AFL  Archive

Australian Football 25 October 2017

“Thumbs up for Port”

Big Jim takes a look at Port Adelaide’s excellent recruitment during the trade period….read more

I really like the way Port Adelaide went about their recruitment this year during the trade period. They had a solid year last year with a list that struggled in some certain key areas. What they did do last year, was they consistently beat teams they should have and that suggests a strong structure and excellent coaching.

Their base core from last year remains with Wingard, Westhoff, Wines, Gray, Ryder and Dixon. This is a pretty good bunch but they had real problems with 12-22 last year but this recruitment drive will fix that.

Tom Rockliff brings over 150 games of experience and at 27 still should have his best football in front of him. He was a two time best and fairest at the Lions and he is the tough hard at the ball piece of the puzzle that their midfield needs. It’s not just what he will do but its how he will relieve some of the hard tagging that good teams put on their best midfielders last year. He can do for Port what Prestia did for the Tigers and to be truthful could do it even better.

Charlie Dixon hit his straps last year but he needed help and that is thankfully arriving. I really like what Jack Watts brings to the table for Port. Getting out of Melbourne is going to be a great thing for Watts. The Melbourne culture was toxic for Jack and his move is a win win for both the D’s and Port. He brings experience and he is another one that should still have his best 3-4 years of football in front of him. Watts needs to play the second tall forward role and he is perfectly suited to that. He is also going to enjoy a more stable midfield than he ever had at the Demons.

Steven Motlop is the wild card. Geelong had been shopping him around for a few seasons and finally got rid of him. It was the right move by the Cats but it might be a shrewd pick up by Port. Motlop is one of these players who is a world beater one day and then goes missing in action the next. Hinkley is the perfect coach to change that and if Motlop can find consistency then he could play a pivotal role in a forward line with plenty of teeth.

Port loses Trengrove, Ah Chee, Young, Lobbe and Austin which are all expectable losses. The one that probably hurts the most is the loss of Jarman Impey but the move from pick 68 to pick 34 is significant and certainly softens the blow.

Time will tell but I give Port Adelaide an A and the biggest tick for their trades this year. They bring in 3 quality players and if they find a ready made one in the draft they all of a sudden have a very strong core that can see them push for a top 4 spot next year.

Australian Football 9 October 2017

Big Moves especially up North”

Big Jim takes a look at some of the big moves already happening in the AFL...read more

Luke Hodge is a Hawthorn legend. That isn’t going to change regardless. His decision to go and play for the Brisbane Lions next year is a strange one. Hawthorn letting him go was the right move for them; But only time will tell if its a good thing for the Lions and for Hodge himself. Only Hodge could tell you what his motivation really is. If he just loves football so much the thought of not playing was too much to take right now, then good luck to him but that scenario is a little bit too much for me to swallow.

You wouldn’t think it was a money thing for Hodge so the most likely thing is that he is looking towards coaching in the future and is taking the same route in that direction that his former team mate Sam Mitchell took last year. This is a very new approach that can be beneficial but can also be a waste of time and money for all involved. Hodge will offer a lot from a mentoring role at Brisbane but its going to be harder to get up week after week in a team that is still struggling on the field.

Stuart Dew is a bold appointment for the Gold Coast Suns. They were always going to choose a first time head coach but Dew is an interesting decision. You get the feeling Dew wears his emotions on his sleeve and that can make the Head Coaching caper a tough gig. Time will tell and he is going to need a big whip to get the Suns mind on the job.

Jake Stringer looks certain to leave the Dogs. That is good news for the Dogs. That is not to say that Stringer hasn’t got good football left in him but there comes a time when some players need to make a break from their club. The Bombers look like the likely landing spot for the “Package” and that might be a good fit. Some of Jake’s silly antics won’t go down well with John Worsfold so if he is to become a Bomber he better be ready to pull his head in.

Also 2018 will be a perfect time for a double dose of Yellow and Black. You can take Richmond to win the 2018 Flag into Dusty Martin to win the 2018 Brownlow medal for a juicy $35.00 at Ladbrokes even more if you use a Ladbrokes Multi Bet boost. Sounds like a pretty good bet to me!!!

Australian Football 1 October 2017

Its Tiger TIME!!!”

Big Jim celebrates the amazing performance by the Richmond Football Club and their 2017 AFL Premiership….read more

I am not usually lost for words; But there are no words that can do justice to th performance by the Yellow and Black in the 2017 AFL Grand Final. In a low scoring Grand Final the Tigers simply crushed the Crows apart. The Crows took full advantage of their chances in the first quarter by kicking 4 goals but in the last three quarters the Tigers outscored them 14 goals to 4. In the second and third quarter, where the Tigers kicked 7 straight goals, the Tiges were +27 in contested possessions which is the area where Adelaide dominated all year.

The Tigers just didn’t have a bad player. They dominated across the ground and their pressure never let the Crows fight their way back into the game. Adelaide would have backed themselves in if they could have won the battle of the midfield and were allowed to get quick clean ball into their forward line. At quarter time the game was in the balance but the Tigers then methodically extinguished the cohesion of the well drilled Crows midfield and the impact of big Sam Jacobs.

Trying to pick the Tigers best is nearly impossible. The leadership of Cotchin and Hardwick can’t be under estimated. Rance is the best full back to ever play the game and even though he doesn’t get the touches that Dusty and Dangerfield does, he is the most valuable player in the game today. Toby Nankervis performance against arguably the best ruckman in the game was inspirational. 5 goals from Graham and Townsend under pins the depth of the Tigers and their recent recruitment. Caddy and Houli who have been maligned at certain stages in their careers silenced their critics once and for all.

Then we are left with the Norm Smith Medallist. To be truthful I wouldn’t have given the medal to Dusty (I thought Rance, Houli or even Graham must have gone close) but its hard to argue that Martin didn’t deserve it. A player like Dusty Martin dominates football games. Its not simply what he does with the ball but also what teams have to sacrifice to keep his involvement under control.

Well DONE TIGES….This one tastes SOOOO SWEET!!!

Australian Rules Football 26 September 2017

One Win Away!”

Big Jim tries to keep his emotions under check as the Tigers prepare to end 37 sad years….read more

It was a one of those special days of football. Its all a bit a blur for me, but I remember the tears rolling down my checks as the realisation that the Tigers had really made it to the biggest dance of them all. 95,000 screaming fans donned in Yellow and Black made it one hell of a spectacle.

The Bulldogs delivered on a fairytale last year, can it happen two years in a row? Its been a long time for the Crows as well and South Australia bleed just as hard for their beloved Crows as the Tiger Army does in Victoria. Lets have a look at the two teams in what is going to be one hell of a game. To be truthful all Grand Finals are special, this is just another one, but for fans of the Tigers and the Crows its going to be a restless week.

Adelaide Crows

Why They Can Win:

The Crows have been the best team all year. They did it easy against the Giants and the Cats and they are one hell of a good football team. The have a perfect balance which is something you can argue the Tigers don’t have. Their back line is solid, their midfield runs all day and they have big strong marking talls and a couple of the best small forwards in the game. If they can break down the Richmond back line then they will pile on the points. They have a huge advantage when it comes to height. Jacobs might just be their most important player. Bruce McAvaney might set a world record for using the expression “big sauce”

Why They Can Lose:

For me its the most potent offence going against the most flexible defence. If they don’t kick straight the Tigers will like their chances of getting the ball out of their own half. The Crow defence is also going to find it hard to belt through that Richmond forward press. Expectation for this side is high, the whole state of South Australia is going “Crow” crazy. The Crows also don’t have experience when the stage is this big.

Richmond Tigers

Why They Can Win:

The words for me that stick in my mind is “Why not us!”. Why can’t the Tigers win? The Tigers just like the Crows beat up the Cats and the Giants on their way to the Grand Final. They lost to the Crows early this year but that was their worst performance of the year, it came early on and it was over in Adelaide. The Tigers are a different team from what they were that night. Their biggest weakness might be their biggest strength. The Tigers lack height but have played that way for the last half of the season and have kept winning. Being mobile enables this side to create an amazing amount of pressure on opposition sides. The big four of Rance, Dusty, Jack and Trent have to lead and have dominant games. I really think the Tiges win if they play their best.

Why They Can Lose:

Its hard to know what kind of head space the Tigers are in. This has been one hell of a roller coaster ride. I like how they have approached this final serious and to be truthful they have played their best two games of the season to get here. The experience isn’t there and even though the Crows are in the same boat you just get a feeling that the Crows could be the more settled team. The Tigers will be emotionally charged and that’s just how they play. Emotion can, however, turn around and bit you.

Big Jim Says:

Look I am the worst person to ask in regards to this game. I don’t have a strong allegiance to any NFL team for just this reason. Emotionally charged selections are poison when it comes to betting. I won’t be having any big bets on the game but to be brutally honest I think this game is totally in the balance and could go either way. So from a betting perspective I would be inclined to take the $2.15 about Richmond over the $1.70 around for the Crows. That is the only sensible thing I can say.

Suggested Bet: Bet 1 Unit Richmond to win @ $2.15

GO TIGES!!!

Australian Football 20 September 2017

Buddy Awfull!”

Big Jim takes a quick look at last weeks two final blow outs and previews the two Preliminary Finals…read more

Was Geelong amazing or was Sydney just down right ordinary? Well it has to be a combination of both but I tend to lean towards how bad Sydney was. Yes Dangerfield was amazing, yes it was an interesting move to play him forward but he is playing on one leg and is going to struggle to run out games like he usually does. Sydney looked flat and they simply got ambushed. That’s what happens when you go into a final with poor commitment.

The worst effort of the night award goes to Buddy Franklin. His body language was down right disgraceful. He is all smiles and giggles when he is kicking 10 goal bags against average teams. His inability to work himself into the game was only over shadowed by his inability to support and help his team mates out. I got sick to death of Buddy standing there with his hands in the air as the Cats ran it out of defence. When it comes to talent he is clearly the best in business but when it comes to a hard working forward who constantly works hard both ways and leads from the front he is sadly lacking.

The Eagles got a good old fashioned shellacking but to be truthful it was always going to be Mission Impossible. The Giants were always going to lift and finally the season caught up with the Eagles. I am looking forward to how the Eagles come out next year, if they can get some new talent in the mid field they could be very good.

So we are left with 4 teams and we all know that only 2 will make it through to the GF.

Adelaide Crows v Geelong Cats

The biggest winners over the Cats demolition job on the Swans were the Adelaide Crows. Now the Crows dodge the Swans and they couldn’t be more happy than a showdown with the Cats. The Cats will have to put in another performance just as good as they did against the Swans and stringer solid performances together hasn’t been the Cats strong point now for years.

I think the first quarter or even the first half will be close but I see Adelaide getting on top late and could win this one quite convincingly. You know that the Crows are going to score points so for Geelong to have any chance they are going to have to get big returns out of Dangerfield and the Tomohawk. Sloane’s return spells DANGER for the Cats and look for the Crows to take Selwood out of the game and slowly dominate through the middle.

Ladbrokes Line: -17.5

Suggested Bet: Bet 3 Unit bet on the Crows -17.5 at the line

Richmond Tigers v GWS Giants

Its good for Football that one of these teams is going to be playing in the Grand Final. I am obviously praying for the Tigers to make it there but I am totally bias. I’m not the Lone Ranger as there will be 90,000 success starved Tigers chanting for the Yellow and Black at the MCG.

This game may be very close. The Giants looked good last week and motivation wont be a problem in a Preliminary Final. This group knows what it feels like to miss out on a Grand Final after their heart breaking loss to the Dogs last year in a Preliminary Final and this experience can only be a good thing. There is no lack of talent in the Giants playing group. They started the year as favourites to win the Flag and I certainly cant write them off.

If the Tigers play to their best then they will win. If they are slightly down then they will be beaten and could be beaten easily. The Tigers don’t have a wealth of experience when it comes to Finals (or more importantly winning finals) and it would have been impossible to hide from the hype.

I liked how Dimma handled the big win over the Cats in the first week of the finals and it will be his leadership which will decide which way this Prelim will go. If the Tigers don’t run their race prior to kick-off then they have the talent and the confidence to win. The one thing that scares me would be if the Tigers lead by 2-4 goals at three quarter time. If that happens they HAVE to continue to play positive football. The Tigers have been guilty of trying to sit on leads and getting run down. Lets hope the Tigers are made of sterner stuff in 2017. So far so good!!!

Ladbrokes Line: -9.5

Suggested Bet: I wont be betting on this game myself. I think the Tigers should win but I just cant be objective. The Tigers have been great to us here at Big Jim’s this year so if you are pressing me for a selection have something small on the Tigers to win. GO TIGES!!!

Australian Football 13 September 2017

“Can the Cats and the Giants escape straight set exits?”

Big Jim works out who will face the Crows and Tigers in the Preliminary Finals next weekend…read more

I’m not sure if two top 4 teams have ever lost both games in an AFL Finals series. I don’t usually waste my time with stupid irrelevant statistics like this as they mean nothing in regards to what is going to happen this year. It does, however, make you think about the depth in the AFL. From an AFL administration perspective, they would be doing cartwheels as they are finally starting to see a more level playing field with new teams emerging as Flag possibilities every year.

