It really is not like me to take pot shots at the umpires, however I was disgusted with their effort at the G at the end of the third quarter. Essendon were slightly in front but the game was certainly in the balance then two of the softest, most ridiculous free kicks gifted Essendon two goals and the momentum to run away with the game. I do not mean to take credit away from the Bombers who played extraordinarily well, but I can’t help but feel Collingwood has some reason to feel slightly short changed.
Sydney and St. Kilda put on a fantastic spectacle for the Kiwis. I was surprised with the Saints’ ability to stay in the contest, however class shone through in the end. Hannebury is criminally underrated and earned himself a well-deserved ANZAC medal.
I also do not normally support Eddie Maguire’s media ranting and raving, even though I believe he is an outstanding president, but his criticism of Caroline Wilson’s journalistic integrity was called for. Her standards are slipping and some of her pieces this year have been borderline ludicrous. Baseless claims with little or no regard for due diligence has severely affected her once sterling reputation. The continual harassment of Dane Swan and the hate campaign against North Melbourne were the last straws.
Fremantle vs Richmond PS 6.45pm
Fremantle at $1.55 seems like an absolute steal to me. The Tigers continue to be overrated by the bookies, so take advantage. They will not be able to match it with a sore Fremantle in the West. Freo on the other hand, desperately need to win this game to put their year back on track. Back to back losses, albeit to quality sides, has dented their campaign. They should be able to blunt the Tigers’ strength, their midfield, with their own stellar on ball brigade and I’m expecting Pavlich to finally hit form this week upon his return. Dockers by 24 points.
Greater Western Sydney vs Gold Coast MO 1.45pm
Here we have a devastatingly dour demonstration of dismal footy. If you can’t find anything better to do on a Saturday afternoon than watch these flogs pretend to be AFL standard, you really need a hobby. It’s anyone’s game really, very much a case of who will be less shit. I’m going to say Gold Coast by 4 points because they seem to have shown a bit more this year.
Carlton vs Adelaide MCG 4.40pm
Rather important game for both clubs this one. If the Blues drop this very winnable game, they will be back to square one. The Crows may have kick-started their campaign with their demolition of the Bulldogs, however they haven’t fired against credible opposition yet. The Blues can’t be considered credible as such, but it would be a start, particularly at the G where historically Carlton play very well. The return of Eddie Betts will make a big difference to a very suspect Carlton forward line. I think the Blues pace on the wide open spaces will be too much for the Crows Blues by 19 points.
Western Bulldogs vs Geelong ES 7.40pm
This one is going to be ugly. The Cats are amazing and the Dogs are pathetic. Cats by 60 points.
Port Adelaide vs West Coast AS 7.15pm
This is an intriguing match up. Port Adelaide are unbelievably undefeated thus far and playing some decent footy, despite not beating any side of note other than their cross town rivals. The Eagles however are languishing at 1-3 and are slowly losing the chance to make the top four. On paper it’s a no brainer. However the Port names on paper seem to be playing much better on the park and vice versa for the Eagles. Having said that, the Eagles’ forwards will monster the young Port defenders and will ensure the Eagles jump back on the rails. Eagles by 12 points.
Brisbane vs Melbourne G 3.20pm
Brisbane at home are a lock, and this will be my safe bet this week at $1.15. Melbourne are terrible. I do not think their 12 goal last quarter last week represents any great change in fortune or momentum, they simply beat up on a young and tired opponent. Brisbane will hammer them into the ground, particularly with Brown finding form in the last coupe of weeks. Lions by 34 points.
Hawthorn vs North Melbourne MCG 4.40pm
Here we have the match of the round at twilight on Sunday. Hawthorn at the moment are an irresistible force, and North Melbourne seemed to kick into gear as they demolished the Lions last week. They are a talented side that can challenge anyone on their day, but their young midfield are incredibly inconsistent, if they can front up two weeks in a row we could be in a for an absolute cracker. Expect Goldstein to dominate the ruck so the Roos have the keys to the midfield battle. Their undersized backline will struggle though with all of Hale, Roughead and especially Franklin. This won’t be the blowout everyone expects. Hawks by 9 points.