Week 2 of the AFL Finals Series saw Geelong stick it to the doubters, while GWS sealed a third preliminary final in four years after prevailing in a Gabba thriller.
Here’s how it looked for punters:
Cats silence critics
Geelong had to cop the looming ‘straight sets’ taunts for all of last week but came from behind to beat West Coast by 20 points on Friday night (pre-game line of -2.5). Down by four points at the final break, Chris Scott’s side came home strongly to book an AFL preliminary final berth against Richmond on Friday night. Skipper Joel Selwood was instrumental in the win. His tough 26-disposal display (paying $2.88 pre-game with Palmerbet to get 25+) willed his side forward at the contest, while Cam Guthrie (33 disposals) was equally impressive. Big man Esava Ratugolea kicked three majors (something he was $13 to do pre-game), while you can read more about four-goal hero Tom Hawkins below.
Take a bow, Joel Selwood
— 7AFL (@7AFL) September 13, 2019
Giants, too, defy doubters
In a see-sawing contest on Saturday night, GWS prevailed over Brisbane by three points in the best game of the 2019 AFL Finals Series to date. Starting as $2.31 outsiders with Palmerbet, the Giants got off to a rollicking start before being pegged back by the Lions. At both ends of the ground, Jeremy Cameron and Eric Hipwood finished with three goals apiece (something they were $2 and $3.75 to do respectively pre-game with Palmerbet). Meanwhile Toby Greene was dominant both around the footy and near the big sticks (see below). The win moves the Giants into $7 premiership chances, still the least fancied of the four sides left in the competition. Richmond ($2.20) currently lead the way, ahead of Collingwood ($3.25) and Geelong ($5.50).
— AFL (@AFL) September 14, 2019
Key men in strife
The Cats’ key man in the win was their All Australian forward Tom Hawkins, who bagged four goals in a key battle with Jeremy McGovern. Hawkins was dominant in the air against arguably the AFL’s best defender, and remained a key outlet in the forward 50 throughout. The big Cat was $3.75 to bag four or more goals with Palmerbet pre-game. But his behind-play hit on Will Schofield is a huge worry for Chris Scott. Without another key forward-50 target, Geelong are sweating on the result of the tribunal hearing tonight.
Will Tom Hawkins face scrutiny from the MRO for this incident with Will Schofield? pic.twitter.com/mFcZHc5Uid
— AFL.com.au (@AFLcomau) September 13, 2019
Similarly, Giant Toby Greene was instrumental in his side’s win over the Lions. His 30-disposal, two-goal effort was, in many eyes, a game-winning performance. In fact, Greene was paying $3.60 pre-game with Palmerbet to rack up 30+ touches. But he too is in trouble with the match review officer. A second-straight week of controversial incidents (specifically, running his hands across the face of an opponent) sees him straight to the AFL tribunal. Both cases will play a significant role in betting markets for this weekend’s preliminary finals.
Strange weekend. Greene gets a week for something with no definitive vision and nothing reported medically and Hawkins gets the same for whacking a bloke behind play. Embarrassing. @superfooty
— Mark Robinson (@Robbo_heraldsun) September 15, 2019
Early prelim markets
Palmerbet’s early head-to-head markets for this weekend’s AFL preliminary finals read as follows:
Prices could are likely to change throughout the week depending on the aforementioned tribunal results, and if the early forecast of Friday/Saturday rain in Melbourne eventuates.
— AFL (@AFL) September 14, 2019