Anyway, enough star gazing from me as we have two big games and we want to cash in again just like we did last weekend when we smashed the bookies apart.

Geelong Cats v Sydney Swans

The Cats look like they might be cooked. Don’t tell me that I hate the Cats. I LOVE the Cats as I just keep writing them off and they just keep delivering. I think there is more chance of Big Jim announcing his engagement to Miranda Kerr than the Cats winning the 2017 AFL Flag.

The Swans just appear to be on a roll. They ARE on a roll! Sydney don’t really have a weakness. If they play to their best over the next three weeks they really should win the Flag. As I said, however, prior to the Finals I think that at some stage things will go wrong and it would be an amazing performance if they go all the way this year. I just can’t see Geelong being the team that is going to put a torch to this fairy tale. The Swans can be beaten, but they love nothing more than beating up on teams that have a handful of stars and no depth and that is exactly what the Geelong Cats are.

Ladbrokes Line: 18.5

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Sydney -18.5 at the line.

Greater Western Sydney Giants v West Coast Eagles

The Giants were horrible against the Crows last week. In fact, horrible doesn’t do it justice. GWS just looked flat and lazy. That just isn’t good enough at this time of the year and Leon Cameron better find a way to motivate this team. The fact that they need motivation at this time of year is a REAL worry.

The West Coast Eagles were simply amazing against the Port. The tired cliché of a week is a long time in football can be used here as the Eagles have strung two weeks of football together that has resurrected their season. If Melbourne beats Collingwood OR the Eagles fail to get over the top of the Crows in the last game of the season then 2017 would have been an utter write off for the Eagles. Now West Coast are one game away from a Preliminary Final which would certainly get them a pass mark in a year when their super star Nic Nac hasn’t kicked a ball.

All of this aside I think the Giants bounce back and win here tonight and I think they might do it fairly easily. Lets take a look at why:

  • West Coast are coming off a huge emotional high.

  • West Coast are coming off a short break after a brutal game that went into extra time.

  • West Coast have been racking up the frequent flyer miles.

  • West Coast have some old bodies that might not cope with the work load and travel.

  • GWS just has to be hungry.

  • GWS are going to have to play small in this game which is when they tend to play best.

  • GWS have now had enough Finals experience and are due to actually go out there and perform. The talent is there.

So, in a nutshell, its the Giants for me to end the fairytale for the Eagles and book their Preliminary Final birth against the Tigers next Saturday afternoon in Melbourne.

Ladbrokes Line: 15.5

Suggested Bet: Bet 3 Units GWS -15.5 at the line.

Australian Football 11 September 2017

A Night to Remember”

Big Jim thanks both the Eagles and Port for saving a fairly lack lustre week 1 of AFL finals…read more

I don’t mind having a crack at poor efforts, stupid sports commentators or gutless journalists. Every now and then you have to pay credit where credit is due. The elimination final between Port and the Eagles was pulsating viewing from start to finish. The effort and courage both sides showed and the support they received from the Port Adelaide Supporters was nothing short of amazing.

I won’t go through the game blow by blow as we all know that West Coast got out to a lead, Port spent the rest of the game clawing it back and then the Eagles kicked a goal at the end of extra time to stage a memorable win. It proves that you don’t need both teams to kick 100 points to get an amazing game. I struggled to even check the score of the NRL during the game because I was so engrossed in the contest.

There were some huge individual efforts but non better than two guys that are hanging up their boots at the end of the year. Drew Petrie and Matt Pridis were nothing short of inspirational. Pridis showed the form his Brownlow year and Petrie is playing better than he has in five years. I have had plenty of negatives things to say about these two over the journey but their effort on Saturday night was top shelf.

The sad thing was that the other three games in week 1 of the AFL Finals were all one sided. The Crows, Tiges and the Swans were all dominant but for me their performances were overshadowed by how bad the Giants, Cats and the Bombers were. Maybe the Bombers have some kind of excuse (as we knew they weren’t a finals ready team in 2017) but the other two put in efforts that are not up to standard for top 4 teams and it should have their coaches head butting the wall. We can only hope that Chris Scott does it hard enough to knock himself out.

Lets quickly get next weekend out of the way so we can concentrate more on the charge of the Yellow and Black. Yes I am biased, but it’s my website so I can be!!!

Australian Football 4 September 2017

“AFL 2017 Finals Preview”

Big Jim takes a look at the top 8 and their chances in the 2017 AFL finals…read more

I’m back from holidays and now only 8 remain. I have listed the 8 finalists in table order not in odds order. Don’t know why, just felt like it. I will obviously have game by game breakdown of all finals matches (no later than Thursday every week) but for those of you who want to take advantage of the juicy odds before we get down to business here is my take on the 8 combatants. Good luck, hope you back this years winner as long as that team is wearing Yellow and Black!!!

Adelaide Crows

Ladbrokes price to win the flag $3.25

The Crows deserve to be favourites for the flag after the regular season. They are two home games away from a place in the Grand Final and they have a better chance than any in a season that is unusually open. Week 1 against the Giants may prove to be harder than many think.

Strengths: The Crows are good across the park. It always helps to have limited weaknesses when it comes to winning a Grand Final. Tahlia, Sloane and Betts are the three players that have to be at their best. Huge home field crowds should be a massive advantage.

Weaknesses: They have had a few shock losses at home this year and they just cant let that happen now. GWS is going to be a big challenge come weak one and a loss there would pile on the pressure. The final hurdle (winning on Grand Final day at the MCG) is especially hard for interstate sides (players) that haven’t been to the big dance before, but apart from Sydney none of these sides can say they are finals hardened.

Big Jim says: I have liked the Crows all year and in a year where all teams have struggled for consistency they have clearly been the best over 22 games. I think $3.25 is good value especially if they chalk up a solid win over the Giants.

Geelong Cats

Ladbrokes price to win the Flag $6.00

I have potted the Cats all year and am happy to continue to do so. They are already moaning about having to play at the MCG in the first week in the finals but that’s just the way the cookie crumbles. It was the only decision the AFL could make and they should suck it up and get on with it.

Strengths: Patrick Dangerfield is obviously their best player, spiritual litmus test and X factor. He is a freak and can win games of football on his own. A fit Selwood makes them very good in the midfield and gives them a wealth of finals experience. They will need some of their fringe players to step up over multiple games to be a realistic chance.

Weaknesses: They have some holes up front if the Tomohawk gets outplayed and their back-line is older and slower these days. Their top shelfers are great, but I am far from convinced they have a deep enough list to win three finals in a row.

Big Jim says: I have said it all year; The Cats are way too short. They are more of a 10/1 proposition to me instead of a 5/1 one. I have them as clearly the weakest of the top 5 chances so I am happy to lay them until my nose bleeds.

Richmond Tigers

Ladbrokes price to win the flag $7.50

If you don’t already know I am a mad Tiger myself. So take what I say with a grain of salt. I think they have a real chance this year but I am biased. I will try and be diplomatic.

Strengths: This year has seen an amazing change of fortunes for the Yellow and Black. Their stars have been awesome, they have seen some of their kids really improve and they have recruited well. Rance is the best in the business at the back and their midfield has real depth. They lack height so Jack and Big Toby are crucial this September.

Weaknesses: The Tigers have always tended to carry the weight of failure on their backs. Their recent finals record is something they have to put out of their mind. If anything was to happen to Dusty or Rance then it would become very tough for the Tiges.

Big Jim says: There isn’t anymore fairy tale prices around about the Tigers, but they have a real chance this year. I think they will beat Geelong and then they are one game at the MCG away from a Grand Final. I like their attitude of “why not us” this year. If they can scrape through to the GF and they string a 4 quarter performance together then $7.50 might be the best value going around.

Greater Western Sydney Giants

Ladbrokes price to win the flag $5.00

The aptly named “sleeping Giants” of the competition get their chance to announce just how serious a threat they are this year. Their block buster on Thursday against the Crows is winnable and its implications are enormous. Its been an up and down season for the Giants with plenty of injuries and a host of rusty performances. Having said that they are in the top 4 and ability isn’t their problem.

Strengths: Just like Adelaide they have an abundance of talent right across the board. Powerful forwards, a quick and talented midfield and a smart rebounding defense make them nearly impossible to beat when everything is working. Add to that the fiery little pocket rocket Toby Green and “man mountain” Mumford and this side is capable of beating anyone this September.

Weaknesses: The Crows are a tough first round match-up and if they lose first week it all of a sudden becomes very tough. They are still a young group without a lot of finals experience.

Big Jim says: I like the Giants and I think $5.00 is good value. I give them a chance against the Crows and if they can cause the upset there then they are very well placed. I think they are at good odds and I will be on them to turn a profit for sure.

Port Adelaide Power

Ladbrokes price to win the Flag $15.00

Just like Geelong I have been happy to lay the Power all year. I have backed the Power all year in games where they are playing dud opponents but have steered clear when they are up against quality opposition. They will be more than happy to host West Coast in the first week of the finals but it’s going to get awfully tough after that.

Strengths: Port are a well coached team that always try hard. That can get you into the finals but it doesn’t usually equate to making a big splash when you get there.

Weaknesses: Their biggest problem is that outside of a very select group they lack depth when it comes to quality. Robbie Gray would need to play the best month of football EVER from ANYONE and he would still need a lot of others to over achieve around him.

Big Jim Says: I give Port an A for effort this year. The problem is that things are about to get serious and I’m not sure this is a serious team. I give the Eagles a chance to topple them first week and I would want to be getting 25/1 or better to even consider backing them to win the flag.

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Sydney Swans

Ladbrokes price to win the Flag $4.50

There were four teams that breathed a collective sigh of relief when the Swans fell just short of a top 4 berth. Clearly the only realistic chance outside of the top 4.

Strengths: Where do you start….They are the form team of the competition and are chocked full of talent. They have the experience and the cattle to beat any team on their day and they nearly NEVER put in a bad game. Buddy is back and he has many friends.

Weaknesses: When it comes to form and players there really isn’t one. The big problem is that they are going to have to win 4 on the trot to lift the Cup come Grand Final Day. They will win week one in a canter but it gets tough after that against some good sides and the Swans will have to do it all on the road.

Big Jim Says: I am very happy I backed the Swans for a little bit mid season at around 20/1. The Dogs showed that you CAN win from the bottom 4 but lets not get carried away by what happened last season. The Swans are a more realistic chance of doing it this year than the Dogs were last year but they are still going to have to win 4 on the trot and do the majority of it on the road. The biggest problem is that the Dogs were at 50/1 last year prior to the first week of the finals and the Swans are at $4.50 to accomplish this amazing feat. Even if they are the best team (as well as the form team) to win the 2017 Flag would be an amazing (and unlikely) feat. So I will be loading up on the Swans in week 1 against the Bombers and then I will be backing that they stumble once there after.

Essendon Bombers

Ladbrokes price to win the flag $51.00

Well last year we had North make the finals and this year we have the Bombers. The Bombers have as much chance as the Roos had last year. Somewhere between zero and less than zero.

Strengths: John Worsfold has done an amazing job. Big Joe looks the goods and there is finally a mood for optimism at Windy Hill regarding the future.

Weaknesses: Clearly the worst team in the finals. Not enough cattle across the board to challenge.

Big Jim Says: Save your money and maybe invest it on them in a few years time. Sydney will toy with them like a well fed cat on an injured mouse. I wouldn’t touch them at 200/1 to lift the trophy on Grand Final Day.

West Coast Eagles

Ladbrokes price to win the Flag $41.00

I breathed a sigh of relief when the Eagles snuck into the finals after I ear marked them (and the Crows) as the “good things” to play finals this year. In all honesty they are dead set lucky to be there but there are 10 other teams that have had their Mad Monday and the Eagles are still alive and kicking.

Strengths: On paper this is a strong team. The absence of Nic Nac has hurt them all year but there is still enough talent there that should have seen them perform better this year. The upside is that they can’t play any worse than they have at times in 2017 and expectation this final series is low.

Weaknesses: Its just been an awful year for the well fancied Eagles and they would need to turn things around in a big way to make a run at it this year.

Big Jim Says: The best smokey of the field. I give the Eagles a real chance of beating Port but I can’t see them going much further after that. They have finals experience and they will want to finish off strong and if they managed to draw the Cats in week 2 of the Finals then they could POSSIBLY get on a roll.

Australian Football 17 August 2017

“A Grand Final preview to kick us off?”

Big Jim takes wades through Round 22 of the 2017 AFL regular season…read more

ALERT: Big Jim and his crew are on holidays for the next few weeks. Click here for details. He will be back for all of the AFL finals so have no fear you will get plenty of winning tips and insight when it matters in September…Cheers Big Jim

If Australian Football is all about form then you would think that this Fridays match between the Crows and the Swans won’t be last time we see these two go head to head this year. Question marks remain about both teams for me and the Giants and the Tigers are far from dead and buried Flag prospects in 2017.

