AFL Round 5 odds, betting and tipsPosted on 19/04 by T J Dilfer
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AFL Round 5
Sydney Swans v Adelaide Crows
The Swans survived a late Bulldogs rally to win held off by seven points in an exhilarating encounter at Etihad Stadium. Buddy Franklin was once more at the centre of things for the Swans, kicking three for the day from eight shots at goal, an early shoulder injury contributing to an afternoon where he wasn’t quite his usual clinical self. Adelaide will be looking to bounce back from a torrid evening at the hands of Collingwood. The Pies were rampant in the 58-106 victory in the grand Finalists backyard, taking full advantage of an insipid Crows display. They face the notoriously difficult prospect of beating the Swans at the SCG with the added hindrance of an injury to All Australian forward Eddie Betts.
Prediction – Swans
St Kilda v GWS
The Saints have an awful record down at the Cattery; a narrative that leads back to their last victory, in Round 10 of the 1999 season, so their 15.13 (103) 7.14 (56) on Sunday was not unexpected. The opening day win over the Lions remains their solitary success so far, and they face the imposing competition leaders at Etihad Stadium on Saturday. The Giants proved too strong for the Dockers in Canberra last time out, prevailing by 31 points in extreme conditions in the Nation’s capital. Although Fremantle made the early running, edging out to a nine-point lead, the Giants hit back with seven goals to two during the second and third terms before surviving a late fightback from their opponents. Picking up maximum points despite the mounting casualty numbers in their midst is a particularly satisfying outcome, a sign of progression for Leon Cameron’s side.
Prediction – GWS
Carlton v West Coast
The Blues remain winless and their paltry total in defeat to the Kangaroos in Hobart last weekend was their lowest score since round 9 in 1995 against St Kilda (24 points). The loss was exacerbated by the injury to skipper Marc Murphy in the warm-up, and they await the result of scans on his aggravated plantar fascia problem this week. The West Coast are turning the Optus Stadium into a fortress following last week’s comprehensive dismantling of the Suns. Excellent back-to-back wins, following their sensational Round 3 victory over the Cats, has lifted the Eagles into second spot on the ladder and they will be aiming to replicate that home form on the road; starting at the MCG on Saturday, a venue in which they have won only once in their previous six visits.
Prediction – West Coast
Port Adelaide v Geelong
After enjoying a start to the season that included a hat-trick of wins, the Power are hoping to rewrite history as they attempt to overturn an abysmal record against the Cats; they have won just once in the previous 14 meetings. They will be anxious to put Sunday’s defeat to the Bombers behind them and will be boosted by home advantage on Saturday. Geelong are depleted by a growing casualty list with defender Lachie Henderson and Cory Gregson both receiving setbacks in their recovery time this week and news that Gary Ablett may miss six weeks with his hamstring injury a further blow to the club.
Prediction – Port Adelaide
Fremantle v Western Bulldogs
The Dockers will be aiming to extend their unbeaten run at Optus Stadium to three as they welcome the Bulldogs to Perth on Saturday evening. With a 101 points average on home soil compared to just 55 on the road, Freo will be looking to continue their solid home form against a Bulldogs side that has regrouped after a slow start to the campaign. This should be an incredibly tight contest and the Bulldogs need to improve their worrying accuracy rate; at 37.6 %, they are ranked last in the competition and have kicked more behinds than goals this year. Perth has been an unhappy hunting ground for the Dogs in recent times – they have lost nine of their last ten matches on the West coast.
Prediction – Fremantle
North Melbourne v Hawthorn
The Kangaroos (two wins and two losses) are inside the top eight, while Carlton remains winless alongside Brisbane. They are basking in their third biggest win ever over Carlton after thumping the Blues by 86 points last time out. Tasmanian talent Ben Brown stole the show with five goals and now has 15 goals for the season, two behind Swans’ talisman Lance Franklin in the race for the 2018 Coleman Medal. A 2-2 start belies the Kangaroos defensive qualities – currently the meanest in the AFL. Only Richmond have bested the Hawks this year, and they are currently leading the competition for clearances and are aiming for their second 4-1 opening to a season in three years.
Prediction – Hawthorn
Brisbane Lions v Gold Coast Suns
The Lions find themselves in the familiar position of propping up the ladder – alongside Carlton - four games into the new season. The deflating manner of their defeat at the hands of Richmond last week also brought with it the unwanted record of a new all-time lowest score of 2. 5. (17); their previous low was 3. 4. (22). They begin the first of ten home games against their Queensland neighbours this week but it would appear that their quest to avoid back-to-back wooden spoons is going to be an uphill battle even at this early stage. The Suns are faring a little better, although the decision to sell a ‘home’ game to West Coast backfired as the draining travel schedule took its toll in the latter stages of the 13.18 (96) 10.8 (68) loss at Optus Stadium. The club have now lost 11 of their 12 matches in WA and will be anxious to return to familiar territory this week.
Prediction – Gold Coast Suns
Melbourne v Richmond
The Hawks inflicted a crushing defeat on the Demons last weekend and the comprehensive fashion of the loss will have led to some soul searching this week. Despite leading the competition for inside 50 entries, the 67-point loss represented their lowest goal-scoring display under coach (6.12.48), coinciding with their heaviest defeat under him. Richmond strolled to yet another victory over Brisbane last week, their 12th straight victory over the Lions in game in which the Premiers were barely mad to work up a sweat. The Tigers kept their opponents goalless until the 27 minute-mark of the third quarter and coasted to a comfortable 93-point winning margin. Dustin Martin was best man on ground with six goals as he maintains the standard of performances that may lead to back-to-back Brownlow medals.
Prediction – Richmond
Collingwood v Essendon
Collingwood were magnificent in their win in Adelaide last week, the 58-106 victory secured on the back of a dominated contested possessions tally of 198-165. Jaidyn Stephenson who booted five goals, and Steele Sidebottom with a career-best disposal count (43 possessions, including 23 contested) were instrumental in the Pies’ first win over the Crows since 2013. They face old foes Essendon in this year’s ANZAC day blockbuster with a clean bill of health and will be desperate to address their opponents’ recent superiority in this contest – the Bombers have won three of the last four head-to-head clashes. Both clubs are coming into the showpiece on the back of excellent Round 4 results; Essendon’s timely win over Port Adelaide, their second of the campaign, was the ideal tonic following consecutive defeats to the Dockers and Bulldogs.
Prediction – Collingwood
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