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Most disposals tips and best bets for Saints vs. Blues, AFL rd 8

Mon, May 12, 4:32pm by Dominic Ciconte

Saints vs. bluesMatch: St Kilda ($3.30) vs. Carlton ($1.38)
Where: Etihad Stadium
When: 7.50pm

WHEN the AFL wanted to experiment with Monday night football some years ago, both Carlton and St Kilda made for an interesting match-up.

The two sides have shared this quirk in the fixture for some time and it’s always worked well. A team seemingly on the rise against a solid performer over many seasons – the results and matches had always been interesting.

Unfortunately, you can’t say that about the two sides leading into their 2014 encounter.

Carlton and St Kilda are both enduring a period of rebuilding.

The Saints have a number of exciting kids and had committed to a season of poor results for the greater good, while Carlton has had its hand forced after ambitions for a deep finals tilt have been ruined by injuries and poor form.

While Carlton is the $1.38 favourite to win in head-to-head markets, with the Saints paying as much as $3.30 at Sportsbet.com.au (better than $3.10 at sportingbet and centrebet).

We’ve taken a look through the markets available for the clash and the one that has taken our fancy is that of most possessions.

In most possessions markets, online bookmakers will offer two groups.

The player you decide to bet on must get the most possessions from just that group of players, not necessarily the most of all the players on the ground.

So, when gambling on this market, it’s always imperative to factor in your competition and the strength of the group, putting just as much focus on them as you would your pick for the wager.

In this preview, we will cover your best options in both groups.

The groups for this match are as followed:

Most possessions groups for St Kilda vs. Carlton

Group 1

Leigh Montagna – $2.25
Steven Jack – $5.50
Marc Murphy – $6
Lenny Hayes – $9
Bryce Gibbs – $11
Andrew Walker – $12
Kade Simpson – $12
Farren Ray – $12

Group 2

Brock McLean – $3.75
Clinton Jones – $4
Luke Dunstan – $6
Dylan Buckley – $7
Heath Scotland – $7.50
Sean Dempster – $9
Dale Thomas – $9
Jack Newnes – $11

Betting options for most possessions group 1

Leigh Montagna – $2.25

Montagna is now the main ball-winner in the Saints midfield and is relied upon heavily around the ground in a quarterback-like role.

St Kilda trust his foot skills and decision-making and the stats back this up. Montagna is the leading possession-winner for the club on 176, leading Farren Ray on 170.

Montagna has come under a little bit of criticism in recent weeks for getting ‘cheap kicks’ in the backline by kicking it to himself and playing on after a point. This may be a tactic the football purists don’t like, but, punters backing on Montagna for most disposals have been lapping it up and taking their money straight to the bank.

Montagna is short at $2.25, but will give you value for money – expect him to get a tag, but he’s capable of working through it. He’s an excellent multi option.

Marc Murphy – $6.50

The Carlton skipper looks to have found his best form in recent weeks after a horror start to the season that had the footy world questioning his leadership and fitness.

Despite a quiet start to the season, Murphy leads the Blues possession count with 170 after seven games – the next closest is Kade Simpson on 167.

Murphy is likely to receive close attention from the Saint’s best tagger, Clinton Jones, but, he looks to finally have the running power back in his legs to shake a tag and rack up the stats.

At $6.50 with Sportingbet.com.au ($6 with Sportsbet), he is value. At his best, he’ll cover everyone in his group and lead the Blues to victory.

Kade Simpson – $12

Simpson is up against stiff competition here, but represents great value at $12 with Sportsbet.com.au.

With other online bookmakers, Simpson is the favourite in the second group, so that tells you that he is rated just outside the main favourites, but is favoured to be the best of the rest of the players in the ground.

Simpson only trails Murphy three touches in the season tally and is a consistent performer, lose, win or draw.

If Murphy is tagged out of the game, Simpson could return some huge value here.

Betting options for most possessions group 2

Broc McLeanBrock McLean – $3.75

McLean is in Group one in Sportingbet.com.au at $13, but we don’t rate his chances against stiff competition.

With Sportsbet.com.au, he is in group 2 against a softer field, paying $3.75 at and represents much better value.

McLean has never been massive disposals-getter, but over the last 12 months he has shown an ability to hit the stat sheet. His competition in this field is light to say the least, so $3.75 is about right. Be warned, McLean hasn’t played his best football in recent weeks, but should enjoy coming up against a younger Saints team.

Heath Scotland – $7.50

The veteran Carlton flanker is a stable, consistent performer for the Blues and enjoying what is more-than-likely his last season in the AFL.

In his four games so far this season, Scotland has averaged just under 20 possessions a game from half back. In a weak field, a 20-possession game may be enough to get you over the line.

Clinton Jones – $4

St Kilda’s number one tagger has proven that he’s more than capable of finding his own footy in 2014.

A 40-possession game earlier in the season has been followed by a number of high-statistic matches, making him a value option at $4 in this group.

Jones is odds-on to get the job on Marc Murphy in this game, so much will depend on how hard he tags Murphy and if he is given a license to hurt the Blues venturing forward himself.


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