Thursday, March 24 from 7.40pm at the MCG, Melbourne – watch on Channel Seven
AFTER a long, hot and controversy-filled summer, the AFL is finally back and not a moment too soon.
Traditional rivals Richmond and Carlton kick off the season on Thursday night in a fixture that has quickly turned into a season-opening tradition.
CupsBetting has taken a look at the first goal-scorer markets and selected two players from both sides that we’ve predicted have the best chance of kicking the very first major of the 2016 AFL home and away season.
To celebrate the opening of the AFL season, William Hill have delivered a first goal scorer promotion worthy of your hard earned cash.
Place a first goal scorer bet on any match in AFL Round one and receive $1 cash (up to the amount of your stake) for every point your first goal scorer selection scores, whether your bet wins or loses.
This means if you put $20 on Tiger spearhead Jack Riewoldt to kick the first goal of the match and he boots three goals for the game you will get $18.00 back whether he nails the opening major of the match or not.
Richmond first goal scorer odds and tips
The obvious candidate for the Tigers.
The two-time Coleman medallist averaged the least amount of goals per game last year since 2010, but kicked seven majors against the Blues across both games last season.
The prospect of playing on first gamer Jacob Weitering may also mean that Tigers’ coach Damian Hardwick will be tempted to isolate Riewoldt at full forward; taking him out of that roaming role which brought his 2015 goal tally down to the lowest it has been since 2009.
The Richmond spearhead represents fantastic value at $7.50 with Sportsbet to boot the first goal of the AFL season.
The Richmond captain is at a huge price which is too hard to ignore.
Tiger star Jack Riewoldt said that Cotchin ‘copped a large whack’ from the playing group after last year’s elimination final loss to North Melbourne and will be keen to atone.
What better way to make an impression than booting the first goal of the AFL season?
Cotchin has shown in the past he has the ability to go forward and boot multiple goals, and with no obvious small forward match up; the Tigers’ captain could be a real weapon in the opening match for coach Damian Hardwick.
The three-time Richmond best and fairest winner could get your AFL punting off to the best possible start on Thursday night – he’s paying $26 at Sportsbet.
Carlton first goal scorer odds and tips
With no other tall forwards for the Blues Levi Casbault is the stand out choice.
The burly forward has put an enormous amount of work into his goal kicking over the pre-season and actually kicked Carlton’s first pre-season goal against the reigning premiers Hawthorn.
The last time the two teams met Casbault kicked two of the five goals for his side.
This will be the first time the Tasmanian has played in a round one contest since 2013 and at $12.00 looks to be the best option for the Blues to boot the first goal of their 2016 campaign.
Another left-field selection but when it is truly broken down, Kerridge is a big chance to cash in at $26.00.
Kerridge has been the stand out performer for the Blues throughout the pre-season after coming across from Adelaide, and dominated the Swans in particular in the final match of the NAB challenge – booting three goals including the first of the game.
At Adelaide Kerridge was a proven goal kicker when given the opportunity too, with a game of five goals to his name.
Marc Murphy, Bryce Gibbs and Patrick Cripps are all likely to line up against the Tigers which means Kerridge may spend more time up forward than in the middle.
At the giant price punters would be negligent to ignore Sam Kerridge on Thursday night.
Bookmaker specials for the AFL season
We have waited so long for the AFL season and the online bookmakers have come to the party with some spectacular deals.
Place a head-to-head bet on any team across the opening round of the season and if your team lead at any change but go on to lose the match you get your investment back – up to $50.00.
William Hill are also offering an enticing futures bet.
Place a Futures bet (minimum bet of $30) on the 2016 AFL Premiers market and William Hill will give you a $5 bonus bet for every match that they win during the regular season.
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