Jul 22, 2022
A highly unhelpful guide to Round Nineteen
The only guide to the round that admits it’s completely unhelpful. What it lacks in insight, it makes up for with wild theories and detours onto unrelated topics.
It’s your unhelpful guide to Round Nineteen.
Richmond vs. Fremantle (Marvel) 7:50pm Fox/Seven
It’s another edition of ‘How can Richmond Manufacture Another Loss,’ fast becoming one of my favourite rebooted TV shows.
I’m so excited to see how they do it this week. Perhaps blowing a big lead again? Or poor goalkicking? Maybe they’ve got something new, like everyone getting injured while running through the banner?
The anticipation is killing me.
The Dockers got a bit of good news this week, with the idea the Grand Final parade could be held on the Yarra with boats. This nautical theme would suit the Dockers, especially with getting on and off the boats.
What I’d like to see, is if they make the Grand Final, is the Dockers honouring their heritage by calling a strike and holding up the parade.
This is being held at Richmond’s home ground, Marvel Stadium, which makes sense in the AFL’s scheduling department.
I’m tipping the Dockers.
North Melbourne vs. Hawthorn (Blundstone) 1:45pm Fox Footy
Leigh Adams has never lost a game as head coach of North Melbourne, and while he has only coached one game, that’s still an amazing stat.
A win here and they’ll be a statue of him up at Arden Street before next week is out.
Could it happen? Theoretically, it’s possible. Hawthorn hasn’t been a model of consistency this year, and now that the Kangaroos have achieved their season aim of getting David Noble sacked, they can set their sights on a new horizon.
But they are still North Melbourne, and they’ve regularly turned in mid-VFL level performances this season.
Hawthorn may be used to Tasmania, but they’ve never had a regular season match at Bellerive Oval.
It’s a challenge for any team, as occasionally, a light breeze can spring up and it is a bit chilly.
Once in the outer there, my beer froze into a solid block while I was drinking it, and anyone who knows me knows that means it froze in under two minutes.
You wouldn’t know it, but a beer icy pole is not as enjoyable as you’d think.
I’m tipping Hawthorn.
Sydney vs. Adelaide (SCG) 1:45pm Fox Footy
The rise of Chad Warner has been meteoric this year, so much so that he’s been anointed John Longmire’s “favourite son”.
That must be nice. I was anointed my father’s ‘least favourite son’ and considering I was his only son, I felt that was an unnecessary title to bestow.
In fairness, he wasn’t a mean man, it was more reflective of my personality.
This week, Malcolm Blight said if North Melbourne gets awarded a priority pick, the Crows deserve one too.
I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I believe every team should get a priority pick. We should rank the order of the priority picks by where teams finish on the ladder.
It would be nice to get a bonus for performing poorly at work. I would be rich if this was the way things work outside of football.
I could probably have bought several homes if this was the case.
I’m tipping Sydney.
Port Adelaide vs. Geelong (AO) 4:35pm Fox Footy
The Power are still in the race for eighth spot, which nobody seems to want this year.
Above them are Richmond, the Bulldogs and St Kilda. Richmond and St Kilda have been self-sabotaging so much recently I feel like they could come to my support group.
The Bulldogs seemed in better form last week, but they were playing St Kilda, so that can be a bit of a false dawn.
This should all give the Power some hope, but getting the Dees followed by Geelong is about as helpful as Dermott Bretton rushing in to support your position on something.
The Cats have had eight straight wins and are the in-form team of the competition.
There’s one question the Geelong fans have, how will this all hold up in September?
They’ve seen this movie before, and it hasn’t ended well in recent years. It seems though the Cats are in better shape.
Plus, this season is all over the shop. Every time a team moves into Premiership favouritism, they seem to drop out of it quicker than Jack Ginnivan in a tackle.
I’m tipping Geelong.
Brisbane vs. Gold Coast (G) 7:10pm Fox Footy
A QClash used to be about as enticing as listening to Scott Morrison deliver a sermon.
