Analyst: Alex Christodoulou
Apr 05, 2019 03:22 PM
Collingwood craving grand final revenge
There are three absolute belters for AFL fans to get excited about on Saturday night.
First it's the Giants and the Tigers doing battle in a fixture that has produced some nail-biters in recent years.
Then it's the Grand Final rematch, where the Pies will be desperate for redemption.
Finally, both Brisbane and Port Adelaide have the top of the table on their mind when they lock horns at the GABBA.
GWS Giants vs Richmond Tigers
AFL Odds: Giants $1.63 (-7.5) / Tigers $2.25 (+7.5)
Two teams looking to bounce back after disappointing Round 2 defeats face-off here, when the Tigers travel up to Western Sydney.
Both sides have their injury concerns, but neither have enough to be used as an excuse in this match.
Both sets of fans will be expecting as win, as both clubs look to re-affirm their premiership credentials.
Why Giants can win
For a few seasons now, GWS have really been a side who have played markedly better at home as opposed to away.
Therefore, as an accurate form line for this match, look to GWS's 72-point opening round win, rather than last week's 52-point defeat away from home.
Toby Greene and Josh Kelly both missed that game against the Eagles, but expect them to come back in here.
They'll join big Shane Mumford as important inclusions for the Giants.
Greene in particular is crucial as he provides the link between the midfield and forward line. Always look to his presence in the starting line-up before betting on GWS.
Why Tigers can win
After an injury-free couple of seasons, Richmond's good luck is starting to turn.
They'll be without not just Alex Rance, but Jack Reiwoldt here, who will miss a month with a minor fracture in his wrist.
With these Tiger veterans out of the side, it's Richmond's younger brigade who will need to stand up.
Daniel Rioli has been quiet in the forward line, but a player of his quality can explode at any moment.
And if Dustin Martin has a good game in the middle of the park, then the Tigers can get straight back into the winner's circle.
Key AFL Stats
- The previous 7 meetings between these sides have all been won by the home team: GWS to win @ $1.63
AFL Betting Tip:
GWS to cover the -7.5 point line @ $1.90
Reasoning: If Greene and Kelly do come back, then GWS have too much firepower at home.
Collingwood Magpies vs West Coast Eagles
AFL Odds: Magpies $1.46 (-15.5) / Eagles $2.60 (+15.5)
A stellar Saturday schedule is highlighted by the Grand Final rematch, where the Magpies will be desperate for revenge.
Collingwood were totally dominant in their Round 2 victory over the Tigers. A repeat of that performance would be enough to overturn the five-point margin of last season's big dance.
But not if the Eagles have something to say about it. They'll look to build off last round's thrashing of GWS to mount an early case for back-to-back flags.
Why Magpies can win
The strength of Collingwood is their skill by hand and foot.
Last week's win was through a domination in possession. They simply kept the ball away from the Tigers, taking 174 marks, which almost beat the all-time AFL record of 181.
This won't be as easy against West Coast, whose strength is also their marking and their ability to win the game from the air.
However, the Pies will certainly try. In the game against Richmond, Collingwood used the ball at a disposal efficiency of 81%.
Compare that with the Grand Final where they lost their cool and ended up with an effective disposal percentage of 69%.
Any improvement on this would all but get them over the line here.
Why Eagles can win
After getting thumped in Round 1, West Coast responded in style last week, dealing out a thrashing of their own.
Comparing these two performances is like comparing chalk and cheese. This throws a spanner in the works when trying to line up West Coast's form for your AFL betting tips.
Assuming that the Eagles repeat their Round 2 performance here, then they can certainly secure the win.
Last year's Grand Final proved that they can perform at a high level in front of a hostile away crowd.
With Luke Shuey carrying over his stellar 2018 form, he'll be the main man who West Coast will look to to inspire another win.
Key AFL Stat
- West Coast have won their past 3 games against Collingwood: Eagles to win @ $2.60
AFL Betting Tip:
Collingwood to cover the -15.5 point line @ $1.90
Reasoning: With the motivation for revenge to lift them, Collingwood can right the wrongs of the Grand Final and win well.
Brisbane Lions vs Port Adelaide Power
AFL Odds: Lions $1.60 (-7.5) / Power 2.30 (+7.5)
Few would've predicted Brisbane to start the season with two straight wins.
The Lions are finally starting to put it all together after a decade in the AFL wilderness, and Port better be wary.
With the top spot on the ladder within reach, Port Adelaide will surely be up for this clash, as they also look to make it three from three.
Why Lions can win
Brisbane are playing with supreme confidence in their game.
While they don't have the recognisable stars of Port Adelaide, their unity, exuberance and attack-minded play will trouble most teams they come up against.
As we saw late last year and in Brisbane's opening round defeat of the Eagles, they also seem to grow another leg when playing at the GABBA.
With Lachie Neale relishing his new surroundings, the Lions also have the strength in the midfield to counter Port's in-form mids.
Why Power can win
Port Adelaide look like a new team in 2019.
While it's hard to say for sure based off the small sample size of just two games, the signs are certainly looking good.
Ex-Lion Tom Rockliff has had a stellar start to the season, while Travis Boak has also impressed with two standout games.
With some younger players starting to come to the boil alongside these seasoned veterans, Port are more than capable of putting the Brisbane away.
They'll have to deal without the services of Jack Watts though, who suffered a horror leg injury in Round 2.
Key AFL Stat
- The Lions have won their past 2 AFL games by a margin of 20+ points: Brisbane to win by 20+ points @ $2.40
AFL Betting Tip:
Reasoning: This is the hardest game to predict all round. Both teams are capable of winning by a margin, so steer clear of any of the usual betting markets.