The Dogs v Port clash is another mouth watering prospect for plenty of reasons and there are a host of other sides that just have to win. So forget the six pack!!! Get a slab and buckle up for a great weekend of football.

Adelaide v Sydney (Ladbrokes line -7.5)

Suggested Bets: 2 Unit bet Swans at the line

Wow….what a belter. There are two massive considerations regarding tonight’s game. Adelaide are at home but Sydney has far more to gain from the result. These two things balance out for me so I am left leaning towards the Swans at the plus.

Bulldogs v Port Adelaide (Ladbrokes line PICK $1.92 Each of two)

Suggested Bets: 3 Unit bet Doggies at the line

Really love the Dogs today. Port just can’t beat good teams. The Power were blown away by the Crows and were only average against the Pies. Dogs to win!!! Woof WOOF….

Collingwood v Geelong (Ladbrokes line +12.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Unit bet Pies at the line

I was really keen about the Pies at the line this weekend but I was hoping to get closer to around a 20 point head start. Sometimes the bookies get it right, unfortunately. Should be a great game and maybe the Pies to win the game might be the best way to go.

GWS v West Coast (Ladbrokes line -26.5)

Suggested Bets: 2 Unit bet Total Points Scored UNDER

From what we have seen in recent weeks this should be an easy day at the office for the Giants but the stakes are high and the 4 points and not percentage is the OVERWHELMING factor here. So I see the Giants winning but think it might be a bit of a slog.

Carlton v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line +21.5)

Suggested Bets:

3 Unit bet Total Points Scored UNDER

1 Unit bet Blues at the line

I would have been really keen on the Blues here if it wasn’t for Clarkeson commenting on his sides poor third quarter last weekend. Interesting game regarding what these two are looking to do next year.

Gold Coast v Essendon (Ladbrokes line +19.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Unit bet Total Points Scored OVER

My interest in this game is about as high as my interest in a div 4 Kazakhstan Yak milking contest. Good time to go and milk your own Yak or maybe invest in taking the family out for diner.

Melbourne v Brisbane (Ladbrokes line -34.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Unit bet Demons at the line.

Another horrible who cares game. Brisbane probably won their GF last weekend and SURELY not even the D’s could screw this one up!!!

St Kilda v North Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -17.5)

Suggested Bets: 2 Unit bet Roos at the line.

Saints are now gone and I think they might turn up with a hangover from last week. Roos get a great chance to record another win.

Fremantle v Richmond (Ladbrokes line +13.5)

Suggested Bets: 2 Unit bet Richmond at the line.

Finally a game that has SOME meaning this Sunday. I would be even keener on the Tiges apart from the fact that Freo has to show some improvement from their spanking last weekend. Hardwick also hates to let his team put teams to the sword. The Tiges just HAVE to win and they should. Margin the only issue.

FUTURES ALERT: Geelong have again shortened into stupid odds on the back of one good win. They are still pretenders. The Tigers after their loss have gotten out to $11.00 at Ladbrokes which is about the right quote. Outside of the Tigers putting it all together it really seems like a three horse race between the Crows, Swans and the Giants.

Australian Football 14 August 2017

Bucks Brave Face!”

Big Jim looks at the fallout of the weekend games…read more

I thought the Pies were really brave against Port. Change is nearly always a good thing and embattled coaches are not good for football clubs but the Pies refused to show Bucks the door mid season and has that created an awkward problem? If you were to judge Nathan Buckley only on his last 6 weeks you would be giving him another short contract. Collingwood has a personal problem both on and off the field and their they have performed to the best of their ability on the field recently.

Ballarat is set to welcome a blockbuster next Saturday. I like the idea of the Bulldogs playing games in Ballarat as teams should look to gain traction in suitable geographical locations. The Doggies and the city I like to affectionately refer to as “The Rat” couldn’t be happier with the prospect of a full house in a game against Port Adelaide where both sides have so much to play for. Its always a risk come this late in the season that this game could have had zero meaning to at least one of the clubs. The Bulldogs looked second rate against the Giants last weekend and Port have struggled against quality opposition all year. This game is going to be a cracker and I hope The Rat embraces it.

The Cats and the Tigers game showed a massive turn around of fortunes for both clubs. I was again left scratching my head after the Tigers went from a blistering 3rd quarter back to insipidity in the 4th. Who makes the call to go back into your shell? Anyway my gut feeling is that the Cats triumph left the Cats looking better than they are and the Tigers looking more vulnerable than they are. Time will tell but one week of football can often be very deceiving.

Australian Football 10 August 2017

“D Day for heavenly bodies”

Big Jim has a look at the third last round of the 2017 AFL Season….read More

There is still plenty of jockeying for top 8 and top 4 positions left to come this year. When it comes to sides that are going on holidays early be careful when it comes to betting on them. Some sides (like Collingwood) will still be incredibly hungry but others will sending players off for early surgery, trying out young kids and looking towards the 2018 season. Tanking is an interesting concept and even though teams probably don’t go out to try and lose they certainly hold winning in a lower regard than they did at the start of the season.

It will be nearly impossible for the loser of the Melbourne v St Kilda game to make the finals. Both clubs would have harboured finals aspirations in 2017 and both sides have put together a season of up and down results. The litmus test regarding their seasons success will all come down to if they make the finals or not. I think the D’s have the stronger list but the Saints are more consistent when it matters. Tough one, but lean towards the Saints in what should be one hell of a game.

Western Bulldogs v GWS (Ladbrokes line -4.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Giants the line.

Awesome start to the round. Who will ever forget the Preliminary Final these two played out last year. Both sides have struggled to play their best footy this year but both are showing signs of turning things around. Think the Giants might fall across the line here with the help of some key forwards coming back this weekend.

Sydney v Fremantle (Ladbrokes line -49.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 1 Unit Freo the line.

The Dockers have played some good games on the road this year but the Swans will want to win out this year and pray they sneak into the top 4 or at very least host a final in the first week. Buddy Franklin has been horrible the last two weeks so it’s time for the champion to kick a bag.

Geelong v Richmond (Ladbrokes line +7.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 3 Units Tigers the line.

Is it too early to dream!!! OF COURSE NOT. The Tigers should win this. The Cats might be cooked and they are going to struggle with their personnel problems this week. Jack will be back for the Tiges and Dangerfield will have to pick up 50 touches for the Cats to have a chance. Rance should keep the Cats score line nice and low.

Brisbane v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes line -8.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Suns the line.

Not much of a derby this one but the signs are better in QLD than you might think. I like the Suns to shine today because everyone will be out to impress the new coach. Nothing like a bit of motivational help at this time of year.

Adelaide v Essendon (Ladbrokes line -18.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Crows the line.

A Bombers win here could cement their position in the 8 but its going to be hard against a side that is really playing well. I don’t think the Bombers match up well against the Crows so it could be a dark day for Essendon.

West Coast v Carlton (Ladbrokes line -34.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units West Coast the line.

Can the Eagles keep picking themselves up? The really horrible performance last weekend when they had the Saints on toast but they luckily get the Blues at the right time. Long trip for a tired Blues outfit. Kennedy should have a field day.

Melbourne v St Kilda (Ladbrokes line -7.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Saints at the line.

Super important clash this one. Hope they get a big crowd. I lean towards the Saints but only because Melbourne continue to lose crunch games. Having said that I think it will be very close for a long way.

North Melbourne v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line 27.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 3 Units Roos the line.

Good chance of an upset here. Hawthorn will put the cue back in the rack now. They have earned that right and they won’t be risking anyone and they will experiment. North, on the other hand, will want to play good football as they continue to try and bring quality unrestricted free agents to the club next year.

Port Adelaide v Collingwood (Ladbrokes line -21.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 1 Unit Pies at the line.

Looking forward to this one. You would think the Power bounce back but the Pies have been ok in the last month of football. These sides have a good rivalry and its not a bad game to end the round.

FUTURES ALERT: Tigers are now too short. Adelaide still good value. If you like the Giants this year and expect them to beat the Doggies then I would be backing them before Friday as a big win in Melbourne will see them plummet in for the flag.

Australian Football 8 August 2107

“The Good and the Bad”

Big Jim takes a look at the fall out from the AFL games last weekend…..read more

Some good things and some bad things came out of last weekend. Lets examine what went down both on and off the field.

The Good

  • Eddie Betts was amazing on the weekend. What a little champion Eddie is. He is a great bloke, tries his guts out week in week out and it was wonderful to see him get back to scintillating best.
  • Thumbs up to Adelaide legend Mark Ricciuto who had to deal with two imbeciles after the Geelong game on Friday night. The culprits being Eddie McGuire and Mark McClure. Ricciuto was trying to make a valid point about the Dangerfield suspension and just rolled his eyes when the two morons let loose on him. In a perfect world he should have shirt fronted both of them.
  • Lastly the Tigers looked the real deal against the Hawks. I just wish they hadn’t of taken their foot off the accelerator in the second half. When is Dimma going to learn that you have to rip the throat out of the opposition when you have them lying dazed on the canvas.

The Bad

  • The Cats are gone and so are Port. I have tried to tell you all year they both were no good. More chance of a Pink Pig winning the Norm Smith than any of these two being at the G on Grand Final Day.
  • The Fox footy team continues to stoop to new levels of stupidity. This week it was a dead heat between Eddie McGuire, Mark McClure, Dwayne Russell, Mark McLachlan and Steven King for the most idiotic commentary. McClure and Russell have done very well joining the other three regulars on this list. It’s hard to be stupid enough to break through but Russell saying that the Brisbane v Bulldogs game was an “epic” qualified him.

Bet Alert

Ladbrokes still has the Crows at $3.25 to win the flag. This is a sexy price as they are two home games away from a Grand Final birth. It would be a big surprise to see them not make the big dance from here. GWS, Sydney and Richmond appear to be the only dangers.

Australian Football 3 August 2017

No “Danger” to Dusty now!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at all the best bets for Rd 20 in the AFL…read more

If Patrick Dangerfield is denied another Brownlow medal for his tackle on Matthew Kreuzer then the AFL has to seriously look at the criteria for winning “Charlie”. If the medal is for the “best and fairest” then Dangerfield doesn’t deserve to get rubbed out of contention for his actions towards the big Carlton ruckman. The tackle may or may not deserve a weeks suspension but that is another issue.

The sportsmanship of Dangerfield in this instance (which is what the fairest component of the medal means) can’t be questioned. The original interpretation of a suspension leading to ineligibility came from an era where players were only rubbed out if they deliberately did something that was deemed as unsportsmanlike. At worst in this instance, Dangerfield tried to place a legitimate tackle on his opponent and got it wrong. In the current climate the AFL uses some forms of suspensions as a pecuniary measure to help increase the duty of care from one player to another. Over time this changes the culture of how players play the game, thus making it safer for players going forward in the future. This is the proactive response most professional sports take to protect their players and it is a good thing. The problem is (and this could be argued from a legal perspective) that taking away Dangerfield’s Brownlow eligibility in this case is unjust when the criteria of winning the award is that you have to be the “best” but also have to pass a level of “fairness”.

If Dangerfield played for a team outside of finals calculation then this decision would have been challenged with out doubt. I totally understand that in Geelong’s current position they can’t allow Dangerfield to contest this charge. This opens another can of worms as circumstance discriminates. Dangerfield would be in his rights to argue (against both the AFL and his club) that being rubbed out of this years race has damaged his brand and earning potential both in the medium and long term. I don’t think it will come to this (as Patty’s not that kind of bloke) but considering the world we live in, does the AFL need to address this issue before it becomes a problem in the future?

If you are going to use a 2017 model of protecting players through suspension, then shouldn’t you update the terms and conditions for the most prized individual honour in the game. I feel for the AFL as the Brownlow Medal is special and stooped in tradition. So does the AFL take a stance and fix the many limitations of the medal or do they simply leave it alone because of tradition? Either way you will get compelling and outspoken arguments from both sides of the fence. This is one of the rare times that I am actually going to sit on the fence. I hate sitting on the fence but this is a “culture” debate not a sports one.

Anyway not that Patty is gone may as well give the medal to Dusty now. Every bikie in Australia can crack a beer in honour of their favourite footballer.

This is an awesome round of football so lets pick some winners and bathe ourselves in cash!

Geelong v Sydney (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Sydney the line

I think the Dangerfield saga will hurt the Cats this weekend. Even if Sydney lose Kennedy I can see the Swans dominate in the mid field. The Swans will still welcome back a few key players and will be hungry to atone after their loss to the Hawks. Selwood would have to have a blinder for the Cats to get home.

GWS v Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -13.5)

Suggested Bets:

2 Unit bet GWS at the line.

1 Unit bet Total Points scored UNDER

The Giants SHOULD win this one. A top 4 finish probably depends on this game. Melbourne have had a tough couple of weeks on the road and this isn’t going to be easy. Fascinating game for both clubs who need to make a statement today about their legitimacy.