While we may never know what the ‘Q’ in QClash stands for, a mystery lost in the sands of time, these days I don’t dread having to watch it, given the Lions are one of the top teams and the Suns are fine.
Gold Coast need this one, given a poor effort last week against Essendon that puts them on the cusp of sticking a fork in this season.
Even all the teams above them falling like drunk guys trying to climb a fence to get into a beer garden might not see them get to the top eight.
Nine players have been dropped between these two sides, with the Lions getting back Marcus Adams, Dayne Zorko, Daniel Rich, Jarrod Berry and Oscar McInerney.
They’re some handy players.
I’m tipping the Lions.
Western Bulldogs vs. Melbourne (Marvel) 7:25pm Fox/Seven
Luke Beveridge came out swinging against the AFL’s warning this week that players won’t be rewarded for ducking into tackles.
In fairness to the AFL, which is something I’m loath to do, the AFL can’t be criticised for not doing enough about concussions, then also be criticised for when they do something about it.
Here’s a rule to protect players for the long term, and certain players then exploit that rule, not to mention set a bad example for the junior ranks of footy.
Plus, the AFL can’t wait until next year to act, the players don’t wait until next season to exploit the rules.
Where I would criticise the AFL is they’re often not consistent in the long term about this. Staging is an example. There’s a blitz, then they seem to forget it.
Around concussions, that’s not an option.
I’m tipping the Dees.
Carlton vs. Greater Western Sydney (Marvel) 1:10pm Fox Footy
Word that boats will be used on the Yarra for the Grand Final parade brought back fond memories of the time Carlton’s hovercraft sank on the same river.
Lately, it hasn’t seemed like the Blues are going to have to worry about any nautical adventures in September.
They’ve been a model of inconsistency, winning one week, losing the next. For Blues fans this is still way better than losing one week, losing by more the next, and getting destroyed the week after that.
The Giants have no such water-based concerns, sitting fifteenth on the ladder and with one eye on who is going to coach them next year.
There are so many options, like Alastair Clarkson and Alastair Clarkson.
The Giants big problem is I haven’t read a single article that says they have a ‘war chest’ which is what you need to land the big fish.
I’m tipping the Blues.
Collingwood vs. Essendon (MCG) 3:20pm Fox/Seven
The Pies charge up the ladder has been both relentless and depressing. When I bump into Collingwood fans, they are happy, hopeful for the future. You just hate to see it.
Essendon have certainly lifted in recent weeks, making this not the easy win it was earlier in the year.
The Bombers have won three in a row and have beaten the Swans and the Lions.
Brisbane did have a lot of outs but it’s still an impressive run of form.
And while I’d love to see Collingwood’s win streak come to an end, the idea of wanting Essendon to win is not something I want to contemplate.
The Bombers would do well to try and stop Nick Daicos, who has been running around like there’s no one else out on the field.
He makes games look like training.
Coaches say they won’t tag players as it upsets their system, even though that system then usually results in a loss.
But the key to footy is having a system, not wins.
Pies to win.
West Coast vs. St Kilda (OS) 4:40pm Fox Footy
Brett Ratten said many of his senior players are on their "last chance", what he didn’t mention is how many chances came before that last chance.
The good news for those senior players is that in footy, you get 30 or 40 last chances.
The Saints season has the faintest of pulses but it’s fading fast. They’ve run from the eight faster than a contestant on Hunted.
A win against the Eagles suddenly becomes essential, and this being St Kilda there are no certainties this is going to go well.
If they can’t beat West Coast, making finals will probably be a blessing.
Especially when you consider the Eagles are without Dom Sheed, Jeremy McGovern, Tom Joyce, Oscar Allen, Luke Edwards, Campbell Chesser, Tom Cole, Nic Naitanui and Elliot Yeo.
Apart from those players, they’re at full strength.
I’m tipping the Saints.
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