Hawthorn v West Coast Sun 1:10pm at Etihad Stadium
There will be a new #1 in town on Sunday, when the Eagles fly to Melbourne to take on the Hawks at Etihad in the battle of the birds. The dominant 47 point win to West Coast over Richmond last round confirmed their outright spot at the top of the ladder, and getting wins in Melbourne during the regular season will be crucial given their lack of success in the big games out east in recent times. Standing in their way will be a Hawks side fresh off losing to what was previously the only winless side in the league. The angry little man, Clarko, will be absolutely filthy with the way his side was overrun by the more enthusiastic Lions side, and he will need to be at his tactical best to combat the myriad of threats this Eagles side poses.
Hawthorn (LWWLL) – We’ve seen something from Hawthorn this season we haven’t seen for a long time- inconsistency. Another surprising element of their season has been the forward line, which at times has looked like a rabble, despite still boasting the likes of Roughead, Gunston and Breust. Last round the Hawks had one more inside 50’s than the Lions, yet could only muster 5 inside 50 marks to the Lions’ 14. They’ve certainly had some solid wins, but in many of their losses they have looked at sea when it comes to attempting to arrest momentum and that is a dangerous habit. West Coast (WWWWW) – What else can we say about the Eagles form line? They have now won 8 in a row for the first time since 2005, when they were in the midst of an engrossing Premiership tussle with Sydney for 2 years in a row. Remarkably, Josh Kennedy is now playing second fiddle to the unstoppable Jack Darling, who has now scored 16 goals in his last 4 games whilst also averaging 19 disposals and 10 marks per game. At the other end of the field, skipper Shannon Hurn is having a career-best year and Jeremy McGovern looks completely impassable, and their leadership has been outstanding in what is still a relatively young team.
Stats That Matter– West Coast are averaging 103 points per game this season – Hawthorn have won 7 of the last 9 meetings, with 5 by 40+ points – Andrew Gaff is averaging 32 disposals per game in his last 4 against Hawthorn – The Eagles have not won 9 in a row since 1991 – Tom Mitchell has had 40+ disposals on 5 occasions this year – Hawthorn are 3-1 ATS at home in 2018
2018 Line: Hawthorn- 5-4; West Coast- 6-3
2018 Over-Under: Hawthorn- 4-5; West Coast- 4-5
What To Expect
The way the Eagles run and spread suits them far better at Etihad Stadium than the ‘G, and their pace should definitely worry the Hawks on the fast deck. They have quite rightly been installed as warm favourites in this clash, but the Wolf is always wary of the Hawks and is expecting them to make the Eagles fight tooth-and-nail for this win. Expecting the Eagles momentum to keep on rolling against the Hawks. It’s hard to see how the Hawks can solve their forward woes overnight against one of the more impregnable defences in the competition.
How It’s Shaping UpWest Coast by 20
Pump It Up Price Special: Darling 4+ Goals & West Coast Win ($4.00)
Recommended Bets Best Bet: West Coast 1-39 ($2.25) Value Bet: West Coast 91-105 Total Points ($3.60) Player Prop: Andrew Gaff 110+ Fantasy Points ($2.00) First Goalscorer: Mark Le Cras