Online bookmaker CrownBet have provided their expert opinions on Saturday’s AFL Grand Final between the Adelaide Crows and the Richmond Tigers. View their tips and bets for the match as well as stats and an in depth preview of the key players in the match. View the expert AFL Grand Final tips below.
ADELAIDE CROWS ($1.70) v RICHMOND TIGERS ($2.20)
ROAD TO THE FINALS
Both teams took the most direct route to the Grand Final, winning their respective Qualifying and Preliminary Finals.
The Crows dominated the Giants in the first half and cruised to a 36 point victory in the Qualifying Final before a quick start against the Cats was met with some minor resistance in a 61 point demolition to book themselves a spot in the Grand Final.
The Tigers were equally impressive, using a 7 goal final quarter to get over the Cats before defeating the Giants by 36 points in a game that was right in the balance until after half-time.
LAST TIME THEY PLAYED
ADELAIDE 140 v RICHMOND 64 (Round 6 Adelaide Oval)
The Tigers managed to keep scoring pace with the Crows early but no team has been able to match Adelaide in a shootout this season. 6 goals in the second quarter was followed by 7 in the third quarter and with a 68 point lead at the last change the game was over well before the final siren.
Adelaide’s engine room was humming with Matt Crouch (38 touches), Laird (34), Sloane (33) and Jake Kelly (28 and 10 marks) dominant. The Crows had plenty of the ball with 7 players registering over 25 possessions. In comparison the Tigers had just two in Cotchin and Martin. Sam Jacobs won plenty of the ball in the ruck with 50 hit outs. Tex Walker had 5 goals whilst both Jack Riewoldt and Daniel Rioli had two apiece.
- Adelaide had 125 marks to the Richmond’s 58.
- Adelaide had 35 scoring shots to Richmond’s 14
Interestingly both teams had a similar amount of Inside 50’s (ADL 60 v RCH 50) indicating that the Tigers could get the ball into their offensive area but couldn’t convert that into scoring shots.
3 THINGS THE TIGERS NEED TO DO TO WIN
- Control the tempo of the game early.
We all know that the first 10 minutes of the Grand Final is played like the ball is a hot potato as the players settle into the big occasion. The Tigers had two goals in the opening minutes against GWS last week and this is exactly what the Cats couldn’t do when they played Adelaide. Dangerfield missed his shots on goal as the Crows kicked away.
- Use the home ground advantage
Richmond are incredibly lucky to have played essentially 3 home finals from 3rd position. They earned the Preliminary Final but the Grand Final is a bonus.
Whilst the MCG will have more Crows supporters and neutral observers than the Giants did last weekend, the Tigers will still have the majority of the crowd behind them. Keep them in the game by staying close and they will feel the excitement build as the match progresses.
- Win the Ruck
The Tigers lost the hit-outs 28-41 against the Giants. This is disappointing considering that Shane Mumford wasn’t even playing. Rory Lobb and Patton shared the ruck work for the Giants. Sam Jacobs is in fantastic form and if he dominates Nankervis the Adelaide midfield will have consistent first use of the ball and the Tigers will be in trouble.
3 THINGS THE CROWS NEED TO DO TO WIN
- SCORE EARLY
We said it last week and it sounds so simple but no one has matched the Crows in a shootout this season. The Cats fought hard early but at quarter time they were 31 points down and despite a see-sawing game in the second and third quarter the margin never really got any smaller before the game blew out.
- USE THE BIG/SMALL FORWARD COMBINATION
The Giants had plenty of the ball against Richmond and were right in the match until half-time. Time after time the Giants had a fast break down the field and were left without a decent lead-out forward to take a mark. The Crows have Tex Walker and Josh Jenkins and the smaller forwards in Betts and Charlie Cameron. All they really need to do is hit any one of those targets.
Both Adelaide and Giant midfields were ranked #1 and #2 in all the important statistical categories so it makes sense to think that Richmond will have an equally hard time controlling them. If you want to go a bit further think of what the Crows midfield did to the Giants when they met in the Qualifying Final. The Giants just didn’t punish the Tigers in attack and the Crows won’t make that mistake.
There is a simple reason why the Crows will win this Grand Final and that is in the major difference between Adelaide and the Giants. Whilst both midfields are elite the Giants had no forward presence. The Crows don’t have that problem.
If the Giants had forward targets to hit they would’ve been in last weekend’s game for a lot longer. The Tigers will be motivated but so are Adelaide, it will be the combination of big and small forwards and elite delivery from the midfield that will deliver the Crows the Premiership.
Adelaide Crows -6.5 ($1.92)
Total points over 171.5 ($1.90)