Essendon v Carlton (Ladbrokes line -23.5)

Suggested Bet:

2 Unit bet Carlton the line

2 Unit bet Total Points scored UNDER

For some strange reason I am really looking forward to this one. This is now a must win for the Bombers and they are going to come out fighting. The game from a betting perspective for me, however, is all about Carlton. Are the brave Blues out of gas? Its hard to tell. On form, a +23.5 head start is a lot for a team that has defended very well all year.

Brisbane v Western Bulldogs (Ladbrokes line +27.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Lions at the line

Lets not get carried away with the Dogs just yet. They are playing better but they are a long way to being “back”. Brisbane rested a few last week against the Eagles and will come out and give their all in this one. Tough betting proposition on all levels.

North Melbourne v Collingwood (Ladbrokes line +13.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet North at the line.

The first of the two meaningless Saturday night games. I am leaning towards North due to the game being played at Etihad. If it was at the MCG I would be on the Pies at the minus but a couple of goals seems a good head start for the Roos at home.

Fremantle v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes line -16.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Freo at the line.

Freo should win but the Freo form line is bouncing around like a compulsive liar on a polygraph. Surely they beat the Suns by more than three goals?

St Kilda v West Coast (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bets: 2 Unit bet Eagles at the line

This is a cracker of a game. West Coasts meltdown two weeks ago against the Pies at Etihad and Saint Nick’s decision to hang up the boots this week will be hot topics. Plenty of drama for two teams that desperately need to win this one. The Eagles today for me, as eventually they will turn up to Melbourne and put in a good one.

Richmond v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line -4.5)

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit bet Tigers at the line

1 Unit bet Total Points scored UNDER

What a Sunday afternoon treat this one is. We all know how high the stakes are. Both clubs are on a roll and both are playing at home. I am leaning towards the Tigers because I think the absence of Hodge is a big loss for the Hawks.

Adelaide v Port Adelaide (Ladbrokes line -11.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Adelaide at the line.

Another cracking Sunday game. I am in two minds here. I will either be backing the Crows at the -11.5 or I will be taking Port at the very juicy odds of $2.55 head to head. These contests are personal, it will be a packed house, everything to play for; So buckle up and enjoy!!!

FUTURES REPORT: Ladbrokes still has the Crows favourites at ($3.50) in Flag betting. The Swans have drifted from $4.50 out to $8.00 which is understandable as the loss to Hawthorn makes the Swans top 4 chances slim. If they beat Geelong, however, and both Port and Richmond lose then they are well and truly still in the hunt so the $8.00 seems pretty good value. Same old story regarding the Cats and the Power; Both massively under the odds. GWS shortened into $4.50 after two pretty average performances. It shows just how close the market is when you have a team under performing as badly as the Giants shorten in future market.

Australian Football 31 July 2017

A Prime Example of AFL Scheduling problems!”

Big Jim suggests that the AFL needs flexibility when it comes to scheduling…read more

This upcoming round of football shows us that the AFL needs to have flexibility in their scheduling. Obviously no argument about the Geelong v Sydney opening on Friday night. It starts to get problematic from then. To kick off Saturday GWS hosts Melbourne which is a big game. At the same time Essendon takes on Carlton at the G which has broad appeal. Then the rest of the Saturday games are all average encounters that have very little interest with only one team out of the 6 (the Bulldogs) still in the race for finals and they take on spoon favourites the Lions.

Then on Sunday there are three massive games that feature 6 teams battling it out for spots in the finals. I will probably be at the Richmond game (as I try to go to nearly every home game) but I will miss the majority of the other two as I will be travelling to and from the game. I am especially pissed off at the prospect of missing the Showdown, pissed off to the point that I might forgo going to the football because I want to catch as much of both games as possible. This seems like an avoidable clash to me.

On Saturday night I will be watching the NRL because at this time of year I want to be watching football games that matter. So the AFL will miss out on my patronage both at the ground and the chance for their broadcast partners to bombard me with commercials on Saturday night TV. All of this could be easily avoided. The NRL is the one code that gets this right so why cant the AFL?

At the very least the last 6 weeks of the season should have flexible scheduling. Now this doesn’t have to be done the week before it can be done a month in advance. A month ago everyone would have known that this weekends scheduling worked out wrong. Now some people would say its too hard to do with the juggling of games at Etihad and MCG. This is just an excuse. Flip both the Saturday and the Sunday Melbourne games at both venues around and there wouldn’t be a problem.

The other excuse is travelling interstate fans need fixed game times apparantly. Lock in the interstate games if need be, but to be truthful these same fans tend to cope with things during the finals. As I said you would have a month of time to plan, not a week like you do in the finals so where is the massive problem. At worst you benefit the masses with a very slight inconvenience to the few.

Australian Football  27  July  2017

“Good Bye Gary!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at all the big betting moves Rd 19 of the AFL…read more

Well the first head has rolled off the chopping block at Collingwood. Gary Pert might be the first but expect Eddy’s guillotine to be working harder than the one they used in the French Revolution. When things are going wrong at a club the leader should usually fall on his own sword and let a new era begin for the sake of the club he loves. Alternatively the leader can go on a purge, destroy all of those around him and blame everyone else but his leadership. This latter option is the proffered method in North Korean politics but I’m not so sure this method is going to be the best thing long term for the Pies. But did you expect Fast Eddie to do the right thing?

West Coasts last quarter loss to the Pies might just be the beginning of the end for their season. There have been some insipid last quarter melt downs this year, more than ever before, but Simpson’s Eagles have made a late season charge to top them all. With so much to play for, what a shattering display. Lucky they get the Lions at home this Sunday to repair some of the damage.

Big Jim was on FIRE with both his AFL tips and his NRL tips last week so lets get down to the serious business of picking winners.

Hawthorn v Sydney (Ladbrokes line +14.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Unit bet Sydney to win Ladbrokes AFL Bet Blast @ $2.00

As I wrote earlier in the week this is going to be one hell of a game. Both sides have found their form but after their empires virtually collapsed at the start of the year this game becomes hugely important for both clubs. Sydney is just going that little bit better.

North Melbourne v Melbourne (Ladbrokes line +16.5)

Suggested Bets: 3 Unit bet Melbourne at the line.

As long as it isn’t too wet and windy the D’s just look like a lock here. If the D’s are legitimate this season then they should be able to cover this line even if they played this one on the moon.

GWS v Fremantle (Ladbrokes line -35.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet GWS the line

Horribly hard game here from a betting perspective. The Giants will win but they are going to need a better effort in regards to attack than the displayed against the Tigers in the rain. Not confident either way and Toby Green is a big loss.

Port Adelaide v St Kilda (Ladbrokes line -26.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Port at the line

The Saints are going to be brave early but Port have to be hungry here. With the Showdown next weekend the Power would want to make a statement this week and keep that healthy % looking rosy. Looks like curtains for the Saints.

Carlton v Geelong (Ladbrokes line +28.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Cats the line.

Another one of these high to mid range line games. The brave Blues defence is starting to get thin on personnel. It looks like the Cats are probably set to keep Dangerfield on the park for the rest of the season even if he is at 80% with a broken foot. The Cats will keep, they have plenty more losses in them in 2017 but today the Blues look an easy target.

GWS v Richmond (Ladbrokes line +18.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Unit bet Tigers at the line.

I must be missing something here. Are the Suns getting a new team to play for them this weekend? Tigers need to keep winning and need every ounce of % they can squeeze out. Just keep telling yourself that the Tiges are made of sterner stuff this year.

Western Bulldogs v Essendon (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bets: 3 Unit bet Dogs at the line

Love the Doggies here. The Bombers are such big pretenders. They might have beaten up on the Saints but a loss to Brisbane and two average displays against Collingwood and North isn’t exactly a great last month of form. The Dogs match-up pretty well against the Bombers and should be able to keep the ball away from Big Joe.

Collingwood v Adelaide (Ladbrokes line +20.5)

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit bet Adelaide at the line

1 Unit bet Total Points scored OVER

Fair to say that this could be a danger game for the Premiership favourites but I expect the Pies to try and play positive football which will only prove positive for the Crows.

West Coast v Brisbane (Ladbrokes line -47.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Total Points Scored OVER

So much to hate about this game. The Eagles are blessed to get this game after their heroics last weekend. Should be plenty of goals kicked.

FUTURES REPORT: Ladbrokes has the Crows ($3.50) and the Swans ($4.50) as Premiership favourites. Hard to argue. Both should win and shorten again this weekend. Same old story regarding the Cats and the Power being massively under the odds. How Port can be shorter than the Demons and the Tigers I will never know. I like the Dogs to win against Essendon this weekend so the $34.00 about them to win the flag might be worth a sneaky $5 on. Josh Kennedy at $4.00 for the Coleman might be worth a dabble on as well as he could kick a bag against the Lions at home.

Australian Football  24 July  2017

“Blast from the Past in the Future”

Big Jim takes a look at the Friday night blockbuster between the Hawks and the Swans…read more

The AFL will be happy with their scheduling with another Friday night blockbuster on its way. It should be the case every weekend but that is not what I want to talk about here today.

Hawthorn and Sydney are probably challenging Adelaide and Richmond as the two teams playing the best football at the moment. The Hawks need to win out from here to finish on 12.5 wins which would be enough for them to sneak into the finals. Its a VERY big ask but their form has been pretty damn good over the last month. If they held on against GWS and beat Geelong then things could have been a lot different. Their win against Freo on Saturday night was top shelf. To get up after a shattering loss to the Cats and having to cope with the long trip over to the West is testament to their resolve and the way that Angry Alistair Clarkson prepares his team.

The Swans were at their brutal best against the Saints. It was a “men against the boys” like performance and the margin was flattering to the Saints who will now struggle to play finals. If the Swans win out from here they will finish on 15 wins and that will be enough for them to finish in the top 4. If they achieved that after losing their first 6 matches it would be one of the most amazing regular season comebacks in the sport’s history. Heaven help the rest of the 7 other teams contesting the finals if the Swans get a double chance come finals time.

So the stage it set and it should be a cracker. The winner this Friday night can start to dream but its going to be shattering for the loser. The winner here will have plenty of other clubs fearing either the Swans or the Hawks.

Australian Football 20 July  2017

“Screws Tighten At Pies”

Big Jim takes a look at the next round of AFL football and the noose that is tightening at Collingwood….read more

Fast Eddie McGuire is the commodity that you don’t touch in the AFL. Well finally on the back page of the Herald Sun on Wednesday Robbo took aim at Eddie and suggested that his time at the Pies should be over. WOW…….I mean WOW…….its OK for an outspoken journo like myself to take aim at Fast Eddie but for one of the big hitters in the Melbourne Press to suggest that Eddie should go and away and shouldn’t come back is a bold move.

I take my hat off to Mark Robinson. This is akin to poking a lion in a cage when the cage door is open. The one thing that is certain is that Fast Eddie will (as Robbo pointed out) “attack, attack, attack” and this is going to be a great battle as the gloves will come off. I’m pretty sure that Robbo isn’t that brave or that stupid so I am guessing that Eddie is getting on the nose of some heavy hitters both at Collingwood, the AFL and Fox Footy. After all, his disgraceful tirade last Friday night on Fox Footy should be the beginning of the end for Fast Eddy but sadly how many times have we said that in the past. In the past Eddie has been more resilient than the most vicious cancer. Interesting times and someone will get hurt.

Couple of big clashes this weekend and a few who cares irrelevant games. This is always going to happen at this time of the year so it gives us a little more down time in regards to doing other things other than watching football. For me it doesn’t matter as every game is a potential gold mine so lets get down to business and lets pick out the best AFL bets for Round 18.

Adelaide v Geelong (Ladbrokes Line -15.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 3 Units Crows to win Ladbrokes AFL Bet Blast $2.00!!!

Geelong continues to get lucky. Well this might change tonight. Dangerfield has his dodgy foot in a moon boot and the Cats are going to need him to have any chance. Love the Crows.

Essendon v North Melbourne(Ladbrokes Line -22.5)

Suggested Bets:

Bet 1 Unit Bombers the line

Bet 1 Unit Total Points scored OVER

These are two teams that I usually like to pot. I am far from convinced the Bombers are finals bound but if they are fair dinkum the win today. The margin is the concern. Might be an old fashioned Etihad shootout.

Melbourne v Port Adelaide (Ladbrokes Line +8.5)

Suggested Bets:

Bet 2 Units Demons the line.

Bet1 Unit Total Points Scored UNDER.

Very tough. The Demons get a few big names back and they will be far more at home here in Melbourne than they were up in Darwin last weekend. The Power as I predicted are very good at winning games that they should but struggle even against average opposition primed for a big performance. Low scoring Demons close game from where I sit.

Western Bulldogs v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes Line -17.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Dogs at the line

The Dogs looked better last weekend against a team that has played tough all year. They need to keep winning and might just get their MOJO back against the Suns that were pathetic last week against the Pies.

Sydney v St Kilda (Ladbrokes Line -26.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 1 Unit Swans at the line.

St Kilda lost their bundle last week against the Dons. I just cant see Sydney losing this one at home. Margin is the problem.

