After a solid week of AFL betting tips where we picked 4 of 6 winners for a small profit we are hoping to finish the 2015 footy season strongly as we offer up our AFL Round 21 betting tips and preview.
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Hawthorn Hawks Vs. Port Adelaide Power (Friday, August 21 at 7:50pm AEST)
Round 21 kicks off on Friday night at Etihad Stadium with the Hawks hosting the Power. It’s not too often the Hawks have a home game at this ground and no doubt they revel in the high-scoring conditions afforded to them.
After a loss to Richmond three weeks ago, the Hawks have showed us why they are the best team in the league with big wins over the Eagles and the Cats – both away games. The Power, meanwhile, were solid in their victory over the Giants last round. It was just a fortnight ago, however, that the Power lost to the Bulldogs by 64 points. And they certainly won’t fancy their chances against the Hawks this weekend.
The Power will be happy to get Jay Schulz back this weekend, but I don’t think he brings enough goals to the game to overcome the scoring power of the Hawks. Etihad will be a joy for the Hawks to play on. They have won 13 of the past 14 at the ground and I can see them really smashing the Power this weekend. Unfortunately the 51 point line looks just about right and tough to bet on. I lean towards the Hawks covering, but will simply be utilising the Ladbrokes $2 special.
Tip: Hawks to win by 15 points or more - $2 at Ladbrokes
Collingwood Magpies Vs. Richmond Tigers (Saturday, August 22 at 1:45pm AEST)
Saturday afternoon plays host to a game that would feel more at home on a Friday night – Collingwood Vs. Richmond. It looks like the Tigers have locked up a spot in the top eight, but they will be hoping to snag a top four place if everything goes right.
The Pies have a solid record against the Tigers, but don’t have too much to play for in these late stages of the year. They won’t be making the eight after losing seven of the last nine games. You get the sense the Magpies might start trying out some new structures and start looking towards next year. The Tigers, however, will be doing everything they can to build the momentum they need going into September.
The Magpies do match up well against the Tigers and with the game on the big stage at the MCG, I like the yellow and black to win by 39 points or less.
Tip: Richmond by 1-39 points (under 39.5) - $2.10 at CrownBet
GWS Giants Vs. Sydney Swans (Saturday, August 22 at 2:10pm)
The Sydney derby is probably the most interesting game of the weekend – the Swans need to win to keep their top four hopes alive, while the Giants need to win to keep their finals chances alive.
These two teams met back in Round 3 of this year with the Swans winning by 21 points. The Swans were pretty much full strength for that game. This time around, however, they will be without Lance Franklin, Gary Rohan, Tom Mitchell and Luke Parker. Do not underestimate how massive these outs are. The Giants also lose a couple of important players, but more importantly get Treloar and Coniglio back in.
I do think there is tremendous value on the Giants for this game. The young team will be hungry and will think they are every chance against the Swans with those outs. I rate this game closer to a coin flip than the odds suggest, so will be getting on the Giants in a close one.
Tip: GWS Giants by 1-39 points - $3.00 at CrownBet
Gold Coast Suns Vs. Essendon Bombers (Saturday, August 22 at 4:35pm AEST)
After another tough week off the field, the Bombers head to Metricon Stadium to take on the Suns. It remains to be seen what the departure of James Hird will do for this side, but I lean towards the thinking that it’s too little, too late. This won’t be like when Mick Malthouse left the Blues. The Bombers have both eyes on the off-season and 2016.
The Suns might not have a hell of a lot to play for, but they would be confident of scalping the Bombers and getting a rare win. The Suns have a few key outs (Nicholls, Dixon, Harbrow), but the Bombers have made five changes too.
I just think football is such a confidence game and I’m not sure any team in recent history has had to deal with these problems on and off the field. Kudos to Essendon for occasionally playing good footy with all this nonsense weighing them down, but it all looks like too much now. This will be too tough on the road.
Tip: Gold Coast at the line (-11.5) - $1.92 at Sportsbet
St Kilda Saints Vs. Geelong Cats (Saturday, August 22 at 7:20pm AEST)
It’s been quite a while since we have talked about the Cats as ‘finals chances’ this late in the season. Usually they have it locked up by now and we would be talking about their premiership chances. I certainly don’t think they can win the premiership this year, but they are still a champion team and will be too strong for the Saints this Saturday night.
