Last week didn't go exactly as planned as my AFL tips for Round 11 ended up down -0.99 units. Luckily It's not the biggest loss and was only my third slight loss of the season out of 11 rounds, meaning we are still in profit betting on AFL this year. Let's hope there are plenty of winners with my 2016 AFL Round 12 betting tips.
Essendon Bombers vs Hawthorn Hawks (Friday, June 10 at 7:50pm AEST)
There is no doubt Hawthorn aren't the powerhouse they have been over the last few years, but you get the feeling it might look like it this Friday night against the Bombers.
As I’ve said almost every week in my AFL betting previews - Essendon simply can't score enough to ever trouble their opponents. They are averaging just 59 points per game at the moment and have only kicked 10 goals or more on three occasions. There isn't much to say about Essendon when they can only put up numbers like this. They just have to take each game as a learning experience and no doubt defensive effort will be the focus of their game with the Hawks this weekend.
So if we are certain the Bombers can't score enough to trouble just about any team, let alone the Hawks, we have to decide if the Hawks can cover a 10-goal plus line - or see if we can find value betting any other markets for this game. The highest score the Bombers have put on the board this season is 73 against the Magpies and they conceded 142 that week. They have conceded more than 120 points four times this season and I think it is highly likely that Hawthorn will put up a big score at Etihad. They haven't played here this season, but last year put up two scores over 130 under the roof. I just can't see the Bombers being able to stop the Hawks from scoring. They are coming off a tough travel to WA where the Dockers smashed them last week and we are reaching the midway point of what is a long season for their inexperienced list. The Bombers will try to play extremely defensive early in the match, but there has to be periods of the Hawks opening the floodgates. I'm not confident on the massive line, but happy to back the total game points.
Tip: Total Game Points OVER 183.5 - $1.90 at CrownBet (1.5 units)
Port Adelaide vs Western Bulldogs (Saturday, June 11 at 1:10pm AEST)
One of the more interesting games of Round 11 is when the Western Bulldogs head to Adelaide Oval to take on the Power. If the game was at Etihad, no doubt the Bulldogs would be heavy favourites, but at the moment the odds are fairly even. Have the sports books got this one right?
The last time these two sides met was at Etihad in Round 19 last season. The Dogs won by 64 points with Jake Stringer and Jack Redpath kicking eight goals between them. Despite the Bulldogs being plagued with injuries this season, they have managed to cover their losses and proved last week they are one of the better teams in the comp with a solid win against the Eagles. The biggest positive out of that game was that they kept West Coast's potent forward line quiet, including only allowing one goal from Josh J Kennedy. Port Adelaide have been solid the last couple of weeks, but they only took care of the Magpies and Demons. The Bulldogs are ahead of Port in most key stats areas and I think they will relish the chance for a challenging trip to Adelaide. I like the Dogs under 39.5, but I was tripped up taking too many under 39s last week, so I’m going to play it safe and take the Bulldogs head-to-head as my main play. In fact, an interesting stat is that since 2008 there has only been one game between these two teams decided by less than six goals, so clearly the Dogs and Port don't like keeping it close.
Tip: Western Bulldogs to win - $1.82 at CrownBet (1.5 units)
Brisbane Lions vs Fremantle Dockers (Saturday, June 11 at 4:35pm AEST)
Was a win over Essendon all the Dockers needed to gain some confidence and start a late run of victories in the second half of the 2016 season? Or will Brisbane see this game as their own chance to build some confidence?
The Lions are no doubt one of the most disappointing teams this season, but they have definitely played better footy on their home deck. They managed their only win against Gold Coast at the Gabba and also kept Sydney to a 3-point margin, along with being competitive against the Roos. I simply don't want to get overexcited about the Dockers because of one victory. They put up a big score against Essendon, but they needed to make a statement on their home ground. Ultimately I think the hunger will be there for the Lions this week. Tom Rockliff is back and looking fired up after his ridiculous 48-possession game last week and if a few other players stand up, they can cause real headaches for the Dockers. Time for Brisbane to show some pride.
Tip: Brisbane Lions to win - $2.15 at CrownBet (1 unit)
Geelong Cats vs North Melbourne Kangaroos (Saturday, June 11 at 7:25pm AEST)
Along with the Bulldogs v Port game and the Swans v GWS game, this one looks like a cracker as the Cats take on the Kangaroos at Etihad on Saturday night.
The big story around this clash is how the Cats will be without Tom Hawkins as he was handed a controversial one match ban for a hit on Phil Davis last week. Despite not being the most potent goal kicker in the comp at the moment, Hawkins is an absolutely huge loss. Apart from taking the best couple of defenders, he is used as a target more than any other key forward in the comp. The Cats will have to reshuffle their inside 50 ball movement and rely on guys like Steven Motlop to kick goals. Ultimately I think this will be their undoing. The Roos have proven themselves potent up forward, while also being a great defensive side. I'm not sure even stellar performances from Selwood and Dangerfield will make this a win for the Cats. It will surely be a competitive game, but the value is with the Roos here. They should get Todd Goldstein back in the side and will take plenty of confidence in after they smashed the Tigers last Friday night.
