Palmerbet Sports Team breaks down a bumper line-up of AFL Round 6 clashes, including a Sydney Swans v Geelong Cats blockbuster on Saturday and a Western Derby between the Dockers and Eagles on Sunday!

Western Bulldogs V Carlton Blues @ Etihad Stadium

Friday 27th April, 19:50 (AEST)

Western Bulldogs Carlton 
 Matthew Suckling, Aaron Naughton, Zaine CordyB Lachie Plowman, Liam Jones, Caleb Marchbank
HB Jason Johannisen, Easton Wood, Hayden CrozierHB Aaron Mullett, Sam Rowe, Kade Simpson
C Bailey Williams, Lachie Hunter, Ed RichardsC Zac Fisher, Patrick Cripps, Sam Kerridge
HF Josh Dunkley, Marcus Bontempelli, Mitch WallisHF Sam Petrevski-Seton, Charlie Curnow, Dale Thomas
F Luke Dahlhaus, Tom Boyd, Billy GowersF Jack Silvagni, Levi Casboult, Matthew Wright
FOL Tim English, Toby McLean, Jack MacraeFOL Andrew Phillips, Ed Curnow, Paddy Dow
I/C Patrick Lipinski, Bailey Dale, Caleb Daniel, Lin JongI/C Matthew Kennedy, Harry McKay, Cameron O’Shea, Lochie O’Brien

Played 144: Carlton 87 V Western Bulldogs 53 (4 Draws).

Last Meeting: Round 17, 2017: Western Bulldogs 12.10 (82) d Carlton 9.8 (62) at MCG.

Final Thoughts: The Western Bulldogs’ season is at a crucial early juncture, slipping to 1-4 after a 54-point loss away to Fremantle last week – their third defeat by 50 points or more already.

Carlton’s plight is equally severe, going 0-5 so far – though they did show some fight in losing to West Coast by just 10 points only a week after a 86-point thrashing at the hands of North Melbourne.

The Bulldogs have six of their last eight against the Blues, including the last three straight. Each of the last seven encounters were decided by 1-39 margins.

The Bulldogs have won only three of their last nine at Etihad Stadium; the Blues are 2-5 at the ground since the start of 2017.

The Blues have some exciting youngsters in form, while the Dogs will be relying heavily on a blinder from Marcus Bontempelli. It’s hard seeing this cellar dweller clash being decided by more than a few points.

Tip: Triple Margin 15.5 – Any Other Result @ $2.40

Geelong Cats V Sydney Swans @ Kardinia Park

Saturday 28th April, 13:45 (AEST)

Geelong Sydney 
 Zach Tuohy, Jake Kolodjashnij, Jed BewsB Harry Marsh, Heath Grundy, Nick Smith
HB Tom Stewart, Jack Henry, Jordan CunicoHB Zak Jones, Dane Rampe, Robbie Fox
C Scott Selwood, Joel Selwood, Mark BlicavsC Jake Lloyd, Luke Parker, Callum Mills
HF Sam Menegola, Esava Ratugolea, Lachie FogartyHF Jarrad McVeigh, Gary Rohan, George Hewett
F James Parsons, Tom Hawkins, Brandan ParfittF Tom Papley, Isaac Heeney, Oliver Florent
FOL Rhys Stanley, Patrick Dangerfield, Mitch DuncanFOL Callum Sinclair, Kieren Jack, Josh P. Kennedy
I/C Cory Gregson, George Horlin-Smith, Tim Kelly, Jordan MurdochI/C Harry Cunningham, Will Hayward, Daniel Robinson, Ben Ronke

Played 221: Geelong 121 V Sydney 100.

Last Meeting: Semi-final, 2017: Geelong 15.8 (98) d Sydney 5.9 (39) at MCG.

Final Thoughts: The biggest blockbuster of the Round 6 pits Geelong and Sydney against one another for the first time since the Cats’ win last year’s semi-final.

