Friday, June 23, 2016, 7.20pm AEST, Adelaide Oval, watch on 7, Fox Footy
Adelaide Crows: Eighth
North Melbourne Kangaroos: Third
Adelaide Crows: 8-4
North Melbourne Kangaroos: 10-3
Last five match results:
Adelaide Crows: LWWWW
North Melbourne Kangaroos: WLWLL
Adelaide Crows: $1.40 with CrownBet.com.au
North Melbourne Kangaroos: $2.95 with CrownBet.com.au
Adelaide Crows: -17.5 ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
North Melbourne Kangaroos: +17.5 ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
A BRUISED and battered North Melbourne heads to Adelaide staring down the barrel of a third consecutive loss that would potentially force it out of the top four.
After starting the season with nine straight wins, the Roos have faltered in the past month, dropping three of their last four to surrender top spot.
And things are not looking good for the Roos, on a short break against an Adelaide Crows side that is absolutely cooking.
Four in a row makes the Crows the form side in the competition and they sport the best forward line in the competition, averaging nearly 17 goals per game, making it number one.
The Roos are no slouches in front of the sticks, sixth at 14.5 per game, but the question is, how to the stop Eddie Betts, Taylor Walker, Josh Jenkins and Tom Lynch?
That quartet combined for 11 of the side’s 15 goals in its huge win over the West Coast Eagles in Perth a fortnight ago and has been nothing short of unstoppable this season.
Jenkins and Betts have been the feature, but if the opposition quells one or two of them, the rest tend to stand up.
Eddie was at it again against the Eagles, slamming on five goals in a 14 disposal, five mark best on ground display that had a little bit of everything.
He has 33 goals for the season, which, on any normal team, would be good enough to be leading.
But his towering team mate Jenkins has shaded him with 39 goals.
That pair is number four and five in the AFL’s Coleman Medal race, behind only Lance Franklin, Josh Kennedy and Thomas Lynch from Gold Coast.
Each has legitimate claims to the first goal of the game, for vastly different reasons.
Betts is the every where little man who turns nothing into something, while Jenkins is the can’t miss monster forward who commands the footy and marks it like a vice.
They are both $9 with sportsbet.com.au, along with their captain Taylor Walker and they can’t be split for good reason.
We’re discounting Walker because he tends to do his best work a little further up the ground now, but you may as well flip a coin as to which one of Betts and Jenkins to pick for first goal.
Midfield dynamo Rory Sloane has stepped up and done his best to fill the void left by the departure of Patrick Dangerfield to Geelong and he again led the way for Adelaide with 29 touches and six tackles.
After a slow start to life without Danger, Sloane has come of age and should be easy money to get 25 disposals or more at $1.64 with Sportsbet.com.au
North is going to have to have its kicking boots on if it is to win this match, something it did not do against triple premiers Hawthorn on Friday night.
The undermanned Roos were up for the fight, but missed easy chances at crucial times throughout the match, finishing the game with more scoring shots then the Hawks, but nothing to show for it in a 14.9 (93) to 11.8 (84) defeat.
Daniel Wells was the typical Rolls Royce that he has been so far this season, claiming 30 disposals and using it well, while Robbie Talent was best on ground with 26 touches and six marks, but the Roos missed captain Andrew Swallow and hard man Ben Cunnington.
Wells has been the club’s best player this season, after many had him on the scrapheap at the start of the season.
He had hardly played in the last two seasons and appeared cooked, but his renaissance in 2016 has been one of the stories of the season.
With Swallow still no certainty to play, the Roos will look to him to provide inspiration in the midfield.
We think he will snare 30 disposals or more with sportsbet.com.au offering $2.60 for him to achieve it.
Drew Petrie and Lindsay Thomas – a similar, if less prolific set up to the Jenkins-Betts partnership – booted three goals each for the Roos in the loss and they are the men most likely to kick the first goal if the Kangaroos get the opportunity. They are rated $14 and $10 chances, respectively.
First goal scorer market:
Taylor Walker ($9)
Eddie Betts ($9)
Josh Jenkins ($9)
Lindsay Thomas ($10)
Tom Lynch ($12)
Mason Wood ($12)
Ben Brown ($12)
Brent Harvey ($12)
Drew Petrie ($14)
Mitch McGovern ($17)
Majak Daw ($17)
Jarrad Lyons ($21)
Todd Goldstein ($21)
Charlie Cameron ($21)
Jack Ziebell ($23)
Daniel Wells ($26)
Richard Douglas ($26)
Sam Gibson ($29)
Rory Atkins ($29)
Trent Dumont v29)
Paul Seedsman ($34)
Rory Sloane ($34)
David Mackay ($34)
Corey Wagner ($34)
Nick Dal Santo ($36)
Brodie Smith ($36)
Jamie MacMillan ($36)
Scott Thompson ($36)
Farren Ray ($41)
Sam Jacobs ($41)
Odds provided by Sportsbet.com.au
Our player props tips
First goal scorer: Eddie Betts ($9 with sportsbet.com.au)
Disposal bet: Daniel Wells over 30 disposals ($2.60 with sportsbet.com.au)
Match result: Adelaide Crows to win ($1.40 with CrownBet.com.au)
Margin betting: Adelaide Crows to win by 40 points or more ($3.80 with Sportsbet.com.au)
North Melbourne is in real trouble here. The Crows are flying and they are flailing. Even if their injured stars return, a trip to Adelaide on a six day break is not ideal. They have had a fantastic start to the season, but the Crows are in brutal form and we are predicting this one to get ugly.
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