The AFL Lines – Round 11

Filed in AFL, AFL Lines by on June 6, 2012

Round 10 upset a few apple carts with the Blues, Eagles and Bombers all going down, Melbourne recording their first win of the season and Richmond lurking just outside the top eight with their toughest section of the draw done and dusted. With byes throwing the action into further disarray over the next three weeks, what are we to make of the Round 11 matchups? Greg Oberscheidt and Cliff Bingham put on their best Hardy Boys impersonation to try and solve these six mysteries.


If we’re behind then never mind

We’ll fight and fight and win…..

I honestly thought when Jason Gram kicked his second goal to put the Saints in front last night (after Richmond had been the better side for almost the entire game) that the Tigers would drop their heads a little and St Kilda would win. After all, it was the same script that played out the week prior against the Bombers. That Richmond not only won but kicked away a little in the end speaks volumes for their character – on current form, I’ve got them in the top six sides right now. Something special could be brewing down at Punt Road – if you don’t believe me, look at their draw between now and Round 18 against Carlton (or indeed their remaining draw in totality) and try to find a significant number of losses.


Well, I kept up my average…Such a good start to the weekend but crashed and burned on the Sunday. Some massive upsets didn’t help our cause and Sydney have found another way to screw me, the jerks. The bye rounds will be interesting. With less games around will we be more likely to take on a sketchy line? We’ll you won’t, but I probably will…


Results for Round 10 selections

GO – 5 selections, 5 units bet, return of 3.82 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = -24%

CB – 2 selections, 2 unit bet, return of 2.85 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = +43%

Total – 7 selections, 7 units bet, return of 6.67 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = -5%

Results for 2012

GO – 39 selections, 46.5 units bet, return of 34.64 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = -24%

CB – 24 selections, 23.5 units bet, return of 24.96 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = +6%

Total – 63 selections, 70 units bet, return of 59.60 units, Profit on Turnover (PoT) = -15%


(Please note – all times are EST)



Carlton v Geelong, Etihad Stadium, 7.50pm

Bookmakers’ line: Carlton +10.5 to +14.5


Carlton are bleeding their own blood at the moment with their focus shifting in from premiership to top-4 to making the eight to not folding over the last month. They’ve had a glut of injuries which gives them a bit of an excuse but not enough in my book. Their effort has been down and they’ll need to rebound.

The Cats have been topsy-turvy, dropping some easy games and seemingly battling for long periods of time. A change to the way they approach the stoppages has led to a reduction in contested ball with their one-out approach at the contest allowing them to pressure the ball carrier.

The Blues like to create space and shutting this space down, a focus of the Cats’ new style, has been the key to beating Carton in recent times and on the strength of that I’ll take the Cats for one unit at the minus.


Carlton appear on the ropes at the moment and with West Coast (at Patersons), Hawthorn and Collingwood their next three opponents after this match, are a small hope of stumbling all the way to a 6-8 record. With Murphy, Carazzo and Scotland all sidelined for extended periods, the time may have come to roll the dice on returns to senior footy for Waite (though apparently his back is still a mess), Duigan and Thornton.

Meanwhile Geelong were able to get a week of rest into a few senior legs last week while the side disposed of GWS, albeit after a first half that deviated significantly from the script.

The Cats have won six of the last eight head to head, although in the corresponding match last year they prevailed by only two points at the MCG. Geelong have won 16 of their last 20 matches at Etihad; Carlton only eight. That’s enough to tip me into 0.5 units on Geelong at the minus.



Richmond v Fremantle, MCG, 2.10pm

Bookmakers’ line: Richmond -30.5 to -31.0


The Tigers are ticking all the boxes and seem destined to play finals this year. Their midfield is red hot and their inexperienced defence is standing up. Riewoldt appears back to his best after a long summer of rehab, booting 14 in the last two weeks. He might find the likes of McPharlin harder to beat though and the Dockers will be hoping their veteran fullback can curtail ‘Jumping Jack’.

Maric v Sandilands looks a cracking matchup and possibly the key to this game. Ivan has won everyone over with his meteoric rise since donning the yellow and black, but the Fremantle giant will be a massive test for him. If Maric can run off Sandi and have an impact around the ground, then the Tigers could really kick away.

Fremantle showed some signs last week that they can get the job done but their consistency of effort has been terrible and must improve. Five goals feels about right to me so I’ll stay away from this one.


Richmond have been one of the revelations of 2012, winning five games in the face of an immensely difficult early season draw – their five losses have come against sides with a combined record of 36-14, while their latest three wins have come against sides with a combined record of 18-12.

Fremantle were looking pretty promising through the first four weeks – wins over Geelong at home and St Kilda away, a respectable road loss to the then 4-0 Swans…  and then it all went pear-shaped. Two of their last three losses were embarrassing and while they showed more fight last week against the Crows, a 29-point loss at home is hardly a strong outcome.

The Dockers have only come to the ‘G to play Richmond three times in the past eight years – losing by 48 points in 2005, seven points in 2008 and 49 points last year. Overall, they have played 37 games at the MCG in club history and only come away with nine victories, including losses in each of their last ten matches.

The Tigers have the momentum, a superior team and a substantial home ground advantage all in their favour this week, so despite the spread being pretty large for this match, I will have one unit on the minus.


Gold Coast v St Kilda, MetriconStadium, 4.40pm

Bookmakers’ line:  Gold Coast +43.5 to +45.5


45 or so points shouldn’t be enough here and the Saints will be keen for a percentage boost. The initial feel is to lay the points but the one thing stopping me is that Jones will go to Ablett. Whilst that should be a kicker rather than an out, follow me here. Jones is the number one stopper in the game;Ablett arguably the best player.

