AFL round 20 betting (August 5): Must-win match-ups for finals hopefuls

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Updated: August 4, 2017

It promises to be a wild and woolly weekend of AFL round 20 action with fierce winds and rain expected in Adelaide and Melbourne while the mercury won’t reach double figures in Canberra for the battle between the Giants and Demons, For our best of the weekend, it’s off to relatively balmy climes of Brisbane for the battle of the Lions and Bulldogs; overall record: 65-4-43, +42.95 units – latest AFL ladder here

AFL round 20: Essendon (9-9) v Carlton (5-13)
Where: MCG, Melbourne, Vic
When: Saturday, August 5, 2.10pm (AET)
Lines: Essendon -26.5, O/U 178.5
Confirmed bet: Essendon -26.5 (two units @ $1.88)

AFL round 20: Brisbane (4-14) v Western Bulldogs (10-8)
Where: Gabba, Brisbane, Qld
When: Saturday, August 5, 4.35pm (AET)
Lines: Bulldogs -27.5, O/U 193.5
Confirmed bet: Bulldogs -27.5 (three units @ $1.91)

Two games have piqued our interest today with similar rationale being applied to both. Tanking is a touchy subject in the AFL, to the extent that Melbourne were fined $500,000 in 2009 – not for tanking, but on the charge of employing two coaches who “acted in a manner prejudicial to the interests of the competition”. Yeh right. But there are many, many ways to light Europe. At this point of the 2017 home and away season, there is not a single reason for either Carlton or Brisbane to win a game. The Blues and Lions are already assured the first and second picks in the draft later this year.

What possible rationale could there be to upset the opportunity to pick the best young player available? For starters, that difference can turn out to be Tom Scully v Jack Trengove, or Bryce Gibbs v Scott Gumbleton. The Blues have already ruled out six players for the season, with another couple unlikely to play again this year. Up at Brisbane, Chris Fagan has started the “management” process with some of his emerging stars. Watch players tried in different positions and roles, others sent to the medicos for early off-season surgery and previously untried guys given a chance to prove their worth.

 

For their opponents the Bombers and Bulldogs, four premiership points are vital today. The Doggies defeated Essendon by five goals last week to leave John Worsfold’s side in an awkward spot a game outside the top eight. Meanwhile the Bulldogs are just percentage behind eighth-placed West Coast but have an inferior percentage to the sides also challenging for positions in the bottom half of the eight. The Bombers are resting veteran James Kelly and last year’s top draft pick Andrew McGrath but regain Josh Green. Essendon have been a decent bet on the rebound this season.

Watch for them to leave nothing to chance at Etihad this afternoon. After a roller coaster start to the season, the reigning premiers are closer to the form that took them all the way in 2016 than at any other point of this season. A functioning forward line has been the catalyst with 35 goals over the past fortnight in solid wins over the Suns and Bombers. In rounds one to 16, they averaged just 80 points per outing. With scoring threats Jack Redpath and Clay Smith back in the side today, we expect the Dogs to run up a big score over a young Lions outfit and win comfortably.

 

Other confirmed bets (AET)

Saturday, August 5 (1.45pm) GWS Giants v Melbourne (UNSW Canberra Oval, Canberra, ACT) – Melbourne +11.5 (one unit @ $1.93)
Sunday, August 6 (1.10pm) St Kilda v West Coast (Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, Vic) – St Kilda -5.5 (one unit @ $1.91)
Sunday, August 6 (3.20pm) Richmond v Hawthorn (MCG, Melbourne, Vic) – Richmond -3.5 (two units @ $1.92)
Sunday, August 6 (4.40pm) Adelaide v Port Adelaide (Adelaide Oval, Adelaide, SA) – Adelaide -12.5 (two units @ $1.90)

 

Other round 20 games (AET)

Saturday, August 5 (7.25pm) North Melbourne v Collingwood (Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, Vic)
Saturday, August 5 (7.40pm) Fremantle v Gold Coast (Domain Stadium, Perth, WA)
Round 20 results update: 0-0-1, -1.0 units

Three-unit bets: 17-1-5, +30.81 units
Two-unit bets: 19-2-14, +9.6 units
One-unit bets: 27-1-24, +2.54 units

Geelong v Sydney -162.5 (one unit @ $1.90) LOSE (61-107)

 

 

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to William Hill (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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