Fri, Sep 9, 3:33pm by Head Editor
Date and Time: Saturday September 10, 7.40pm AEST
Venue: Adelaide Oval
TV: Live on Channel 7, Fox Footy
Unlike the three finals that proceed it, the last final of the weekend looks on paper at least, to be a bit of a mismatch. But having said that, the Dogs proved on Thursday that there are no guarantees in football, especially football of the finals variety.
The bookies certainly believe the Crows will do it in a canter with Sportsbet installing the Crows at the shortest odds of any team over the weekend at $1.18. North Melbourne are at $5 with the line also the biggest of the weekend. IT is now out to 35.5.
WATCH: We preview the first week of the AFL Finals
One of the biggest obstacles for the Crows will be ensuring that they put the shock-loss to the Eagles in Round 23 behind them. That loss cost them a spot in the top four which traditionally means it also puts an end to premiership hopes.
Having said that, this is the closest season we’ve seen since 1993 and Adelaide also has some history on their side as the only club to win the Premiership from outside the top four – back in 1998 when they finished fifth, lost the first final and still went on to win the flag, their second in as many years.
Besides the final round slip up, Adelaide have been exceptional since the middle of May, winning 12 of their past 14 games. North on the other hand, have fallen away dramatically after a 9-0 start to lose their last four and end the season on 12-10.
One thing that the North Melbourne hierarchy will no doubt be mentioning to install confidence in the players is their finals form over the past two years which has been excellent. They have won four finals in that period and made the preliminary final in both years, including last year when they did it from eighth.
North fullback Scott Thompson will not play which makes the task of trying to stop the highest scoring team in the league even harder. Not many give North hope in this one and it’s easy to see why. The Crows were exposed in the midfield in their last start loss to the Eagles but the return of Rory Sloane will bolster the engine room nicely.
I’m backing North to come out strong as they so often do when their backs are against the wall and maybe even lead at some point in the first half but the Crows will be too good.
BEST BET: Adelaide to win by 1-39: $2.30
Head to Head
North Melbourne $5
Big Win Little Win
Adelaide 1-39 $2.30
Adelaide 40+ $2
North Melbourne 1-39 $6
North Melbourne 40+ $46
Adelaide (-35.5) $1.92
North Melbourne (+35.5) $1.92
1st Goal Scorer
Eddie Betts $7
Josh Jenkins $9
Taylor Walker $10
Ben Brown $11
Lindsay Thomas $13
Tom Lynch $13
Mitch McGovern $14
Brent Harvey $15
Drew Petrie $15
Charlie Cameron $17
Richard Douglas $18
Jarryd Lyons $21
Shaun Higgins $21
Rory Atkins $26
Rory Sloane $26
Majak Daw $26
Todd Goldstein $31
Daniel Wells $31
Lachie Hansen $36
Jack Ziebell $41
Any player not listed $6.50
Total Match Points – Over/Under
Over (175.5) $1.90
Under (175.5) $1.90
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