AFL PRELIMINARY FINALS
Fremantle v Hawthorn
Fremantle's battling Qualifying Final win over Sydney doesn't look quite as good after the Swans loss to North Melbourne last week. Hawthorn made their fifth Preliminary Final in a row after getting off to a flyer and never looking back when thrashing an overawed Adelaide.
Recent history suggests that Fremantle are going to have to pull something special out of the bag here. Hawthorn have won seven of the last eight meetings dating back to 2011. Fremantle's sole victory in this period was a 19-point win late last season when Roughead missed.
I can't argue too much with the spread market which has Hawthorn an 8-9 point fave. The total of 168-170 has come up goal or two too big however. Greater value looks to lie in playing the Fremantle total.
Despite a fine weather forecast, Ross Lyon is unlikely to change up his long term defensive game plan at this stage. Fremantle simply just struggle to score. They have only scored more than their 79 in just one of their last seven meetings with Hawthorn – and only one was a final (the 2013 GF when they just managed 62 points). Take the Fremantle Team Total under down to 76 points.
West Coast v North Melbourne
West Coast well and truly earned the two-week break with a win over Hawthorn while North advanced after the aforementioned upset win over Sydney.
West Coast are 11-2 at home this year while North Melbourne are 3-3 on the road (excl. Tasmania). But the Kangas have won their last two matches against West Coast with the win at Subiaco coming mid-2014.
When you have a 30-point fave in a Preliminary Final there is a normally a good chance of a blowout, but I think North can stay with the Eagles for a good part of the match. I've got a feeling that Brad Scott might see the only way to stop the Eagles is to try and tie this one down with one or two spare down back.
Only one of their last five meetings (160, 126, 178, 228, 170) has gone over the set total here. It's all on the line in a Prelim – if North can stay handy, I can't see a shootout on the cards. Play the under down to 175.
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI BEST BET Grand Final
Finals Week Three
Finals Week Two
Finals Week One