AFL Tips & Preview – Round 22

Round 22 of the 2022 AFL season is last-chance-saloon for St Kilda and the Western Bulldogs, who face crunch matches in their bid to squeeze into the Top 8.

Friday 12th August, 19:50 (AEST)

St Kilda Brisbane
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C I/C


History:
Played 50: St Kilda 25 v Brisbane 25

Last Meeting: AFL R13 2022: Brisbane Lions 10.18 (78) dftd St Kilda 8.9 (57)

Final Thoughts: St Kilda’s poor percentage means they’ll need to win their last two games to keep their Top 8 hopes alive, starting with the Lions. Nothing from the Saints’ last month of footy suggests they deserve to be playing finals footy in 2022, and Brett Ratten would need to pull something out of the hat if he’s to inspire a form-reversal in the final fortnight of the season.

The Lions also need to win their last two games of the season to seal a fourth-straight Top 4 finish. They start as favourites in this one, but continual question marks hang over Chris Fagan’s men, perhaps best typified by their win over Carlton in Round 21. After dominating for three quarters, Brisbane conceded eight goals in the final term as they switched off in all facets. There’s little to suggest they’re peaking heading into September, and they’ll be desperate to extract some momentum from this one.

Tip: Line, Brisbane -8.5 @ $1.90

Saturday 13th August, 13:45 (AEST)

Western Bulldogs GWS
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C I/C


History:
Played 15: Western Bulldogs 9 v GWS 6

Last Meeting: AFL R14 2022: GWS Giants 16.9 (105) lost to Western Bulldogs 19.11 (125)

Final Thoughts: A stuttering finish to 2022 from Carlton has opened up the door for the Dogs to sneak into the Top 8, but Luke Beveridge’s men blew the perfect chance to narrow the gap with a hugely disappointing loss to the Dockers at home in Round 21. It leaves them needing victory in both of their final two games, and relying on the Blues to trip up against both Melbourne and Collingwood. But the sequence of events isn’t impossible, and the Dogs are still considered $3.25 chances to make the Top 8 with Palmerbet.

They’ll have to get past a Giants outfit which — credit where it’s due — responded well to a lashing from interim coach Mark McVeigh (after a Round 20 thumping from the Swans) to register a strong win over Essendon last week.

Tip: Line, GWS +32.5 @ $1.90

Saturday 13th August, 14:10 (AEST)

Adelaide North Melbourne
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C I/C


History:
Played 48: Adelaide 26 v North Melbourne 22

Last Meeting: AFL R15 2022: North Melbourne 8.10 (58) lost to Adelaide 17.13 (115)

Final Thoughts: A late-season dead-rubber if ever there was one, but North could sniff an opportunity to snatch their third win for the season and avoid back-to-back wooden spoons. In truth the Roos, from a pressure perspective, were strong against the Swans in Round 21 despite the 38-point loss. Nick Larkey’s seven goals were a definitive highlight, and if they’re any chance for an upset in this one, he’d need to feature prominently in this one as well. Ben Cunnington’s return after a prolonged absence due to cancer treatment will undoubtedly give the playing list a huge lift. The Crows are finishing off what’s been a disappointing season strongly, and deservedly start strong favourites to notch a third-straight win. Despite their lowly position in 15th, Adelaide have stamped their authority as one of the best pressure sides in the competition and lead the league in tackles.

Tip: Margin, Adelaide by 1-39 @ $2.25

Saturday 13th August, 16:35 (AEST)

Gold Coast Geelong
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C I/C

 

History: Played 13: Gold Coast 2 v Geelong 11

Last Meeting: AFL R10 2021: Geelong 14.7 (91) dftd Gold Coast 8.9 (57)

Final Thoughts: While they already have one hand and four fingers on the minor premiership (if, you know, it was actually an object to acquire), Geelong could seal their fourth top-spot since 2007 with victory at Metricon Stadium. Four points and percentage ahead of Collingwood in second, Chris Scott has the luxury of resting players in the final two games of the home-and-away season, making sure they’re tip-top heading into a September flag tilt. Although don’t expect them to take the foot off the gas — a 12th-straight win looms.

For the Suns, the positivity that surrounded them at one stage a month ago has all but worn off and they’re losing momentum in 2022 having lost three of their last four. While at one stage they looked on-track to make their first ever finals series, they could finish as low as 13th without a win in their next two games.

Tip: To score 2+ goals, Izak Rankine (GC) @ $2.50

Saturday 13th August, 19:25 (AEST)

Melbourne Carlton
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C I/C


History:
Played 215: Melbourne 95 v Carlton 118 (2 draws)

Last Meeting: AFL R9 2021: Melbourne 13.16 (94) dftd Carlton 10.8 (68)

Final Thoughts: After jumping out to 10-0, it seems inconceivable that Melbourne could finish outside the Top 4. At that stage, the Dees were $1.04 to seal a double-chance and were far-and-away the 2022 flag favourites. But things have gone belly-up since, and Simon Goodwin’s side have won just four of their last 10. It’s perhaps even more damning that Clayton Oliver, Jack Viney and Christian Petracca all dominated last Friday’s clash against Collingwood, yet Melbourne still lost the encounter. It speaks to a side with a dysfunctional forward line and, with time running out until we hit September, one that needs to fix things quick smart.

