An upset-filled opening weekend of the AFL season saw tipsters struggle, while the courageous punters thrived.

Here’s how it looked for punters: 

Outsiders salute

Consider this: Round 1 saw six upsets take place, the EQUAL MOST in a round of footy. The biggest of these were Port Adelaide ($3.40 head-to-head against Melbourne with Palmerbet), Hawthorn ($3.15 against Adelaide) and Brisbane ($2.80 against reigning premiers West Coast). The results spelt carnage for tipsters, whose only solace was that most others struggled, too.

Low-scoring affairs

While the six upsets took the headlines from the weekend, another key headline was the low scores on offer. The first eight games of the round were ALL under the ‘total points’ line offered by Palmerbet. It took until the final game, Fremantle v North Melbourne, for the total points line of 175.5 to be exceeded. In fact, it was the lowest scoring opening round since 1965.

Slow start for grand finalists

As both West Coast and Collingwood fell, this was just the eighth time both grand finalists lost in round 1. Collingwood ($1.63 favourites) went down to the Cats in a Friday night classic that they arguably should have closed out, while the Eagles ($1.43) fell to an exciting Brisbane outfit at The Gabba. Thankfully for both sides, neither loss was a distinctly poor one. Oh, and we should remember that the AFL season is a marathon, not a sprint…

Dons dive

Without doubt the most disappointing performance was from Essendon, who fell to a 72-point loss to GWS. The Dons were described by some as ‘insipid’ as the Giants ran riot at the Showgrounds. Expectations for John Worsfold’s side were strong about six weeks ago. In January, they were even $10 fifth-favourites for the premiership with Palmerbet. Further, various pundits picked them in their top-four. But after a lacklustre JLT campaign and news of Joe Daniher’s further delayed return, they aren’t viewed in the same light. This result will give punters even less hope in the Dons. Thankfully for them, however, they face St Kilda this weekend in a game they should prevail in.