Palmerbet Sports Team breaks down a bumper line-up of Round 4 clashes in our AFL Preview, including unbeaten Port Adelaide’s road trip to take on Essendon and a massive clash between Hawthorn and Melbourne at the ‘G!
Friday 13 April, 19:20 (AEST)
|B – Luke Brown, Daniel Talia, Kyle Hartigan|
HB – Rory Laird, Tom Doedee, Jake Kelly
C – Rory Atkins, Bryce Gibbs, Paul Seedsman
HF – Wayne Milera, Mitch McGovern, Tom Lynch
F – Eddie Betts, Taylor Walker, Josh Jenkins
FOL – Sam Jacobs, Rory Sloane, Cameron Ellis-Yolmen
I/C – Hugh Greenwood, David Mackay, Richard Douglas, Darcy Fogarty
|B – Sam Murray, Lynden Dunn, Brayden Maynard|
HB – Jack Crisp, Matthew Scharenberg, Jeremy Howe
C – Steele Sidebottom, Scott Pendlebury, Tom Phillips
HF – Jordan de Goey, Ben Reid, Will Hoskin-Elliott
F – Travis Varcoe, Ben Crocker, James Aish
FOL – Brodie Grundy, Adam Treloar, Josh Thomas
I/C – Tom Langdon, Callum Brown, Jaidyn Stephenson, MasonCox
History: Played 41: Collingwood 25 V Adelaide 15 (1 Draw).
Last Meeting: Round 19, 2017: Collingwood 15.13 (103) drew with Adelaide 16.7 (103) at MCG.
Final Thoughts: Adelaide have been building nicely since their first-up loss to Essendon, outlasting Richmond in the grand final rematch in Round 2 with a 36-point win before thumping St Kilda by 49 points.
Collingwood eased some pressure last week with a 24-point win over Carlton after losing their first two to Hawthorn and GWS.
The Magpies are 8-8 away to the Crows – the best record of any club against the Crows in Adelaide. But the Crows are unbeaten in the last five games between the clubs. The clubs’ last seven encounters were decided by margins of 28 points or less, culminating in last year’s draw at the MCG.
The Crows have an excellent record as home favourites – both head-to-head and against the line – and the start looks to be too skinny to help a Magpies side that have won just four of their last 12 interstate.
Saturday 14th April, 13:45 (AEST)
|Jeremy Finlayson, Nick Haynes, Heath Shaw||B||Nathan Wilson, Joel Hamling, Luke Ryan|
|HB||Tim Taranto, Phil Davis, Aidan Corr||HB||Michael Johnson, Alex Pearce, Connor Blakely|
|C||Brett Deledio, Callan Ward, Lachie Whitfield||C||Ed Langdon, Lachie Neale, Stephen Hill|
|HF||Sam J. Reid, Harry Himmelberg, Adam Tomlinson||HF||Adam Cerra, Cam McCarthy, Hayden Ballantyne|
|F||Toby Greene, Jeremy Cameron, Stephen Coniglio||F||Brandon Matera, Matt Taberner, Michael Walters|
|FOL||Dawson Simpson, Jacob Hopper, Dylan Shiel||FOL||Aaron Sandilands, Nat Fyfe, David Mundy|
|I/C||Jonathon Patton, Ryan Griffen, Daniel Lloyd, Matt de Boer||I/C||Andrew Brayshaw, Mitchell Crowden, Tommy Sheridan, Bailey Banfield|
History: Played 7: Fremantle 4 V GWS 3.
Last Meeting: Round 19, 2017: GWS 13.20 (98) d Fremantle 13.8 (86) Spotless Stadium.
Final Thoughts: GWS received some food for thought courtesy of a 16-point loss to Sydney in last week’s derby, undoing some of the good work of their convincing wins over Western Bulldogs and Collingwood in the opening two rounds.
Fremantle have recovered from a 50-point loss to Port in Round 1 with back-to-back wins over Essendon and Gold Coast at their home ground. But a record of just one win in their last seven games away from Perth doesn’t bode well for this trip to Canberra.
The Giants have won their last three against the Dockers, including their only two home games in the rivalry’s history.
The Giants are 10-1 in their last 11 games as home favourites, but just 4-7 against the line. With the Dockers boasting a fair record against the line as underdogs and carrying some momentum into this clash, they look a solid bet with a hefty start.