Fremantle v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes Line +1.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Freo the line

Horrible betting proposition this one. Both sides basically signed off on their own seasons last weekend with shattering losses. So in a contest where both sides have little to play for I am going to lean towards the home team who should still be on a high with Fyfe signing a 6 year contract.

Richmond V GWS (Ladbrokes Line +7.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Total Points Scored UNDER

This should be one hell of a game. Both sides have SO MUCH to gain and plenty to lose. I struggle being objective in this one as I bleed yellow and black. I think it will be close and think that teams might struggle to score. So UNDER

Collingwood v West Coast (Ladbrokes Line +7.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 1 Unit Eagles at the line

The Pies always have something to prove. This might be a really tough contest. I lean towards passion being overtaken by the desperation of the Eagles needing to win for the sake of finals.

Brisbane v Carlton (Ladbrokes Line +6.5)

Suggested Bet: Bet 2 Units Lions the line.

The Blues have been one of the great stories of the year. They have played very accountable football but a host of small losses in resent weeks must be starting to take its toll. The Lions form in the last month has been pretty good and I think that they might treat this one as their Grand Final and that will prove to be at the expense of the Navy Blues.

FUTURES ALERT: The winner of the Tiges v Giants game is the obvious best bet RE Futures. The problem is that if you don’t have a snake charmer handy its a tough game to pick. I think the Crows are going to do the job on the Geelong so it might be the right time to pull the trigger on the Crows who appear to be getting back to their early season form. The Saints are the other one who have dramatically drifted and now is the time to have a dip at them if you think they can ground the Swans. The problem there is that I think the Swans will send the Sainters back to Melbourne with a lot of questions still needing to be answered.

Australian Football  14 July  2017

“O When The Saints!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at all of the good bets available in Rd 17 of the AFL…read more

Super effort from the Saints. The Tigers were on a roll last weekend with everything to play for but bought nothing. The Sainter’s showed some real spirit and also showed that they are far from done and dusted regarding the 2017 AFL season. Its been a roller-coaster ride for the Saints who go from champions to chumps and back to champions in very short periods of time. They need to make a statement against the Bombers on Friday night and a big win will keep them fighting for that valuable top 4 spot. Young teams like the Saints need to understand that to be a very good team you need to put impressive performances back to back.

I can’t understand how Easton Wood got a week and Cotchin didn’t. The circus needs to hire a ring master and sack some of the clowns. Get to it Gil, this is starting to get embarrassing.

BETTING ALERT: There are jackpots at the VIC TAB for both the AFL Footy Quad and the AFL Pick The Margins. Jackpots are rare these days but last weeks draw and some other crazy results mean that there is nearly 150K of free money out there to have a crack at. Its certainly worth a crack, get a few mates together and get a syndicate going as you can turn peanuts into gold.

For ANY OTHER BETTING (including quaddies on horses) back all the games at Ladbrokes because unless there is football related jackpots like this you will always get ripped off at the TAB compared to Ladbrokes who consistently give you better odds and excellent offers and specials. Sign up today at Ladbrokes, contact Big Jim and I will guarantee you a Big Jim present regardless of where you live. If you have any questions regarding this then email me at jimbo@bigjimwins.com directly.

St Kilda v Essendon (Ladbrokes line -5.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Unit bet St Kilda the line

If the Saints are even semi serious they need to beat the Bombers tonight. Not only do they need to beat them they need to put them to the sword. Then and only then can they claim to be the real deal. I think the Saints can and it would be nice to see. The tri-colours have to put good performances together as I said before.

Geelong v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line -15.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Unit bet Total points UNDER

This is going to be a good game but I hate it as a betting option. The Cats have had a tough travel schedule over the last few weeks and the Hawks are up and down like a yo-yo….Good luck….I am staying away and will pray for rain and a low scoring game.

Port Adelaide v North Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -39.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Port the line

Hard to see how North get up for this. The Power should be pretty confident after their exploits in the West and I can see plenty of late garbage time goals for the Power.

Gold Coast v Collingwood (Ladbrokes line -1.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Suns at the line

Maybe the Pies play with freedom now but I still cant see how they can turn it around and beat the Suns. The Suns really need to get the job done today. I am not a fan of margin betting but the Suns to win by 1-39 points might be a good way to go if you like to gamble.

GWS v Sydney (Ladbrokes line -3.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Sydney the line.

15 regular players are out for the Giants. Sydney is on a roll and should be optimistic about their chances. Its going to be a great game as this rivalry is starting to gain some traction.

Melbourne v Adelaide (Ladbrokes line -19.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Crows at the line.

Huge game for the D’s. The problem is that they struggle consistently when it gets important and their record at Darwin is far from impressive. Adelaide appeared to recapture the sort of form they showed early in the year and they might be on their way to reclaiming their MOJO Austin Powers style.

Richmond v Brisbane (Ladbrokes line -37.5)

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Total Points UNDER

1 Unit Tigers at the line

The Tigers will win its just a question of the margin. I think if you bet the UNDER and the Tigers at the line you can’t lose both bets. If we get lucky we get them both.

Carlton v Western Bulldogs (Ladbrokes line -11.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Bulldogs at the line

This is a dead set horribly hard game to try and work out. The Blues are playing really well but I think the Dogs match up well against them. The big question is can the Dogs bounce back after a good long break against a team they should dominate on paper. Weather is also another question. Interesting but hard.

Fremantle v West Coast (Ladbrokes line +14.5)

Suggested Bet:

2 Unit bet Freo the line

1 Unit bet Total Points UNDER

Love these games. Just hard to work out what is going to happen. I think its going to be close (as it often is) so I am going to back on the quartet of Fyfe, Johnson, Walters and Neale to keep Freo competitive.

FUTURES REPORT:

Horrible time to back Adelaide after a big win but they really did look like they were back to somewhere near their best against the Dogs. The other great bet would be to back the winner of the GWS v Sydney game. The winner will shorten dramatically and be a great bet regarding the flag. I wouldn’t write off the Tigers either across the board as they will beat Brisbane this weekend and will then get their chance against GWS at the MCG the week after.

“O When The Saints!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at all of the good bets available in Rd 17 of the AFL…read more

Super effort from the Saints. The Tigers were on a roll last weekend with everything to play for but bought nothing. The Sainter’s showed some real spirit and also showed that they are far from done and dusted regarding the 2017 AFL season. Its been a roller-coaster ride for the Saints who go from champions to chumps and back to champions in very short periods of time. They need to make a statement against the Bombers on Friday night and a big win will keep them fighting for that valuable top 4 spot. Young teams like the Saints need to understand that to be a very good team you need to put impressive performances back to back.

I can’t understand how Easton Wood got a week and Cotchin didn’t. The circus needs to hire a ring master and sack some of the clowns. Get to it Gil, this is starting to get embarrassing.

BETTING ALERT: There are jackpots at the VIC TAB for both the AFL Footy Quad and the AFL Pick The Margins. Jackpots are rare these days but last weeks draw and some other crazy results mean that there is nearly 150K of free money out there to have a crack at. Its certainly worth a crack, get a few mates together and get a syndicate going as you can turn peanuts into gold.

For ANY OTHER BETTING (including quaddies on horses) back all the games at Ladbrokes because unless there is football related jackpots like this you will always get ripped off at the TAB compared to Ladbrokes who consistently give you better odds and excellent offers and specials. Sign up today at Ladbrokes, contact Big Jim and I will guarantee you a Big Jim present regardless of where you live. If you have any questions regarding this then email me at jimbo@bigjimwins.com directly.

St Kilda v Essendon (Ladbrokes line -5.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Unit bet St Kilda the line

If the Saints are even semi serious they need to beat the Bombers tonight. Not only do they need to beat them they need to put them to the sword. Then and only then can they claim to be the real deal. I think the Saints can and it would be nice to see. The tri-colours have to put good performances together as I said before.

Geelong v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line -15.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Unit bet Total points UNDER

This is going to be a good game but I hate it as a betting option. The Cats have had a tough travel schedule over the last few weeks and the Hawks are up and down like a yo-yo….Good luck….I am staying away and will pray for rain and a low scoring game.

Port Adelaide v North Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -39.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Port the line

Hard to see how North get up for this. The Power should be pretty confident after their exploits in the West and I can see plenty of late garbage time goals for the Power.

Gold Coast v Collingwood (Ladbrokes line -1.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Suns at the line

Maybe the Pies play with freedom now but I still cant see how they can turn it around and beat the Suns. The Suns really need to get the job done today. I am not a fan of margin betting but the Suns to win by 1-39 points might be a good way to go if you like to gamble.

GWS v Sydney (Ladbrokes line -3.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Sydney the line.

15 regular players are out for the Giants. Sydney is on a roll and should be optimistic about their chances. Its going to be a great game as this rivalry is starting to gain some traction.

Melbourne v Adelaide (Ladbrokes line -19.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit bet Crows at the line.

Huge game for the D’s. The problem is that they struggle consistently when it gets important and their record at Darwin is far from impressive. Adelaide appeared to recapture the sort of form they showed early in the year and they might be on their way to reclaiming their MOJO Austin Powers style.

Richmond v Brisbane (Ladbrokes line -37.5)

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Total Points UNDER

1 Unit Tigers at the line

The Tigers will win its just a question of the margin. I think if you bet the UNDER and the Tigers at the line you can’t lose both bets. If we get lucky we get them both.

Carlton v Western Bulldogs (Ladbrokes line -11.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit bet Bulldogs at the line

This is a dead set horribly hard game to try and work out. The Blues are playing really well but I think the Dogs match up well against them. The big question is can the Dogs bounce back after a good long break against a team they should dominate on paper. Weather is also another question. Interesting but hard.

Fremantle v West Coast (Ladbrokes line +14.5)

Suggested Bet:

2 Unit bet Freo the line

1 Unit bet Total Points UNDER

Love these games. Just hard to work out what is going to happen. I think its going to be close (as it often is) so I am going to back on the quartet of Fyfe, Johnson, Walters and Neale to keep Freo competitive.

FUTURES REPORT:

Horrible time to back Adelaide after a big win but they really did look like they were back to somewhere near their best against the Dogs. The other great bet would be to back the winner of the GWS v Sydney game. The winner will shorten dramatically and be a great bet regarding the flag. I wouldn’t write off the Tigers either across the board as they will beat Brisbane this weekend and will then get their chance against GWS at the MCG the week after.

Australian Football  10  July  2017

“Surfs Up Bevo”

Big Jim looks at the debacle the Western Bulldogs find themselves in at the moment...read more

It would be a miracle if the Dogs make the finals this year. Forget the top 4 and forget about any repeat Flags. Hopefully for the Sons Of The West they hit rock bottom in Adelaide last weekend. Apparently, however, everything had been going along smoothly according to coach Luke Beveridge up until that point in time.

A head coach doesn’t run hand passing drills these days. Those were things that coaches did 30 years ago. These days you have a team of coaches led by a head coach who runs “his team”. There are also other duties like monitoring the direction the team is taking. You would have to think that Beveridge didn’t contemplate a plan B if things started turning sour this year for the Premiers.

One of the other incredibly important thing that a head coach for an AFL team has to do these days is to handle the media. Now every club has a host of media personnel on their books to advise and prepare head coaches for this job but at the end of the day its the head coach that has to sit there and take the heat and answer the questions. Some do it better than others. Last year Beveridge handled that part of his job pretty well. But was easy when expectations were limited and the results were going his way. This year its a totally different kettle of fish and the fish is starting to rot and smell really bad.

You can’t week after week say everything is going well when you are the reigning Champions and consistently play football that isn’t going to even get you into the finals. Its too late to eventually come out after a thrashing and admit that the wheels have fallen off. Has Beveridge just realised this? If he just stumbled upon that knowledge then his days are already numbered. If he has known for some time that there were serious problems then he hasn’t been up front to the media and most importantly to the Bulldog fans that deserve better and at the end of the day pay his wage.

Blind Freddy could see that there are some major problems at the Bulldogs. Boyd is now taking time off for mental illness. Cloke has already missed time this year for the same problem. Johannisen is no where near his best and is yet to re-sign. Australia Post would struggle with what to do with The Package and the old brigade of dogs are looking slow and tired. The supporters and members deserve to know what is going on. You don’t have to air out all the dirty laundry but the coach needs to at the very least give a tangible reason for why the current Champions are going to go out in straight sets this year without as much as a bark. At the very least the head coach needs to have the answer as to how he is going to turn it around in the short to medium term future.

Its very easy to have a rocky year after massively over achieving the previous year but there are a host of problems at the Dogs that look serious. Its just not as simple as saying that this is a team struggling for form or ravaged by injury. The head in the sand approach from coaches doesn’t cut the mustard these days. They have to be better than that. Otherwise your critics will simply write you off as a coach that doesn’t have a direction and a coach with no direction wont coach in the AFL for a long period of time. Unless you coach at Richmond that is but that is a different topic entirely.

Australian Football  5  July  2017

“Fahour, not the sort of diversity the AFL needs!!!”

