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AFL ROUND 18

ADELAIDE CROWS VS RICHMOND TIGERS

SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 19, 4.40 PM, ADELAIDE OVAL

Adelaide have given themselves a small chance of remarkably handing the wooden spoon over to North Melbourne if they can get the job done against the reigning Premiers Richmond.  The Crows have been on a 3-game tear since breaking their duck against Hawthorn, as they went about beating the Giants and most recently the Blues, showing just how much of a factor confidence is in this game.  Richmond showed Geelong and the entire AFL how serious they are about defending their title as they belted the Cats by 26, leaving Geelong to lick their paws after managing just 4 goals against the bigger cat Tigers.  Richmond can move back to 3rd by winning this game, otherwise inviting the Cats into 3rd and giving the Eagles an early Christmas present by leaving them 4th, meaning they get 2 shots in the Finals while Richmond would be in sudden-death from week 1.  Cool wet weather awaits in Adelaide, meaning another dogfight is on the cards, in a low-scoring defence first type affair, with only a brave crowd venturing out to support their Crows.

What a memorable game it would be if Adelaide can celebrate Daniel Talia’s 200th with a win, defeating the reigning Premiers, giving him a career highlight he will never forget.  Frampton, Gibbs and Butts are not selected to attempt to gift that game to the fine workhorse, from Kilmore.  Talia missed last game but is back and starting at Fullback, while Mackay also returns in the Midfield and key Forward Taylor Walker is back starting his 203rd match, all for Adelaide since debuting in 2009.  Markov is out of the Richmond side, while 3 others are injured, namely Soldo, Bolton and Lynch, leaving them plenty of holes to fill, and probably more changes than they would like this close to the Finals.  Astbury will play in the Defenders group, while Caddy is back to play a bench role, and Chol will be in the starting Forward line, while Edwards returns to play a key Midfielders position.

Adelaide were far too good for Richmond in the 2019 rendition of this fixture, winning by 33, right in the thick of the season in mid-June, which ought to cause the Tigers some concern, as a win here is crucial to their chances.  Indeed Richmond have just 14 wins from 39 matches against Adelaide, which seems rather low, until you remember just how good the Crows were for many years that Richmond were not good.  Richmond are $1.23 favourites with a handicap mark of -22.5, but the Crows are just $4.20, while one would think with that margin prediction they would be much longer.  It might be a stretch to say Adelaide are a good chance of winning this, but the spoiling tag has suited them in the last month, and it would be a mighty shake-up to the competition, with the Eagles big-time beneficiaries.

PREDICTION: Richmond to beat Adelaide in a tight game, by less than 15.

BETTING TIP: Richmond by 1-39 is the boring but popular option here paying $1.87.