Tip: North Melbourne by 1-39 points (under 39.5) - $2.50 at CrownBet (1 unit)
West Coast Eagles vs Adelaide Crows (Saturday, June 11 at 5:40pm AWST)
The Eagles have faced a lot of scrutiny this season. They have certainly struggled to win away from home, but they haven't been easy games, losing to the Hawks, Sydney, Geelong and Bulldogs on the road. I still think they are one of the most dangerous teams in the comp and will be a tough prospect for the Crows this Saturday night.
In some senses this will be a battle of powerful goal kickers as Josh Jenkins, Taylor Walker and co take on the Josh Kennedy led West Coast forward half. In the end this might simply come down to the game being at Domain as the Eagles have put up big scores at home. They were down in most key stat areas against the Dogs last week, but should be able to regroup and prove too strong in a competitive game back in Western Australia.
Tip: West Coast by 1-39 points (under 39.5) - $2.25 at Sportsbet (1 unit)
St Kilda Saints vs Carlton Blues (Sunday, June 12 at 1:10pm AEST)
Carlton continue to be the surprise packet this season. They have won four of the last five, including tough wins against the Cats and Port Adelaide. On that form you have to say the Saints have a very tough task this Sunday.
The Saints go into this game without some pillars of their backline in Sam Fisher, Sean Dempster and Hugh Goddard. Nick Reiwoldt also pulled up sore last week, while Paddy McCartin was concussed. This one wouldn't be easy for the Saints even if they were at full strength. Carlton also has a fantastic record against the Saints, winning the last four in a row. I do think the Blues will struggle to blow this out, but the Saints have conceded a lot of points at times this season, so going to play it safe and just take Carlton at the line.
Tip: Carlton at the line (-8.5) - $1.91 at William Hill (1.5 units)
Richmond Tigers vs Gold Coast Suns (Sunday, June 12 at 3:20pm AEST)
Just a fortnight ago there was so much hope for the Tigers, but a lot can change in one week as it's doomsday again after a 70-point loss to the Roos. Their confidence is at a season-low, so they will be happy to take on Suns this week and hopefully regain some respect.
The Suns haven't won since Round 3 and I can't seem them turning it around in Round 12. They might be thinking they can come out strong against a deflated Tigers, but ultimately I think the Tigers are too proud to drop a game like this after their embarrassment last week. The problem here is that you just couldn't bet on any markets with too much confidence. It would take a brave person to take the Tigers at the line and you would be equally brave to take the Suns. I just one of those games you have to sit out.
Tip: No Bet.
GWS Giants vs Sydney Swans (Sunday, June 12 at 4:40pm AEST)
The game of the round is no doubt when the Giants take on the Swans at Spotless Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Both these teams are going to play big roles in the finals this year, so it will be interesting to see them match up against each other now that we know more about each side since their Round 3 clash.
The Swans managed a 25-point victory when they played the Giants at the SCG and while I think they will be hard to beat this week, don't write the Giants off. They are the number one clearance side in the competition and are ranked fourth in centre clearances. The Swans, meanwhile, are 15th for clearances. Where the Swans damage teams is going inside 50 and that's where Phil Davis will have to lead the backline and stop the Swans from putting up a big score. I do lean towards the Giants being able to get the win here, but I'm more confident in the thinking that it will be a close game either way. The Giants have lost only one game by more than 24 points this year (25 to Sydney in Round 3), while the Swans one loss was by just 10 points. Can't see either team losing in a blow out.
Tip: Either Team by Under 24.5 points - $1.77 at Sportsbet (2 units)
Melbourne Demons vs Collingwood Magpies (Monday, June 13 at 3:20pm AEST)
I just read an interesting stat on the AFL website that said Melbourne hasn't been the betting favourite going into a Queen's Birthday clash with Collingwood in more than a decade. At the start of this season it was hard to believe that would change this year, but after 11 rounds it is arguable the Demons are a better side than the Magpies. The bookies seem to think so anyway.
Collingwood and Melbourne come into this on the back of contrasting performances. Where the Demons were commendable against the powerful Hawks, the Pies were abysmal against Port Adelaide. You can give Collingwood a bit of leeway because of injuries, but ultimately they are going to find it very hard to win games playing like that. The Demons defeated the Pies back in Round 4 and there is no reason to think they can't do it again this week. More than anything, they have to fight against their own inconsistency, because the Pies don't really have the manpower to be a huge threat. I think too much has to go right for the Magpies to win. To be fully confident, I would prefer Jack Viney to be in for the Demons, but they showed they can cover his absence with some strong football last week.
Tip: Melbourne by 1-39 points (under 39.5) - $2.30 at Sportsbet (1 unit)
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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