Saturday 14th April, 14:10 (AEST)
|Alex Rance, David Astbury, Dylan Grimes||B||Sam Mayes, Josh Walker, Darcy Gardiner|
|HB||Bachar Houli, Nick Vlastuin, Jayden Short||HB||Luke Hodge, Harris Andrews, Alex Witherden|
|C||Shaun Grigg, Trent Cotchin, Kamdyn McIntosh||C||Tom Cutler, Dayne Zorko, Rohan Bewick|
|HF||Jason Castagna, Josh Caddy, Jacob Townsend||HF||Cameron Rayner, Mitch Robinson, Hugh McCluggage|
|F||Jack Riewoldt, Shane Edwards, Dan Butler||F||Allen Christensen, Eric Hipwood, Charlie Cameron|
|FOL||Toby Nankervis, Kane Lambert, Dustin Martin||FOL||Stefan Martin, Jarrod Berry, Dayne Beams|
|I/C||Brandon Ellis, Jack Graham, Dion Prestia, Reece Conca||I/C||Nick Robertson, Lewis Taylor, Zac Bailey, Rhys Mathieson|
History: Played 28: Richmond 19 V Brisbane 8 (1 Draw).
Last Meeting: Round 17, 2017: Richmond 16.16 (112) d Brisbane 12.9 (81) at Etihad Stadium.
Final Thoughts: Richmond sit just outside the eight on percentages but importantly they bounced back from their grand final rematch loss in Adelaide with a 13-point win over in-form Hawthorn in Round 3.
There have been signs of promise despite Brisbane’s winless start to 2018, with their losses to the Saints, Demons and Power all by 26 points or less. A last-quarter surge saw them almost stun Port at Adelaide Oval, ultimately losing by just five.
The Tigers boast a 10-1-2 record against the Lions at home, while they are currently on an 11-match winning streak in the rivalry that stretches back to 2010. The Tigers have won their last six against the Lions by 25-plus margins.
The Tigers are also 9-1 as home favourites with a good record against the line, but while the Lions are dreadful on the road results-wise, they are 8-3 against the line as away underdogs – and they’ve proven already they can stay in the contest.
Saturday 14th April, 16:35 (AEST)
|Ed Richards, Aaron Naughton, Bailey||B||Nick Smith, Heath Grundy, Dane Rampe|
|HB||Matthew Suckling, Easton Wood, Jason Johannisen||HB||Callum Mills, Aliir Aliir, Jarrad McVeigh|
|C||Lachie Hunter, Luke Dahlhaus, Bailey Dale||C||Jake Lloyd, Luke Parker, Isaac Heeney|
|HF||Josh Dunkley, Marcus Bontempelli, Lin Jong||HF||Will Hayward, Dean Towers, George Hewett|
|F||Tory Dickson, Jack Redpath, Billy Gowers||F||Tom Papley, Lance Franklin, Kieren Jack|
|FOL||Tim English, Toby McLean, Jack Macrae||FOL||Callum Sinclair, Josh P. Kennedy, Dan Hannebery|
|I/C||Mitch Wallis, Mitch Honeychurch, Shane Biggs, Caleb Daniel||I/C||Harry Cunningham, Oliver Florent, Zak Jones, Nic Newman|
History: Played 159: Western Bulldogs 81 V Sydney 77 (1 Draw).
Last Meeting: Round 12, 2017: Sydney 13.9 (87) d Western Bulldogs 6.6 (42) at SCG.
Final Thoughts: Embarrassed by GWS and West Coast in the opening two rounds, Western Bulldogs enjoyed a remarkable turnaround in Round 3 via a 21-point upset of Essendon.
Sydney made a statement by responding to their shock loss at home to Port Adelaide with a 16-point win over on-fire heavyweights GWS.
Sydney’s 46-point win at home last season ended a four-game losing streak against the Bulldogs that encompassed the 2016 grand final. They have also won 12 of their last 13 at Etihad Stadium and should be favoured to breeze past a modest line in this one.
Saturday 14th April, 19:25 (AEST)
|Scott D. Thompson, Robbie Tarrant, Marley Williams||B||Lachie Plowman, Liam Jones, David Cuningham|
|HB||Jamie Macmillan, Majak Daw, Ed Vickers-Willis||HB||Cameron O’Shea, Jacob Weitering, Kade Simpson|
|C||Ben Jacobs, Trent Dumont, Billy Hartung||C||Dale Thomas, Matthew Kennedy, Aaron Mullett|
|HF||Shaun Atley, Jarrad Waite, Jed Anderson||HF||Sam Petrevski-Seton, Levi Casboult, Jack Silvagni|
|F||Jack Ziebell, Ben Brown, Jy Simpkin||F||Zac Fisher, Charlie Curnow, Matthew Wright|
|FOL||Todd Goldstein, Shaun Higgins, Ben Cunnington||FOL||Matthew Kreuzer, Patrick Cripps, Marc Murphy|
|I/C||Luke Davies-Uniacke, Luke McDonald, Ryan Clarke, Kayne Turner||I/C||Paddy Dow, Jarrod Garlett, Ed Curnow, Lochie O’Brien|
History: Played 154: Carlton 97 V North Melbourne 57.
