AFL round 23 betting (August 25): Hawks to farewell skipper Hodge in style

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Updated: August 24, 2017

The final round of the 2017 AFL home and away season kicks-off with the farewell match for Hawks legend Luke Hodge (pictured below) and Bulldogs captain Robert Murphy. The Bulldogs are set to be the first defending premiers since Hawthorn in 2009 to miss the finals and must win for them to have any chance of sneaking into the top eight; overall record: 68-4-48, +42.07 units – latest AFL ladder here

AFL round 23: Hawthorn (9-1-11) v Western Bulldogs (11-10)
Where: Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, Vic
When: Friday, August 25, 7.50pm (AET)
Lines: Bulldogs -3.5, O/U 185.5

Confirmed bet: -185.5 (two units @ $1.90)

TIW says: Hawthorn (2013-15) and the Western Bulldogs (2016) have combined for the past four AFL premierships. The Hawks have already been ruled out of the 2017 finals and will almost certainly be joined on the sidelines by the reigning premiers. To make the eight. The Bulldogs must win tonight while relying on Essendon (v Fremantle), West Coast (v Adelaide) and St Kilda (v Richmond) all lose. Two out of three is the most likely scenario, leaving the Bulldogs to become just the second team to have missed the finals since the AFL went to an eight-team finals system in 2000.

We’ve discussed the Bulldogs at length this season having predicted that they’d fail to defend their title beyond the home and away season in 2017. History will show that the Dogs’ purple patch at the end of their 2016 campaign was an aberration. Aside from a handful of players, most have failed to reach the heights of their form of last year. Yes, they’ve suffered a tough run with injuries (mental and physical) but Luke Beveridge and his football department should be heavily scrutinised after a bitterly disappointing season. Tonight’s game will be the last for Bobby Murphy, Matthew Boyd and, probably, Travis Cloke. Bulldog fans will at least get their first look at Patrick Lipinski as he debuts tonight.

 

The glass is half-empty at the Western Oval, but it’s trending in the opposite direction at Waverley Park with the Hawks chasing a 10th win for the season after a horror start to 2017. They’ll farewell Luke Hodge tonight but take some nice momentum into 2018 with several new names gaining valuable experience throughout the course of the season. Harry Morrison will join that list tonight. Bizarrely, this is the first meeting between the Hawks and Bulldogs this year dating back to the 2016 finals. The Bulldogs’ 23-point win in that match-up (was their first over Hawthorn since early in 2010; the Hawks had won eight games in a row.

The Dogs haven’t won consecutive clashes with the Hawks since 2009-10. Neither side impressed last week, with the Bulldogs blowing a golden opportunity to secure their finals status in a 17-point setback against Port in Ballarat while the dogged Blues pipped Hawthorn in a grindfest at Etihad. Given this isn’t quite a dead rubber, we’ll be playing the strong angles that suggest a low scoring affair tonight. The ‘over/under’ is 16-28 in Bulldog night games while the Hawks’ past six at night have all played ‘under’. The Dogs are 8-13 ‘over/under’ in 2017, while the Hawks are 6-15.

 

Overall results

Three-unit bets: 18-1-6, +30.45 units
Two-unit bets: 21-2-16, +9.24 units
One-unit bets: 29-1-26, +2.38 units

 

 

• 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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