There’s an absolute belter in store for AFL fans at the SCG on Thursday night when the Sydney Swans take on the mighty Hawks from Hawthorn.
Both heavyweights come into this off the back of hugely impressive performances in round 16. Hawthorn disposed of Port Adelaide by 22 points in a feisty affair that saw Port target Cyril Rioli for a bit of rough treatment early in the game. Initially the tactic seems to work as Rioli gave away a 50m penalty and generally looked a little discombobulated but it did not last long and he went on to put in one of his best performances of the year with three goals and 18 disposals.
Sydney were even more impressive in their victory over Geelong at Simonds Stadium by 38 points. Kieran Jack did his talking on the field , scoring three goals. This performance by the Swans is even more creditable given that Buddy Franklin only weighed in with one goal.
Hawthorn go into this game as 6.5 point underdogs to the Swans and this is a highly unfamiliar position for them. They’ve been dogs in only 4 of their last 66 matches. They won two and lost two.
Unfamiliar is also how one might describe the Swans going into a game at the SCG as single digit favourites as thats only happened twice in their last 22 matches at the ground.
The Swans have been a solid bet at the handicap line in 2016 covering 10 of their 15 lines while the Hawks have covered in 6 from 15.
This match looks primed to be a close one but i must go with the Swans at the SCG, especially with Ladbrokes offering $2 lines. If the Swans get smashed in the betting in the next 24 hours we could look to hedge but i’d want 12 points or more to get with Hawthorn and look for the middle.