Big Jim calls for the immediate axing of AFL thug Ali Fahour…read more

If Ali “King Hit” Fahour doesn’t get sacked as the AFL’s Diversity Officer after his actions over the weekend then the AFL deserves as much condemnation as could possibly be thrown at it. This cowardly act from a man who obviously has no control over his actions, is not the sort of person who should be representing the game on any level. Yes Mr. Fahour….in the position you hold, your level of behaviour should be judged at a higher standard. Having a little cry for the camera just means that you are even more of a pathetic coward. An instant resignation was the ONLY honourable thing to do, not a vain attempt to try and save your cushy over paid position at the AFL. The person who hired this cave man should also be asked for a “please explain”. Fahour needs to be fired and then charged for a grievous assault!!!

There has also been a worrying amount of “dog acts” finding there way into the game on the field. Punching, eye gouging and the AFL doesn’t even have a tribunal now as it just makes up its own rulings when it sees fit. So a couple of real problems to fix Gil. Its tough to police when even your own staff are throwing coward punches. Sack the morons, sort out the rules and sort out some standard penalties for dirty play. Employ a body that you can rely on to interpret and enforce the sanctions that you put in place. The first point of order might be to oversea the selection process of the people in your employ. Its no surprise when you get a brain dead moron with a nickname like the “OX” to deliberate on on field stupidness. It really isn’t that hard Mr Mc.

Big Thumbs up to the heart shown by the Bombers last weekend. What a pathetic effort. Worsfold would be wishing he was still a chemist so he could raid the good quality pain killers after his sides dismal performance. Its one thing capitulating against the Swans in Sydney but its a totally different thing to throw in the towel against the Lions at home. The only thing worse was some of the insipid umpiring over the weekend. The Ump’s aren’t totally to blame as they are probably as confused about some of the rules at the moment as we are.

Right lets get down to business and pick some winners after taking aim at that long (but deserving) list of targets.

Adelaide v Western Bulldogs (Ladbrokes line -24.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

Well the stakes are high. The form lines aren’t exactly impressive. Beveridge continues to do his best interpretation of an ostrich and the Crows are a shadow of their former barnstorming best that took the start of the season by storm. This makes this a tough game to pick as 4 goals looks about the right handicap. Think the Crows probably sneak home but not sure about the margin. So lets go for a close “tackle heavy” low scoring Friday night showdown.

Hawthorn v GWS (Ladbrokes line +16.5)

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Giants at the line.

1 Unit Total Points UNDER.

It was a good win by the Hawks last weekend as the Pies were visibly hungry. GWS continue to play one quarter of football and not get punished. Not sure if this is a worrying trend or a terrifying premonition for the rest of the competition. The Giants should have too much fire power and scoring options for the Hawks but again not doing cartwheels over the game as a betting option.

Collingwood v Essendon (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Pies the line.

Where do the Bombers go now? Their display against Brisbane was a new level of putrid. The Pies weren’t much better but Hawthorn is still a better side for Brisbane (well at least for the rest of this year). Just think the Pies can get the job done here against the sorrowful pack of pretenders from Windy Hill.

Sydney v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes line 39.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Suns at the line

This is a big line. Yes the Swans are going a lot better. You might even say they are going good but they aren’t flying just yet. Suns are a better team than their ladder position suggests and I think they can at least keep the scoreboard respectable.

Brisbane v Geelong (Ladbrokes line +32.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Brisbane the line

I still think the Cats are pretenders. Brisbane should be on a high and the Cats are in the middle of a hard road trip. The Cats also have zero heart when it matters so lets hope the Hawkins choke plays on their minds this week.

St Kilda v Richmond (Ladbrokes line +11.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Tigers at the line.

Well the Tiges have been very good to us. Both sides coming off BIG emotional interstate wins. I am going for the Tiges here because I think they travel better and they come into this one with an extra day of rest. Its a crunch game for both clubs but Etihad obviously favours the Saints.

North Melbourne v Fremantle (Ladbrokes line -10.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points OVER

My suggestion here is to book in a long Sunday brunch or a DIY working bee for Sunday morning/early afternoon. The only interesting think will be to see if they can break the record for the lowest attendance record for an AFL game at the Dome.

Carlton v Melbourne (Ladbrokes line +8.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Melbourne the line

Would love to back the Blues here as I think they have been really good this year. Sadly sentiments don’t pay the bills so I am all over the D’s. Demons will believe they can win this one and should win it with ease which means they probably will. Its when they have to FIND belief that they really struggle. Expect the D’s here to do it by at least 4 goals. One of my better bets of the week.

West Coast v Port (Ladbrokes line -10.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units West Coast the line

I told you earlier in the year that Port will beat up on shite teams but that they will struggle against teams with quality cattle. The Power have plenty of heart and are well coached but have a severe lack of top end talent. So I think the Eagles can build on their good win from last week and should cover here especially with Kennedy coming back from injury.

FUTURES REPORT:

Some interesting top 4 betting options. Ladbrokes has Geelong at $1.36 and Port at $2.20 to make the top 4 (GWS and Adelaide are both $1.10 or shorter). I think the Cats and the Power are WAY too short. Richmond, Melbourne, West Coast and Sydney are all BIG VALUE. Use that same methodology in regards to Premiership betting. Plenty of value just steer away from Port and the Cats.

Australian Football

Best and the Worst”

Big Jim looks at some of the best and the worst of the AFL over the weekend…read more

Ken Hinkley and Jackson Trengove combined to put the acid test on Alex Rance in the first half of the Port v Tigers clash. Rance was made to look human, not bad. But it was fair to say that the best player in the game became frustrated and was beaten by an opponent for the first time this years at the hands of a well orchestrated game plan directed directly at him. In the commentary box, former North player and now media imbecile David King commented that Alex Rance’s career was basically shot to pieces suggesting that he had finally been “worked out”. Thankfully Mark Ricciuto pulled up King on his most stupidest comment of the year (a tall order to surpass other moronic ramblings) suggesting that other teams will try but it might not be as easy to dismantle Rance’s influence and total dominance in his position than King might think. Ricciuto, unlike King, was a Champion himself and he understands that champions adapt when put under pressure.

King has been given a mandate to work with Champion Data and is paid for his critical thinking ability. This would be akin to giving Mike Tyson tenure as the head of Astral-Physics at Harvard. The only difference is that Tyson (being a champion and smarter than King) would probably realise that he was out of his depth. King is quickly charging to the top of the most painful and stupid AFL commentators list. Considering the opposition he has at Fox footy and AFL reporters in general this is no mean feat. Thankfully for King the likes of Hamish McLachlan, Tim Watson and Dwayne Russell continue to make it tough for David King to actually claw his way to the top for the first time in his life.

In the second half Alex Rance came out and played a half a game of football that will go down in the ages as one of the most impressive half time personal turn arounds ever. That’s what champions do and boy did he make King look stupid. Champions embrace adversity, chew it out and spit it right back in the face of their critics. Rance rallied his defence and shut Port down by leading from the front and totally dominated half of the Adelaide Oval for two quarters. Port kicked only 3 goals in the second half and two of those came late in the 4th quarter after the horse had bolted. There isn’t much else to say apart from…WOW. Rance had more impact in a half of football than King has had in his entire career both on and off the field.

Can someone at Fox Footy find David King a job that he is suited to. Who is currently scrubbing out the bathrooms at Fox Footy HQ? My advice to you David (if you keep your current position) is pick a target that doesn’t make you look like the utter fool you continually appear to be.

The other amazing performance of the weekend was Patrick Dangerfield who is CLEARLY Rance’s challenger for the the games Nb 1 player. In the GWS v Geelong draw only four players managed to accumulate over 30 possessions. Menegola, Ward and Kelly all finished with 33 disposals and all played very well. Dangerfield ended up with 45 touches, a crucial goal and 4 tackles. It is unfair that he will only get 3 Brownlow points for his effort. He deserves to get all 6. Wonder if David King has some data to suggest that Dangerfield can be stopped?

Australian Football  30  June  2017

A Round for the Ages!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at Round 15 of the AFL…read more

You would be hard to please if you weren’t excited about this round of football. There is still a log jam in the middle of the table but with plenty of the contenders facing each other this week we will learn a lot.

The Demons and the Swans kick it all off and the winner here should consider themselves serious threats come September. Can the Cats prove themselves when it matters? Can Carlton bounce back after being outclassed by the Tigers? The Suns and North both have their final chance to make a late charge whilst the Tigers (and Port for that matter) have a chance to push for top four hounours. Then to round it all out Freo and the Saints get one of their last chances to seriously push for September action.

This is an awesome round so buckle up and lets see if we can snag a winner or two.

Melbourne v Sydney (Ladbrokes Line: +2.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Swans the line.

This is a great match-up between two teams totally on the up. I am very keen on the Swans tonight as the Demons are coming back from a very emotional long road trip out West. History tells us that the D’s struggle to get the job done in clutch (but winnable) games.

Western Bulldogs v West Coast (Ladbrokes Line: -14.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

Two of the “big gun” disappointments of the year. Form suggests you steer clear of both. Lets go for defence to rule the day and go for the UNDER Total Points scored.

Carlton v Adelaide (Ladbrokes Line: +22.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

You would think that Adelaide gets back on track today. The thing is that Carlton’s defence has been pretty good this year. I am going for another low scoring game and hoping that Carlton goes back to what they do best after an average effort last weekend.

Gold Coast v North (Ladbrokes Line: -2.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: I Unit Suns the line.

So hard to actually work the Suns out. They weren’t too bad last weekend and I will go with them again against a team I think is average at best. Ablett to see plenty of the pill in his milestone 300th.

GWS v Geelong (Ladbrokes Line: -19.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Giants the line.

You can have the Cats. This is really going to test them and I think that the Giants are going to hit their straps very soon as they start to get players back. Its hard to come back of an emotional high especially when in essence you were horrible the week before. Giants the best of the week.

Port Adelaide v Richmond (Ladbrokes Line: -20.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Tigers the line.

This is a big start for a team that travels well and should be sitting at the top of the ladder. If Rance plays up to scratch the Tiges are a great bet head to head and at the line. The Houli debacle might loom as a problem but it could also galvanise the Yellow and Black.

Essendon v Brisbane (Ladbrokes Line: -43.)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Bombers the line.

There is always one game that makes you want to puke. Shit game that the Bombers will win. Margin the only interest.

Hawthorn v Collingwood (Ladbrokes Line: +2.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Magpies at the line.

The AFL probably thought that this was going to be a blockbuster. Well its turned into a “last chance saloon” affair. Think the Pies get over the line but might go and mow the lawn when this is on.

Freemantle v St Kilda (Ladbrokes Line: -1.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Freo the line.

Freo are doing my head in at the moment. I just have a feeling they get the job done at home here today. The Saints are going OK but this is always a tough road trip for a young team. Ross Lyon is a good enough coach to get the Dockers up for a big performance.

FUTURES ALERT:

This is a really interesting week when it comes to betting on future markets. I think that this weeks results will see some huge moves in all Flag, top4 and top 8 markets. What you want to be looking for is a team that you think will win this week and will follow that up with wins in the foreseeable future. So if you think the Tigers can cause the upset over Port then St Kilda and Brisbane in their following two games appears very attractive. Melbourne and Sydney both have easy games in Rd 16 so if you like either to win on Friday night then this week is a good week to pull the trigger in future markets.

ew the moon, that would be far too easy…..LETS THINK BIG….

Australian Football 26 June 2017

AFL-X and game on Mars in 2027!!!”

Big Jim looks at some of the more stupid things being said in the AFL at the moment…read more

AFL-X is a stupid idea. It sounds more like a cheap B grade porno movie that could feature Gary Ablett Dildo and Jason Dongstill. Who is behind this particular pearl of wisdom? Australian Football is a great game just how it is. Why do you want to bastardise the game. Gee having 3 forms of cricket has been an amazing success story! Yes playing it on a rectangle field will make the game more accessible in South America, Europe and Africa but I cant see the game taking off in these parts of the world in the next 200 years regardless of where or how they play it. The AFL has to be careful in what they tweak. Twilight Grand Final…YES….Fixing the deliberate out of bounds and rushed behind rule…YES….AFL-X…NO! Lets get back on track boys and girls at AFL HQ. Ask Gil to give you some serious work to do if you have so much time on your hands.

The Bombers want to play a game in India. Thanks Port Adelaide and that imbecile crone dome Koshi for opening this can of worms. India actually makes more sense than most countries (especially China) for an AFL invasion but that still doesn’t mean this is a good idea. No doubt it will probably be the poor Suns that have to make the journey to the Punjab on Jetstar (economy) to play in vicious heat with gastro in front of 10 people and 10,000 cardboard cut-outs. Maybe Gil can be there dressed in traditional Indian attire promoting the AFL-X even though there are millions of round sporting ovals in India.

North Melbourne are usually pretty good at being the stupidest club in the league when it comes to these sort of things. I think they need to sew up the first AFL game to be played on a different planet and pencil in a game on Mars. Mars would be jumping up and down to sponsor the game. Will Jetstar fly the Suns that far and are there economy seats available? Screw the moon, that would be far too easy…..LETS THINK BIG….

