The following are previews with betting tips for Round 22 of the 2015 AFL season.
Friday, August 28
Geelong vs Collingwood
7:50PM AEST, MCG
The Cats let themselves down last weekend in their draw with the Saints. Their finals hopes now comes down to this game. Lose and they’re out. Win and it sets up a cut throat match up against the Crows next week.
The Pies also put in a very much below par effort last weekend, although the stakes weren’t as high for them. With their season effectively over, clearly some of the players are finding it hard to get up for the games. They’d want to be careful however, as you can bet the coach will be paying close attention to anyone who isn’t up to his lofty standards.
I can’t see the Pies beating the Cats in this one; I think the Cats will win comfortably but it won’t be a blow out. The Cats will just hold the Pies at arms reach all night, as they’ve done so often against so many teams over the past decade.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Cats at the line of -17.5 @ $2.03 (SBOBet)
Saturday, August 29
GWS Giants vs Carlton
1:45PM AEST, Spotless Stadium
The season is coming to end for these two clubs, but for Carlton, it’s also the start of a new beginning, with this week’s announcement that Brendan Bolton will be the new senior coach. Good luck to him. He’s going to need it. The Carlton rebuild is not going to be quick or easy, especially if experienced players like Henderson and Yarran depart during the trade period. That may ultimately fast track the rebuild, as they’ll receive high draft picks in exchange which they can use on talented youngsters, but it means they could, now bare with me here and use your imagination; it means they could be even more uncompetitive next year than they are at the moment. Hard to fathom, I know.
The Giants should win this game fairly comfortably. I’d say they’ll get home by about 10 goals.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Giants by 40+ @ $2.55 (betstar)
Hawthorn vs Brisbane
2:10PM AEST, Aurora Stadium
The Hawks were once again stunned by the Power last Friday night, at no stage looking like winning a game that you would’ve almost guaranteed they would. It’s a relatively minor, but at the same time, quite significant, hiccup in their premiership aspirations. It means they’ll almost definitely have to travel to Perth in the first week of the finals. While the Hawks live by the mantra ‘anytime, anywhere’ as most good clubs do, it’s clearly not ideal to travel all that way in the first week of a long finals campaign.
The other hiccup to come out of Friday night was the two week suspension given to skipper Luke Hodge. It means he’ll be coming into finals not having played a competitive game for two weeks, which probably won’t be a huge issue for a player of his calibre, but it just might mean he’s that 4-5% off his best. And we all know it’s the small things that decide premierships.
Anyway, the Hawks will obviously beat the Lions. By a lot.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Hawks at the line of -75.5 @ $2.15 (Centrebet)
North Melbourne vs Western Bulldogs
4:35PM AEST, Etihad Stadium
Massive game for these clubs this weekend, and quite possibly a preview of one of the elimination finals to take place in a few weeks time. The Kangaroos are building some really solid form, which they’ll need to continue; they’ve got likely fellow finalists in the next two weeks in the Dogs and the Tigers. Two wins could see them finish 5th and host a final in Melbourne, possibly against the Crows, giving them a big chance of progressing to the 2nd week of finals.
The Dogs will be just as keen for a win after a disappointing last quarter blow out against the Eagles in Perth. The game was a stunning display of fast and ferocious football until mid way through the 3rd quarter when the Eagles were able to really blow the Dogs out of the water and make it seem like a pedestrian game of football.
The Dogs will welcome back veterans Matthew Boyd and Liam Picken to bolster their lineup, while it looks like we might finally see the return of Daniel Wells for the Roos. I reckon this will be a really close game of footy and could go either way, but I’d have to back the Roos based on their experience and their slightly better form of late.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Kangaroos to win @ $1.72 (BetFair)
Essendon vs Richmond
7:20PM AEST, MCG
Can’t imagine this contest will throw up too much of a surprise. The Bombers, while playing markedly better footy last week, are crawling towards the end of the season, while the Tigers are bounding towards the finals. Richmond must win this game to cement their spot, and I expect they’ll do it easily, with a handy percentage boost to boot.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Tigers by 40+ @ $1.96 (Centrebet)
Gold Coast vs Port Adelaide
7:20PM AEST, Metricon Stadium
It’s all too little too late for the Power. It’s great that they can come and beat the premiership favourites away from home, but slightly pointless when they haven’t put themselves in the position to be able to do it again when it matters. That said, it will be something encouraging that they can take into the pre-season. Considering the way they played last week, they should be able to beat the Suns, it’s just a matter of whether they bring the same energy and intensity. If they fall off and go back to playing poorly, some questions will probably need to be asked about their mental preparation and how they go about making sure they’re up for every game of the year, not just the games against the Hawks.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Power at the line of -19.5 @ $1.93 (Bet365)
Sunday, August 30
Adelaide vs West Coast
1:10PM AEST, Adelaide Oval
The Eagles put a strangle hold on a top two finish by crushing the Bulldogs last Sunday in emphatic fashion. They’re well and truly right up there in the premiership race. With Freo struggling for form and the Hawks showing some cracks, the Eagles storming through the finals for a fairytale premiership is looking more probable with each passing week. But this is another interesting test. The Crows are hitting some really impressive form, and there’ll also be the added bonus of a big hostile crowd that the Eagles will need to deal with. They’re obviously used to big hostile crowds from playing in Perth, but those crowds are invariably hostile towards their opposition, not them.
Still, on current form it’s really difficult to look past the Eagles in this contest. I reckon it’ll be close, but the Eagles should get home and set up a massive clash between the Crows and the Cats next weekend.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Eagles to win @ $1.89 (Matchbook)
St Kilda vs Sydney
3:20PM AEST, Etihad Stadium
The Swans finally hit a bit of form last weekend, and just in time. I was starting to think they’d barely do enough to actually make the finals. Now they’re looking well placed to finish in fourth position and lock up a double chance. They just need to make sure they beat the Saints, who have proven themselves a pesky opposition all season. Take them lightly and they’ll make you pay, as the Cats found out last weekend. I doubt the Swans will make the same mistake, and with the possible return of Buddy, the Swans should make light work of this one.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Swans by 40+ @ $2.52 (Palmerbet)
Fremantle vs Melbourne
4:40PM AEST, Patersons Stadium
The Dees seem to be travelling backwards. They made some impressive inroads in the first half of the season, but their last few weeks have been as bad as any they’ve played over the past 4 or 5 years. Maybe they’re just spent and can’t play out a full season. That might be the case, but it’s still inexcusable to play a first half like they did against the Blues last weekend. If they’re not better prepared this week, they’ll be knocked over by at least 30 goals, and that’s taking into account the fact that the Dockers aren’t in great condition at the moment.
Another game that shouldn’t provide too much unexpected excitement this weekend. Freo will get the job done and move on to bigger fish.
Betting tip: 1 unit – Dockers by 40+ @ $1.75 (Luxbet)
Units Wagered: 161
Units Won: 165.17