Wed, May 8, 1:52pm by Rob Sheeley
Round 7 of the AFL competition is dominated by two highly anticipated matches. There is the top of the table clash between the Cats and Bombers on Friday night, followed by the grand final replay between the Hawks and Swans on Saturday night. In other matches, the Eagles, Collingwood and Kangaroos will be looking to notch up a win and advance up the ladder. The Giants are still searching for that elusive win and Melbourne’s run of bad luck looks set to continue. Let’s have a brief look at what each match has to offer this week:
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Friday night football sees the mouth watering top of the table clash between Geelong and Essendon at Etihad Stadium. The match is highly anticipated and this is demonstrated by the many calls for the AFL to move the match to the bigger MCG stage. Geelong are sitting in second spot on the ladder behind Essendon. This match will determine who takes top spot.
Geelong are currently $4.50 chances to win the flag whilst Essendon are at $10.00 with IASbet.
Last round, Essendon were a bit slow out of the blocks against GWS. At one stage, GWS were 5 goals up. Essendon ended up comfortable 39 point winners. They can’t afford to take it slow against Geelong, who defeated Richmond comfortably by 44 points last week.
Who will be on top after Friday night?
David Koch would be happy with Port’s recent form and the Chairman will be hoping his team can give the passionate Port fans another victory. They take on the Tigers who started the 2013 season well but have now suffered a lapse in form.
Port are sitting nicely in 3rd spot on the ladder whilst Richmond have slipped to 9th. Port are outside chances to win the Premiership at $51.00 whilst Richmond are $34.00 chances with IASbet.
Port lost their last match against North Melbourne by a narrow 10 point margin. Port had a poor first quarter where they were outscored by 7 goals to 1 and then had to play catch up. Richmond were defeated by 44 points by an undefeated Geelong side. They led the first quarter by 1 goal but failed to keep up with the raging Cats.
Can Richmond put their season back on track or will Port get a victory before their home crowd?
West Coast had the biggest winning margin last round of 70 points and it was no coincidence that it came at the same time as the return of two of their star players (Naitanui and Wellingham). They will be looking to soar over the top of the 2013 NAB Cup winners.
The Eagles are 10th on the ladder and Brisbane are below them in 14th spot. The Eagles are $14.00 with IASbet to be the grand final victors. Brisbane are clearly not favoured to trouble the 2013 Premiership as they are rated a $501 chance with IASbet.
The Eagles will be looking to make a climb up the ladder after last week’s dominant performance. They will be full of confidence against a Brisbane side that were taught a lesson by the Swans last round.
Can the Lions clip the Eagles wings?
The Kangaroos have had a tough start to the season after already facing competition heavyweights Collingwood, Geelong, Sydney and Hawthorn. They face an easier challenge this week against a Bulldogs outfit that are coming off 5 straight losses.
The Bulldogs are languishing in 16th spot on the competition ladder. North Melbourne are currently in 11th place. Neither side are favoured for the Premiership with North Melbourne rated a $41 chance whilst the Bulldogs are at huge odds of $1001 with IASbet.
The Kangaroos won narrowly last week against the 3rd placed Port Adelaide side. Clearly, their battle hardened start to the season put them in good stead for that match. It was a gritty win that proved North Melbourne can improve this season. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs were handed a 70 point defeat by the Eagles last week and their confidence will be waning.
Can the Kangaroos get on a hop now or will the Bulldogs cause an unlikely upset?
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This will be a tantalising rematch of last year’s grand final combatants. Hawthorn will be looking to avenge last year’s Premiership defeat at the hands of the Swans, while the Swans will be looking to prove that the grand final win was no fluke.
The Hawks currently sit in 5th spot on the ladder with the Swans just one spot ahead in 4th. With IASbet, the Hawks are currently $3.75 Premiership favourites whilst Sydney are third pick at $7.00.
The Swans are coming off a dominant 60 point win over the Lions. They were off to a quick start and never gave the Lions a chance. The Hawks are coming off 5 straight wins. Last week, they were pushed all the way by a plucky Crows outfit and managed to scrape out as 11 point victors.
Will the Hawks avenge last year’s grand final defeat?
This appears to be an even clash between two sides sitting in fairly similar positions on the ladder. Both sides are coming off comfortable victories. The only point of difference is that the Magpies have to head west and take on the Dockers at home.
Fremantle are sitting in 6th spot on the ladder, just ahead of the Magpies in 7th spot. Collingwood are rated an $8 chance to take the Premiership whilst the Dockers are at $17.00 with IASbet.
A Fremantle side depleted of key players came away with a 45 point win against Gold Coast last week, demonstrating a gutsy defensive effort. Collingwood won a scrappy affair by 26 points against St Kilda to record their 4th win of the year.
How will the sides match up this week?
The Giants played a brilliant first half of football last week against the Bombers. They are at home against the Crows this week and it will be interesting to see if GWS can notch up their first win of the 2013 season.
The Giants are sitting at the very bottom of the ladder (18th) and are a $1001 chance with IASbet to take the flag. Adelaide are occupying 12th spot and are at $67 with IASbet to win the Premiership.
GWS have failed to win a game this year and Adelaide have only managed 2 wins. In GWS’ opening half of footy last week, they really took it to the Bombers and gave them a scare. However, GWS failed to finish off the game. It is becoming common knowledge that GWS fail to maintain intensity for the full 4 quarters. Adelaide showed great tenacity in their match against the Premiership favourites Hawthorn to only go down by 11 points.
Will GWS finally hold on long enough to win a match?
The Demons have lost their co-captain this week for the match against the Suns. Meanwhile, the Suns will be seeking to add some poise that was non-existent in their last outing.
Both Melbourne and the Suns sit on the bottom half of the ladder (17th and 13th respectively). They are both rated $1001 chances with IASbet to win the Premiership.
Despite winning most of the statistical categories in their game against Fremantle last week, the Suns failed to trouble in their 45 point loss.
Melbourne clearly struggled against Carlton. They will be keen to get some of their senior players back to try and bring the team back on an even keel and competing.
Can the Suns take advantage of a depleted Melbourne?
Historically, Carlton have dominated clashes against St Kilda (winning 158 of 210 matches). They meet in a rare Monday night clash.
Carlton are currently in 8th spot on the ladder with 3 wins and 3 losses. St Kilda are way down in 15th. With IASbet, Carlton are $12 chances to take out the title and St Kilda are at $25.
The Saints are coming off a loss against Collingwood. Whilst they put in a brave effort, injuries and poor form continue to haunt them this season. Riewoldt will be looking to lead from the front and lift his team for this match. Carlton is coming off a 61 point victory over the Demons.
Will Carlton ensure that history repeats?
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