Maybe we have to stop tipping surprise results because most of the games finished up as expected. Essendon beating Freo? Well, that was a game that could have gone either way as could have the game between the Lions and the Suns. Collingwood’s form was in fact a little better than Hawthorn’s and the win by Port was probably tipped only by Power supporters. Teams are still finding their feet although watching the games you can see different levels of skill that should be helping you pick winners more consistently. It doesn’t get easier either as the season rolls on.
Essendon 10.12.72 defeated Fremantle 9.14.68
Does anyone know how the Dockers lost this game? Exactly 6 goals up at half time in what was obviously going to be a low scoring game Fremantle coughed up that lead to be just 3 points ahead at the last change. 2 very late shots on goal by Freo in the last minute of the game saw one ball bounce unexpectedly through for a point and then a gimme kick about 12 metres out hit the post! Unbelievable. Essendon coach Hird has had to endure a bit of pressure this week as well so to win in Perth and maintain that unbeaten start to the season is pretty good. The Bombers play the Saints next week and Fremantle play an in-form Hawthorn in Tassie.
Sydney 20.11.131 defeated North Melbourne 13.14.92
At half time the Kangaroos had a handy 3 goal break and it looked like it would be a tough day at the office for the Swans for the remainder of the game. In the 3rd quarter Sydney pounced on North and kicked 11 goals to 1 to lead by 8 goals at the start of the final quarter. Game over really! It’s hard to believe the Kangaroos would allow something like that to happen and it would not have impressed their away from home crowd at Blundstone. They would have been better playing next week’s opponent, the Brisbane Lions, at that ground. Sydney faces one of the other unbeaten teams, Geelong, at the SCG on Friday night. That should be a cracker of a game!
West Coast 27.15.177 defeated Melbourne 13.5.83
Eagles’ fans would have been doing a bit of nail biting at half time when their team held a slender and hard fought 10 point lead. Like Sydney, who was playing across the Strait, West Coast kicked 11 goals in the 3rd term to Melbourne’s 1 goal and any team leading by 12 goals at the start of the last quarter has a darn good chance of winning. The Eagles won their first and to maintain a winning streak they will have to beat Carlton at home next week. Melbourne may give the Giants their first win next week.
St Kilda 21.14.140 defeated GWS Giants 10.8.68
GWS was kept scoreless in the 1st quarter and while the Saints didn’t kick 11 goals in a quarter like everybody else seemed to be doing (except Fremantle and Essendon who couldn’t do that in a whole game) they showed that the home side was no hope to win the game. The margin was not quite as big as last time they met but enough to put the Giants back into perspective. The Saints meet a pretty hot Bomber outfit next week and will have to end that team’s unbeaten record to notch their 2nd win. The Giants need to lift to beat Melbourne next week. Not a lot though!
Brisbane Lions 13.16.94 defeated Gold Coast Suns 13.14.92
In the second close game of the round to date, the Lions hung on to win by 2 points against little brother the Suns in this cliff hanger. Brisbane opened its win account and Brown kicked 5 goals in a welcome return to some sort of form. Not a great standard of football but what it lacked in class it made up for in an exciting finish. The Lions travel to Melbourne next week to face a winless North Melbourne and Gold Coast will play the unbeaten Port Adelaide at Metricon. That will be an interesting game to tip.
Geelong 18.11.119 defeated Carlton 15.13.103
The game was played at a frenetic pace with pressured errors, turnovers, fierce tackling and some great goals until finally Geelong established almost a 6 goal break going into the final quarter . At one stage in the 2nd quarter the Blues overtook Geelong and went to a 17 point lead before the Cats hit back and turned the game around to be 19 points up at the long break. Carlton tried hard in the last but fell short. Geelong is playing with a new lease of football life so far this season and if they can sustain this form they might be looking at meeting Hawthorn in a Grand Final. The game against Sydney next Friday night will be another good indicator as both teams have yet to lose. Carlton is in the middle of a change of style with a new coach so you can expect them to start winning games soon. Problem is that they travel to Perth to play West Coast next week – maybe a zip 4 start for them coming up.
Richmond 20.15.135 defeated Western Bulldogs 10.8.68
With 13 scoring shots to 3 in the 1st quarter the writing was on the board for where the result of this game was going to end up. And so it proved with the Tigers dominating the game from the outset. That’s 3 wins in a row to open the season for Richmond whereas initial thoughts that the Bulldogs might be on a long term rebuild seem to be correct. The dreaded ‘F’ word will be on the lips of Tiger supporters who are back into the game going by the roar of the crowd today. They face a stiff test next week against Collingwood who will be looking to take out their bad loss to Hawthorn today on their next competitor – Richmond. Nothing will be easy for the Bulldogs this year and a trip to Adelaide to play Crows looks like, on current form , another loss looming.
Hawthorn 22.13.145 defeated Collingwood 13.12.90
The Pies started this game on fire and it looked like the Hawthorn monkey might be dislodged from their back. Even to half time when Hawthorn had got them self back into the game I doubt anybody foresaw what turned out to be a bit of a hiding for the Magpies. Is Hawthorn a 10 goal better side than Collingwood and the West Coast Eagles who both played in preliminary finals last season? Scary! They beat West Coast by 50 and Collingwood by 55 and will probably beat Fremantle by the same margin next week. Another big turn out to watch the Pies get humbled today with about 78,000 at the ‘G” and we can expect 80,000 at the MCG next week when they play the Tigers.
Port Adelaide 17.16.118 defeated Adelaide 16.13.109
The Power remained as one of the 4 teams undefeated this season so far, with a pretty handy win over the Crows. A goal that sailed through as the siren sounded made the margin a respectable and close 9 points but half way through that last quarter Port had the game sewn up. Has a total revamp of the Port Adelaide football club caused this form reversal or will the old Port stand up when they face some stiffer opposition? Maybe Melbourne should look at the Port set up if their poor season continues. The Power has every chance to remain unbeaten as they play the Gold Coast next week while the Crows look in better shape than the Bulldogs who they play at AAMI