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We have expert tips and predictions for AFL Finals Week 1, beginning tonight with Brisbane and Richmond in the Elimination Final. Melbourne will host the Sydney Swans in the Qualifying Final on Friday night, whilst we look forward to a Saturday twilight blockbuster Qualifying Final between Geelong and Collingwood.
Thursday 7:20pm AEST
The Gabba, Brisbane
The Brisbane Lions will host Richmond tonight in a do or die elimination final at the Gabba tonight.
The Lions finished seventh with a 15-7 record, hosting the seventh placed Tigers with a 13-8 record. These sides are meeting in their third final in four years. Richmond won the 2019 qualifying final 112-65. Brisbane however won their first final since 2009 a year later, defeating Richmond 69-54. Most recently, Brisbane led the Tigers by 42-points in round 20 at the MCG, only to over run in the end as Richmond got over the line 104-97.
Brisbane were struggling with form towards the end of the season. After blowing the 42-point lead to Richmond in round 20, they led Carlton by over 50-points at three quarter time, before Carlton kicked six goals in a row to get within under 20-points, before a late Brisbane rally got them over the line by 33-points. They struggled to get past St Kilda, only winning by 15-points in round 22. Before Melbourne blew them away at the Gabba (their own home ground) by 58-points in round 23, which has a lot of people concerned for their form heading into the finals. Whilst most significantly, they will be without superstar Cam Rayner due to suspension.
Richmond were very impressive late in the season. After their shock four-point loss to North in round 19, they haven’t lost a game. Drawing with Fremantle. Making a 42-point recovery against Brisbane in round 20, blowing away Port Adelaide in Adelaide by 38-points in round 21. They secured finals with a massive 61-point thrashing against Hawthorn. Before destroying Essendon by 66-points in a simple preparation for September action. A huge boost is Dusty Martin returning in time for finals.
- Joe Daniher
- Charlie Cameron
- Lachie Neale
- Dustin Martin
- Jack Riewoldt
- Trent Cotchin
Brisbane Lions vs Richmond prediction:
Richmond appear to be the strong side heading into this, they should get the win by 15-points, but don’t count out Brisbane either at home.
Brisbane Lions vs Richmond betting tip:
Richmond start slight favourites at $1.65 to Brisbane $2.20
Friday 7:50pm AEST
Melbourne will host the Sydney Swans in the Qualifying Final at the MCG on Friday night.
Melbourne the premiers of last year, finished in second place this year with a 16-6 record. Sydney came in third with the Sam record. Both sides will remember that Sydney were able to defeat Melbourne at the MCG in round 12, coming from behind to win by 12-points.
Melbourne’s form of late is what they needed, escaping the upset from the Blues in round 22 with Kozzie Pickett snapping the winner with 11 seconds remaining. Then they destroyed Brisbane at the Gabba by 58-points in the final round, which impressed most people. They definitely will want to give it their best to go back to back.
Whilst Sydney’s late form was nothing short of special, winning their final seven games including when they ended Collingwood’s 11-game winning streak in round 22. They will want to make an impact on this years finals, considering they got knocked out in only week one of last years finals.
- Max Gawn
- Ben Brown
- Luke Jackson
- Lance Franklin
- Luke Parker
- Tom Papley
Melbourne vs Sydney Swans prediction:
Melbourne to win by 25-points and get through to another preliminary final.
Melbourne vs Sydney betting tip:
Melbourne start favourites $1.49 to Sydney $2.56
Saturday 4:35PM AEST
Geelong will host Collingwood at the MCG on Saturday afternoon in the Qualifying Final.
Both these sides had incredible runs to the end of the season. Geelong coming in first place with an 18-4 record, taking on the fourth place Collingwood with a 16-6 record. No one will forget when these sides met in round three, with Geelong coming behind from 30-points at three quarter times to win by 13-points after kicking the last seven goals of the game.
Geelong looked a half decent side in the first nine games of the season. Winning five of their first nine games, with surprise losses to Hawthorn and Fremantle at their home ground. In round nine, they had a 22-point lead over St Kilda in the third quarter. But got over run by 10-points in an upset.
From that point on, come round 10 the Cats would not look back. They got on a mammoth run, from going from a side that was threatening to miss the eight altogether, to minor premiers with flag favourites. Winning their last 13 games consecutively and stunning the football world and turning heads. Most impressively they beat Melbourne at their home park in the top two clash in round 17 to take over top spot on the ladder. They secured the minor premiership with one game remaining with their win over Gold Coast in round 22. They are a good shot at winning their first flag since 2011.
Collingwood have impressed many in their first season under Craig McRae. After a positive start to the season, they looked half decent by round 10, with a 4-5 record heading into their clash in Perth with Fremantle. That’s when they started to turn heads, upsetting Fremantle in Perth to start their winning run of 11-straight. They held on in many close thrillers, the next week they held off the Blues by four-points. They went on to beat the Hawks by four-points the next week, and people started to really take notice when they came from behind to beat Melbourne by 26-points.
Collingwood went on to become the masters of winning close games. Their winning run up to round 22 consisted of defeating GWS by 11-points, Gold Coast by five-points, North Melbourne by seven-points, Adelaide by five-points. In round 19 Jamie Elliot kicked the match winning goal after the final siren, as Collingwood defeated Essendon by four-points. The close wins continued, in round 20 they beat Port by six-points, and then defeated Melbourne yet again by seven-points in a Friday night belter by seven-points. Collingwood’s winning run was brought to an end by Sydney by 27-points in round 22. Before Collingwood clinched it’s top four spot, defeating Carlton in one of the games of the year, coming from 25-points down in the last quarter, with Jamie Elliot kicking the winning goal again, as the Pies ended the Blues season in a one-point thriller. Now the Pies are ready for finals action and finished fourth, with a rising star of Nick Daicos and Jamie Elliot firing.