The Hunter’s Weekend of Sports – AFL Special
Tips, Tricks, Picks, and Odds.
The Ball’s Rolling on Aussie Sports Again.
With the NRL kicking off last week, fans around Australia were glued to their seat all weekend watching game after game of footy action. But, when the last game wrapped up on Sunday – we couldn’t help but feel unsatisfied, as though our Aussie sports cravings had only been half fulfilled.
Something was missing…
Well, now there’s double the footy for sports fans to consume.
Starting with the Richmond v Carlton game last night, the AFL officially opened its season after a cripplingly long 173 day hiatus. And what an absolute show the Tigers put on. If last night was anything to go by, this is going to be a wonderful season of footy.
In celebration of the new season, I (The Hunter) am here to talk you through what we can expect from this weekend of AFL action, with an informed tip for every game of the round based on my research, analysis, and expert intuition.
Collingwood Magpies v Geelong Cats
Geelong were one of the more unpredictable sides last season, losing games they should have won, but winning games they had no right to win. They managed to scrape their way into the finals qualifiers by the skin of their teeth, where they were demolished by the Dees in a performance that can only be described as woeful. Selwood will be looking to lead his team to a good season opener in, what is, really the last chance for this cats core to succeed.
The pies had a great 2018, culminating in a final that was one of the closest fought battles in recent memory. Collingwood can definitely contend for a title again this year if key players like De Goey can get and stay healthy, they definitely have the upper hand in this opener.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Collingwood to Win
Melbourne Demons v Port Adelaide Power
The Dees then host Port in a game between two teams really vying for the top 4 this season. Last time they met, Port came away with the 10pt win. But, where Port’s season fell off the cliff, the Dees hit a run of form that saw them finish in 5th and end up competing in a semi-final (where they were obliterated by the eventual champion Eagles 121-55). If the Dees can keep up the form of last season (not including that last game) they could put in a good show here. With that being said, the Dees will be missing two key players in Vandenberg and Smith, and this could honestly be all the difference against a Power team with everything to prove. I can’t see the Demons winning this one.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Power to Win
Adelaide Crows v Hawthorn Hawks
We finally leave Melbourne for this Adelaide game between a team looking for redemption and a team looking for forgiveness. Adelaide will be the ones trying to redeem themselves after a mediocre (at best) 2018 season that saw them finish in 12th. The Hawks will be seeking redemption after putting in an excellent 2018 to finish 4th, only to absolutely bottle it in the first round of the finals in a 31 point loss to the Tigers, and then again with a 33pt loss to the Dees. On paper, Hawthorn are definitely still the better team and should take this one on their road to a better finals showing for their fans.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Hawks to Win
Western Bulldogs v Sydney Swans
This one’s an interesting one. The Bulldogs were quite average last season but will be looking to cement themselves as a contender after their horror opening round last year (82-point loss to WCE). The Swans, on the other hand, were a top six team last season and a genuine finals favourite, until GWS got involved. But the Swans have hit a rough patch internally, with questions over Buddy’s durability and the Swans squad as a whole. I think the Bulldogs – with a point to prove – have the potential to surprise a lot of people here.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Bulldogs to Win
Brisbane Lions v West Coast Eagles
Eagles to win.
Look, I love Brisbane, don’t get me wrong, but they’ve been far from good since the glory days of Akermanis, and the Eagles are the Eagles.
This one’s a no-brainer. No analysis needed.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Eagles to Win (Easily)
St Kilda v Gold Coast Suns
The battle to avoid the wooden spoon reopens with a clean slate come this match (thank god for Carlton last season), and both these teams will be desperate for a win after a 2018 to forget. St Kilda have had a tough run of injuries leading into this season, but the Suns aren’t exactly a competitive squad either. I anticipate a lot of demoralising defeats for both of these teams this season, including one for the Suns in the opening round.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: St Kilda to Win
GWS Giants v Essendon Bombers
The Giants are a team I can really see competing for a title after their good postseason run last year. They come into this game needing a win, having to face WCE, Richmond and Geelong in the next month. Standing in their way is the Bombers, who have had one of the strongest off-seasons in terms of recruiting and hype. Both teams will want to set the tone, but I can’t help but see GWS taking this at home – despite their weakened squad missing Daniher and Hooker in the backline.
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Giants to Win
Freemantle Dockers v North Melbourne Kangaroos
We close out the weekend of footy with a slightly underwhelming matchup between two non-finals teams with relatively low expectations for this season. I guess by the time Sunday rolls around we’ll need this as a palette cleanser from a weekend of great games (hopefully).
The Dockers aren’t great – neither are the Roos. Both are hindered by injuries. Honestly, I think this one will just come down to home advantage, these two teams don’t bring much excitement to the opening weekend. I mean, Fyfe’s pretty good I guess…
The Hunter’s Hot Tip: Dockers to Win