We are now seven rounds into an intriguing 2016 AFL season which has seen Fremantle lose their first seven matches as well as the services of 2015 Brownlow medal winner Nat Fyfe who has a broken leg for the second time in as many years.
Hawthorn have looked vulnerable despite getting to 5 and 2 with three of those wins by half a goal while North Melbourne are the only undefeated team with the Cats and Swans breathing down their necks with a single loss each.
I backed the Crows for the flag at $14 before they played Hawthorn as I thought they had a great chance of winning the match and kicking on from there. They lost that one by 3 points and they really need to beat the Cats tonight to stay on track for the top 4 place i believe is where they should be aiming this year.
Their forward line is full of goals and they have scored 100 points in 5 of their 7 games. I like Talia, Hartigan and Lever in defence too while Sloane and the Crouch brothers have done a good job in helping the Adelaide faithful forget about Paddy Dangerfield…well almost anyway. They lack a bit of speed off half back but that is their only real weakness.
I also chucked a few dollars at Port for the flag at $101 last week with the TAB as despite not really firing at all this year they have managed to get to a 4 and 3 record. They need their ruckmen to stand up and be counted and for Robbie Gray and Charlie Dixon to hit top form for me to be any chance.
Anyway, enough about what’s gone by, it’s time to look at round 8.
I’m obviously hoping the Crows demolish the Cats tonight in Adelaide but I think the books have it right in pricing the game up as a coin toss. William Hill (UK version) are +5.5 the Cats which will become of interest if they get backed today while the Hills traders are asleep and I can get myself a 7 point+ middle.
If that does not eventuate then half a unit on either team to win by 15 points or less in the tri-bet market at $2.85 with is a safe play at decent odds.
The ladder topping Kangas play Essendon at Etihad and the line of 51.5 is of little interest either way with North’s average winning margin 20 points and Essendon’s average loss 52 points. The line looks right.
Hawks play Freo in Tassie and they are 9/0 at Aurora since 2014 with an average winning margin of 53 points. This makes a 42.5 handicap looks quite appealing against a team sat at 0/7 but Freo have improved in recent weeks without winning and the Hawks do not look like the side that went 8/0 in the 14 and 15 seasons at the venue. I’ll pass.
GWS should give the Suns a pumping at their home ground and the 55.5 point line agrees. The Suns embarrassed themselves in the final quarter against Melbourne last week but if Rodney Eade and Gary Ablett can’t motivate them for this game against the Giants then they may as well do what Leigh Matthews says and jack it in altogether.
Brisbane and Collingwood do battle at the Gabba on Saturday night and I took the early $1.75 money line and -2.5 about the home team. This has moved to a more realistic -9.5 now. I have more faith in the Lions than the Pies although neither team can be trusted.
Two solid trends in past years have been to back under the points total in Gabba night games and the same in Collingwood matches when travelling interstate. The line is $1.91 under 195.5 with and that will do for me despite the overs trend in 2016 so far.
Richmond vs Sydney. Fuck Richmond. That is all.
Well, almost all – I might back Sydney by 10 goals at $5 just to hate on the Tigers a little bit more come game time. I may or may not have backed the 0/7 Tigers at the line a few times this year.
You work it out.
Carlton have won three games in a row and Levi Casboult has been kicking straight…ish. I’m still keen on Port here and have backed them at -12.5. You can get $1.93 at -11.5 with if you agree with me. Look at who the Blues have beaten in this fantastic run of 3 victories: a hapless Freo team at their lowest ebb, a useless Collingwood playing with zero confidence and a drug free Bombers team of misfits and pensioners. Port also go ok at Etihad as their 4/3 record since 2014 attests to.
The rejuvenated Melbourne Demons play the Western Bulldogs at the MCG on Sunday afternoon in what should be a good game for the neutrals. The Dogs are playing their first match away from Etihad in 2016 but I don’t see that as a problem. They are 2/2 there since 2014 and should have beaten the Crows there in last year’s elimination final.
I’ve been super impressed with how the Dogs have coped with the injuries to their back line players in recent weeks and +10 in scoring shots and +31 inside 50’s in the beating of the Crows last week bodes well for them. Bulldogs -13.5 at $1.92 with the bad blokes at
West Coast vs St Kilda at Subiaco/Domain is a tricky one. West Coast are the ultimate flat track bullies at home and it’s not hard to see the Saints joining the long list of teams with a 6 goal start get blown off the oval by the end of the 3rd quarter. I made the line 33.5 when i priced the game up but i’d add a few points to that having had another look and i’m staying out of it.