Australian Football 21 June 2017

Back to Normal….Bout bloody time!!!”

Big Jim is excited and his world returns to normal with Rd14 of the AFL…read more

The split round just make me nervous and not feeling at my peak “ZEN”. I dont know why but they do, ah well shit happens. I feel that the world has realigned back to normal so everything is good now that every team is playing every week.

Strange sort of week. Plenty of those mid teen sort of lines. They normally wreek of plenty of favourites covering. I can tell you what the bookies have had a good year so its about bloody time some of the good things got over the line for the punters. Lets have a gander and see if we can come up with a few specials like we did last week.

Adelaide v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line -48.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Hawks the line

Well seems like a big line here!!! Oh how the mighty have fallen, suck it up all of you yellow and poo browners. I just think the Hawks aint that bad…..and Adelaide certainly arent playing with the same kind of vigour they showed at the start of the year. Not overly confident so tread with care but on the plus.

Sydney v Essendon (Ladbrokes line -17.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Sydney the line

Really like the Swans here. Bombers are ok when they are at home and everything is going their way. The boys from Windy Hill are a long…..long way away from being a serious team. Clearly in my top two bets of the round.

Collingwood v Port Adelaide (Ladbrokes line 4.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

Could be a good game this one. Port are throwing their hat in the ring for being one of the most inconsistent teams ever but there are big question marks over the competition today. This one is really tough. I am going to go the UNDER totals as I suspect it to be tight.

Brisbane v GWS (Ladbrokes line +33.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units GWS the line

Going against the form line here. Brisbane been pretty good last two weeks. I just feel that the Bears had a tough road trip last week and that the Giants are ready to put a team to the sword after a break and a disgusting loss. And yes IDIOTS I know they are now the Lions but they will always be the BEARS to me!

West Coast v Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -16.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Eagles the line.

David King was an annoying football player that was easy to dislike. He was a hopeless assistant coach that again……was easy to dislike. As a hack journo he is totally AWESOME. Not because he says gives you great mail its the exact opposite. Whatever comes out of his mouth…..bet against the exact opposite and you will be down to the Ferrari dealership before you know what hit you. So when the former North JOKER declared the Demonds a serious team capable of going all the way, they instantly became the lay of the week. Eagles easily as the best of the week. Thanks King-ie!!!

Geelong v Freemantle (Ladbrokes line -37.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Freo the line.

Geelong NEVER should start this big a favourites. Freo are due for a half desent performance. Two horribly inconsistent teams so lets just pray on the plus. If good old Big Turf Toe can play then this would become a two Unit bet.

Richmond v Carlton (Ladbrokes line -14.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Tiges at the line.

Carlton are going great guns at the moment and the Tiges refuse to break with tradition and continue to find ways to lose the unloseable. I WILL NOT STRAY. If the Tiges are even half serious today they slaughter the Blues and make a statement that they can finish of games and are still top 4 smokies.

St Kilda v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes line -25.5)

Suggested Bets: 1 Units Total Points scored OVER

The entire Gold Coast team need to be horse whipped for their shameful attempt at playing football last weekend. The Suns at their best could win this but I think the Saints prob get there its just a question on the margin for me. Hoping for a shoot out at the old DOME. And yes, I know its called a stadium these days, but I like the whole “Dome” thing. Its a week for nostalgia.

FUTURES ALERT

Well what appeared to be a fairly clear cut top 4 and top 8 has turned into a betting bonanza for future punters who think they know what is going to happen. The problem is that it has been more than problemtatic picking what is going to happen. This week Melbourne, St Kilda and Sydney are all getting backed and you cant write a ticket on teams like the Tigers and the Bulldogs. Dont get carried away with one good win. One impressive win (or horrible loss for that matter) dont mean NOTHING come September. Look for value and be weary of injuries. Things tend to return a little to normal around this time of year and expect the better teams to start playing a little better even though it is a very even competition.

Australian Football 18 June 2017

Give Dimma a spell!”

Big Jim takes a look at another Richmond disaster…read more

Maybe I should ban myself from writing about the Tigers. After another shattering display on the weekend you would think I would be numb. Well far from it. I am bloody angry this time around.

I opened up the Saturday paper yesterday and the Herald Sun had an article penned by Matthew Lloyd on what an amazing coach his old mate Damien Hardwick is. Seriously Robbo are you running the show down there at the Herald? You pen some descent stuff yourself but some of the articles written by your team are painful to read.

Prior to that a couple of days before, Wayne Carey gets out his pen out to endorse Dimma in the Age. Carey is a below par human being but I do respect his football integrity most of the time. Well Wayne, it was a big call prior to playing the Swans and its an even bigger call now!

The Tigers had a shocking year last year and Dimma would have been sacked if the board were prepared to lose the cash. Rightly or wrongly CEO Brendon Gale (and the board you would think) decided it was better to save the cash after finally getting the club back into a reasonable financial state. This isn’t my take on the situation Gale said as much to the press.

The years prior (to last years utter shambolic filth) the Tigers played and lost in three elimination finals. They were unlucky not to make the top 4 finishing 5th twice with one of those years accumulating 15 wins in the home and away season. So yes….we are playing a lot better than we did last year and yes…..our game plan has gone from horrible to a lot better but lets keep the cork in the bubbles for later on in the year boys! Last year was a disgrace and there is PLENTY left still to do in 2017.

This year we recruited well and our kids are starting to play well. BUT we probably have two of the top 5 players in the competition in Rance and Martin. We have mid field depth, some reasonable talls, a bevy of exciting small forwards and a top 5 full forward in Jack. THIS IS A GOOD LIST. Yes Hardwick deserves some of the credit for its creation but you cant keep losing games by tiny margins. It is now not just simply “bad luck” its a worrying pattern. Hardwick teams never rip the throat out of their opponents even when they have their claws wrapped around their throats. This is strange seeing that Dimma learnt his trade under Clarkson who always made his team go in for the kill as soon as the first drop of blood hit the water.

Damien Hardwick appears to be a great bloke. One day I would love to meet him. He was as tough as they come on the football field and has done some good thing at the Tigers (and we all know that isn’t easy). The Tigers have been 100% better than they were last year but that isn’t saying much. Lets keep the coach of the year debate till a little bit later on in the season. Anything short of hosting and winning a final this year should spell the end for Dimma at Tigerland. Its sad but the AFL isn’t a three legged race for kids at kindergarten where every participant gets a ribbon for having a go!

Australian Football  15 June  2017

“Plenty of Coin Flips!!!”

Big Jim takes a look at an excellent (be it small) round 13 of the AFL…read more

Thankfully its the last of the split rounds. At least we have had three good rounds of football and given all the clubs a week off. This system isn’t perfect but this is about as good as we are ever going to get if we insist on a bye round.

I love this round of football with some very even games served up pon the menu. Lots of small lines and I think there are some very good bets. Lets keep our fingers crossed and hope that we need to hire an armoured truck to take all the money away.

West Coast v Geelong (Ladbrokes line +5.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units West Coast at the line.

Ladbrokes has Geelong as their AFL Beststar Blast special of the week. If you like the Cats you aren’t going to go anywhere near getting $2.00 (even money) about them to win the game anywhere else. I, however, think the Eagles will win this one. Their form isnt great but Geelong are always easy to beat if they arent 100% fired up and ready to go.

North Melbourne v St Kilda (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bet: 3 Units St Kilda at the line.

Love the Sainters tonight. My best of the weekend by a mile. They are just better than the Roos across the park and get to play an away game on home turf. GET ON THE SAINTS.

Richmond v Sydney (Ladbrokes line +1.5)

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Tigers at the line.

As you all know I have yellow and black glasses on always. I just cant tip against them this week. Yes Sydney beat the inconsistent Dogs last week but the Swans also lost at home to Hawthorn the week before. If the Tigers play up to form they win this well.

Port Adelaide v Brisbane (Ladbrokes line -57.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Units Lions at the line.

When the line gets to over six goals I tend to lose a lot of interest. Port were horrible last week and the Lions were very good. I have to lean towards the 10 goal head start even though Port will find a way to win.

Gold Coast v Carlton(Ladbrokes line -22.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Suns at the line.

Both of these sides had great wins last weekend. I think the line is about right here but I lean towards the Suns who have the list to get on a roll.

Western Bulldogs v Melbourne (Ladbrokes line -10.5)

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Bulldogs at the line.

This is the sort of game Melbourne traditionally losses. They weren’t overly impressive on Monday but got the job done against the Pies. The Dogs are still struggling but you feel they have to get cracking fairly soon. The extra rest is also a bonus coming back from Sydney.

FUTURES ALERT

The winners of the Richmond v Sydney game and the West Coast v Geelong game will definitely shorten. So if you have strong feelings in either games now is the time to jump. Also an excellent time to jump on the Giants for the Flag at Ladbrokes after their slip up last weekend against the Blues. They still have PLENTY coming back and could pose as an unbeatable line up in the latter part of the season.

Australian Football  8 June  2017

Thumb’s Up Thursday!”

Big Jim takes a look at Round 12 of the AFL…read more

I like football on Thursday nights. I would be happy to have football on every night. I think the AFL has done a pretty good job on the draw this year and when they adopt the policy the NRL uses and schedule the rounds days and times a few weeks out then they will be pretty close to getting it right. I understand there are many counter arguments like fans who travel interstate for matches. This is a small group of people and the over all benefits outweigh the negatives. The television dollars is where the big money comes from and we all want block busters not duds. It also stops the smaller moaning clubs from demanding prime time regardless of how crap they are going. This is another one of the “when” not “if” arguments.

This Thursday, however, no one could argue with the game we have to kick off the weekend. Sydney at 3:7 have to finish off their season 9:3 AT WORST to make the finals. That is a tough ask. The Doggies will slip a minimum of two games behind the Giants, Crows and Cats if they lose tonight. So the stakes are high.

With some of the more exciting teams having the weekend off, there are some average looking games here on paper. At least they are bookended by two games that will be must watch.

Sydney v Western Bulldogs (Ladbrokes Line: -3.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Bulldogs the line.

Sydney has been installed here as favourites. For that reason I am going to be on the Dogs for value. As I stated before this game has huge implications for both teams but I think the Dogs still have a little more depth where it matters. If they keep the Sydney talls under check they should do enough to win. If, however, you like the Swans you can get an AMAZING $2.30 about them to win the game at Ladbrokes up to a maximum of $50 with the Ladbrokes AFL Bet Blast!!! At the TAB they are paying $1.75 so you tell me which is better!!!

Adelaide v St Kilda (Ladbrokes Line: -36.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit St Kilda the line

1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

St Kilda were the talk of the town a few weeks ago and now they find themselves friendless after a couple of losses. Ladbrokes has even wound them out to $3.00 to make the top 8. The Crows look like a million dollars for a few weeks and then lose game to the likes of Melbourne and North. The Crows probably win this one but the Saints won’t die wondering and it might be closer than many think.

Hawthorn v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes Line: -7.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Suns at the line

Both stuck on 16 points. Hard to get excited about this game. I think the Suns have more upside and should hopefully be on a mental high after their win against the Eagles.

Brisbane v Fremantle (Ladbrokes Line: +17.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

2 Units Freo the line.

If these two teams were race horses you would shoot them. Brisbane at least has an excuse. Freo were pathetic last weekend against the Pies. I think Freo probably win its just a question of the margin. This might be a good time to do the mowing even if it is dark outside.

Essendon v Port Adelaide (Ladbrokes Line: +15.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Port at the line.

If Port are fair dinkum then they win this and win it by a good margin. Money across the board suggests the Power are better than they appear so lets back on the boys from Adelaide being too solid in every facet for the up and down Bombers.

Carlton v GWS (Ladbrokes Line: +31.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit GWS the line

The Giants just keep on winning. They haven’t done it pretty and they certainly haven’t done it with authority but they keep on racking up the numbers in the column that counts; WINS. The Blues have been brave but I have a feeling that a GWS break out party has been pencilled in shortly.

Melbourne v Collingwood (Ladbrokes Line: -10.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Units Melbourne the line.

The Pies keep on hanging in there. It was a huge effort against Freo (and it certainly proved me wrong). Both teams sit on 5 wins and this is the type of game that both just have to win if they want to play finals. Just think the D’s have the more upside, should be a cracking game.

FUTURES ALERT:

Been some big movers and shakers in future betting. The market basically says that its a five horse race. Ladbrokes has Geelong and Port at $7.00 and $7.50 respectively and I cant have either of them so that leaves three. The Giants, Crows and Bulldogs are five times more likely than the Cats or Port. West Coast is on a massive slide and is out to $17.00. They lost their last two by under 10 points and I wouldn’t be writing them off yet. Tigers, Demons and Swans are the only other three under 50/1 and you would think they represent the only real smokies at this point in time.

Australian Football 2 June 2017

Freo to bounce back after having a weekend off in Adelaide.”

