AFL ROUND 20
GWS v MELBOURNE
GWS are in a World of bother here missing Patton, Cameron and Greene all up front. It makes hard to see them kicking a winning score in Canberra and also appears to make the current odds still not right.
Pattons omission yesterday has only dropped the line 3-4 points from 11.5 to 8.5/7.5. That doesn't seem enough for me. Let's face it the Giants are not playing particularly well as it is and can ill afford these key outs against a good side like Melbourne.
The Demons themselves will be without there key forward in Jesse Hogan but he has been absent for most of the season and the Dees do have other targets up forward in Tom McDonald and Jack Watts with the dangerous Jeff Garlett at there feet.
The value here remains Melb who should almost be fave. Back the Dees both ways.
Melbourne +8.53 at 1.94-3
Melbourne to Win2 at 2.35-2
ESSENDON v CARLTON
Essendon has the chance this week to get back to the winning board and get some handy percentage when they take on Carlton at the MCG on Saturday.
The Bombers lost a high quality match to the rejuvenated Western Bulldogs. John Worsfold will be concerned that they allowed the Dogs a127 points but they shouldn't face as much firepower from a Carlton side that hasn't managed to reach 100 in a game this year. The Bombers on the other hand have had no issues scoring and little wonder with Joe Daniher wreaking havoc up forward. The Bombers have pasted 100 ten times this year.
Essendon lost to Carlton in Round 3 this year so they will be on high alert and looking to get one back on there arch rival. If Essendon harbours any hopes of playing finals in 2017 then this is a must win game. The Blues are really starting to look tired and no Patrick Cripps has really hurt them. Bryce Gibbs numbers have dropped right off since Cripps went out injured.
Go with Essendon at the minus 26.5 here.
BRISBANE v WESTERN BULLDOGS
The Western Bulldogs have finally got there act together in Season 2017 and now are on a four game winning run. Last week's win over Essendon was high quality and there best for the season. It was certainly the closest they have looked to the Premiership side of 2016. The quick ball movement has returned and suddenly the forward line as a result of quick entries is looking potent.
The Doggies head up to Queensland for the second time in three weeks when they play the Brisbane Lions at the Gabba in the Saturday twilight game. These two sides played an entertaining game in Round 5 with the Lions going into half time with a five goal lead to the shock of everyone. The Dogs ended up fighting back to win by five goals themselves. They won't want to be giving the Lions to big a start at home this week.
The Lions won't be a pushover here. They rested four of there young budding stars last week from the long trip to Perth and also Dayne Zorko who has been the Lions best this year also missed with suspension. So you can expect a few fresh young Cubs ready to rip in this week.
The Dogs have lost the last four encounters between these two sides at the Gabba.
The Dogs are in to good a form to drop this but the Lions will offer plenty of headaches. Take the Doggies at the margin 1-39 here.
Western Bulldogs 1-392 at 2.30+2.6
ST KILDA v WEST COAST
St Kilda are back at home this Sunday after there desperate last second loss to Port Adelaide. The Saints looked like they had done the perfect hit and run job last week until they conceded two goals in the last minute.
The West Coast Eagles will be the Saints opponents this week. The Eagles had a comfortable win against an under strength Lions team last week. The Eagles gave the impression they never really got out of second gear but its hard to know if they can go up another gear these days. Watching the Eagles this year you get the impression they are a very one paced side who rely heavily on individual brilliance and the experience and bigger bodies to get them over the line. Sides are well aware when the Eagles travel to Melbourne they go to Josh Kennedy without fail and even against Collingwood when he kicked six goals it still wasn't enough.
The Eagles have of course had there usual troubles when playing in Melbourne this year but have won two games at Etihad in 2017 and really should have won against Collingwood two weeks back. The Saints of course play there best footy on the fast track that is Etihad and this is sure to worry the slow paced Eagles midfield.
If the home side can contain Kennedy and Darling then I expect them to be a little to quick around the packs and with Nick Riewoldt back into side the Saints with be inspired here to see there inspiration leader go out in the last few weeks of his career with a few wins.
RICHMOND v HAWTHORN
Richmond and Hawthorn are set to do battle in a ripping contest at the G on Sunday afternoon. The Hawks took care of the Swans for the second time this year last Friday as Alastair Clarkson continues to weave the magic wand and keep the faint finals hopes alive.
Richmond continued it's winning ways with a comfortable win over the Suns on the Gold Coast. More importantly the Tigers didn't get any injuries but they will still be without Jack Riewoldt this week. They were able to cover the absence of Riewoldt last week without to much drama but you get the feeling it won't be so easy this week against the organised Hawthorn defence which itself will be minus Luke Hodge due to suspension.
Richmond will know they can ill afford to get into a shoot out here with no genuine marking forward and therefore will try to make this a tight scrappy affair. The Hawks won't mind that either. The teams that have worried the Hawks the most this year are the ones that have moved the ball fast and wide and scored heavy. When Clarkson can get the game on his own terms he makes the Hawks so difficult to beat.
In a predicted tight contest take the value with the Hawks to win at 2.10/ 2.05. And take them at the margin of 1-39.
ADELAIDE v PORT ADELAIDE
The final game of Round 20 is the Showdown. This looms as another great contest between the two sides who love to hate each other but also love to put on ripping games.
The Crows somehow came from 50 points down last week against Collingwood to scrape a draw with a goal after the siren. It was a remarkable fightback that not many sides in the comp could manage. That said they should never have allowed themselves to be so far behind. This week they will be switched on from the onset and they will also likely have some handy inclusions in Eddie Betts, Jake Lever and Brad Crouch.
Port Adelaide pulled off the great escape last week. The Power have looked a little ragged the last fortnight and of course have only managed to win against one other fellow final 8 side all year. That's not a good stat. Chad Wingard is still out and is probably the one player they didn't want missing for this clash.
The Crows have won the last four showdowns and I think they will have a little too much quality and firepower for the Power here. Take the Crows at 1-39.
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI Grand Final +9 11 82% Finals Week Three -4.2 12 -35% Finals Week Two +0.42 11 4% Finals Week One +7.18 11 65% Round Twenty-Three -9.09 21 -43% Round Twenty-Two +9.47 16 59% Round Twenty-One +8.55 13 66% Round Twenty -8 17 -47% Round Nineteen -9.2 13 -71% Round Eighteen +3.01 15 20% Round Seventeen +9.88 16 62% Round Sixteen -4.05 15 -27% Round Fifteen +0.12 13 1% Round Fourteen -2.48 15 -17% Round Thirteen +1.93 5 39% Round Twelve -6.3 14 -45% Round Eleven -2.1 9 -23% Round Ten -5.26 10 -53% Round Nine +4 11 36% Round Eight +10.01 9 111% Round Seven -10.26 17 -60% Round Six -2.4 14 -17% Round Five -12.3 18 -68% Round Four -5.21 11 -47% Round Three -1.16 10 -12% Round Two -11 11 -100% Round One -0.27 6 -5% Total -29.71 345 -9%