Friday, August 19 from 8.10pm AEST, Domain Stadium, Perth.
West Coast Eagles: Sixth
Hawthorn Hawks: First
West Coast Eagles: 14-6
Hawthorn Hawks: 16-4
Last five match results:
West Coast Eagles: WWLWW
Hawthorn Hawks: WWWLW
West Coast Eagles: $1.92 with CrownBet.com.au
Hawthorn Hawks: $1.92 with CrownBet.com.au
West Coast Eagles: +0.5 ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Hawthorn Hawks: -0.5 ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
THE top of the table Hawthorn head west for a clash with the West Coast Eagles and the bookies simply cannot split them.
CrownBet.com.au has the Hawks and the Eagles at $1.92 each of two as does Sportsbet.com.au, which is offering the slimmest of lines on the match – just 0.5 – also at $1.92.
In Melbourne, the Hawks would be heavy favourites, but a last-kick-of-the-game win on the road against top four side Greater Western Sydney, coupled with the fact the Eagles grow a leg on their home turf, and this one becomes tough to pick.
Hero ruckman Nic Naitanui snapped one across his body from a stoppage deep in the Eagles forward pocket to give them a one point win over the Giants, 14.13 (97) to 14.12 (96).
Midfield hard man Luke Schuey had an absolute monster, gathering 38 disposals and booting two goals in one of his best performances for the club.
The courageous star was in absolutely everything, adding six tackles to his massive effort.
Speedy runner Andrew Gaff had 29 touches, while Brownlow Medallist Matthew Priddis had 26 disposals to go with two goals.
Josh Kennedy was not quite as dominant as he was the week before, but was still the Eagles most dangerous forward, booting three goals from his 13 touches and seven marks, but he had a hard time in front of the sticks, kicking three behinds to go with it.
A wasteful mark LeCras had exactly the same stat line, except he sprayed them with two goals four.
Of course, the win merely takes the pressure of a side that has largely been seen to be making up the numbers in the eight this season.
Have we underestimated them? A win over the Hawks would certainly go a long way to proving we just may have.
But don’t think for a moment it will be easy.
After the loss they had to have against Melbourne a two weeks ago, the Hawks came out breathing fire against North Melbourne on the weekend, booting eight goals in the opening term and then holding off a gallant fightback from the Roos to run out 39 point winners, 14.12 (96) to 8.9 (57).
Cyril Rioli was at his delicious best, slamming home three goals in one of the finest 13 disposal efforts you will see.
After being well held for a few weeks, Sam Mitchell bounced back with a vengeance, snaring 37 disposals to go with eight marks, while his running mate Isaac Smith had probably his best game of the season with 33 touches to of with 11 marks and a goal.
Another speedster in Bradley Hill had 28 touches, while old stagers Luke Hodge and Jordan Lewis had 27 each.
Luke Breust and Pual Puopolo were the only other multiple goal scorers for the Hawks, with two each, as 10 players got on the board with majors in the match.
We’re sticking with out man Cyril as our Hawks pick to boot the first goal of the match. He has his a purple patch, sending home three, four and then three in his last three weeks to take him to 41 for the season.
He is just going so damn well and seems to have taken his game to a new level.
As far as the Eagles go, we simply can’t go past the monster power forward Josh Kennedy.
He is the favourite to kick the first goal and that is no surprise: He leads the Coleman Medal Race with 70 goals and should be hinting to fill his bags early at 47.50.
If you don’t like that, you could do worse than the Frenchman, who needs to find his accuracy, but If he goes off and fixes that inacuracy of last week, he represents some real value at $14.
As far as the disposal count goes, Schuey is in hot form and should do over 25 touches easily, while Hodge is our pick to dominate against the Eagles.
Player props bets
First goal scorer – West Coast Eagles:
Josh Kennedy ($7.50 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Mark LeCras ($14 with Sportsbet.com.au)
First goal scorer – Hawthorn Hawks:
Cyril Rioli ($9.50 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Player disposal tips – West Coast Eagles:
Luke Schuey to have 25 or more disposals ($1.30 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Player disposal tips – Hawthorn Hawks:
Luke Hodge to get 25 or more ($1.72 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Match result: West Coast wins ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
Line betting: West Coast +0.5 0.5 ($1.92 with Sportsbet.com.au)
After that, we’re going with the Eagles – just. The Hawks have an air of invincibility about them that will mean they are very hard to beat, but it will be up to the Eagles to find a way to resist their attacking fire power.
Lights out for Power as punters jump sinking Port Adelaide ship
AFL multi tips, exotics & best bets for Round 9, 2015
2016 AFL Grand Final bonuses, free bets & money back specials
Geelong vs. Sydney Preliminary Final line & disposal betting tips
Sydney leads 2016 AFL premiership market as focus turns to finals
Dalhouse and Treloar disposal betting, AFL Magpies vs. Bulldogs
Richmond vs. Collingwood betting & Dustin Martin disposal tips
GWS Giants open as $5 favourites for 2017 AFL Premiership