Thursday, 26 June 2008
: Hawthorn vs. West Coast Eagles
Where: MCG, Melbourne
When: 7.40PM, Friday 27th June 2008
Sportingbet Odds: Hawks ($1.06) Eagles ($9.00)
Line Option: Eagles +45.5 ($1.91)
Flying high in second position, the Hawks went into their clash with North Melbourne last Saturday at the MCG as firm favourites, however a week after falling to Fremantle, the Kangaroos upset the apple cart, winning their fifth match in succession against the Hawks.
With the Bulldogs having held off Collingwood, the Hawks start the split round in third position, and will not lose that position whatever the result on Friday night.
While the Hawks could easily have stayed pat and kept the same twenty-two from last week, with returning veterans Shane Crawford and Trent Croad fit again after their respective injuries, both have been raced back into the line-up, with Travis Tuck and Tim Boyle making way for the returning duo.
B: Brent Guerra, Stephen Gilham, Campbell Brown
HB: Grant Birchall, Trent Croad, Rick Ladson
C: Jordan Lewis, Sam Mitchell, Clinton Young
HF: Cyril Rioli, Lance Franklin, Shane Crawford
F: Mark Williams, Jarryd Roughead, Michael Osborne
Foll: Robert Campbell, Luke Hodge, Xavier Ellis
I/C: Thomas Murphy, Stuart Dew, Jarryd Morton, Brent Renouf
EMG: Tim Clarke, Travis Tuck, Brendan Whitecross
Last Saturday night's embarrassment against Geelong was perhaps the low-point in West Coast's history, with their 135-point home loss keeping the Eagles in fifteenth position and dropping their percentage to an embarrassing 67.53%. After thirteen rounds, the Eagles possess the worst attack and third worst defence in the competition, and show sign that the performance will improve in the short term.
Facing the Hawks at this point in time is a tough enough assignment, however the Eagles will go into Friday night's match without David Wirrpanda (back) and Brett Jones (knee), while the luckless Sam Butler (groin) finds himself back on the sidelines. Premiership players Michael Braun and Chad Fletcher have both been omitted from the side.
Coming back into the side is the quartet of Steven Armstrong, Ryan Davis, Jaymie Graham and Jamie McNamara, while Brent Staker also resumes having missed last weekend's embarrassment against the Cats.
B: Jaymie Graham, Darren Glass, Mark Nicoski
HB: Andrew Embley, Beau Wilkes, Adam Selwood
C: Brad Ebert, Daniel Kerr, Tim Houlihan
HF: Steven Armstrong, Ashley Hansen, Ben McKinley
F: Mark LeCras, Adam Hunter, Quinten Lynch
Foll: Dean Cox, Matt Priddis, Jamie McNamara
I/C: Ryan Davis, Will Schofield, Brent Staker, Tyson Stenglein
EMG: Michael Braun, Eric Mackenzie, James Thomson
Lance Franklin: More goals or behinds: More Goals ($1.57)
Franklin had an off game against the Kangaroos last Saturday, however he should bounce back with a big game on Friday night and kick a big bag of goals.
Whichever way you look at it, there's only one option here.
Racing and Sports tip: Hawthorn