21/05, 13:45
Line: Pies +33.5, Cats -33.5
The relentless media pressure has eased on Nathan Buckley for at least one week, after Collingwood completely annihilated a hapless Brisbane Lions side. The impact on the scoreboard should have been far more significant too when you consider that the Magpies had 21 shots on goal before Brisbane even scored. But taking into account the current state of Collingwood’s season, they would have taken a 78 point victory in a heartbeat. The opposition this week will be a completely different challenge though and Nathan Buckley must ensure his side carries on its high standards at the stoppages against the Lions. Ben Reid is back for the Pies.
The red hot Cats are the new premiership favourite after comfortably dealing with a potential challenger in the Crows away. While Geelong made the task far more difficult than it should have been due to poor kicking, it sent a message to the rest of the competition that it is a serious flag contender. The midfield partnership of Dangerfield and Selwood has been well documented, but it took a great performance on the Friday night stage for the football world to understand just how good Cameron Guthrie is. He is been producing elite performances for a while now and he deserves all the accolades the media have given him this week.
It was a stark improvement for Collingwood against Brisbane, but it is difficult to go against the Cats here. Geelong are +194 points in fourth quarters during 2016, compared to Collingwood -44 points. Geelong’s -9.5 last quarter line deserves consideration.

GEELONG TO WIN BY 17 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Geelong @ -9.5 Last Quarter Line

GOLD COAST ($12.00) VS ADELAIDE ($1.04)

AT METRICON STADIUM, SATURDAY 21/05, 14:10
Line: Suns +60.5, Crows -60.5
The Gold Coast Suns are really beginning to get on the nose and the AFL will be starting to have serious concerns about its northern asset that has consumed so much dollar. Rodney Eade’s men now have an average losing margin of 94.66 points over the last three weeks, conceding 159 points a game during that same period of time. Score averages are up throughout the entire competition, but this is just a flood that can’t be controlled. Injuries hurt, but their depth is atrocious and it is going to get worse with Gary Ablett, Aaron Hall and Adam Saad missing this week.
Adelaide were well and truly in the game against Geelong until the fourth quarter, but in reality, the game should have been over much earlier than it was. Although had Seedsman kicked a simple opportunity early in the last quarter, momentum could have seen the Crows home. Adelaide continue to be on the wrong end of extreme inside 50 differentials and until they contain the flow, they won’t consistently defeat the better teams in the competition. Rory Laird is still at least a week away.
The Crows have had a difficult fixture to start the season and will be looking forward to an easy kill. Expect the likes of Jenkins, Walker and Betts to fill their pockets up forward.

ADELAIDE TO WIN BY 80 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Adelaide -70.5 Line @ $2.25

PORT ADELAIDE ($3.00) VS WEST COAST ($1.41)

AT ADELAIDE OVAL, SATURDAY 21/05, 16:35
Line: Port +17.5, Eagles -17.5
Port Adelaide are playing better footy, but expect Ken Hinkley to have been brutal during the week after a very disappointing loss to Carlton. The Power led by 3 goals approaching time on of the fourth quarter, but as we have seen numerous times this season, the momentum swung and Carlton came storming home to claim a famous victory. At the end of the day, Port Adelaide’s ball use just wasn’t good enough as it ended the match with an enormous 84 less effective disposals than Carlton. To make that statistic really hit home, Port also had less contested possessions than the Blues, so it wasn’t as if they were playing a hard ball brand. Positively, the Power are set to regain the services of Robbie Gray this week.
West Coast went home to Domain Stadium and again recorded a convincing win, but whatever the result on Sunday, the flat track bully tag was never going to be dispelled. The 103 point victory against St Kilda saw the Eagles average winning margin lift to 66 points at home, a figure that most clubs should be proud of. Although the obvious drop in competitive output when travelling interstate have soured numbers that we should be applauding. Adam Simpson and his men have an outstanding opportunity against Port at Adelaide Oval to not only prove a point, but build belief that it can win away from home.
The Eagles got the points against Port at Adelaide Oval last year and considering the external perception, you’d think the motivation will be high to get off the interstate duck. I expect the Eagles to be switched on Saturday.

