WE have finally reached the end of the home and away season and for all intents and purposes, the eight is locked down.
Barring a miracle – which 90 Sportsbet.com.au punters will be hoping comes to fruition – North Melbourne will retain their position inside the finals.
The only question now is who will take a double chance into the first week of the finals.
GWS will be relying on a Collingwood upset to force their way into the eight, while Adelaide and Sydney only have to win against weaker opposition to finish the season in first and second respectively.
It promises to be a fantastic end to the regular season.
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Place your first bet at Sportsbet and it will be matched as a bonus bet up to the value of $501.
Selections for the Round 23 AFL multi of the week:
Adelaide to beat West Coast ($1.32)
Port Adelaide to defeat Gold Coast ($1.40)
Greater Western Sydney to defeat North Melbourne ($1.47)
Hawthorn to beat Collingwood ($1.21)
Adelaide vs. West Coast
Friday, August 26 from 8.10pm at Adelaide Oval, Adelaide
First game this week in our multi is a pivotal clash between two sides who want to ensure they play at home in the first week of the finals.
The Crows have been steamrolling teams lately, and if they are able to overcome the Eagles this week they will finish top-two and have a legitimate shot at hosting a home preliminary final.
The Eagles proved they are no easy-beats over the last two weeks, shocking the Giants at home before comfortably accounting for the Hawks last Friday night.
West Coast will be without key ruckman Nic Naitanui for the remainder of the season after he sustained an ACL injury, and no Nic Nat means no Eagles on Friday night.
Adelaide should be able to lock down a top-two spot and a shot at their third premiership in the process.
Multi tip: Adelaide to win – $1.32
Gold Coast vs. Port Adelaide
Saturday, August 27 from 1.45pm at Merticon Stadium, Gold Coast
Two teams looking to kill a bit of time before the end of the season meet at the ideal Mad Monday footy trip destination as the Suns host the Power on Saturday afternoon.
Both teams would have envisioned finals appearances in 2016 but after ordinary seasons they find themselves in football purgatory.
The Gold Coast have been hammered back-to-back over the last fortnight, losing to Essendon and Collingwood in matches they would have identified as winnable games heading in.
Port’s efforts have been just as bad as their opponents, losing in embarrassing fashion to Melbourne before a lacklustre Showdown performance which saw them “challenge” on the scoreboard but never officially worry the Adelaide Crows.
It is a matter of picking who is the better of the ‘bad’ teams this week, and given Gold Coast’s injury list is a mile long we are favouring the Power to end their season on a winning note.
Multi tip: Port Adelaide to win – $1.40
North Melbourne vs. Greater Western Sydney
Saturday, August 27 from 7.25pm at Etihad Stadium, Melbourne
An intriguing battle between a team who is looking to force their way into the top-four and another who is clinging on to eighth spot awaits us on Saturday night.
The Giants bounced back into form last week after their disappointing loss to the Eagles at home, hammering the Dockers by 92 points.
GWS simply have to win to have any shot of a top-four berth, and coach Leon Cameron said they will be ‘full steam ahead’ heading into Saturday night.
The Giants are $3.25 to finish inside the top-four this season at Sportsbet.com.au.
North Melbourne are limping their way into the finals, and barring a catastrophic failure on Saturday night, they should play finals again this season.
The Kangaroos seem like they are simply making up the numbers though given they have lost three straight games.
We cannot believe that the Giants are at these odds as we think they are the lock of the round.
GWS will add some great value to our multi.
Multi tip: GWS to win – $1.47
Hawthorn vs. Collingwood
Sunday, August 28 from 3.20pm at the MCG, Melbourne
Sunday afternoon at the G is our last leg of the multi as one of the premiership favourites in Hawthorn host the bottom-10 Magpies in a contest that looms as a danger game for the three-time flag winning Hawks.
Collingwood has been sensational in recent weeks, only narrowly missing out on beating the Bulldogs a fortnight ago before hamming the Suns the week after.
Their good form, compounded by the retirements of favourite son Dane Swan alongside premiership teammates Brett Macaffer and Alan Toovey gives the Pies some impetus heading into Sunday.
The Hawks’ form has been indifferent over the last month, and in their last outing against the Eagles the reigning premiers were unable to ertract themselves from jail to retain top spot on the ladder.
Hawthorn could finish outside the top-four if they lose here, and despite coming up against a Collingwood side who will be playing with pride we cannot see how the Hawks will blow this one.
Multi tip: Hawthorn to win – $1.21
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