View UniBet’s preview of Round 15 of the 2016 AFL home and away season below.
West Coast v Essendon | Thursday, June 30, 8.10pm (AEDT), Domain Stadium
‘There are lies, damn lies and statistics’. Former British politician Benjamin Disraeli could well have used his famous aphorism to describe the modern day tendency to review an AFL game purely on statistics.
In these terms Essendon are moving ahead nicely. Lots of disposals, uncontested marks, kicks etc. Except they don’t really result in too many goals being scored.
This changed against GWS when they altered their game style completely and attempted to play direct and fast to put the opposition’s defence under maximum pressure.
Can they repeat this away against the angry Eagles? No they can’t.
Unibet Odds: West Coast $1.01 Essendon $19.00
Last time they met: Rd11, 2015 – West Coast 96 def Essendon 46
Tip: West Coast
Line tip: West Coast -73.5
Port Adelaide v Richmond | Friday, July 1, 7.50pm (AEDT), Adelaide Oval
The last start form of both Port and Richmond is shaky to say the least.
Port lost away at Fremantle and Richmond were unconvincing against a very poor Brisbane Lions outfit.
In Port’s favour is they have already accounted for the Tigers twice this season. Once in the pre-season at Etihad and then in Round 6 at the MCG.
On both occasions they outran Richmond and never looked like losing.
Port also have the benefit of having the bye last weekend and Richmond are coming off a six-day break and have to travel to Adelaide.
Port Adelaide have been unreliable for the last 18 months, but should have too many guns for the underwhelming Tigers.
Unibet Odds: Port Adelaide $1.39 Richmond $3.05
Last time they met: Rd 6, 2016 – Richmond 59 lost to Port Adelaide 94
Tip: Port Adelaide
Line tip: Port Adelaide -19.5
Gold Coast v St Kilda | Saturday, July 2, 1.40pm (AEDT), Metricon Stadium
This match should be a fast moving, exciting affair played in good conditions on the Gold Coast.
The Suns should get back the running Adam Saad, livewire midfielder Jack Martin and defender Kade Kolodjashnij.
Coach Rocket Eade has plenty of talent to work with and it is starting to coalesce nicely and wins should now start to follow.
Key position players Tom Lynch and Steven May are in good form and provide a great foundation and structure at either end of the ground.
It won’t be easy though against the exciting Saints who managed to run the flag favourites Geelong off their legs to win a thriller indoors at Etihad.
There’s a question mark over Saints’ interstate form, having lost heavily away to Adelaide, West Coast and Port Adelaide.
After a shocking run of injuries and suspension, the Suns are finally positioned to gets some wins and the 1.80 on offer appears good value.
Unibet Odds: Gold Coast $1.80 St Kilda $2.05
Last time they met: Rd 2, 2015 – Gold Coast 76 lost to St Kilda 104
Tip: Gold Coast
Line tip: Gold Coast -3.5
Sydney v Western Bulldogs | Saturday, July 2, 4.35pm (AEDT), SCG
This fixture last year saw the Bulldogs spring a surprise win over the Swans at a soggy SCG.
With ace backman Easton Wood due to return from injury, they’ll fancy their chances once more.
The Swans are still without ruckman/tall forward Kurt Tippett and may struggle if too much reliance is placed on Lance Franklin to score.
But the battle win be decided in the midfield trenches where both sets of midfielders are fierce and tough and will scrap for every possession.
The Swans may have an edge in the number of top mids, but the Bulldogs may have the best individual withMarcus Bontempelli whose reputation is growing by the week.
With no Tippett, we think the Bulldogs can upset the premiership applecart and down the mighty Swans.
Unibet Odds: Sydney $1.40 Western Bulldogs $3.00
Last time they met: Rd 5, 2015 – Sydney 73 lost to Western Bulldogs 77
Tip: Western Bulldogs
Line tip: Western Bulldogs +17.5
Carlton v Collingwood | Saturday, July 2, 7.25pm (AEDT), MCG
It could pay to overlook the last match for both teams here. Collingwood beat the woeful Dockers and Carlton went down to the rampant GWS Giants.
For most of the game Carlton played well and only really failed in the last quarter when GWS piled on the goals.
Collingwood on the other hand have had a dodgy defensive set-up all year and the Blues will find the contrast with the Giants stark.
They’ll still be without captain Marc Murphy who is nursing an ankle injury, but Carlton have already taken care of Collingwood once this year.
Expect them to get the job done again on Saturday.
Unibet Odds: Carlton $2.07 Collingwood $1.77
Last time they met: Rd 7, 2016 – Collingwood 84 lost to Carlton 99
Line tip: Carlton +3.5
Melbourne v Adelaide | Sunday, July 3, 3.20pm (AEDT), MCG
A good test for the improving Demons who last start suffered a disappointing 55-point loss away to the Swans.
Back at the MCG they’ll be more comfortable and are largely injury free to take on the formidable Crows.
Adelaide have recent decisions over West Coast, GWS and North Melbourne and will be expected to be able to handle whatever the Demons can throw at them.
Melbourne are well placed to get an edge in the ruck and tough midfielders Nathan Jones, Jack Viney andChristian Petracca will fancy their chances against the Crows’ mids with big Max Gawn at the centre bounces.
Of concern is how the Melbourne back six contain Josh Jenkins, Eddie Betts, Taylor Walker and Tom Lynch from kicking a score.
A case can be made for Melbourne, but on balance the Crows appear to have too much firepower.
Unibet Odds: Melbourne $3.25 Adelaide $1.35
Last time they met: Rd 3, 2015 – Adelaide 80 def Melbourne 55
Line tip: Melbourne +20.5