AFL Round 22 Preview & Betting Tips

The following are previews with betting tips for Round 22 of the 2018 AFL season.

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Friday, August 17


Richmond vs Essendon

7:50 pm AEST, MCG
View a detailed form guide for Richmond vs Essendon


Despite some results falling their way on the weekend the Bombers are still incredibly unlikely to make the finals, but that doesn’t mean the build up to this game isn’t going to be massive. If the Bombers lose their season is over, but if they somehow manage to beat the reigning champs they’ll still be alive and it would give them a huge amount of confidence going forward. It’s going to be a tough ask against the Tigers though, and multiple injuries suffered in their win over the Saints isn’t going to help their cause.

The Tigers are still looking just about unbeatable; it was only the Suns, but Richmond won by 74 points without really getting into top gear. Jack Riewoldt had his best game of the year — slotting ten goals and claiming the lead in the Coleman medal race — to help the Tigers to their first interstate win of the season. The injury to Kane Lambert will hurt them for a few weeks, but they look more than capable of covering him at the moment, although the shock omissions of Trent Cotchin, Dion Prestia and David Astbury might be enough to give Essendon a sniff.

If the Bombers can get their tails up early they’ve shown they’re able to make the most of their opportunities, but the Tigers will keep coming at them all game. I reckon it might be a close contest, but the Tigers always find a way and I think they’ll run all over the Bombers in the final quarter to claim another victory at the MCG.

Betting tip: Richmond to win @ $1.47 (Bet365)

Saturday, August 18


Collingwood vs Port Adelaide

1:45 pm AEST, MCG
View a detailed form guide for Collingwood vs Port Adelaide


For the second time in two seasons the Power went down to West Coast due to a goal kicked after the final siren. The first time was in last year’s elimination final, but the stakes were almost as high on Saturday evening: a win would’ve left Port in the mix for a top four spot, while the loss has put their finals chances in doubt altogether. Their destiny is still in their own hands, but with tough games coming up against the Pies and the Bombers — and injuries to key men Charlie Dixon and Paddy Ryder — things are looking ominous for the Power. The Pies are another club that has had their 2018 premiership hopes cruelled by poor luck on the injury front, but they continue to fight hard and press for a top four position. They’re probably not going to get it following their loss to the Swans two weeks ago, but beating the Power on Saturday afternoon would keep them in with a chance.

It’ll be interesting to see how this one plays out. Port are good enough to challenge anyone on their day, but with Ryder struggling to get through a full game, Brodie Grundy is likely to dominate and give the Pies’ midfield enough dominance to allow a fairly comfortable win. Port had a chance to make a splash in 2018, but a few poor games and some recent bad luck has just about ended their year and I think the Pies will take full advantage of that on Saturday.

Betting tip: Collingwood to win @ $1.47 (Ladbrokes)


Geelong vs Fremantle

2:10 pm AEST, GMHBA Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Geelong vs Fremantle


Geelong’s finals hopes are on thin ice following their disappointing performance against the Hawks at the MCG on Saturday afternoon, but an easy last two games might still allow them to sneak into the bottom half of the eight. It won’t matter much if they continue to dish up performances like they did against the Hawks though; it wasn’t terrible, but that standard of footy isn’t going to trouble too many of the other teams vying for the flag. It was the second week in a row where they nearly snatched a win late in the game, but they shouldn’t have allowed Hawthorn to dominate for large periods of the game if they wanted to ensure they didn’t fall just short.

This week they host Fremantle, and it should be a relatively straightforward assignment for them — Freo aren’t travelling all that well, having struggled for a fair chunk of their game against the Blues last weekend, and they’ll be even worse away from Perth. Even with the inclusion of superstar midfielder Nat Fyfe, the Cats should end up winning this by at least 10 goals; they need to anyway, in order to build some much needed percentage and confidence as they head into the final round of the home and away season.

Betting tip: Geelong (-49.5) @ $1.93 (Bet365)


GWS vs Sydney

4:35 pm AEST, Spotless Stadium
View a detailed form guide for GWS vs Sydney


Sydney’s season is back on track after a gutsy victory over the Demons on Sunday afternoon. Their efforts were especially impressive considering loved clubman Alex Johnson went down with another serious knee injury early in the game, but it just goes to show that you can’t write the Swans off. They’re now in a pretty solid position to attack the last two games of the season, but facing the Giants this weekend isn’t going to be easy.

That being said, GWS are yet again struggling on the injury front and will be missing star playmaker Josh Kelly this week as he recovers from a concussion suffered at the hands of Crows’ skipper Taylor Walker. He’s easily their most important player, which is obvious when you look at how their season turned on its head upon Kelly’s return to the team. Can they cope without him — and the experience of Heath Shaw — against a seasoned team like the Swans?

I expect it to be a very close game of footy but still reckon the Giants will be a touch too good for Sydney at home. It won’t be a big margin, but I’m backing the Giants to get the points and solidify their top eight position.

Betting tip: GWS to win @ $1.80 (Ladbrokes)


Gold Coast vs Brisbane

7:25 pm AEST, Metricon Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Gold Coast vs Brisbane


There haven’t been too many genuinely meaningful Q-Clash’s since the AFL was granted it’s second Queensland-based club, and this one is no different. The season is well and truly over for both the Suns and the Lions, and you wouldn’t think the bragging rights gained in this match will be anything to write home about. With only one game remaining after this one and the two clubs locked at five wins apiece, the victor is likely to finish on top of the loser. That might be something for the clubs to hang their hat on, or it might be looked on as a negative in terms of draft position.

