Fri, Jul 13, 11:44am by Staff Writer
Round 17 of the 2018 season continues on Sunday with a top four showdown between Collingwood and West Coast at the MCG.
Collingwood versus West Coast
Sunday, 15 July 2018 at 1.10pm AEST at the MCG
Collingwood have surged to second on the ladder after seven consecutive wins and will be looking to solidify their spot in the top four with a win against the Eagles on Sunday.
The Pies are $1.54 favourites with the visiting Eagles $2.50 outsiders.
West Coast got their season back on track after a poor run of form, defeating the Giants by 11 points.
Jack Darling, Mark LeCras and Josh Kennedy are three enormous ins for the Eagles. Their scoring without that trio has dipped to an average of 65 points per game and has contributed to three losses in four matches.
What is counting against the Eagles in this match is that they have not beaten Collingwood at the MCG since round two 1995. In their one match at the venue this season, they defeated Carlton.
These sides are set to meet for the 50th time, with the all-time record locked at 24 wins apiece and one draw. Collingwood has won its past two matches against West Coast, including a come-from-behind win last season where they booted five goals to one in the final quarter.
Collingwood are in better form than the Eagles, but have yet to face a team in the top four in their blistering mid-season run.
The Pies play their best football at the MCG, whereas the Eagles record at the ground is dour.
Take the Pies to grab the win and extend their winning streak to eight matches.
Best bet- Collingwood Big Win Little Win 1-39 at $2.20
North Melbourne versus Sydney
Sunday, 15 July 2018 at 3.20pm AEST at Etihad Stadium
North Melbourne host Sydney at Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon, with both teams needing a win to maintain top eight and top four aspirations respectively.
The Roos are $2.05 underdogs with the Swans $1.80 favourites for the match.
North secured a narrow two point win against the Swans at the SCG in round seven this season in one of the games of the season.
In a low scoring affair, the Roos announced themselves in 2018, inflicting what at the time was a second loss at the SCG for the Swans this season.
Sydney have found winning at home difficult in 2018, losing four of their home matches, which is uncharacteristic for them.
Their form at Etihad Stadium against the Roos however is dominant. They have won four of the five matches the sides have played at the ground and 10 of 12 against all opponents at the venue.
North are just outside the top eight on percentage, with the Swans a game behind three teams in the top four.
The Swans will have the advantage in the centre clearance, where they rank sixth in the competition with 12.3 per game, with North averaging 11.7 placing them 14th in the AFL.
The Roos are not a possession based team, but are handy at snaring contested ball, which has been a trademark of their style this season.
Sydney are the better side and will look to avenge their round seven loss and should do so on Sunday.
Best bet- Sydney to win at $1.80
Fremantle versus Port Adelaide
Sunday, 15 July 2018 at 4.40pm AEST at Optus Stadium
Fremantle has had a terrible past fortnight where they have lost by 50+ points consecutively. They now host the red-hot Power at Optus Stadium.
Port are $1.27 favourites for the match at Sportsbet, with the Dockers $3.78.
Fremantle’s home form was what was keeping their season from being disastrous, but a last-start 55-point home loss to the Lions has the Dockers in free-fall.
They were outgunned in Darwin against the Demons last Saturday night, with the final scoreline flattering the visitors.
Conversely Port Adelaide have rocketed into third favouritism for the Premiership and are in a rich vain of form.
The 11-4 Power have won seven of their past eight matches, including a win against Premiership favourites Richmond.
Port have accounted for bottom four sides in St Kilda and Carlton in the past fortnight and will know a trip to Perth represents a greater challenge than either of these opponents.
Port Adelaide’s tackling pressure has been a point of improvement for them this season, averaging 72 tackles per game which is first in the AFL.
The Dockers are formidable at home, averaging 84 points per game at Optus Stadium, where they have won five of eight games.
The Power crushed the Dockers by 50 points in round one this season and there should be a similar scoreline at full-time on Sunday.
Best bet- Port Adelaide to cover 25.5-point handicap at $1.92
AFL Round 17 Sunday Odds – Sportsbet
Collingwood $1.54 v West Coast $2.50
North Melbourne $2.05 v Sydney $1.80
Fremantle $3.78 v Port Adelaide $1.27
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