Last Meeting: Round 10, 2017: North Melbourne 17.11 (113) d Carlton 15.6 (97) at Etihad Stadium.
Final Thoughts: North Melbourne have bookended a stirring win over St Kilda with disappointing defeats to the Suns and Demons so far in 2018, but a return to their second home in Hobart provides the Kangaroos with a bit of impetus here.
North have won 10 of their last 12 at Blundstone Arena – including two of three in 2017 despite winning just six games all year.
Carlton are one of only two winless teams remaining in the AFL, going down to Richmond, Gold Coast and Collingwood by margins of 24 or more.
The Kangaroos have won their last three against the Blues and the Hobart factor makes them the most attractive betting play.
Saturday 14th April, 20:10 (AEST)
|West Coast||Gold Coast|
|Brad Sheppard, Tom Barrass, Shannon Hurn||B||Jarrod Harbrow, Rory Thompson, Jesse Joyce|
|HB||Jackson Nelson, Jeremy McGovern, Lewis Jetta||HB||Michael Rischitelli, Steven May, Kade Kolodjashnij|
|C||Dom Sheed, Elliot Yeo, Jamie Cripps||C||Lachie Weller, Jarryd Lyons, Brayden Fiorini|
|HF||Mark LeCras, Jack Darling, Chris Masten||HF||Jack Martin, Tom J. Lynch, Aaron Young|
|F||Jake Waterman, Josh J. Kennedy, Scott Lycett||F||Ben Ainsworth, Sam Day, Alex Sexton|
|FOL||Nic Naitanui, Luke Shuey, Andrew Gaff||FOL||Jarrod Witts, Touk Miller, David Swallow|
|I/C||Jack Redden, Liam Duggan, Daniel Venables, William Rioli||I/C||Nick Holman, Jack Bowes, Darcy MacPherson, Aaron Hall|
History: Played 9: West Coast 7 V Gold Coast 1 (1 Draw).
Last Meeting: Round 11, 2017: Gold Coast 11.14 (80) d West Coast 11.11 (77) at Metricon Stadium.
Final Thoughts: It’s been an interesting start to 2018 for the Eagles, with their customary imposing home record taking a hit via losses to big guns Sydney and Geelong but overcoming their travel phobia with a 51-point thrashing of the Bulldogs in Melbourne.
Gold Coast surprised with back-to-back wins over North and Carlton, but they went down to Fremantle in Perth last week. Still, a 2-1 record given the Commonwealth Games has had them on the road all season so far is more than satisfactory.
The Suns snared a maiden win over the Eagles last year on the Gold Coast, but they are 0-6 against the Eagles in Perth – including three losses by 77 points or more.
Count on West Coast chalking up their maiden victory at Optus Stadium, but don’t expect a blowout.
Sunday 15th April, 13:10 (AEST)
|Mark Baguley, Michael Hurley, Adam Saad||B||Riley Bonner, Tom Jonas, Dan Houston|
|HB||Zach Merrett, Mitch Brown, David Zaharakis||HB||Darcy Byrne-Jones, Tom Clurey, Hamish Hartlett|
|C||Orazio Fantasia, Jake Stringer, Andrew McGrath||C||Brad Ebert, Ollie Wines, Jared Polec|
|HF||Matt Guelfi, Joe Daniher, Devon Smith||HF||Travis Boak, Jack Watts, Chad Wingard|
|F||Dyson Heppell, Cale Hooker, James Stewart||F||Justin Westhoff, Charlie Dixon, Steven Motlop|
|FOL||Tom Bellchambers, Brendon Goddard, Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti||FOL||Dougal Howard, Tom Rockliff, Robbie Gray|
|I/C||Michael Hartley, Josh Green, Kyle Langford, Darcy Parish, Josh Begley, Shaun McKernan, David Myers, Jackson Merrett (Three to be omitted)||I/C||Dom Barry, Jarrod Lienert, Sam Gray, Todd Marshall, Karl Amon, Joe Atley, Trent McKenzie, Jake Neade (Three to be omitted)|
History: Played 28: Port Adelaide 16 V Essendon 12 .
Last Meeting: Round 12, 2017: Essendon 19.17 (131) d Port Adelaide 8.13 (61) at Etihad Stadium.
Final Thoughts: It’s back to the drawing board for Essendon, who rolled Adelaide in Round 1 but have suffered consecutive losses to Fremantle and Western Bulldogs since. Meanwhile, Conor McKenna’s biting suspension has cast an unwelcome spotlight on the club.
