About a third of the 2009 season has passed and St Kilda and Geelong appear to be the teams to beat. At this stage they seem all but certainties to face off in the AFL grand final. Both are undefeated and have a three game lead at the top of the AFL ladder.
It just hasn’t been that they have been winning but the way in which they are winning. Geelong have been suffocating opposition teams out of the contest, while the defence of St Kilda has been breathtaking.
As you would expect, the two teams have dominated AFL betting and their AFL odds continue to shrink as every week goes by.
In other AFL results, Richmond have followed up their win against the Kangaroos with two more losses; their latest being a pretty insipid effort against the Brisbane Lions. The absence of Matthew Richardson is really going to hurt them as not only was he their best player but their leading goal-kicker. At 1-6 you would think Terry Wallace’s days at Punt Road are numbered.
Fremantle have managed to turn their season around with three straight wins. They have gone from a parlous 0-4 to a more respectable 3-4. They host Hawthorn this week and are a real chance to get back on a level track at 4-4.
West Coast just held off a spirited Melbourne side. Although they lost, the Demons probably won more friends with that courageous performance than anything else they have done over the last four years. They showed real character and it looks as though there might be something there to work with.
What to make of Essendon? They have been consistently inconsistent. Their last five matches have gone WLWLW and against St Kilda this week, this streak is destined to continue. They are a tipper’s nightmare as they seem to lose the games they shouldn’t and win the ones they shouldn’t- their latest effort over Hawthorn a case in point.
It wasn’t a good week for the Adelaide teams. Port Adelaide went down to North Melbourne while the Crows were no match for a resurgent Western Bulldogs.
Round 8 of the AFL fixture has thrown up some interesting games. Sydney-West Coast was a huge rivalry and used to be the biggest game in the league. The two contested back to back AFL Grand Finals in 2005-06. If the West Coast don’t get a win in Sydney, their season and the future of coach John Worsfold could be in real trouble.
A classic rivalry which never grows old is Collingwood – Carlton. These two are the best of enemies and both would love nothing better than to rebound this week with a victory at the expense of the other.
David Wiseman is a sports journalist, who writes about all team sports for Betfair Australia. As well as the afl season, he is particularly looking forward to following the nrl odds.