With the AFL finals around the corner, Round 14 of the season has crept up upon footy fans and punters alike, and it is traditionally at this point of the year where sides scramble for points as they hope to finish in the top half of the ladder.
After the split round 13, with teams having mid season breaks, this weekend will see which sides used the rest to full capacity, and which did not.
With perhaps the upset of the season going down last weekend as the Saints stopped the thunderous efforts of Geelong, the top of the ladder has suddenly become that much closer, so for a full recap of last weekend’s action click here.
This round, the two fighting to finish on top of the ladder have relatively easy fixtures, and will no doubt see St Kilda looking to up their scoring and close down the percentage difference keeping them out of number one.
To back your side this weekend, or to place a wager on which team will do well, head to Ladbrokes.com.au for a great range of odds and markets such as the first goal scorer, the exact winning margin and many many more!
Below is a preview of the matches scheduled for round 14 of the 2010 AFL Season.
Carlton V Brisbane Lions
Bouncing off the weekend’s action tonight, Carlton welcomes the Brisbane Lions to Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium for their round 14 fixture.
Currently at $1.24 for the win at Sportsbet, the Blues head into the fixture off the back of some less than impressive results, and while in the top eight see just percentage difference keeping them from tenth place and need to up their game this round.
One potentially rewarding wager is to back Eddie Bates to score first, and after booting four last weekend his odds of $9 would go far, however if you think a Lions player will score first, back Brent Staker – as being the highest goal scorer last weekend for the side will stand him in good stead.
The Lions have seen a superb start to the season get progressively worse and are at $4.15 for the win, but without Jonathan Brown and Brendan Fevola, need one of the remaining men to work their magic.
Capping off the first half of the season with a loss to wooden spoon contenders Richmond, the Queensland side need to breathe some life into their campaign and with last weekend off may be able to do so.
Our ‘Tip Of The Match’ is to go with a Carlton winning margin of 1-24 at $3.20, as the Blues hold better form and confidence, although have not been scoring high.
Hawthorn V Western Bulldogs
On Friday evening, the MCG will see Hawthorn at home to the Western Bulldogs for what seems set to be an exciting game on the world famous oval.
These two are currently both in the top eight, although the Dogs are within top four contention if they win this round and are at $1.62 for the win with Sportsbet.
It should be pointed out to punters the Hawks are coming into this weekend off the back of some convincing form – six consecutive wins, and have seen their dismal start to the season turned around as they slowly creep up on the back of the top four, so are at $2.30 for the win.
The home side’s Lance Franklin was hugely impressive in round 13 – booting five goals and four behinds, and could be a worthy wager for the Hawks to score first at $3.80.
This is a tough one to pick with recent form hardly separating the two, as the Hawks have had better results at the MCG of late, but in head-to-head clashes the Dogs have had more victories.
In what will certainly be a close game, our ‘Tip Of The Match’ is to back a Hawks lead at half time by 1-12 points at $5.50, as the home ground advantage and confidence will pull them forward, but whether or not they will follow through in the second half is a choice you will have to make.
Fremantle V Port Adelaide
Starting Saturday’s action, Fremantle will play Port Adelaide at the Subiaco Oval as they take to their round 14 fixture.
Freo are currently the favourites to claim the win at $1.12, and sitting comfortably at fourth place on the ladder is a safe bet, with the home side coming off the back of a solid win over the Blues last round.
With Rhys Palmer still finding his pre surgery form, Freo will use this as an opportunity to give him some game time in preparation for their probable assault on the finals while Matthew Pavlich has been skippering his men to some of the best footy they have ever played.
The Power has had a terrible time of it lately, knocking up six consecutive losses – their worst record to date, and are at $6.35 for the upset, although it could be the first of many with Collingwood, the Dogs and the Saints all coming up.
While a Freo bet is the way to go in this one, the winning odds do not have a great margin, and so our ‘Tip Of The Match’ is to punt on a Freo winning margin of margin at $4.25.
Collingwood V West Coast Eagles
On Saturday night, Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium will see Collingwood welcome the West Coast Eagles for yet another round 14 tie which will surely only go one way.
The home side are dominating the odds at $1.06, and sitting at third place on the ladder will hope to edge closer to the front of the pack as they overcome their opposition in contention for the wooden spoon.
The knowledge the Pies could emerge from the weekend in the top two, or even leading the ladder if St Kilda and Geelong lose, is certainly a circumstance which will push them to score hard and fast this round against a weaker side.
