West Coast v Geelong It has been a big fall from grace for the Eagles in the past after winning six games from the first eight rounds sitting nicely in the top four, they have lost their past three games to be sitting ninth. The Cats got the stumbles a few weeks ago but have found some form again winning their past three games. Both teams are coming of the bye which will see them both fresh bunt any good or bad momentum they had before that now starts again. Both sides are without their main forward with Kennedy injured and Hawkins suspended which leaves their structures a little different and will need other players to step up and take this roll. Which ever side does this best increases its chance of winning greatly. The midfield battle will be hot but I think it will be the Selwood brothers that will be the game changer for the Cats and get them over the line.
Predict Geelong win 17 points
North Melbourne v Saint Kilda
It may seem like 12th v 15th on the AFL ladder would be a boring game, but this will be very different. The Saints have been poor the last three weeks losing by a total of over 120 points in the three games combined. The Kangaroos while not setting the world on fire have been solid winning three of their last five games. North have a solid record against the saints winning the past six encounters between them. Saint Nick is due back in this week and will give the Saints a massive lift and may be the difference between the sides he gives them so much better structure when he plays. The Saints will need to keep the Kanga’s forwards under tight guard, both Brown and Waite where almost unsighted last game so expect a return to the spot light.
Predict Saints win 7 points
Richmond v Sydney
One of the most important games of the round for shaping finals and the ladder, Richmond win and they sit a game inside the top four with a little breathing space. Sydney win and they cling on to the chasing pack and put themselves within a game of the top eight. The Swans are finding form winning four of their last five matches none more impressive than the last victory over the Dogs were they suffocated the Bulldogs with intense pressure. Richmond much like the Cats got the stumbles and dropped a few games but have bounced back to win their last two. Is Martin still fit? Can Rance stop Buddy? Have the Swans midfield got that consistency back needed to push them back up the ladder. This game goes one of two ways Tigers in a low scoring slug or Swans blow them out and Buddy kicks five!
Predict Swans win 37 points
Port Adelaide v Brisbane
Brisbane were good last week in bearing Freo and Power were pretty bad getting belted by the Bombers. Hard to compare the two form lines as up until last week the Power had been absolutely red hot and putting up very big scores. In Brisbane you would give the Lions an outside chance but in Adelaide the Power should be far too strong. Expect the Lions to keep it close early but the Power will have far to much running Power in the end and run out not easy winners but they do it comfortably. Robbie Gray was at his worst last week but expect him too bounce back this week. The Lions have one of the better midfields in the competition and will be able to match Port but it will be Port’s relentless forward thrusts that will get them on top.
Predict Port Adelaide win 39 points
Gold Coast v Carlton
What a win by the Blues last week pinching the win over the very fancied Giants. There is a lot to like about Carlton they never give up even when out classed they just keep on grinding away. The Suns at Metricon has been a tough ask this year they have knock3e off both the Cats and the Eagles at the ground. Ablett has been sensational and is still one of the ,ost exciting players to watch. The Suns at home should be far too good for the Blues at home, the Blues will show plenty of fight but won’t be able to stay with the improving Suns. It’s a bit of a nothing game as both are pretty much out of finals contention but the Suns are just within reach if they can win games like this.
Predict Gold Coast win 9 points
Western Bulldogs v Melbourne
Once again this shapes up as a game for their seasons win and you stay in the top eight lose and your out. In a season where every game seems to have such vital importance we’re one week your in the next your out. The Dogs are going through a very tough period and have been very much out of sorts many players out of form and injuries taking its toll or maybe they are not as good as people think. The Demons roller coaster continues they have struggle to put wins in a row together but have now won two in a row. Max Gawn returns today which gives them a big lift they have been smashed in the middle but their mid field is still winning clearances.
Expect this game to be a real hard slug fest not an inch given and expect the Demons to pull away early then the Dogs push back hard only for Melbourne to pinch a couple goal win.
Predict Melbourne win 16 points