As remarkable as it may seem, the Suns played their best footy when Gazza was injured and with Jones likely to nullify his impact they’ll be forced to find other ways to win the nut.

A spike in influence from the younger mids might be just the tonic to get the Suns shining – no bet.


It was only a month ago that the Suns nearly pulled one out of the fire against Fremantle at home and looked for all intents and purposes like a side on the improve – mirages of that magnitude are usually reserved for desert treks in the movies.

St Kilda have shown greater creativity in attack this season and the scoreboard has reflected this – an average of 102 points scored per game and only one score of less than 80 so far this year.  Nonetheless, losses to Freo at home and Port on the road imply they’re a fringe top-eight side at best.

Last year the Saints won the corresponding game by 20 points, while they thumped the Suns by 92 points in Round 2 of this season at Etihad.

I don’t want to lay more than seven goals on the road and I don’t want to back the Suns under any circumstances right now – no play.


Essendon v Sydney,Etihad Stadium, 7.40pm

Bookmakers’ line:  Essendon –9.5 to -11.0


Fuck you Sydney!!! No bet.


I was feeling really good about this season until last week. Seriously, good luck to Mark Neeld and the Dees….. but what the hell was that? The only good news – the last bush league performance (falling in against Gold Coast in Round 3) was followed by towelling up Carlton. I have my fingers crossed that last week’s performance was an ‘aberration’ (copyright: Brad Scott).

Sydney looks a completely different football side with Shane Mumford back. Admittedly, the Bullodgs are not the sternest of opposition, but last Sunday’s performance was clinical. Good sides take care of business at home, and that’s what the Swans did.

Last year’s match (which the Bombers took out by a solitary point) was the first time these teams had met in Melbourne since 2006 – way to provide a fair draw across seasons, AFL. The teams had played six matches in Sydney during the intervening period, with the Swans winning on four occasions and three matches being decided by less than 10 points.

The line offered here implies the teams are rated pretty much equal at a neutral venue and that the Swans would jump favourites at home. That sounds about right to me – no play.



Port Adelaide v Hawthorn,AAMI Stadium, 4.40pm

Bookmakers’ line:  Port Adelaide +24.5 to +27.0


The last time these teams met the Hawks won by almost 30 goals. Apart from a bit of a shift in attitude, not a great deal has changed.

Hawthorn found form last week on the back of some Franklin magic. Their mids are winning the pill and taking pressure off the back six. 

The Power have won three in a row for the first time in donkeys. Plenty of their lads are having a crack and you can’t fault their endeavour. 

It seems reasonable to leave this one alone but in reality, the Hawks just dusted North by 20 goals and only three weeks ago, in Adelaide, North dominated the Power for all but 15 minutes of footy. Since then, the Power have knocked off the Suns and an insipid Carlton. I think the line should be closer to eight goals than four, and therefore will have two units on Hawthorn at the minus.


Port are showing significantly more fight this season than they did in 2011 – I think it’s fair to say that we won’t see the Hawks dust them up by 165 points again this time around. Their greatest improvement has come in defence, conceding 100 points only three times thus far in 2012 (to Essendon, Sydney and Adelaide).

Hawthorn have been enigmatic in 2012 to say the least. Given their next five games (at Port, Bris, Carl, GWS, Dogs), it’s quite conceivable that they could be 11-4 when they take on Collingwood in a Round 17 blockbuster.

The Hawks have won three of the last four overall between the clubs but only one of three between the teams at AAMI Stadium over the past four seasons.

I have a slight lean to the Power with the points here, but not enough to entice a bet.



Melbourne v Collingwood, MCG, 3.15pm

Bookmakers’ line:  Melbourne +44.5 to +46.5


Congrats to the Dees on their first win. This week will be an even bigger test. They’ve shown they can match it when they have a crack but they’ll need to repeat that performance every week to placate their fans. Their recent history against the Pies is actually ok given the general disparity in results between the clubs, whileNeeld’s knowledge of the Pies should be a help.

Collingwood dusted the Suns but so they should have; it’s a bit hard to see where they are. Pendles joins Swan on the sideline so a bit more responsibility falls on Daisy this week.

I can’t trust the Dees to back it up this week so the plus is out, and the Pies have been less than inspiring so no minus either. Beat it.


Melbourne finally aimed up last week and showed a bit of spirit. Whether that was an aberration or a sign that the players are starting to respond to Mark Neeld is still up for debate, but at least it’s a start.

Meanwhile, the Magpies appear to be rounding into ominous form – out of top spot on percentage alone, they’ve won seven straight and the question marks around Buckley’s coaching have faded into the ether… at least for now.

The last five head to head results provide a real mixed bag – a draw, a one-point win to Collingwood and three Magpie wins by north of 50 points. That’s volatile enough to have me giving this game a wide berth.


Bye:  Adelaide, Brisbane, GWS, North Melbourne, West Coast, Western Bulldogs


Recommended bet summary


1 unit on Geelong -13.5 at $1.91 (Flemington Sportsbet, Centrebet)

2 units on Hawthorn -24.5 at $1.90 (TAB Sportsbet)


0.5 units on Geelong -13.5 at $1.91 (Flemington Sportsbet, Centrebet)

1 unit on Richmond -30.5 at $1.92 (Sportsbet)

*Note: While TAB Sportsbet are currently offering Geelong -10.5, this line comes at odds of just $1.75. Therefore, we’ve opted to take the best line offered at $1.90 or better.


Thanks to Mark Nolan/Getty Images AsiaPac for use of the photo


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