The Eagles are at $9.30 for the upset, and a huge upset at that – currently looking as though they will claim the bottom of the ladder as Richmond won its last three fixtures.
In this fixture it is all about the winning margin to make the most of a buck, and so ‘Our Tip Of The Match’ is to go with a 40-59 margin to the Pies at $4.25, although the less lucrative $2.25 for a 60+ margin could be safer.
Adelaide V Essendon
Over in South Australia on Saturday night, the AAMI Stadium will see Adelaide at home to Essendon for their round 14 fixture.
The home side are heading into the game as favourites at $1.62, and with the better of recent records between the two sides, looks set to deliver and if they do it will be their first consecutive win of the season.
On the other hand the Bombers have more to play for, with a win keeping them within grasp of a top eight finish and are at $2.25 for the win – promising a close game.
With their recent defeats coming from top eight teams Geelong, Hawthorn and the Swans, this weekend starts a string of must-win games for the Bombers, a theory which will drive them this weekend.
Our ‘Tip Of The Match’, is for an Adelaide win with the payout coming from the 19-20 point exact winning margin at $31.
Geelong V North Melbourne
On Sunday afternoon, the Skilled Stadium will see Geelong play host to North Melbourne for their round 14 clash.
After being stunned at the MCG by St Kilda last weekend, Aussie rules fans around the nation will hold their breath as they wait to see how the table toppers will respond to the kink in their path of domination – but are still favourites at $1.16.
While many thought it impossible for the Cats to be held goalless in a quarter let alone a half, the Saints managed to do just that last round, and so the Roos, coming into the game brimming with confidence may fancy their chances with odds of $5.30 for the win.
Adding to the advantages for North are the crucial players missing in the Cats’ starting line up such as Cameroon Mooney and Steve Johnson, plus the fact they had their mid season break last weekend while Geelong were fighting a losing battle.
A huge test of strength for both sides with a win seeing the Roos into the top eight, our ‘Tip Of The Match’ is to back a Geelong winning margin of 1-19 at $4.75, as they will victor but North will put up a good fight.
Richmond V Sydney
Also on Sunday afternoon, the MCG will see Richmond at home to the Sydney Swans to see if they can continue the winning streak they have built.
While the Tigers may have improved since the last time these two met back in round three, the Swans are favourites to win once more at $1.74 – although it could be a close call.
Sydney started the season well, and then flew off the radar unable to deliver week after week, and after a couple of convincing wins before their mid season break, suffered a humiliating defeat last weekend which they will hope to overcome.
The home side now have one of the most in-form individuals in the league at the moment in Jack Riewoldt, able to turn the tempo of any game, and are at $2.10 for the win.
Considering what is at stake for both of these teams, it seems as though the Swans have more to play for, just sitting in the top eight while the Tigers are playing for pride.
Our ‘Tip Of The Match’ is to go with a Sydney winning margin of 20-39 at $4.50, with the likes of Lewis Robertson, Ben McGlynn and Daniel Bradshaw able to deal with Riewoldt and his midfield men.
St Kilda V Melbourne
Rounding off the weekend’s action, the Etihad Stadium will see St Kilda at home to Melbourne for their round 14 fixture.
The Saints, after delivering the defeat of the season, and perhaps the most important result for their campaign so far, are at $1.15 for another win this weekend.
No doubt looking to take the spot off table toppers Geelong, the Saints cannot afford to drop any points at this pivotal point in the season, particularly against sides ranked 13th in the league.
After some satisfactory results of late, improving on a sorry start to the season, the Demons face a tough challenge ahead this weekend and have long odds of $5.75 for the win.
In a case of overconfidence from the Saints, combined with the need to rectify a disappointing loss to the Crows for the Dees, this match could be far closer than many think.
Therefore, ‘Our Tip Of The Match’ is to punt on a St Kilda winning margin of 1-19 at $4.50 for a close result.
AFL Round 14 Fixtures
|01.07.10||Carlton V Brisbane Lions||Etihad Stadium||7.10pm|
|02.07.10||Hawthorn V Western Bulldogs||MCG||7.40pm|
|03.02.10||Fremantle V Port Adelaide||Subiaco Oval||1.10pm|
|03.02.10||Collingwood V West Coast Eagles||Etihad Stadium||7.10pm|
|03.02.10||Adelaide V Essendon||AAMI Stadium||7.10pm|
|04.02.10||Geelong V North Melbourne||Skilled Stadium||1.10pm|
|04.02.10||Richmond V Sydney||MCG||2.10pm|
|04.02.10||St Kilda V Melbourne||Etihad Stadium||4.40pm|