The following are betting tips for the AFL Finals Week 1 in the 2022 season. This round features two qualifying finals involving seeds 1-4 and two elimination finals involving seeds 5-8.
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Brisbane vs. Richmond
Richmond have won 17 of their last 19 fixtures against Brisbane, however the Tigers lost their previous two visits to the Gabba – a venue where Brisbane have gone 9-2 this season. You can make a case for either side in the head-to-head, but the stats that jump out are the totals. The two sides last met at the end of July, which resulted in 201 total points. Over the last twelve months all eleven of Richmond’s away fixtures went over the total while Brisbane’s last five home fixtures went over. Each of the last four meetings between the two also went over the total. Brisbane (179.4) and Richmond (179.3) were ranked 1st and 2nd, respectively, for the highest average total score in the regular season. This comes as no surprise given the two clubs boasted the 1st and 2nd highest scoring offences, but only the 10th and 9th best defences, respectively. Had this been a regular season fixture I would have taken on the primary total market, which is currently 177.5, but with this being an elimination game, I will be more conservative and take an alternative match total. I would back over 167.5 total points at 1.50 (bet365).
Melbourne vs. Sydney
Sydney covered the line in each of their last six away fixtures against Melbourne and since 2013 the Swans have a 5-0 line record as the underdog against the Demons. Out of the last ten meetings where Melbourne hosted Sydney, the Swans won seven of those fixtures by 1-39 points. Melbourne enter this clash in 4-3 form while Sydney finished the regular season in 7-0 form. I would back Sydney +13.5 at 1.91 (bet365). Those looking for more risk should consider Sydney 1-39 at 3.20 (PlayUp, Unibet).
If I had to bet on the total I would take under 171.5 at 1.50 (bet365). Melbourne led the league in defence this season, but they only had the 6th best offence. This resulted in the Demons having the 3rd lowest average total in the league, at 155.4 points. The last meeting between Melbourne and Sydney at the MCG was in early June, which resulted in 134 total points. This continued a trend of low scoring totals. Nine of the last ten meetings between Melbourne and Sydney went under the total.
Geelong vs. Collingwood
Collingwood stormed home in 12-1 form but it felt like they used up eight of their nine lives to keep that run going. Of those twelve wins, nine were by 1-7 points, including each of the last seven. Geelong finished the regular season in 13-0 form. In contrast to Collingwood, the Cats’ average winning margin during that run was 39.3 points and only one of Geelong’s last eight opponents finished within 28 points of them. Another terrifying stat is Geelong covered the line in each of their last nine fixtures. This game will be played at the MCG rather than GMHBA Stadium, but Geelong went 4-1 both in the head-to-head and at the line at the MCG this season. Collingwood, in contrast, went 7-7 at the line at this venue in 2022. The last two meetings between the two were settled by 10 points (2021) and 13 points (2022), so I expect Collingwood will be competitive. The Magpies have only lost one game by more than 40+ points over the last twelve months and they love playing at the MCG, as evident by their 12-2 head-to-head record at the venue over the last twelve months. I expect that Geelong will win, but Collingwood will keep it interesting. I would back Geelong 1-39 at 2.15 (PlayUp).
Fremantle vs. Western Bulldogs
Fremantle have gone 6-3 as the home favourite over the last twelve months while the Western Bulldogs have gone 2-6 as the away underdog. Since 2013, Fremantle have gone 7-0 when installed as the favourite against the Western Bulldogs. It’s also noteworthy that the Dogs went 5-1 at the line as the favourite over the last twelve months, but 2-6 at the line as the underdog. Six of Fremantle’s seven home wins over the last twelve months were by 1-39 points and nine of their last ten wins over the Bulldogs were by 1-39 points. I would back Fremantle 1-39 at 2.15 (PlayUp).