Either way, the Lions have looked the much better team for the majority of the second half of the season and should beat the Suns fairly comfortably. It wouldn’t surprise me to see a close game up until late in the contest, but I reckon the Lions will run away with it and consign the Suns to another long, soul-searching off-season.

Betting tip: Brisbane By 25+ @ $1.75 (Ladbrokes)


St Kilda vs Hawthorn

7:25 pm AEST, Etihad Stadium
View a detailed form guide for St Kilda vs Hawthorn


The Hawks find themselves in a beautiful position coming into round 22 after their gritty 11 point win over the Cats at the MCG. It was a huge game for so many reasons, but most importantly it puts the Hawks in fourth position with only two games remaining in the season. You’d think a win over the Saints in this one would be straightforward, leaving next week’s clash against the Swans in Sydney as the decider as to whether they earn themselves a double chance or not. It would be a huge turn around for the Hawks, who missed the finals last year for the first time in forever. I’m not sure they’ve got what it takes to go all the way, but if they put themselves in with a (double) chance anything can happen.

First of all they need to beat St Kilda, and I reckon they’ll do it comfortably. The Saints aren’t much chop and are quite clearly looking forward to the end of 2018. It won’t be much longer, but I think they’ll be forced to endure another heavy loss this weekend before they get the opportunity to reset.

Betting tip: Hawthorn By 25+ @ $1.55 (Ladbrokes)

Sunday, August 19


Carlton vs Western Bulldogs

1:10 pm AEST, Etihad Stadium
View a detailed form guide for Carlton vs Western Bulldogs


The Blues were almost able to snatch their third victory of the season when they travelled to Perth to take on the Dockers on Sunday afternoon, but a second half fade-out allowed Freo to storm home. This weekend they’re back in Melbourne to take on the Bulldogs and it might be their last chance at victory for 2018, although the Dogs have put in some strong performances in recent weeks.

Their win over the Kangaroos on Sunday was particularly impressive — the Roos hopped out to a five goal margin early in the game before the Dogs pegged them back, in a similar fashion to their win over the Saints the week prior. This week they’ll be hoping not to give their opponent a five goal head start, but if they do they’ll back themselves to turn it around just like they have in the past two weeks. I doubt it gets to that point however — Carlton aren’t likely to get a five goal jump on the Dogs if they keep their recent form up; I don’t expect it to be a blowout by any means, but I think the Dogs will keep Carlton at arm’s length for much of the afternoon.

Betting tip: Western Bulldogs (-20.5) @ $1.62 (Ladbrokes)


West Coast vs Melbourne

3:20 pm AEST, Perth Stadium
View a detailed form guide for West Coast vs Melbourne


Could the Demons do it again? They had their hearts broken in 2017, and Sunday’s loss to the Swans takes them one step closer to a similar outcome in 2018. Their fate is in their own hands, but two really difficult games await them; the first of which is the Eagles in Perth. West Coast are fresh off another after-the-siren win over Port Adelaide, which has just about secured them a top two finish — granting them a home final and the double chance.

This contest is going to tell us plenty about the Demons. If they’re a genuine finals threat they need to head over to Perth and really challenge the Eagles. They may not win, but they need to put in a really strong showing. If they get blown away I suspect their heads will drop and so will their chances of beating the Giants in round 23.

It’s one of the more fascinating games taking place this weekend, but I reckon the Eagles will lead Melbourne all day. The loss of spearhead Jesse Hogan really hurts them — while they’ve got structural replacements, Hogan provides a huge focal point for them and I think it would take at least a game or two to adjust to his absence. Unfortunately, they don’t have a game or two to spare, and I get the feeling they might end up missing out on the finals once again.

Betting tip: West Coast to win @ $1.67 (BetFair)


Adelaide vs North Melbourne

4:40 pm AEST, Adelaide Oval
View a detailed form guide for Adelaide vs North Melbourne


The last game of the round sees the Crows hosting the Kangaroos at the Adelaide Oval. Both the Crows and the Roos saw their finals chances vanish in front of their eyes last weekend in disappointing losses, and they’re now both destined to finish just outside the top eight. Which is a bit of a let-down for both clubs: the Crows had such great hopes after a grand final berth last year, while the Kangaroos would have backed themselves to play finals midway through the year.

All of that means that this game isn’t going to be all that interesting. The Crows will be without skipper Taylor Walker for the remainder of the year due to his two week suspension, while the Kangaroos and their fans will have one eye on the trade period and what becomes of next year, after last week’s loss to the Bulldogs ended their chances of taking part in September action. In terms of the result, I think the Crows will get the job done at home, but I expect it to be a fairly scrappy, low-scoring game of footy — it’s set to be a wet weekend in Adelaide.

Betting tip: Total Match Points Under 187.50 @ $1.91 (TopBetta)


Best Bets of the Round

Brisbane By 25+ @ $1.75 (Ladbrokes)


Season Tally

All Bets:        -13.20 units

Best Bets:     -2.68 units

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