They face a Carlton outfit who have similarly struggled in the back-half of this season and, with a glut of midfielders out including skipper Patrick Cripps, start as big outsiders in this one. Defeat here could leave Michael Voss’ side needing victory in their last game of the season against Collingwood to break a nine-year finals drought — something which seemed nailed-on when the Blues burst out to 8-2 in 2022.

Tip: To get 30+ disposals, Jack Viney (Melb) @ $2.35

Saturday 13th August, 19:40 (AEST)

Fremantle West Coast
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C  I/C

 

History: Played 54: Fremantle 22 v West Coast 32

Last Meeting: AFL R3 2022: West Coast 7.5 (47) lost to Fremantle 15.12 (102)

Final Thoughts: A derby with wholly differing carrots dangling in front of both sides. For Fremantle, a Top 4 finish remains a live chance but without victory here it would be all but impossible. The Dockers will need to win here and against the Giants next week, and rely on other results going their way. But at $2.25 to sneak in, Justin Longmuir would be bullish about their chances. At $1.12 (on Thursday morning) It’s likely they’ve never started a derby clash this short.

For the Eagles, who are stumbling to the finish line of what’s been a torrid 2022 campaign, their carrot is that victory would all but assure them of avoiding the wooden spoon. Equal on points with North Melbourne, their superior percentage would mean one more win would do the trick.

Tip: Line, West Coast +38.5 @ $1.90

Sunday 14th August, 13:10 (AEST)

Richmond Hawthorn
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C (from) I/C (from)

 

History: Played 163: Richmond 91 v Hawthorn 71 (1 draw)

Last Meeting: AFL R9 2022: Hawthorn 14.10 (94) lost to Richmond 17.15 (117)

Final Thoughts: At 42 points down to Brisbane in Round 20, Richmond’s season looked all but done. A stunning comeback in that clash, then a dominant win over Port Adelaide in Round 21, has put Damien Hardwick’s side in the box seat to return to finals action. Wins against both Hawthorn here and Essendon next week will see them through. In fact, one win could also see them remain inside the Top 8, but would rely on St Kilda not winning both of their final two games.

For the Hawks, they have little left to play for in 2022, which makes their late-season surge (winning four of their last five) all the more impressive. Sam Mitchell gets a big tick in his first season as head coach, and disrupting the finals race here would only add to that.

Tip: Margin, Richmond 1-39 @ $2.20

Sunday 14th August, 15:20 (AEST)

Sydney Collingwood
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C (from) I/C (from)

 

History: Played 229: Sydney 85 v Collingwood 143 (1 draw)

Last Meeting: AFL R9 2021: Sydney 10.12 (72) dftd Collingwood 5.12 (42)

Final Thoughts: It’s a mark of just how big this clash is that the SCG had sold out by Tuesday afternoon; a rarity for any home-and-away game in Sydney let alone five days out from the first bounce. The Swans can go a long way to securing a Top 4 spot with victory here, and would even keep hopes alive of finishing as high as second, which would secure a home qualifying final.

The Pies, meanwhile, are gunning for an incredible 12th win on the bounce and would themselves secure the double chance with an upset win here. As long as $101 flag outsiders at one stage in 2022, the Craig McRae revival is now the story of the year and has seen Collingwood into $8. This clash is likely to be a high-octane, high-pressure game with both sides hitting each other hard. Both the Swans and Pies have been two of the best pressure sides in the back half of the year, and on the smaller confines of the SCG ball movement will prove difficult. Another tight one is likely.

Tip: Total score, Under 172.5 @ $1.88

Sunday 14th August, 16:40 (AEST)

Essendon Port Adelaide
Pos Player Pos Player

B

B
HB HB
C C
HF HF
F F
FOL FOL
I/C (from) I/C (from)

 

History: Played 34: Essendon 14 v Port Adelaide 20

Last Meeting: AFL R11 2022: Port Adelaide 9.12 (66) dftd Essendon 6.14 (50)

Final Thoughts: After both played finals in 2021, Essendon and Port Adelaide have been two of the biggest disappointments in 2022 and have little left to play for this season. Essendon’s late-season revival has been pegged back in recent weeks, losing two of their last three, while Port Adelaide have now gone down in four-straight games. The Power have won their last four outings against the Bombers, however they haven’t faced off in Docklands since 2019.

Michael Hurley, who hasn’t played an AFL game since round 18, 2020, could be considered for a return in red and black, while the Power will regain leading goalkicker Todd Marshall after a stint on the sidelines from COVID protocols.

Tip: Margin, Essendon by 1-39 @ $2.35