The 3-2 Cats have bounced back from consecutive losses to the Hawks and Eagles with big wins over the Saints and Power in the past two rounds. The Swans are also sitting on 3-2 following their 10-point loss to the Crows at home last weekend.

The Cats’ 59-point drubbing of the Swans during the 2017 finals was just their second in the last seven encounters between the clubs. Remarkably, each of the teams’ last eight games have been decided by margins of 32 points or more.

The Swans have managed three wins in their last six visits to Kardinia Park; the Cats have won 10 of their last 11 at the ground.

The absence of Buddy Franklin and Dan Hannebery hurts the Swans’ chances of an away victory, especially with some of the Cats’ big guns in such hot form.

Tip: Margin – Geelong 1-39 @ $2.12

North Melbourne V Port Adelaide @ Etihad Stadium

Saturday 28th April, 14:10 (AEST)

North Melbourne (TBC)Port Adelaide (TBC)
 Scott D. Thompson, Robbie Tarrant, Marley WilliamsB Riley Bonner, Tom Jonas, Dan Houston
HB Jamie Macmillan, Majak Daw, Ryan ClarkeHB Darcy Byrne-Jones, Jack Hombsch, Tom Clurey
C Billy Hartung, Jed Anderson, Trent DumontC Karl Amon, Ollie Wines, Jared Polec
HF Shaun Atley, Jarrad Waite, Luke McDonaldHF Travis Boak, Jack Watts, Chad Wingard
F Jack Ziebell, Ben Brown, Kayne TurnerF Justin Westhoff, Charlie Dixon, Steven Motlop
FOL Todd Goldstein, Ben Jacobs, Ben CunningtonFOL Dougal Howard, Brad Ebert, Robbie Gray
I/C Luke Davies-Uniacke, Jy Simpkin, Ed Vickers-Willis, Cameron ZurhaarI/C Dom Barry, Sam Gray, Jake Neade, Aidyn Johnson

Played 32: North Melbourne 21 V Port Adelaide 11.

Last Meeting: Round 17, 2017: Port Adelaide 19.13 (127) d North Melbourne 8.9 (57).

Final Thoughts: North Melbourne’s surprising early-season charge hit a high point last week, downing Hawthorn by 28 points a week after obliterating Carlton by 86 points. They sit at 3-2 and have won both of their games at Etihad Stadium in 2018.

The only unbeaten team after three rounds, Port Adelaide have come right back to the pack via losses to Essendon by 22 points and Geelong by 34 points in the past fortnight. The Samuel Powell-Pepper story has also been an unwanted distraction.

North Melbourne boast a dominant 14-3 home record against Port Adelaide, but the Power have won three straight against the Kangaroos – including the last two encounters at Etihad. Four of the teams’ last six encounters have featured margins of 10 points or less.

The Kangaroos’ momentum, home-ground advantage and the absence of Power star Paddy Ryder render North the best-value underdog of Round 6.

Tip: North Melbourne Win @ $2.42

GWS Giants V Brisbane Lions @ Spotless Stadium

Saturday 28th April, 16:35 (AEST)

GWS Brisbane 
 Jeremy Finlayson, Phil Davis, Heath ShawB Nick Robertson, Harris Andrews, Darcy Gardiner
HB Aidan Corr, Nick Haynes, Jacob HopperHB Daniel Rich, Daniel McStay, Alex Witherden
C Lachie Whitfield, Dylan Shiel, Nick ShipleyC Tom Cutler, Dayne Zorko, Lewis Taylor
HF Sam J. Reid, Jeremy Cameron, Matt de BoerHF Cameron Rayner, Mitch Robinson, Hugh McCluggage
F Stephen Coniglio, Adam Tomlinson, Brett DeledioF Allen Christensen, Eric Hipwood, Charlie Cameron
FOL Jonathon Patton, Callan Ward, Tim TarantoFOL Stefan Martin, Jarrod Berry, Dayne Beams
I/C Daniel Lloyd, Zac Langdon, Harry Himmelberg, Ryan GriffenI/C Jacob Allison, Zac Bailey, Ryan Lester, Oscar McInerney

Played 6: GWS 4 V Brisbane 2.

