Round 13 AFL Preview

Thursday
Adelaide vs Richmond @ Adelaide Oval - 19:50

After their win over a quality opponent, in GWS, last weekend, the Adelaide Crows go into Thursday night's match as deserving favourites. Richmond were horrible last round and, as a result, were on the end of a hiding from the ladder leading Cats. I can't think of a single Richmond player who won their spot on the ground...
In this match, Adelaide's midfield will be too strong for the Tigers which will provide their forwards with plenty of opportunities to kick goals. At the other end of the ground, the Tiger forward structure has been a shambles, with no Richmond forwards ever seeming to have any space to work in, something the coaching staff should be losing sleep over.
While Richmond has a decent record against Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, it would not be surprising if this game ends with Adelaide supporters heading to bed singing their theme song.
Adelaide by 38

Friday
Essendon vs Hawthorn @ Marvel Stadium - 19:50

With both teams coming off their bye, we should see a good contest between Essendon and Hawthorn on Friday night at Marvel Stadium and, with both teams being on the same score just outside the Top 8, there will be some extra incentive for them to perform well!
In Round 11 Essendon game the Blues a fair belting, while the Hawks went down to the Lions up at the Gabba in a game where the Hawthorn forwards just couldn't get into the match. While the Bombers have the better form, they have only been able to beat the Hawks twice since 2010, setting the stage for a tough game. With both teams having a number of players being under an injury cloud, it will be interesting to see who they get back for this match. As it appears that the Bombers will be adding Stringer, Fantasia and Dylan Shiel to the squad, these inclusions will give them a big lift.
Essendon by 16

Saturday
Gold Coast vs St. Kilda @ Townsville - 13:45

Even with this a Gold Coast home game, both teams will be heading north to the heat of a Townsville Winter; the St Kilda players will be going from weather in the mid-teens to playing a game in the high 20s. If they have any sense they will stay up in Queensland, to enjoy some warmth, for as long as possible!
The last time these two teams played was in Melbourne, where the Saints came away with a one-point win. Since then both teams have lost a number of quality players to injury and personal reasons and have found things much tougher as a result.
With the thought that Touk Miller will be right for the match, and that the heat will work against the Saints, I am going to go with the Suns to get a rare win in Season 2019.
Gold Coast by 5

Fremantle vs Port Adelaide @ Optus Stadium - 16:35

In another match played by two teams on the same score and next to each other on the ladder, we find the Dockers playing the Power in Perth on Saturday afternoon on what should be a good match of footy.
In the respective matches from Round 11, the Power demolished the Saints by 70 points while the Dockers got one of their better wins ever, downing Collingwood by four points at the MCG. Since then both teams have had a week off and yet injuries could play a part in deciding who will be the winner of this match. For the Dockers, the No1 ruckman, Rory Lobbe will be sidelined through injury whereas the Power will be hoping to get a number of quality players back for the match.
While these two teams have a near 50/50 record when playing each other, the wins have nearly always gone the way of the home team. With the way the in's and out's are looking, I think Port will sneak home.
Port Adelaide by 7

Carlton vs Western Bulldogs @ Marvel Stadium - 19:10

While it is surprising to see the Bulldogs sitting in 15th place of the ladder halfway through the season, they only have themselves to blame. After a great win against the Tigers in Round 7, the Bulldogs lost their following three games leading into their mid-season break. While the Blues are sitting stone-cold last, they found a way to get their second win on the board last week, coming from behind to over-run a visiting Brisbane Lions team. While it is a bit of a push, you could say that Carlton is the form team out of these two...
While neither team has hit any great heights this season, watching Patrick Cripps and Marcus Bontempelli going head-to-head just about makes this a match worth watching.
I'm hoping on the bandwagon!
Carlton by 11

Sunday
North Melbourne vs GWS Giants @ Blundstone Arena - 15:20

This round's sole Sunday match finds North Melbourne up against GWS in Hobart.
At this venue, in the corresponding head-to-head match-up in Round 9 last year, the Kangaroos came away with a comfortable 43 point win over the Giants and with their much-improved performances of late, the Roos would have to be feeling pretty positive about getting their fourth win in a row. For the Giants, whilst having more possessions overall last week, they were beaten by the Crows at the big ones of Clearances, Contested Possessions and Inside the 50s, resulting in a loss they may not have expected. Will they come out hard to make amends, or will they be hanging their heads from the loss?
I wonder if the Shaw brothers (one a back-pocket for the Giants while the other now coaches the Kangaroos) will engage in a fiery game of scissors-pape-rock to determine who gets the win and bragging rights around the Xmas table?
GWS Giants by 19

Byes: Brisbane, Collingwood, Geelong, Melbourne, Sydney, West Coast

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