Port Adelaide are the surprise competition leaders as the only unbeaten team after three rounds, downing Fremantle, Sydney and Brisbane so far. But the Power almost choked late against the unfancied Lions, while they have had their own bit of drama with young star Sam Powell-Pepper set to be stood down over an off-field incident.
The Bombers have an 8-7 home record against the Power, including a 70-point thrashing at Etihad last season.
Expect that result to provide the Bombers with the confidence to salute as underdogs on Sunday afternoon.
Tip: Essendon Win @ $2.18
Sunday 15th April, 15:20 (AEST)
|Conor Glass, James Frawley, Blake Hardwick||B||Christian Petracca, Oscar McDonald, Neville Jetta|
|HB||Taylor Duryea, Ben Stratton, James Sicily||HB||Michael Hibberd, Jake Lever, Bernie Vince|
|C||Ricky Henderson, Jarman Impey, Isaac Smith||C||James Harmes, Nathan Jones, Jordan Lewis|
|HF||Luke Breust, Jack Gunston, Tim O’Brien||HF||Alex Neal-Bullen, Sam Frost, Tomas Bugg|
|F||Paul Puopolo, Jarryd Roughead, Cyril Rioli||F||Jake Melksham, Jesse Hogan, Dean Kent|
|FOL||Ben McEvoy, Tom Mitchell, Liam Shiels||FOL||Max Gawn, Christian Salem, Clayton Oliver|
|I/C||Harry Morrison, James Cousins, Daniel Howe, Jaeger O’Meara, Brendan Whitecross, Ryan Burton, David Mirra, Mitch Lewis (Three to be omitted)||I/C||Angus Brayshaw, Billy Stretch, Bayley Fritsch, Mitch Hannan, Sam Weideman, Jayden Hunt, Jeff Garlett, Josh Wagner (Three to be omitted)|
History: Played 161: Hawthorn 86 V Melbourne 75.
Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Hawthorn 14.10 (94) d Melbourne 14.7 (91) at MCG.
Final Thoughts: Hawthorn are looking to bounce back from their first loss of the season, going down to Richmond by 13 points after opening their campaign with impressive victories over Collingwood and Geelong.
Melbourne have recovered strongly from their Round 1 heartbreaker against Geelong, beating Brisbane away then vanquishing a 12-year hoodoo with a 37-point win over North Melbourne.
The Hawks have won 14 of their last 15 against the Demons, but last week’s drought-breaking result puts Melbourne in good stead to again reverse a trend.
This shapes as the game of the round – expect the emerging rivals to go down to the wire.
Sunday 15th April, 16:40 (AEST)
|Zach Tuohy, Jack Henry, Tom Stewart||B||Jarryn Geary, Nathan J. Brown, Dylan Roberton|
|HB||Jed Bews, Jake Kolodjashnij, Zach Guthrie||HB||Sam Gilbert, Jake Carlisle, Shane Savage|
|C||Mark Blicavs, Joel Selwood, Scott Selwood||C||Brandon White, Luke Dunstan, Jack Newnes|
|HF||Sam Menegola, Esava Ratugolea, Brandan Parfitt||HF||Jack Sinclair, Paddy McCartin, Jack Billings|
|F||Daniel Menzel, Tom Hawkins, Cory Gregson||F||Jade Gresham, Blake Acres, Ben Long|
|FOL||Rhys Stanley, Patrick Dangerfield, Tim Kelly||FOL||Rowan Marshall, Sebastian Ross, Jack Steven|
|I/C||Charlie Constable, Jordan Cunico, Mitch Duncan, Lachie Fogarty, Jordan Murdoch, James Parsons, Zac Smith, Jackson Thurlow (Three to be omitted)||I/C||Tom Hickey, Jack Steele, Hunter Clark, Jack Lonie, David Armitage, Logan Austin, Josh Bruce, Nick Coffield (Three to be omitted)|
History: Played 213: Geelong 128 V St Kilda 82 (1 Draw).
Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Geelong 19.12 (126) d St Kilda 13.10 (88) at Etihad Stadium.
Final Thoughts: It’s been a nerve-shredding start to the year for Geelong fans, surviving an after-the-siren shot on goal in Round 1 against Melbourne, edged out by a point by Hawthorn a week later and then giving up a three-quarter time lead against West Coast to lose by 15.
Gary Ablett is sidelined and the Cats have several other injury concerns.
But St Kilda’s back-to-back losses to North and Adelaide by 50-plus – after starting with a 25-point win over Brisbane – render the Saints as rank outsiders ahead of this showdown.
The Saints have won just one of their last eight against the Cats, while they have not won at Kardinia Park since 1999, losing seven straight at the venue.
With 17 wins from their last 19 games at their home base, take the Cats against the line with confidence.