AFL ROUND 3
Carlton v Collingwood
To kick off round three we'll be looking to find some value in the Friday night clash between the Blues and the Pies. An insipid Blues were shell shocked last week when the Suns come to town, got an early jump and were never able to reel them in. The Pies improved on their round one performance and a couple of key Giants injuries last week meant they were able to hang around long enough to cover a handicap we thought they couldn't.
Though the Blues have started the season 0-2, those games played couldn't be any further from each other in terms of performance. Round one the Blues kicked six goals in the first quarter to only be run down by the premiers in an effort that signalled big things for this season. They then backed it up last week kicking one goal in the first quarter (and only 9 nine goals for the game) in a really poor performance. Notably, the Blues had their best player in Matty Kruezer withdraw late which was never going to bode well for them but comparisons were already made to the Blues of mid-2015 with the effort they dished up on the weekend. The injury curse continues to roll on in the Collingwood camp as another two went down with significant injuries last week. Broomhead sensationally broke his leg after swinging for a rolling ball, that was surely to be a goal already, missing and kicking the goal post. Swing man, and their only shining light at the moment, Darcy Moore has torn a hamstring which will see him miss a month's worth of action. The Pies stepped it up to premiership contenders, GWS Giants, last week and showed that they weren't going to be pushovers. Their midfield of Treloar, Pendles and Adams ensures that they'll always be in the contest but unfortunately they just do not have the cattle to help give a chop out. The Pies are still a week or two away from expecting anyone back from their lengthy injury list but can expect to regain services of their big 'American Pie'.
We're happy to say that the bookies' have got the favourtism wrong on this one. The Pies close margin last week was flattered by noticeable Giant-injuries and we expect the Blues to start well, or better than they did against the Suns, which should set up a weakened Pies outfit to do all the chasing on Friday night.
Carlton to Win3.0u at 2.65-3
West Coast v Geelong
West Coast return to their half of Australia after doing everything we expected them to against The Doggies last week while the Cats will travel to the new Optus Stadium off the back of a stinging one point defeat to Hawthorn on Easter Monday.
The Eagles went around Etihad Stadium last week in a preferable training session, disposing of the Dogs to the tune of 51 points. They totaled 31 scoring shots for the game and have shown no real inability to hit the scoreboard while their spearhead, Josh Kennedy, remains on the sideline. Rookie Liam Ryan has been the talking point for the Eagles as he has slotted into this Eagles forward line having already booted four goals from his past two outings. The high flying youngster could continues to impress and will firmly be in conversation for the NAB Rising Star when the season concludes. Geelong played part to another thriller against long time rivals Hawthorn on Easter Monday. Four of the last six games those two teams have played had been decided by 4 points or less so to see the Hawks edge the Cats by a point really fit the narrative. After looking like they were going to get run over, the Cats stirred a comeback in the fourth quarter against the Hawks to draw level, having trailed for a majority of the match. A mismatch in the Cats defense allowed Roughhead to pick up the significantly, younger, smaller and weaker Zach Guthrie in a one on one contest and kick the winning point for the Hawks. The underlying issue for the Cats here is their patchy backline while stalwarts Harry Taylor and Lachie Henderson remain sidelined through injury. Both are still a week our two away from returning so the slack will need to be picked up around the ground. Question marks can also asked of the forward line led by Tommy Hawkins who has one major to his name after two rounds.
Geelong's on ball brigade masks an underlying issue down at the Cattery. A misfiring forward line, a weak, inexperienced backline and the Cats are quite vulnerable. Take the West Coast Eagles to record back to back victories and get their first win on their home deck.
West Coast to Win2.5u at 2.06+2.65
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI Round Four -2.1 6.5 -32% Round Three -0.35 5.5 -6% Round Two -1.5 6 -25% Round One +2.56 6 43% Total -1.39 24 -6%