AFL

The Weekend Forecast – Round 18

Patrick Dangerfield has produced one of the great games in recent memory, with his 5.6 effort against Hawthorn last week, playing on with what looked like a significant injury. Fast forward 6 days, and Dangerfield appears to have made a miraculous recovery to a point where he claims he is a 45% chance to play.

Kane Cornes has made controversial comments about the Cats star’s tendency to over-dramatise injuries, and debate raged in earnest.

We can’t deny that his performance last week was exemplary in the face of adversity, but has Danger sooked it up on this occasion? Time will tell of course, but you would think it better for him not to risk any potential further damage.

Patrick Dangerfield and Rory Sloane (concussion) have at the very least been named in the squads, so let’s get to this week’s Weekend Forecast for the rundown.

Match Of The Round – Geelong vs Adelaide

GEELONG CATS

FB       Jed Bews, Tom Lonergan, Zach Tuohy
HB      Tom Stewart,
Lachie Henderson, Jake Kolodjashnij
C         Steven MotlopJoel Selwood,Mark Blicavs
HF      Sam Menegola, Harry Taylor, Jordan Murdoch
FF       Daniel Menzel, Tom Hawkins, James Parsons
FOL    Zac Smith, Mitch Duncan, Patrick Dangerfield
I/C      Cameron Guthrie, Zach Guthrie, Scott Selwood, Rhys Stanley

Ins in BOLD.

ADELAIDE CROWS

FB       Jake Kelly, Daniel Talia, Rory Laird
HB      Luke Brown, Andy Otten, David Mackay
C          Brodie Smith, Matt Crouch, Rory Atkins
HF      Charlie Cameron, Taylor Walker, Mitch McGovern
FF       Eddie Betts, Josh Jenkins, Tom Lynch
FOL    Sam Jacobs, Richard Douglas, Brad Crouch
I/C      Riley Knight, Rory Sloane, Hugh Greenwood, Alex Keath

Ins in BOLD.

Head To Head
Geelong           $ 2.75
Adelaide          $ 1.46  (Source: Crownbet)

Cricketer Alex Keath makes his debut for the Crows, with Jake Lever missing with injury. Scott Selwood returns and he is likely to go to Sloane.

I believe the Cats are a huge chance having been 22-point winners on their last matchup.

Unlikely, but for Patrick Dangerfield to repeat last week’s feat, with the Most Disposals/Most Goals, he’s currently at $21.

Who’s On Fire

Is Dusty untaggable? You would think so the way he’s playing currently.

The fearless Richmond maestro, in his 8th year of top level footy, had a blinder (40 disposals, 2 goals) last week, despite a heavy tag for most of the game from Nick Robertson.

What is it about Dustin Martin that allows his to thrive under a tag, when many other high level playmakers falter?
Martin turns the ball over a lot, 5.1 times a game in fact , but it’s his work inside 5o, his physical presence, controlling the game, giving the forwards every opportunity to convert.

He drives Richmond forward, and looms as a lock for All-Australian, and a Brownlow chance to boot (having escaped a suspension last week). He’s the first “On-Fire” player I have featured twice this year, which says a lot about the season he is having.

Who’s Under Fire

Todd Goldstein being omitted from this week’s team has raised eyebrows in the footy community.

Goldy would certainly like to Control/Alt/Delete/Restart this season if given the chance, especially his on-the-siren miss to fall short to Freo recently.

He has been well below his best for sometime now, and needs to dust himself off, get back on the saddle, and lead the way for North, and take some momentum into 2018.

Footy Can Make Fools Of Us All

In the beginning of the season I wrote about the Sydney Swans finishing high on the ladder, and they start the season 0-6.

Then in the Mid-Season review , I had the Swans only improving to finish 9th-12th.  They’re now playing like premiership favourites, beating the would-be premiership favourites in GWS to cling to 6th spot, and looking like they can beat anyone.

Let’s not get started on my tipping fortunes this year.

The point being, it’s hard to put predictions out there on a weekly basis, when there’s a fair chance it will backfire.

I guess that’s the unpredictable nature of this season, a season that the AFL could not have scripted any better.

For the first time in history, we saw in Round 7 all teams lower on the ladder defeat the team higher on the ladder.

Last weekend only 3 teams lower on the ladder had wins, so as we turn for home on the regular season, the dust is beginning to settle, and we are seeing the top teams start to come through and establish themselves.

Ladder Implications

48   Adelaide
46   Geelong
44   GWS
40   Port Adelaide
40   Richmond
36   Sydney
36   Melbourne
36   West Coast
36    St Kilda
32    Essendon
32    Western Bulldogs
28    Fremantle
26    Hawthorn
24    Collingwood
24    Gold Coast
20    Carlton
16     Nth Melbourne
12     Brisbane

Big week for Richmond this week, a win could get them into the top four. A loss can send them out to 7th if other results come to pass. A late Jeremy Cameron goal to sink the Tigers in their last encounter will be burning inside them, lets see if the Tiges are top 4 material this week.

A St Kilda win could see them swap places with Sydney, possibly dropping the Swans out of the eight.Who do you put a line through for finals at this point with 6 rounds still to play??

Currently you would gather that if 12 wins are required, Brisbane, North and Carlton, Collingwood and Gold Coast are all done. Hawthorn need a Sydney-like rise akin to Lazarus, to be any chance.

The Run Home

Which brings us to my new add-on section for the Ladder section of the forecast. With six weeks left, its time to analyse the draw of some of the contending finals teams.

This week’s combatants Fremantle and Hawthorn play to fight another day. Losing this Sunday would be a catastrophe for their finals aspirations.

Hawthorn

After this round Hawthorn have 3 games out of 5 where they will not start favourites.
Sydney (MCG) , Richmond (MCG), Western Bulldogs (Etihad)

Out of these three crunch games, the Hawks will need to win two of those to be a chance for finals. What a strange season it is with the brown and gold not likely to figure into September action. Mission (Almost) Impossible. I’m saying ”almost” because Clarko is at the helm of the team.

Fremantle

If the Dockers can get through the desperate Hawks this week, they will need to win two crunch games against:-
GWS (Spotless), Sydney (SCG), Richmond (Domain).

With the form they are currently in, they should be finished off by the time Essendon rolls around in the final round.

Head To Head

Fremantle       $1.98
Hawthorn       $1.85

Enjoy the weekend of footy, and may your team get up and stay in finals contention.

 

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