The Cats won four in a row before falling to the Hawks last week. They have been playing really solid football and the good news is that they haven’t been relying on their old guard. They will be happy with a few ins this week and will be taking on the Saints without Roberton, Dempster, Armitage, Longer and more. Armitage is the biggest loss of this pack and I actually think he swings the ball at least a goal or two further in the Cats favour. The line is quite high, but I don’t mind the look of the Cats here.
Tip: Geelong at the line (-26.5) -$1.92 at Sportsbet
Adelaide Crows Vs. Brisbane Lions (Saturday, August 22 at 7:10pm AEST)
The Lions got their third win of the year last week and they won’t be making it a fourth this weekend at Adelaide Oval when they take on the Crows.
Adelaide snuck into the top eight last week when they smashed the Bombers and will be super keen to keep the momentum going and secure a shot in September. Dangerfield is in career best form and will cause plenty of headaches for the Lions on Saturday during his 150th game. The Crows also get Douglas back. These two teams met back in Round 13 at the Gabba with the Crows winning by 13 points. This will be much tougher at Adelaide Oval and I expect the Crows to win by a big margin. I do lean towards the Crows covering the big line, but the safe option is to sit this one out.
Tip: No Bet
North Melbourne Kangaroos vs. Fremantle Dockers (Sunday, August 23 at 1:10pm AEST)
Once again punters and the public seem to be underestimating the top-of-the-ladder Fremantle Dockers as the Kangaroos are favourites this Sunday. This might be because of whispers that Aaron Sandilands will be a late withdrawal. If Sandilands doesn’t make the trek to Melbourne, the Roos deserve to be favourites. He has been named, however, so we will look at this game as if he is playing.
Firstly, the Dockers are huge value here. The fact this game is at Etihad will not scare them. They have won 9 of 11 games on this pitch and four of the last five. We also have to remember the Roos have only beat the five bottom teams on their recent winning streak. This is going to be a huge test. The Dockers have only lost three tough games this year and defeated the Roos by 73 points earlier this year. Ziebell is out too which is a huge loss to the Roos as he is arguably one of the most important players to their structure. Love the Dockers at this price, but will certainly watch and see what happens with Sandilands – without him, Goldstein will monster in the ruck.
Tip: Fremantle Hd-Hd - $2.20 at CrownBet
Carlton Blues Vs. Melbourne Demons (Sunday, August 23 at 3:20pm AEST)
It’s not too often the Demons are paying $1.40 for the win, but that’s what an opponent like Carlton will do for you. Should Melbourne be such heavy favourites? Against the Blues at the MCG, probably.
The Dees really struggled at Etihad against the Dogs last week and will be happy to get back on the MCG and bounce back. They have played some okay football over the last couple of months and certainly better than the Blues. It was just a few weeks ago the Demons beat the Pies and I think they will get their seventh win of the season here. Personally, however, I will be fading this game as when bottom teams like these two play each other late in the year you just never know what will happen. The Blues could come out and play loose, adventurous footy. I lean towards the Demons winning and being able to cover the line, but going the safe road and leaving this one alone.
Tip: No Bet
West Coast Eagles Vs. Western Bulldogs (Sunday, August 23 at 2:40pm AEST)
There aren’t many who would have predicted that this game in Round 21 between the Bulldogs and Eagles would be a top four battle. But here we are and it’s certainly going to be one of the most talked about games of the round.
Earlier this year the Bulldogs beat the Eagles by 10 points. That game was at Etihad, while this one is over at Domain Stadium. There is no doubt this will be really tough for the Dogs, but I personally don’t think the ground will worry them. What will worry them is being dominated in the ruck as Nic Nat comes back into the side.
The Bulldogs will also be without Matt Boyd and Liam Picken – both massive losses. Luckily for the Dogs the Eagles have even more outs with half their backline on the sideline and Chris Masten also out after getting a bit hungry against the Dockers last week. I think this one comes down to the fact the Bulldogs have been too good lately to be such big underdogs. The Eagles have had a really tough month of football and will feel some of their outs.
Tip: Western Bulldogs at the line (+22.5) - $1.92 at Sportsbet
Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly. Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!
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