With three rounds of competition football now out of the way, the cream is rising to the top and it is the West Coast Eagles who have been the dominant side so far in 2012. They handed newcomers GWS an absolute lesson in how to play the native game last weekend, destroying them 150-69. They are joined unbeaten at the top of the ladder by Carlton, Sydney and Essendon but they face their toughest test of the year this Saturday night when they take on an on-song Hawthorn side. It is one of many exciting matches this weekend that will also see the Swans take on the Kangaroos and a local derby between the Gold Coast Suns and big brother the Brisbane Lions.
St Kilda V Fremantle, Friday April 20, Etihad Stadium
Both sides are coming into Friday night footy with two wins under their belt but St Kilda will start as deserving $1.41 favourites after dominating the Western Bulldogs by 63 points last weekend. Fremantle showed excellent defence to keep the Lions to just 35 points but they will have to find some attacking spark if they are going to beat a high class St Kilda line up in Melbourne on Friday.
Carlton V Essendon, Saturday April 21, MCG
Both these teams are unbeaten so far in 2012 but it would take a brave man to back against Carlton this weekend. The Blues have been in sizzling form in the opening stages of this season and were particularly impressive when dominating a highly rated Collingwood side by 60 points on Saturday night. Look out Bombers!
Collingwood V Port Adelaide, Saturday April 21, Etihad Stadium
Collingwood will be thanking their lucky stars they line up against an underperforming Port Adelaide side on Saturday after being humbled by Carlton on Friday night. They have too much talent in their lineup to be down for long and beware a wounded side with that many stars. Port Adelaide tried hard against Sydney when losing by 22 points last weekend but it is unlikely they will have the depth to match the men in the black and white.
Adelaide Crows V GWS, Saturday April 21, AAMI Stadium
There was not even a market open for the GWS clash with front runners West Coast last weekend and for good reason. The AFL’s newcomers looked like boys playing against men, going down by 71 points and their task does not get any easier this weekend. Adelaide experienced their first loss of the season to Hawthorn on the weekend and will be looking to get back on track quickly when they start as $1.01 favourites against the AFL’s rookies. There is no line currently available for the clash but if one opens up later in the week you can be sure it will be big one!
Win – Adelaide $1.01
Win – GWS $30.00
West Coast V Hawthorn, Satuday April 21, Patersons Stadium
This is likely to be the match of the round with a talented Hawks side making the trip to Perth to take on a red-hot West Coast who have proved unbeatable so far in 2012. It is by far the toughest test for the men from the west this year and it will be interesting to see how they handle the attacking force of Cyril Rioli and Buddy Franklin. This is one game where an upset could be on the cards but it is still hard to look past the Eagles who are capable of racking up some phenomenal scorelines.
Brisbane V Gold Coast, Saturday April 21, Gabba
Another match with a potential upset. The Lions welcomed back their inspirational skipper Jonathan Brown last weekend but even with their fearless leader they were unable to score more than 35 points against Fremantle. Meanwhile, the Gold Coast showed some much-needed improvement when going down by 17 points to Essendon in the first signs that suggest they might finally be ready for top flight football. With Gary Ablett junior and a bunch of talented youngsters in the line up, the Suns are good value at $2.72 to upset their big brother.
Geelong V Richmond, Sunday April 22, Simonds Stadium
The Cats may have just one win from three games so far in 2012 but they have too much talent to stay down for long. Richmond showed they can put points on the board when thumping Melbourne on the weekend but they are unlikely to have the quality to match a Geelong side that will start as short-priced favourites.
Sydney V North Melbourne, Sunday April 22, SCG
One of the few likely close encounters this weekend will feature two teams have shown plenty of promise so far in 2012. The Kangaroos produced an excellent display to beat a star-studded Geelong side by 17 points last weekend and come up against a Swans side that is yet to be beaten in 2012. This one is too tough to call.
Melbourne V Western Bulldogs, Sunday April 22, MCG
Melbourne have been nothing short of horrible this year, with only GWS having had more points scored against them. The Western Bulldogs are also yet to record victory in 2012 but should have enough talent to dispose of Melbourne who have looked out of their depth so far this year.
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