Four convincing wins on the trot – the latest a trouncing of Collingwood – has seen Richmond overtake Geelong as the 2019 AFL premiership favourites.

Are we seeing the 2017 Tigers in action at the moment? That year, as fans well know, they stormed into September and took the finals series by the scruff of the neck, before delivering on the biggest day in the most convincing fashion. Some say the 2019 version is as good. Others (like Wayne Carey) say they’re even better. Whatever the case, the facts are this: in beating the Pies on Friday night, Richmond are now $3.70 favourites to win this season’s AFL premiership. This is the first since since pre-season they’ve been the shortest-priced of all 18 teams. They’ve overtaken Geelong (now $4) who have held the mantle since their round six trouncing of the Eagles. Perhaps most amazing about the Tigers’ return to form is where they’ve come from a mere month ago…

Tiger turnaround

Seeing Richmond return as AFL premiership favourites isn’t the most surprising news story you’ll see in footy. As one of (if not the) best side in the last few years, fans have become accustomed to their on-field strengths. But it is incredible when you consider where they were just a month ago. Prior to round 15, the Tigers were a wayward $18 to claim the flag with Palmerbet. They had gone into the bye having lost three straight by an average of 46 points. But a bye in round 14 appears to have done them wonders. Since the break they’ve won four on the bounce, ironically also by an average of 46 points. Given they’re making up some lost ground from earlier in the AFL season, the Tigers are inside the top four by just one game. They are now $1.50 with Palmerbet to remain there until the end of the home and away season.

Home comforts on the run home

Damien Hardwick’s side face a mixed run home before the finals. The next fortnight is certainly favourable, facing Melbourne this weekend (in which they start as $1.22 favourites) and then another bottom-three side in Carlton the following week (althought, the Blues have shown promise in the last month). The last two rounds are a trickier prospect, however, up against fellow top-four clubs West Coast and Brisbane. The good news, though, is that all four games will be at the MCG. Given the home of footy also hosts the big dance on September 28, Richmond (should they make it) could hardly have a better preparation.

Prize recruit firing

After a circumspect start to the season, Tom Lynch is now officially firing. The prized off-season recruit – now playing alongside fellow star Jack Riewoldt – has kicked three or more goals in each of the past five rounds. It’s even put him into Coleman Medal contention, although he may have left his run too late. Twelve goals behind Giant Jeremy Cameron, Lynch ($11) has four weeks to storm home.

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