Last Meeting: Round 14, 2017: GWS 22.14 (146) d Brisbane 12.14 (86) at The Gabba.

Final Thoughts: The GWS Giants are third on the AFL with a 3-1-1 record following their draw against St Kilda last weekend.

The winless Brisbane Lions went down to Gold Coast by five points in a Q-Clash thriller in Round 5 – a vast improvement on their 93-point loss to Richmond in which they kicked just two majors.

The Giants are on a four-game winning streak against the Lions, scoring 146 points in each of the last two meetings. They have met in Sydney just once previously, with GWS winning by 30 points in 2015.

Back at Spotless for the first time in 2018, expect the Giants to make up for last week’s underwhelming stalemate by putting the Lions to the sword.

Tip: Margin – GWS by 60 Points or More @ $3.40

Hawthorn Hawks V St Kilda Saints @ York Park

Saturday 28th April, 19:25 (AEST)

Hawthorn St Kilda 
 Ryan Burton, James Frawley, Ben StrattonB Brandon White, Nathan J. Brown, Shane Savage
HB Taylor Duryea, David Mirra, Blake HardwickHB  Sam Gilbert, Jake Carlisle, Jack Newnes
C Isaac Smith, Jaeger O’Meara, Harry MorrisonC Jack Sinclair, Jack Steele, Blake Acres
HF Luke Breust, Tim O’Brien, Jack GunstonHF Jarryn Geary, Paddy McCartin, Jack Billings
F James Worpel, Jarryd Roughead, Ricky HendersonF Jade Gresham, Tim Membrey, Ben Long
FOL  Ben McEvoy, Tom Mitchell, Shaun BurgoyneFOL Tom Hickey, Sebastian Ross, Jack Steven
I/C Jarman Impey, Will Langford, Daniel Howe, James CousinsI/C Luke Dunstan, Jimmy Webster, Nick Coffield, Maverick Weller

Played 154: Hawthorn 80 V St Kilda 72 (2 Draws).

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: St Kilda 19.16 (130) d Hawthorn 8.7 (55) at York Park.

Final Thoughts: The 3-2 Hawthorn Hawks are smarting from a 28-point loss to North Melbourne last weekend in easily their most disappointing display of 2018 so far.

St Kilda ended a run of three straight losses (all by margins of 47 or more) by holding heavyweights GWS to a draw in Round 5, an impressive and much-needed turnaround.

St Kilda’s 75-point shellacking early last season was their second in three clashes with Hawthorn at York Park and ended a seven-match winless run against the Hawks.

Hawthorn’s James Sicily is out suspended but Tom Mitchell was cleared by the MRP and the Hawks should salute for the Launceston faithful.

Tip: HT/FT Double – Hawthorn/Hawthorn @ $1.70

Adelaide Crows V Gold Coast Suns @ Adelaide Oval

Sunday 28th April, 19:40 (AEST)

Adelaide Gold Coast 
Luke Brown, Daniel Talia, Andy OttenBJarrod Harbrow, Rory Thompson, Jesse Joyce
HB Rory Laird, Tom Doedee, Paul SeedsmanHB  Lachie Weller, Steven May, Jack Martin
C Rory Atkins, Matt Crouch, David MackayC Matt Rosa, Jarryd Lyons, Jack Bowes
HF Mitch McGovern, Tom Lynch, Wayne MileraHF Nick Holman, Tom J. Lynch, Aaron Young
F Riley Knight, Taylor Walker, Josh JenkinsF Ben Ainsworth, Sam Day, Alex Sexton
FOL Sam Jacobs, Bryce Gibbs, Richard DouglasFOL Jarrod Witts, Touk Miller, David Swallow
I/CHugh Greenwood, Jordan Gallucci, Myles Poholke, Cameron Ellis-YolmenI/C Jesse Lonergan, Michael Barlow, Brayden Fiorini, Max Spencer

Played 10: Adelaide 10 V Gold Coast 0.

Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Adelaide 23.15 (153) d Gold Coast 13.8 (86) at Metricon Stadium.

Final Thoughts: The Gold Coast Suns confront their Adelaide bogey once again, having never beaten the Crows in 10 attempts. The last four encounters have been decided by 40+ margins, while the Suns have never come closer than 28 points to the Crows.

Combining their games against the Power, the Suns have won just once in seven visits to Adelaide – back in their 2011 debut season.

Gold Coast have showed some encouraging signs to start the season 3-2, bouncing back from an 80-point hiding at the hands of the Lions in Round 4 by edging out the Lions by five points at the Gabba.

Adelaide are also 3-2, losing games against teams they were expected to beat (Essendon, Collingwood) but also picking up a couple of big early scalps (Richmond, Sydney).

The Crows should get the win, but the Suns are hard to resist with the biggest start of the weekend.

Tip: Handicap – Gold Coast +46.5 @ $1.90

Essendon Bombers V Melbourne Demons @ Etihad Stadium

Sunday 29th April, 13:10 (AEST)

Essendon Melbourne 
 Brendon Goddard, Michael Hurley, Adam SaadB Jake Lever, Oscar McDonald, Neville Jetta
HB Jackson Merrett, Cale Hooker, Dyson HeppellHB Bernie Vince, Michael Hibberd, Jayden Hunt
C Jayden Laverde, Zach Merrett, Darcy ParishC Jordan Lewis, Nathan Jones, Christian Salem
HF Matt Guelfi, James Stewart, Anthony McDonald-TipungwutiHF Angus Brayshaw, Jesse Hogan, Jake Melksham
F Jake Stringer, Joe Daniher, David ZaharakisF Alex Neal-Bullen, Sam Weideman, James Harmes
FOL Matthew Leuenberger, Devon Smith, Andrew McGrathFOL Max Gawn, Dom Tyson, Clayton Oliver
I/C Patrick Ambrose, Mark Baguley, Kyle Langford, Kobe Mutch, Jordan Ridley, Ben McNiece, Dylan Clarke, Shaun McKernan (Three to be omitted)I/C Charlie Spargo, Bayley Fritsch, Mitch Hannan, Tom McDonald, Jeff Garlett, Timothy Smith, Josh Wagner, Joel Smith (Three to be omitted)

Played 213: Essendon 129 V Melbourne 82 (2 Draws).

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Melbourne 17.10 (112) d Essendon 10.14 (74) at Etihad Stadium.

Final Thoughts: Essendon and Melbourne both come into Round 6 with 2-3 records and are desperate to stay in touch with the leading pack.

The Bombers were swamped to the tune of 49 points by the Magpies in a bitterly disappointing Anzac Day display, negating their solid win over the Power a week earlier. The Demons are coming off heavy back-to-back losses to the Hawks (67 points) and Tigers (46 points) are badly in need of a momentum-changing performances.

The Bombers have won three of their last five against the Demons, but the Dees racked up a convincing 38-point win last season courtesy of an eight-goal charge in the third quarter. The previous three meetings were decided by 13 points or less.

Both sides are on a short turnaround, with the Demons having an extra day’s rest after playing on Tuesday – and that could prove the difference.

Tip: Melbourne Win @ $1.78

Collingwood Magpies V Richmond Tigers @ MCG

Sunday 29th April, 15:20 (AEST)

