Last week the AFL produced what could possibly be the upset of the season when the Pies beat the in-form Cats at the MCG, after racing to a massive quarter time lead. On Friday night, Buddy was in irresistible touch for the Swans against his former club the Hawks, kicking three goals including a 75-metre monster in the last quarter.
The Kangaroos bounded away to register their ninth consecutive win to sit alone at the peak of the ladder. The Suns’ misery continued at home in their capitulation against the Crows while the Eagles finally found some form outside of WA with a strong win in Adelaide over the Power.
This week’s feature match is again on Friday night with the Swans hosting North at the Sydney Cricket Ground. On Saturday the Hawks are expected to make light work of the Lions, the Demons battle the Power in Melbourne, St Kilda and Freo face-off, the Bombers and Tigers clash and the Crows and Giants are expected to contest a hard fought match in Adelaide.
On Sunday, Carlton and the Cats resume a traditional rivalry that peaked throughout the 90s. Capping off the round the Pies and Dogs face each other at the MCG and the Suns head west to Domain Stadium, where they are not expected to challenge the Eagles.
Friday, May 27, 7:50 pm (AEST) @ SCG
The Kangaroos face their toughest test of the season when they face the high-flying Swans, who sit in equal second spot behind North. Last week the Swans were impressive in their 14-point away win over defending premiers, the Hawks. Despite only registering 69 points, Sydney was miserly in defence conceding just 55 points in one of their best defensive displays of the year.
The Kangaroos’ best start to a season in almost 40 years sees them undefeated after the first nine rounds of the AFL season. While North has beaten the likes of the Western Bulldogs and Adelaide, they have had pretty cruisy draw up until this week. In their last start victory over Carlton, the Roos didn’t relent in posting a 67-point win.
Harrison Marsh comes in for the Swans in place of Ted Richards who is suffering from concussion. Daniel Wells and Sam Wright are the new additions for the Kangaroos.
Saturday, May 28, 1:40 pm (AEST) @ Traeger Park, Alice Springs
Both the Demons and Power are on the cusp of the top eight with five wins each and the victor in this clash could find themselves well in contention to play finals footy in 2016. Last week the Demons were on fire against the Brisbane Lions at the Gabba, kicking 19 goals in their 63 point victory. Pleasingly for coach Paul Roos is the fact the dominance of the team is not just limited to senior stars such as Bernie Vince and Nathan Jones – the younger players also seem to be relishing the challenge of week-to-week AFL footy.
While Port suffered a tough loss at home to the West Coast Eagles last week, they will be primed for retaliation against the Demons. Despite their excellent recent record over Melbourne, Port Adelaide starts this one as outsiders but with Robbie Gray back in the team, anything is possible for the Power.
Neville Jetta and Dom Tyson enter camp with the Demons while the Power have added Dougal Howard in place of the suspended Tom Jonas.
Saturday, May 28, 7:40 pm (AEST) @ Adelaide Oval
Both the Crows (8th) and Giants (3rd) are entrenched in the top eight after nine rounds and with GWS sitting inside the top four; they have the chance to sneak into second position if they can post a big winning margin. However, UBET punters don’t particularly think that scenario is likely with Adelaide starting as favourites – mainly because the match will be played in South Australia. Last week the Crows were ruthless against the struggling Gold Coast, smashing the Suns by a whopping 75 points.
GWS is enjoying the club’s best winning streak since they entered the AFL competition in 2012. Last week, they kept that run going when they beat fellow flag contenders the Western Bulldogs by 25 points at Spotless Stadium.
The Crows remain unchanged from last weekend, while the Giants have named Adam Tomlinson and Jack Steele in place of the injured Tim Mohr and concussed Matt Buntine.
Sunday, May 29, 1:10 pm (AEST) @ Etihad Stadium
Carlton and Geelong are on opposite ends of the ladder, with the Cats currently in second position and the Blues in the bottom half of the field in 12th. Both of these teams were last start losers, with the Hoops’ loss to Collingwood the biggest upset of round nine. The woeful first quarter against the Pies made it virtually impossible for the Cats to claw their way back into contention, and while they won the next three quarters, they couldn’t quite account for the 41-point deficit in the opening 20 minutes.
Carlton were riding a four game winning streak heading into their match against the AFL’s front-runners North Melbourne, but that was swiftly spoiled by Brad Scott’s Kangaroos last Saturday. The Blues eventually lost by 67 points. Had they beaten North, they would have been on a five game winning streak for the first time since 2000 when they won 13 in a row.
The Blues have added Kristian Jaksch, Levi Casboult and Matthew Kreuzer to an extended squad. Geelong has named Tom Lonergan, Jake Kolodjashnij, Jordan Murdoch and Billie Smedts to their extended squad as well.
Sunday, May 29, 3:20 pm (AEST) @ MCG
Collingwood endured a pretty torrid beginning to what promised to be an improvement on 2015, but they seem to have gotten themselves back on track after an extremely impressive and unexpected victory over flag favourites the Cats at the MCG on Saturday afternoon. After the first period of play the Pies were up 44-3, which set up the eventual 24-point win despite losing the second third and fourth quarters.
While the Magpies were enjoying the spoils of their win last weekend, the Bulldogs were completely outplayed against the surprise packets of 2016, the Giants in Sydney. The Dogs start this weekend’s match as favourites with UBET despite the 25-point loss to GWS last Sunday and they will be keen to atone from that performance by running over the top of the in-form Pies.
Collingwood has added Jarrod Witts, Jonathon Marsh and Ben Sinclair to its extended squad while the Bulldogs have named Matthew Boyd, Marcus Adams, Jack Redpath, Matthew Suckling, Will Minson and Josh Dunkley in their side.
Sunday, May 29, 4:40 pm (AEST) @ Domain Stadium
West Coast and Gold Coast are on opposite sides of the country and the teams are on opposite ends of the AFL ladder. UBET is offering the astronomical odds of $17 for the Suns to rise against the Eagles on Sunday afternoon over in the west. Last week the Suns again endured a big loss; this time by 75 points to the Crows at their home ground Metricon Stadium on the Gold Coast, but they did not have their best player and captain in former Brownlow Medallist Gary Ablett Junior.
The Eagles, on the other hand, brushed off their poor away record by disposing of the Port Power in Adelaide. Their first away win of 2016 got the monkey off their back and will fill them with confidence as the halfway mark of the season approaches. With an incredible record against the Suns, the Eagles are expected to justify their $1.01 price with UBET by winning with ease.
West Coast will be without Elliot Yeo and Andrew Gaff through injury, naming a host of potential replacements in Thomas Cole, Xavier Ellis, Lewis Jetta, Patrick McGinnity and Thomas Barrass. The Suns have made mass changes, adding Steven May, Tom Nicholls, Gary Ablett, Clay Cameron, Aaron Hall, Mackenzie Willis, Joshua Schoenfeld and Jesse Joyce to their squad.