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AFL – Finals Week 2 in Review

Week two of the 2022 AFL Finals Series saw the biggest September upset since 2013 in one clash, while the other went very much to script.

Here’s how it looked for punters: 

Lion-hearted

Brisbane entered their semi-final encounter against Melbourne at lengthy head-to-head odds, which drifted further on Friday morning when it was confirmed their No.1 forward Joe Daniher wouldn’t play the do-or-die clash. By the time the ball was bounced, the Lions were all the way out to $4.28 with Palmerbet. But in edging the Dees by 13 points, Brisbane registered the biggest AFL Finals upset since 2013, when Port Adelaide upset Collingwood as $4.62 outsiders. The result on Friday night also represented a more than six-goal swing on the pre-game line of +25.5.

Stars on the night were Eric Hipwood (four goals, $16 pre-match to kick 4+), Charlie Cameron (three goals, $4.10) and Daniel Rich (30 disposals, $7 pre-match to collect 30+). Outsiders against Richmond and Melbourne thus far in the 2022 Finals series, Brisbane will enter their Preliminary Final again as heavy outsiders. The early H2H market for that one has the Lions at $3.64.

Straight-sets Dees left to rue 2022

Speaking of records, after reigning premiers Melbourne went 10-0 in 2022, they became the shortest flag favourites ever ($2.45) at that stage of any AFL season. At that time, it was the Dees then daylight in premiership betting. Just one other club (Brisbane at $6.00) were in single-figures. But things unravelled from there and, while coach Simon Goodwin wrestled back some of the best aspects of their game in the latter stages of the home-and-away season, the stark reality is that Melbourne were nothing short of poor in both their finals. Melbourne failed to deal with the ramped-up pressure of the Swans and Lions, and fell away in both. It’ll be a long off-season for the Dees, left to rue a season that promised so much. To not even be there on AFL Preliminary Final weekend can only be viewed as a distinct failure.

Pies fairytale continues

While things turned sour for Melbourne, the following night it went very much to script for Collingwood. Going in as $1.50 favourites, the Pies professionally dismantled Fremantle by 20 points, not giving the Dockers a sniff after earning an early buffer. The margin saw Craig McRae’s men cover the pre-game line of -11.5 points. Jack Ginnivan (three goals, $6.75 pre-game to kick 3+) again starred on the big stage. Caleb Serong (game-high 34 disposals, $2.50 pre-game for 30+) and Andrew Brayshaw (32 disposals, $2.10) flew the flag for Fremantle. In both Freo’s finals the pair had 30+ disposals. And at 21 and 22 years old respectively, have shown that they will drive many more AFL finals campaigns for the club.

But the night was all about Collingwood. After finishing 17th in 2021, their incredible rise continues; now a win away from a Grand Final berth. But like Brisbane, they go in as considerable outsiders in AFL Preliminary Final weekend. The early market has the Pies at $3.00 against Sydney ($1.40).

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