Collingwood Richmond 
 Sam Murray, Lynden Dunn, Jack CrispB Alex Rance, David Astbury, Dylan Grimes
HB Brayden Maynard, Matthew Scharenberg, Jeremy HoweHB Brandon Ellis, Nathan Broad, Nick Vlastuin
C Steele Sidebottom, Scott Pendlebury, Tom PhillipsC Shane Edwards, Trent Cotchin, Kamdyn McIntosh
HF Jordan de Goey, Ben Reid, Will Hoskin-ElliottHF Jason Castagna, Josh Caddy, Jacob Townsend
F James Aish, Mason Cox, Jaidyn StephensonF Sam Lloyd, Jack Riewoldt, Dan Butler
FOL Brodie Grundy, Callum Brown, Adam TreloarFOL Toby Nankervis, Kane Lambert, Dustin Martin
I/C Jarryd Blair, Josh Smith, Josh Thomas, Flynn Appleby, Chris Mayne, Ben Crocker, Brayden SierI/C Bachar Houli, Jack Higgins, Dion Prestia, Shaun Grigg, Jack Graham, Reece Conca, Jayden Short

Played 206: Collingwood 117 V Richmond 88 (1 Draw).

Last Meeting: Round 2, 2017: Richmond 14.15 (99) d Collingwood 11.14 (80).

Final Thoughts: Collingwood have emerged as a potential dark horse in the 2018 competition, putting aside losses in the opening two rounds to win their last three against Carlton, Adelaide and Essendon – the latter two by over 40 points.

Richmond, meanwhile, are sailing along at the top of the table in their title defence. Their only loss so far was to the Crows in Adelaide; since then, they’ve beaten the Hawks and thumped the Lions and Demons.

The Tigers have won four of the teams’ last five encounters, which have featured four games decided by margins of less than 20 points.

Richmond are on an 11-match winning streak at the MCG, while Collingwood have won only three of their last 11 at the ground.

Riding a wave of newfound confidence, the Pies are likely to run the Tigers close – but a four-day turnaround and the premiers’ big-match temperament will prove tough to overcome.

Tip: Handicap – Richmond -12.5 @ $1.90

Fremantle Dockers V West Coast Eagles @ Optus Stadium

Sunday 29th April, 16:40 (AEST)

Fremantle West Coast 
 Nathan Wilson, Joel Hamling, Michael JohnsonB Shannon Hurn, Tom Barrass, Brad Sheppard
HB Luke Ryan, Alex Pearce, Ed LangdonHB Lewis Jetta, Jeremy McGovern, Liam Duggan
C Lachie Neale, Connor Blakely, Stephen HillC Andrew Gaff, Dom Sheed, Chris Masten
HF Bailey Banfield, Cam McCarthy, Hayden BallantyneHF Jamie Cripps, Jack Darling, Jack Petruccelle
F Brandon Matera, Michael Walters, Adam CerraF Mark LeCras, Josh J. Kennedy, Scott Lycett
FOL Aaron Sandilands, Nat Fyfe, David MundyFOL Nic Naitanui, Elliot Yeo, Luke Shuey
I/C Shane Kersten, Ethan Hughes, Scott Jones, Darcy Tucker, Taylin Duman, Tommy Sheridan, Andrew Brayshaw, Mitchell Crowden (Three to be omitted)I/C  Jack Redden, Thomas Cole, Jackson Nelson, Will Schofield, Mark Hutchings, Fraser McInnes, William Rioli, Jake Waterman (Three to be omitted)

Played 46: West Coast 26 V Fremantle 20.

Last Meeting: Round 17, 2017: West Coast 11.8 (74) d Fremantle 5.14 (44) at Subiaco Oval.

Final Thoughts: The Western Derby makes its Optus Stadium debut to close out Round 6.

Fremantle have built a bit of momentum since their heavy first-up loss to Port, winning three of their last four against Essendon, Gold Coast and Western Bulldogs. But they’d dearly love the scalp of neighbouring West Coast to truly kick their campaign into gear.

The Eagles are on a four-match winning streak, accounting for the Bulldogs, Cats and Suns before making hard work of a 10-point away win over the Blues last weekend.

The Eagles have won each of the last five WA derbies by 24 points or more. They are aiming for six straight over the Dockers for the first time since the 1990s.

Nat Fyfe’s form and the Dockers’ 3-0 record at Optus Stadium will have the Eagles worried, but they should still have too much class for ‘little brother’.

Tip: Margin – West Coast 1-39 @ $2.24