WEST COAST TO WIN BY 31 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
West Coast @ -17.5 Line

NORTH MELBOURNE ($1.22) VS CARLTON ($4.25)

AT ETIHAD STADIUM, SATURDAY 21/05, 19:25
Line: North -30.5, Blues +30.5
North Melbourne continue to sit a game clear undefeated on top of the ladder, but Brad Scott’s men produced a bizarre performance against the struggling Bombers. The Kangaroos managed to keep Essendon goalless in the first half and lead by 50 points at the main break, but things went downhill from there. In a season where percentage is expected to be vital at the end of the home and away rounds, North couldn’t carry on its dominant start and fizzed away to a less than ideal 14 point win. Brad Scott was quoted as saying it felt like a loss, especially considering its defeated opposition left the ground to a standing ovation from its supporters. It was a weird game, but North Melbourne can’t afford to be lowering its standards.
Brendon Bolton mania has hit the Carlton faithful after he achieved what Mick Malthouse couldn’t, four victories in a row. The football club is again filled with optimism and hope as the on field fortunes appear to be turning much faster than even the most positive Carlton supporter could have expected. Gibbs and Murphy are back to playing outstanding football, while the experienced Kade Simpson is arguably in career best form. Unfortunately injuries to Kreuzer and Casboult couldn’t have come at a worse time with so many form talls in the North Melbourne line up. It will be difficult covering their absences with a tough fortnight coming up.
It is hard to imagine North Melbourne producing football like it did in the second half again. With those key Carlton talls out, the Kangaroos shouldn’t have any problems here.

NORTH MELBOURNE TO WIN BY 30 POINTS
No Bet To Consider

FREMANTLE ($1.85) VS RICHMOND ($1.95)

AT DOMAIN STADIUM, SATURDAY 21/05, 19:40
Line: Freo -1.5, Tigers +1.5
Fremantle played arguably its best football of 2016 in the first half against Hawthorn, but couldn’t hold its 2 point main break lead as the reigning premier kicked 8.7 with the wind to the Dockers 2 behinds to blow the game out. It is difficult to know what Ross Lyon does with this group as the club remains winless after 8 rounds. He has basically conceded the year a write off, yet it isn’t as if we are seeing a massive influx of youngsters coming in and more importantly filling key roles. It isn’t in Ross Lyon’s best interests to be winning too many games from now on and considering he has more than happily let games slip in the past, should we expect the Dockers to go into experimental mode in the coming weeks? Stephen Hill is another big loss for Fremantle, but Pavlich returns.
The Tiger train is back on the tracks after the game of the season against Sydney, where Sam Lloyd fulfilled every footballer’s childhood dream to kick a goal after the siren from 50 metres out to win by a point. It was probably a game the Tigers never had any right to win when considering the circumstances, but it could be a defining point in their season. Richmond look a much better side when Brett Deledio is up and running, while Trent Cotchin is all but certain to return. The Tigers love a trigger to set up a late season surge.
The Tigers are up and about and travel well to Perth. Considering Fremantle’s woes, I’m surprised to see Richmond as the outsider here. They are great value at $1.95.

RICHMOND TO WIN BY 20 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Richmond Head to Head @ $1.95

MELBOURNE ($1.15) VS BRISBANE ($5.75)

AT THE MCG, SUNDAY 22/05, 13:10
Line: Dees -38.5, Lions +38.5
Melbourne went down by 32 points to the Western Bulldogs on Sunday, but it was difficult to be too critical of their performance. Admittedly they did get smashed in the contested ball stakes with a -30 differential, but on a whole I think Paul Roos would have been able to produce many positives during the review. After an All Australian type start to the season, Max Gawn would have been disappointed to have not had a greater impact, but the Dogs have been good at restricting the influence of opposition ruckmen. Neville Jetta will miss this game through suspension.
Queensland footy is in an ugly place this year and the Lions did nothing to help that reputation against Collingwood. Justin Leppitsch was genuinely speechless when trying to describe the competitive effort of his players. When the opposition has 21 shots on goal before your side scores, there really isn’t much positive to be said. To his credit, Leppitsch took full responsibility of the result and admitted to questioning himself. Dayne Beams will again be on the sidelines after his troublesome knee flared up once more.
Brisbane aren’t in a good place and can’t be considered in its current state. The Demons are improving with every game they play.

