Round 6 AFL Preview

Wednesday
Richmond vs Melbourne @ The MCG - 19:35

On this year's Anzac Day eve match, we find two teams that have only had a five-day break since their last outings, where the Tigers took care of business to beat an uninspiring Swans outfit, and the Demons kicked away their chances to lose to the second-on-the-ladder Saints. In spite of the Tigers being in 10th place, and the languishing Demons in 17th, I think this is a real danger game for the Tigers; a midfield that can contain Oliver, Salem, Jones, Brayshaw, Viney, Petracca and Gawn can never be underestimated! But once again, who is going to kick their goals?
With it looking like Jack Riewoldt will be back for the Tigers, and Dustin Martin starting to show why he won a Brownlow not too long ago, I think the Tiger's re-found pressure game should give them enough opportunities to kick a winning score, and with JR and Tom Lynch up forward, they now have the quality to convert those opportunities into goals.
Richmond by 21

Thursday
Essendon vs Collingwood @ The MCG - 15:20

Fittingly the game-of-the-round is going to fall on Anzac day at the MCG.
Both of these teams are in tremendous form, with the Pies demolishing the Lions last round and the Bombers making short work of the Kangaroos. Both teams are playing a free-wheeling, fast-moving and exciting brand of football at the moment and should provide a great spectacle to all of those who can watch it.
The Pies will have a wait to see how Aish (concussion) and Mihocek (corkie) come up after only a short break. For the Bombers, David Zaharakis is now looking likely, as is Devon Smith, to be able to return to the lineup for this clash.
If they can keep up the speed and intensity of the previous weeks against a better drilled, and more formidable opposition, I reckon the Bombers could get themselves an upset here.
Bombers by 14

Friday
Port Adelaide vs North Melbourne @ Adelaide Oval - 19:50

After last weekend's matches, and the fact this game is being played in Adelaide, I think the Roos are going to have a really tough time getting over the renewed Port Power.
While North has some quality in Higgins, Cunnington, McMillan, Anderson and Goldstein, the invigorated Power, featuring Boak, Wines, Gray, Rockliff, Ryder and Westoff, being at home, should be too much for the Roos to shut down, but then the Roos did get the Crows number in Round 4 after everyone, me included, wrote them off...
With the Power having won the past four games against the Roos and playing in front of their home crowd, they should make this number 5.
Port Adelaide by 34

Saturday
Gold Coast vs Brisbane @ Metricon Stadium - 13:45

I read somewhere that this match is being labelled as The Battle of the Q's, or something like that. If this is the quality of marketing that the team at AFL House can come up with, I'd like to apply for a well-paying job. I am available to start as needed.
While both teams were comprehensively beaten last weekend, the Lions managed five more scoring shots against the Pies than the Suns did against the Crows in Eddie Betts' 300th. With that firmly in mind, along with the better form before getting a right slapping, I am going to back the Lions in to recapture some of their early season form and take the Crown of Queensland home on Saturday afternoon.
Brisbane by 22

St. Kilda vs Adelaide @ Marvel Stadium - 16:35

Well haven't the Saints gotten off to a great start to 2019! I doubt too many people, eg... anyone, would have had them sitting happily second on the AFL ladder after, well, any rounds this year, but here we are and there they are.
Even though they lost the hit-outs 16 to 49 and the inside 50s, 47 to 55, the Saints stood up strong in defence and made much better use of the ball when in hand. In their game, Adelaide demolished the Suns across the middle and finally had their key forwards reward them on the scoreboard, but coming up against the renewed Saints, the Crows will definitely need to work harder, especially in the back half. This will not be the easy game they had against the Suns!
In spite of their current vein of rich form, I am going to go against the flow and pick the Crows midfield to get the ball down their end more than the Saints will be able to for their forwards.
Adelaide by 19

Sydney vs GWS Giants @ The SCG - 19:25

Both teams get to head back to Sydney for another round of the Sydney Derby. Hmmm... Harbourside Derby...? Yeah, I think that sounds a bit more impressive; for another round of the Harbourside Derby, and neither team would have enjoyed their time away from the bright lights and big city!
While Lloyd and Rampe were great in defence for the Swans, their teammates weren't damaging enough with the ball in hand, making it hard for the Swan forwards to get many quality opportunities. For GWS, their midfield ended up getting soundly beaten by their Fremantle opponents. This, in turn, gave the Docker forwards more opportunities, which they did a good job of capitalising on.
While the Swans looked ordinary against the Tigers, they have the week to work on how to get some potency back before this game. Adding Davis to their injury list will create a massive hole in the GWS defence, and I am expecting to see Franklin have a greater impact on the outcome of this match.
Sydney by 11

Fremantle vs Western Bulldogs @ Optus Stadium - 20:10

The Fremantle Dockers will return home as last round's Giant killers (see what I did there???), while the Bulldogs get to make the long trip west having been given a resounding thumping by Carlton
In a battle of two great players, I am sure the contest between Fyfe and Bontempelli will be one to follow closely and enjoy.
Getting back onto the wide expanses of Optus Stadium, while the Bulldogs are more used to the enclosed surrounds of Marvel Stadium, should see the Dockers continue with the spread and speed they showed last round. As long as the Dockers midfield can at least break even, their forwards will be too hard for the undersized Doggies to keep on the leash.
Fremantle by 25

Sunday
Hawthorn vs Carlton @ UTAS Stadium - 15:20

Wow. Over the past 15 meetings between these two teams, Carlton has managed to win................... 1 game. You read that correctly, just the single, solitary match. I'm not sure if this is a better reflection of the power of Hawthorn, over that time, or the lowly performances from Carlton that have led to such a huge disparity between the two.
With Carlton having broken through for their first win of the year, and having an extra day's rest, I think this is their best opportunity in *gulps* fifteen years to get their second win over their arch nemesis Hawthorn. That's right folks. While Tweetie has Sylvester, the Blues have the Hawks but this time, Sylvester has a sore back, dodgy hip and a splitting headache.
Carlton by 13

Geelong vs West Coast @ GMHBA Stadium - 16:40

After the Essendon v Collingwood clash, this is shaping up to be the best game of the weekend.
Following their comfortable win against the Hawks last weekend, the Catters will be full of confidence going into this exciting match, whereas the Eagles will have had some serious questions asked of them after their capitulation to the Power, who nearly doubled West Coast's score for the match. Did this match show other teams how to take down the reigning premiers?
With the particularities of the Geelong home ground a potentially important addition to the teams, I'm going to break from tradition by letting the Bureau of Meteorology provide the deciding vote... So far the BoM has Sunday as 18, windy with a decent chance of rain.
Geelong by 17

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