AFL FINALS WEEK 3
ADELAIDE v GEELONG
The top four sides on the ladder for season 2017 will play in this weeks Prelim finals and that hopefully is a recipe for some wonderful exciting close footy which has been sadly missing in this years finals campaign.
Adelaide and Geelong kick it off on Friday night. The Crows haven't been in the big dance since 1998 after winning back to back premierships. They are well overdue and have been building nicely in the past few years falling in the semi finals stage in 2016 and 2015. They have gone a week better this year but that will mean nothing unless they can win at home against the Cats and book a spot in the Grand Final.
The Crows will regain star midfielder Rory Sloane after he missed there big win over GWS. Unfortunately for Adelaide supporters in the same game Brodie Smith did a knee and is gone for 12 months. Mitch McGovern has also succumb to injury which is body blow for the Crows as he often takes an important mark or kicks a vital goal. The Cats will regain Tom Lonergan after missing last week and have taken a punt on the exciting but injury prone Nakia Cockatoo.
The Cats stunned everyone last week with there big win against the Sydney. They were brilliantly coached by Chris Scott, but now the Crows will be alert to the possibility of Patrick Dangerfield starting at full forward. I expect Scott will try to tag Sloane and maybe Matt Crouch. If Geelong can bring the same intensity and hunger as they did last week they are huge chance, whether last weeks demanding performance took something out of there tank is the big question? The other question mark is how will Adelaide run the game out having only played one game in the past three weeks? Remember last year both Geelong and GWS lost at this time of year after having won through to the Prelim in week one.
The Crows playing at home in front of there passionate supporters have no excuses here but you would be silly to write the Cats off here. They will make this a tough night and will tag heavy and flood back in defence.
If the Cats can stay with the Crows till half time the hosts will be nervous and the Cats will sense a massive opportunity.
Best bets in this game lie taking either side to win under 24.5@$1.87. in what should be a tight close tussle. The other bet Game Total under 170.5. If it's close it should be low scoring and even in the one sides games this final series the totals have been going very low.
Either side Under 24.53 at 1.87-3
RICHMOND v GWS
The last time Richmond played in a Grand Final it was still the VFL and it was 1982. That's 35 years of pain and build up coming into this weeks game against GWS. It's little surprise that the city of Melbourne has been besieged with Tiger mania.
The crowd is expected to be over 90,000 for this twilight game on Saturday afternoon and GWS fans will be lucky to make up 1000 of them. Its fair to say the majority of boys from West Sydney will have never played in front of such a large hostile crowd and it is sure to be intimidating for them.
The Tigers big win over Geelong in week one of the finals looks all the more impressive now after the way the Cats disposed of Sydney. You get the feeling the confidence levels down at Punt Road are higher than ever before. They are starting to believe they can do it and they believe in there high intensity game plan. Every player knows his role and throw in the best defender in the game in Alex Rance and the best player in season 2017 in Dustin Martin and the Tigers have a great platform to win through to an illusive Grand Final.
The Giants did what most people expected last week and that was win and win easy against a very ordinary West Coast side. The Eagles laid eight tackles in the first quarter! Richmond will lay that many in the first five mins of the game. The Giants will face an entirely different beast this week and they only need look back to Round 18 this year when the Tigers beat them by 19 points at the G. The Giants skipped out the gates that day and led by 20 points at the end of the first qtr. Then came the rain and the Tigers pressure and the Giants just wilted away. The weather could well be the same for this game with the chance of showers. If GWS can't lift the intensity then they will be staring down the barrel of the same result. The Tigers pride themselves on out working sides and wearing them down.
The Giants will struggle to kick goals here. No Jeremy Cameron and they will need big Jono Patton to break free from either Rance or David Astbury. There secret weapon may well be Toby Green who is probably there most important player. If Greene can kick 3+ goals they will give themselves a huge chance.
It's hard to go past the Tigers here they have been excellent all year and have almost gone up another level in the past month. They have no serious injury concerns and for me they seem to be playing better footy than GWS.
Take the Tigers minus 8.5 and we will also take the game total under 162.5
Total Points Under 162.53 at 1.80-3
WEEK RESULTS STAKES ROI Grand Final +9 11 82% Finals Week Three -4.2 12 -35% Finals Week Two +0.42 11 4% Finals Week One +7.18 11 65% Round Twenty-Three -9.09 21 -43% Round Twenty-Two +9.47 16 59% Round Twenty-One +8.55 13 66% Round Twenty -8 17 -47% Round Nineteen -9.2 13 -71% Round Eighteen +3.01 15 20% Round Seventeen +9.88 16 62% Round Sixteen -4.05 15 -27% Round Fifteen +0.12 13 1% Round Fourteen -2.48 15 -17% Round Thirteen +1.93 5 39% Round Twelve -6.3 14 -45% Round Eleven -2.1 9 -23% Round Ten -5.26 10 -53% Round Nine +4 11 36% Round Eight +10.01 9 111% Round Seven -10.26 17 -60% Round Six -2.4 14 -17% Round Five -12.3 18 -68% Round Four -5.21 11 -47% Round Three -1.16 10 -12% Round Two -11 11 -100% Round One -0.27 6 -5% Total -29.71 345 -9%