MELBOURNE TO WIN BY 51 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Dom Tyson to Get 30 or More Disposals @ $4.70

GWS ($1.36) VS WESTERN BULLDOGS ($3.15)

AT SPOTLESS STADIUM, SUNDAY 22/05, 15:20
Line: Giants -19.5, Dogs +19.5
The Giants are now being discussed as a genuine top four prospect after again showing on the weekend that it is far further advanced than the other franchise side in the Gold Coast Suns. So much so that GWS romped home to its greatest winning margin of 91 points. The Giants have elevated themselves to being statistically the best stoppage side in the competition. Not only are GWS averaging 1.5 clearances more per game than any other side, they are also ranked first for scoring from stoppages. The loss of Adam Treloar during the offseason has barely made a difference to the midfield rotations and as Jacob Hopper proved on Saturday, the Giants have depth to burn. Excitement and fear externally are growing regarding this team.
The Western Bulldogs run away to a comfortable 32 point win against Melbourne on Sunday, but the Dogs were made to fight harder than the scoreboard gave them credit. It was tough and physical game despite the free scoring nature, with both sides recording over 80 tackles. Tom Liberatore was at the forefront by equalling the most tackles recorded in a match with 19, but he was helped defensively by the likes of Dahlhaus, Wallis and Picken. The loss of Matthew Boyd to suspension in an already broken defence hurts immensely, after depth stocks were already stretched to the minimum.
Spotless Stadium gets to host a mini blockbuster here, so it will be interesting to see the crowd figure. Both teams are looking the goods, but the loss of Boyd probably stretches the Dogs down back too much.

GWS TO WIN BY 20 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Total Game Points Under 190.5 @ $1.88

ST KILDA ($1.19) VS ESSENDON ($4.75)

AT ETIHAD STADIUM, SUNDAY 22/05, 16:40
Line: Saints -33.5, Bombers +33.5
I think everyone has been able to respect the efforts of St Kilda in 2016 despite struggling to secure a lot of wins, but its opening quarter effort against the Eagles was completely unacceptable. While Nic Naitanui was brilliant, the West Coast midfield were able to trundle out of a stoppage too easily and kick simple goals. To make matters worse, when St Kilda did have the ball, it was more often than not given back to the opposition. While the 9 goal first quarter figure looked bad, it could have been much worse.
Has there ever been a team in the history of our great competition that has been goalless at half time, only to be cheered off to a standing ovation after a loss? It was a generous show of support by the Essendon supporters who are happy to accept effort, despite the final result. The Bombers ended up winning the I50 count too and are sure to gain confidence from outscoring the top of the table Kangaroos by 36 points in the second half. Essendon will enter this match with the firm belief that it can win.
St Kilda are sure to produce better football than it did against West Coast, but its -33.5 point line looks high.

ST KILDA TO WIN BY 8 POINTS
Bet To Consider:
Essendon +33.5 Line @ $1.92

Author

mm

Rover

Covering all things Australian Rules Football for The Profits. I’ve been a passionate supporter and follower of AFL for as long as I can remember. Having been born into a family with deep football history and tradition on both sides, you can say it runs through my blood. I’ve got a keen interest in the stats and analysis of the game, which helped me finish in the top 100 of fantasy competitions DreamTeam and Supercoach last year. While my own local football career was cut short due to injury at 22, it has created an opportunity for me to frequently watch and build a deep knowledge of the sport at its highest level. I look forward to sharing my thoughts and views throughout the season.

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