Fri, Aug 17, 11:46am by Staff Writer
Round 22 of the 2018 AFL season continues on Sunday, with an all-important clash between West Coast and Melbourne in Perth crucial to the top-four hopes of the visitors.
Carlton versus Western Bulldogs
Sunday, 19 August 2018 at 1.10pm AEST at Etihad Stadium
The Western Bulldogs have found form in recent weeks, with back-to-back wins against St Kilda and North Melbourne.
The Dogs are heavy favourites at $1.23 to defeat the bottom-placed Blues on Sunday.
Although they will miss finals for the second straight season after winning the Premiership in 2016, the Dogs are showing signs of promise in recent weeks.
Their seven-point win against North Melbourne last weekend has taken the air out of North’s finals hopes, in a match that meant far more to the Kangaroos.
When these two sides met in round six this season, it was the Dogs who were 21-point winners in a poor exhibition of a rare Friday night showdown for the sides.
After a high-scoring first quarter, both sides struggling to find the scoreboard after half-time, kicking a combined eight goals.
The Blues were let down by a poor second half in Perth after leading by 13 points against the Dockers at the main break in round 21.
A seven-goal third quarter by Fremantle is the reason why the Blues find themselves at the foot of the table and staring at the number one pick in November’s AFL Draft.
This is far from an inspiring match to kick of Sunday football, but the Dogs are in form at the moment, relative to their season, and should win this one with a bit to spare.
Best bet- Western Bulldogs Big Win Little Win 40+ at $2.50
West Coast versus Melbourne
Sunday, 19 August 2018 at 3.20pm AEST at Optus Stadium
Melbourne relinquished their strong hopes of a top four finish this season when they lost to Sydney at the MCG as heavy favourites last round.
They now make a trip to Optus Stadium knowing that a loss in Perth all but ends their top four aspirations this season.
The Dees are $2.30 outsiders at Sportsbet to beat the Eagles, with the home side a $1.62 favourite.
West Coast has plenty to play for themselves, with a top two finish guaranteed with a win.
The Eagles are the surprise team in the top four this season, and will guarantee themselves a potential home preliminary final with a final on Sunday afternoon.
This is the first time these two clubs have met since round 14, 2017 when the Demons snatched a narrow three-point win at Domain Stadium.
Forward Tom McDonald booted a late goal from the square to give Melbourne an unlikely win after they trailed by 16 points in the final term.
Melbourne has mixed form in close matches on the road this season, losing to Geelong after the siren and then beating the Crows a week later.
The loss of forward Jesse Hogan shouldn’t be understated, with a stress fracture in his foot ruling him out for the remainder of the season.
The Eagles are a magnificent price given that news and Melbourne may struggle to hit the scoreboard as a result.
Best bet- West Coast to cover 9.5-point handicap at $1.92
Adelaide versus North Melbourne
Sunday, 19 August 2018 at 4.40pm AEST
Adelaide can end North Melbourne’s slim finals hopes with a win against the Kangaroos on Sunday.
The Crows are $1.35 favourites, with the Roos paying $3.20 to win the match.
Adelaide was always in the game against the Giants in Canberra, but a poor start to the second half had them chasing the game until the final siren.
North Melbourne suffered a loss to the out of contention Dogs in the upset of round 21. That result has meant this is a must-win for North.
Crows captain Taylor Walker again finds himself suspended, with a high bump ruling him out in this match.
The last time these two sides met was in 2017, when the Roos shocked the then ladder-leading Crows in Hobart.
An incredible 10-goal opening term by North set up their win, as they booted 22 goals in that match to win by 59 points.
These sides have split their last six encounters at three apiece, but North are winless at Adelaide Oval in five attempts against the Crows and Port Adelaide, which counts against them in this one.
Adelaide will want to send their home fans out with a win, but are not in any sort of form to consider backing them at such a low price. Take the handicap on North as we figure they’ll be up for this game more than the Crows.
Best bet- North Melbourne to cover 19.5-point handicap at $1.92
AFL Round 22 Sunday Odds – Sportsbet
Carlton $4.20 Western Bulldogs $1.23
West Coast $1.62 Melbourne $2.30
Adelaide $1.35 North Melbourne $3.20
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