Ins – Sloane, Smith
Outs – Ellis-Yolmen, Henderson
Well that was the longest AFL free week in history wasn’t it? Never fear, the finals are finally here!
Adelaide and North Melbourne have played twice already this year. The results are split at 1-1, so I guess you can probably call this game the series decider.
Now based on form, Adelaide should be short priced favourites for this game and they are. But only two weeks ago, we saw West Coast annihilate Adelaide in Adelaide when nobody gave them a chance to do as much.
You can bet your bottom dollar that North will try to emulate the same tactics that West Coast attempted to try and stop the Crows run and drive. As to how effective they will be at it remains to be seen. Do North have the defence and team buy in to play the same sort of footy as the Eagles? It’s a no for mine.
Adelaide surely cannot have another game where their skill level was so bad. I’m confident of that.
North do have nothing to lose. It could be the last time Nick Dal Santo, Brent Harvey, Drew Petrie and Michael Firrito play in the AFL. Everyone has written off the Kangas and sometimes that is the only motivation you need.
In terms of Adelaide’s selections, there are a few players who can probably count themselves lucky to still be in the side this week. Brodie Smith and Rory Sloane are vital inclusions. It would have been great to see Paul Seedsman back in the team for some run, but injury and lack of match fitness continues to delay that.
Cam Ellis-Yolmen will hopefully win the Magarey Medal to ease the pain of having only two AFL games this year. Henderson unlucky but last in, first out has been the theme all year. Don’t mind that call. David Mackay would have been the other on the chopping block for mine.
There were calls too to drop Scott Thompson this week, but in a team with little finals experience, you don’t drop someone who has a fair bit at this time of the season.
Riley Knight is the other name that keeps popping up and as long as he can stay fit and in form, depending on how far Adelaide can go, his name is not out of the calculations. He has strung together enough footy now I think.
Sam Jacobs fitness is a still a worry for mine. Saw him walking across the ground at the SANFL last weekend and he certainly is not walking 100% freely.
The Crows failed under the big crowd and bright lights a fortnight ago. There is no more perfect time than to make amends for that come Saturday night.
Adelaide by 27 points.
You can feel the angst building in South Australia with the Crows first ever SANFL finals win. I still don’t think they can go all the way though.
Having watched both games last weekend, it was clear that Adelaide knew how to play Adelaide Oval better than their opponent however. They looked at home.
South Adelaide in their game against Sturt looked fairly ordinary despite six weeks of really good form previously. Sturt were the better team all day, despite it being relatively close up until the last quarter.
For that reason I think Adelaide will do another job on the Panthers this weekend and advance to the Preliminary Final. Luke Lowden, Alex Keath, Ricky Henderson and Paul Seedsman are more handy inclusions.
On another note – to the Central District supporters who stood at the Crows race and booed and displayed rude gestures after the game. You are a disgrace. An AFL team playing in the SANFL is not ideal, I agree. But there are ways to go about venting your opinions that are far more proactive than abusing opposition players. It isn’t the Adelaide players fault that they are playing in this league. Grow up.
Adelaide by 36 points.