We’re on the final stretch to the 2023 AFL finals series, and there are pressure match-ups everywhere you look.
BetDeluxe delivers tips for every game, including an in-depth look at the Gold Coast Suns as they attempt to find form following the departure of Stewart Dew.
game of the week: Suns vs. Saints
15th July 2:10PM
While seven spots separate these two sides on the ladder, the market has indeed come for the Gold Coast Suns after news of Stewart Dew’s sacking as senior coach. Both sides have won just one game from their past four, but the Suns enter the clash as $1.53 favourites as punters expect them to bounce back and record their eighth win of the season under interim coach Steven King.
It was an improved Suns team that lost to Port Adelaide by 33 points on Saturday night, one week after being dismantled by Collingwood in front of their home fans. Noah Anderson led from the front with 29 disposals, while Levi Casboult ended a two-game dry spell and slotted a season-high four goals.
As for the Saints, their poor run of form continued with a 21-point loss to Melbourne. It was an uphill battle from the very start for Ross Lyon, with Max King (shoulder), Seb Ross (hamstring) and Zaine Cordy (concussion) all subbed out in the opening quarter. Nevertheless, the Saints’ 58 points took their season average to 77.4, ranking them fourth-last in attack above just the bottom three teams.
The loss of a senior coach often leads to an improved performance the following week, and we’re expecting the same from the Suns, especially with the Saints’ forced changes and lack of forward options.
Suggested Bet: Suns to win @ $1.53
Swans vs. Bulldogs
13th July 7:20pm
Despite boasting a percentage higher than three teams inside the top eight, Sydney’s finals hopes may have been dashed in Thursday night’s loss to the Tigers as they now sit 15th and two wins outside the eight. The seventh-placed Bulldogs, however, have it all to play for following their courageous loss to the Pies, making this one of the most intriguing match-ups of the round.
Suggested Bet: M. Bontempelli anytime goal scorer @ $1.67
Demons vs. Lions
14th July 7:50pm
Are the Dees back in form, or did the football gods kiss them with three first-quarter injuries to St Kilda? A little bit of ‘A’, a little bit of ‘B’. Christian Petracca kicked four goals from 20 disposals, but they were still missing Clayton Oliver. Either way, we’ll undoubtedly discover this weekend as they take on the red-hot Lions at the ‘G. With 13 losses from their past 14 at the venue, it’s hard to mount an argument for Chris Fagan and his men.
Suggested Bet: Demons to win @ $1.79
Magpies vs. Dockers
15th July 1:45PM
The Magpie Army is chirping, and they’ve got every reason to. With three wins in a row – including a 12-point Marvel Stadium victory over the Dogs last week – the Pies are flying in first spot on the ladder. With genuine Brownlow Medal fancy, Nick Daicos is running rings around the opposition. The Dockers have lost four of their past five, and nobody can expect them to find form against the benchmark.
Suggested Bet: Magpies (-40.5) @ $1.91
Blues vs. Power
15th July 4:35PM
Carlton’s newfound form will be tested for the first time this weekend as they come up against a Power unit on a 13-game winning streak. With wins against the Suns, Hawks and Dockers, the Blues will face their first top-eight side since losing to Essendon in Round 14. And it’s a Power team that just piled on nine goals in the third quarter to steamroll the Suns. Hold your breath, Blues fans.
Suggested Bet: Power 1-39 @ $2.25
Cats vs. Bombers
15th July 7:25PM
Perhaps closer than the market suggests, Geelong will face off with Essendon as $1.35 favourites with BetDeluxe. The Cats have improved over the past five rounds with three wins and a draw, while the Bombers bounced back from a four-point loss to the Power with a sensational 18-point triumph over the Crows that has launched them in fifth on the ladder. With three consecutive wins over the Bombers, we’ll take a Cats side purring ahead of finals.
Suggested Bet: N. Martin 25+ disposals @ $2.10
Crows vs. Giants
15th July 7:40PM
The Crows’ toxic relationship with venues away from the Adelaide Oval continued over the weekend when they went down to the Bombers by three goals. However, they will be buoyed by their six-goal final quarter, as well as Rory Laird (31) and Jordan Dawson’s (28) continual midfield dominance. The Giants have now won four in a row, but the Crows at home are a different beast.
Suggested Bet: Crows (-16.5) @ $1.90
Kangaroos vs. Hawks
16th July 1:10PM
Not exactly the most mouthwatering clash of the week, with the 16th and 17th-ranked sides going head-to-head at Marvel Stadium. The Hawks enter as $1.53 favourites based on their hard-fought 13-point loss to the Giants, whereby their young midfield of Jai Newcombe, Conor Nash, Will Day and James Worpel all registered 24+ disposals. Should be too good.
Suggested Bet: Hawks to win @ $1.53
Eagles vs. Tigers
16th July 4:40PM
The season from hell will continue for West Coast fans as they face a Richmond team with four wins from five matches and sitting just one game outside the eight. A percentage of 96.9% is working against the yellow and black in their bid for finals, so expect an unrelenting Sunday afternoon massacre at Optus Stadium.
Suggested Bet: Tigers 40+ @ $1.84