Big Jim loves Freo to bounce back this week and has them as his best bet of the round. Full round 11 selections.

You have to love Ross Lyon. I have had the pleasure of meeting him and he is as dry as he appears. He does, however, have a pretty good record of turning out well prepared football teams that dont get smashed apart.

Well last weekend his chargers were beaten in every facet of the game. As I punter I always think of the motivation a coach can use to get his team switched on. Make no mistake Lyon will have his boys primed for a big one. This Freo team has the talent to play finals. They are hard to beat at home and I think they will be the ones doing the demo job this weekend, so it might be Magpie Soup on the menu for Eddie and Bucks next week down at their plush little inner city hideaway.

Port v Hawthorn (Ladbrokes line 40.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Ladbrokes AFL Bet Blast Port Adelaide to win by 20 or more at $2.00.

Yeh yeh the Hawks were good last week but it was a tough game on the road. It doesn’t get any easier this week and I can see Port just being too good all over the park. Great special to have a crack at here as -19.5 is HALF the line they have to cover at the TAB.

Gold Coast v West Coast (Ladbrokes line 7.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points Scored OVER

This is a tough one regarding the line. You have to feel a bit sorry for the Sun’s who appear to the be AFL’s whipping boys in regards to travel. They have the talent but not the consistency. Tough to pick

GWS v Essendon (Ladbrokes line 29.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Giants the line.

The Bombers should have been beaten by 40 points last weekend against the Tigers. GWS are coming off an emotional and hard road trip but they should cover this spread in second gear if they are fair dinkum.

North Melbourne v Richmond (Ladbrokes line 5.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Tigers the line.

I know I am a one eyed Tiger fan and I know that North is our bogie team but am I missing something here? The Tigers if they bring their best should cover this line with ease.

Freemantle v Collingwood (line 2.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Freemantle the line.

Its a funny old season where last weeks form doesnt seem to matter when it comes to this weeks performance. To be truthful Ross Lyon will have plenty of ammunition and should have his Chargers ready to go. I honestly believe Freo are a better team than the Pies and at home look awesome value and the Dockers are my best of the week.

FUTURES ALERT

The Crows and the Giants both flexed their muscles last weekend and deserve to be premiership favourites. Just after big wins though is not the best time to back them. West Coast for the top 4 and the flag and Sydney across the board are probably the best value bets this week. Ladbrokes has a full range of all future bets including Flag, Top 4, Top 8, Wooden Spoon, Brownlow and Colemen to name just a few.

Australian Football 2 June 2017

Get a real job and see how you like that!!!”

Big Jim comments about a recent article in the Herald Sun about the so called over work “problem” and pressure AFL players face….read more

On the back page of the Herald Sun on Thursday they led with a story about the concern over players “welfare” due to the strain and stress placed on players. GIVE ME A BREAK PLEASE!!!

Lets get two things straight off the bat. Firstly I understand that professional sportsmen and women apply their trade under pressure. The bigger the sport and the more money they get paid the more pressure and the harder it gets. Secondly I think that mental health issues are real and that people that suffer from mental health issues need to be treated well and taken care of. The world we live in is a tough one.

Now that I have that off my chest let me say that this article and the whole notion of player welfare regarding the pressure of playing professional sport is utter bullshit. No one is made to play professional sport. Some sportspeople struggle mentally or physical to make the grade. That again is just life, welcome to the real world boys and girls. There are plenty of high fliers in every walk of life that have had to walk away from what they do because they can’t handle the heat in the kitchen. We aren’t crying rivers of tears for them as we put that down as just another unfortunate part of life living in a capitalist democracy.

Australian Football  26  May  2017

Jumper Punch gets the arse”

Big Jim takes a look at Round 10 of the AFL…read more

Punching a player whether you are holding a piece of their jumper or not is still a punch. Finally the AFL has decided to close this stupid loophole. Dimma Hardwick says he is struggling to work out the new law. Maybe Dimma should save his intellectual endeavours and direct them towards teaching his chargers how to defend a lead with under a minute left on the clock.

Lets have a look at the footy. Some really good match-ups this weekend in what appears a very tough round featuring a lot of match-ups that should be close.

Rd 9 Results: Big Jim +9 Units draws with Bookies +9 Units

Geelong v Port

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Unit Geelong to win at $2.00 at Ladbrokes AFL Betstar Blast

Cats should just have too much fire power tonight at home. They are tough to beat on their home track which is arguably the biggest advantage in football.

Sydney v Hawthron (Ladbrokes line 34.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Swans at the line

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

Sydney are back. The Pies and the Hawks may still be totally gonzo but make no mistake about the juggernaut that is Sydney. Swans should canter past the hapless Hawks.

Bulldogs v St Kilda (Ladbrokes line 15.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units the Dogs at the line

This is one of the toughest games of the round. Last week the Saints really stumbled and the Dogs are yet to get back to anything like their best. Think the Dogs might come out barking today.

Melbourne v Gold Coast (Ladbrokes line 19.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Demons at the line

1 Unit total points scored OVER

I know sooth sayers that would run away from any Melbourne game this year tearing their hair out. No Ablett for the Suns is a big loss. You would think if the good D’s turn up that they should win by over 3 goals.

Richmond v Essendon (Ladbrokes line 3.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Richmond at the line

Unless the football Gods are really having a laugh at all in Yellow and Black the Tigers will win this one and win it well.

Adelaide v Fremantle (Ladbrokes line 39.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Freo at the line

Freo continues to win game and climb up the ladder. 39.5 is a huge start for a team going pretty well at the moment even with the daunting trip to Adelaide.

Collingwood v Brisbane(Ladbrokes Line 47.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

You would think the only real question here is the margin. Poor old Brisbane appear to have hit the wall. Then again Pies are capable of turning around any teams form. Might be the low scoring dud-fest of the weekend this one.

Carlton v North Melbourne(Ladbrokes line 20.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

Another one of these really really hard ones to pick. Pretty even these two teams. Going to bet on that Navy Blue defence to make it hard for the North forward line.

West Coast v GWS (Ladbrokes line 11.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Eagles at the line

1 Unit Total Points Scored OVER.

Might be the best game of the weekend. Looks like a sneak peek into September. Line looks about right. Lets hope its a free flowing game with plenty of points.

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT
I am kicking myself for letting the Swans get under my guard. Ladbrokes still has them at $15.00 which isn’t a bad price. Cats and Port are still WAY to short and the Bulldogs and West Coast still appear to be the value.

Australian Football  22  May  2017

Is letting your kids support Richmond paramount to child abuse?”

Big Jim cries into his soup after another heart breaking loss for the Tiges.

Being a Richmond supporter is a tough gig. There are brief moments when things appear to be good but then it all turns to custard one way or another and we are left feeling like we have been run over by a semi trailer. My ten year old daughter summed it up after we both sat their staring at the TV in disbelief after leading the Giants all day to only lose in the last minute again.

“We get a long way in front and then we play our crapest and lose!”

The Tiges have now crashed to 5:4 after their 5:0 start. Its been a tough month of football and apart from their heavy loss to Adelaide they have played pretty well. A close loss the Premiers and then last minute losses to Freo and GWS was just the cherry on top of the shit sundae.

Essendon and North await in the next two weeks for the Yellow and Black before a bye. These are two games that we should win. On form we should win them easily. If we sit at 7:4 at the break then the last month will start to fade into the memory. I always strive to be a positive Richmond fan I just hope I can hold it all together if we continue to find ways to lose the next two games. C’mon Tiges!!! I will be checking Ladbrokes next week to see what sort of price I can get about the Tigers making the top 8. I think they will represent good value and I am going to remain strong in resolve. And for the record so is my little ten year old.

 

 

 

 

Australian Football  18 May  2017

China…..Well lets wait and see”

Big Jim takes a look at upcoming Round 9 of the AFL.

I’m not sure about the China experiment . Hard to know how to gauge its success or failure. The whole venture probably sits in between a bold expansion of the game and an utter waste of time. For starters Gill, the tickets might have sold but there were plenty of empty places in the stands however you want to look at it. The game itself was average and you have to wonder how serious Gold Coast was about the journey. I can understand it makes Port a serious bundle of cash but its a big ask for the other team to disrupt their season in such a way. Anyway I’ll give it a “just scrape through” pass mark and see what they come up with next year.

Lets get stuck in!

Rd 6 Results: Big Jim +4 UnitsBookies +8 Units

Geelong v Bulldogs (line 3.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Dogs at the line

Exciting start to the weekend. Geelong have been more than putrid of late and when their big guns don’t fire they look average at best. Simonds Stadium is a huge plus for the Cats but I still think the Premiers find a way to keep the Cats on a slide.

ST Kilda v Sydney (line 5.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Saints at the line

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

Winning form is good form. Swans can win this one but the Saints appear to be the real deal. Huge litmus test for both clubs.

GWS v Richmond (line 27.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit the Giants at the line

Hard to know what “that” loss is going to do to the Tigers. It was a shocker and could easily haunt the yellow and black, only time will tell. I am going to concentrate on GWS who should bounce back after a pretty average display against the Pies and will be hungry to win this one with conviction.

Brisbane v Adelaide (line 45.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit the Giants at the line

1 Unit Total Points scored OVER

The Crows just have to win this one you would think and even though they are on the road its hard to see the young Lions being able to stop them. The line looks about right and I hate betting on these kind of games. Crows to cover but not with a huge amount of conviction.

Collingwood v Hawthorn (line 12.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

1 Unit Pies at the line

Hard to like either of these teams on form. Its such a crucial game for both sides as both can simply not afford to lose games like this if they are still dreaming of September football. Just too many out for the Hawks who need everything going right not the other way around at the moment. So for that reason I at least expect there to be plenty of purpose but not a whole lot of goals. UNDER here for sure.

Essendon v West Coast (line 13.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units West Coast the line

The Bombers are going to be up and down all year. It was a good win last weekend but they come up against a much better team tonight. Simpson will look to go to the “win on the road well” again and just think the Eagles match up really well against the Bombers.

Melbourne v North Melbourne (Line 13.5)

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Demons at the line.

North came crashing back to earth with a thud. The Demons have had a hard week off the park with the Hogan news but lets hope that creates the inspiration for them like they did last week. This is the kind of game the Demons SHOULD win and win easily.

Freemantle v Carlton (line 20.5)

Still a big wrap on the endeavour of the young Blues but this is a really tough assignment. The boys in purple are back and the likes of Mundy, Johnson, Walters, Neale, Sandilands and Fyfe are all starting to regain form. You can’t argue that this Freo team doesn’t have some excellent cattle. Its just their depth and keeping their stars fit that is going to be the challenge.

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

2 Units Freo at the line

1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

asdf

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT
Port and West Coast at the same price of $9.00 at Ladbrokes? Am I missing something here. West Coast are great value and Port is the opposite. The Crows are still Flag favourites at $4.00. Even after their recent bad form there just hasn’t been any other clubs banging the door down with amazing form either. With it being so tight at the top of the ladder teams like the Saints, Demons, Freo and even Richmond aren’t totally out of it especially if one of them can sneak into the top 4.

 

 

 

 

AFL  May 15 2017

Don’t raise the draft age!!!”

Big Jim shoots down Adam Ramanauska’s idea to raise the age of the draft…read more

Adam Ramanauska has come out and publicly suggested that the draft age should be raised. I can see where Adam is coming from but he is stating a position that he thinks would be better for the Clubs. He is saying that the Clubs wouldn’t get stuck paying big money for kids who still need a lot of development. The welfare of the kids, however, should trump that.

Back in the days when Adam was coming through the grades young men played football, hoped to make it to the AFL and also concentrated on study or a career. These days that isn’t going to cut the mustard. A 16 year old kid who has the possibility of playing AFL is dedicated to nothing more than harbouring a dream to play at the top level. They have to basically give up their young adult hood and any future career based dreams to focus entirely on football. Theses kids need to be compensated for this sacrifice. Otherwise it will just be the rich Wesley College types that can afford to put everything into their dreams while the working class kids have to go out there and flip burgers or stack bricks to survive.

From a club perspective its the same boat for every club. That’s why clubs pay big dollars to recruiters. If you choose to pick ready made bigger harder bodies then that is your choice. If you choose to develop immature bodies with tons of ability, then that is also your choice. The smart clubs take a combination of both.

In the US the majority of players entering into the professional ranks are around the 22 year old mark. This is because they are groomed at a college level where they must combine their sport with study. This system isn’t just for the big sports and it isn’t just for the very best. There are sporting scholarships for a huge range of sports and a huge range of ability across hundreds and hundred of tertiary institutions. Its not a perfect system, as some of the bigger name athletes at the elite sporting Colleges should be at least gaining a “super” style fund set up for their blood sweat and tears, but that is a discussion for another time. It does though, encourage schools to give a wide range of kids, from a wide range of sports, the chance to get an education for free.

Australia doesn’t have that kind of system and never will, but if premier sports like the AFL have to pay kids a wage for putting their bodies on the line and their lives on hold for their chosen sport then I think that can only be a good thing.

 

 

AFL  May 11 2017

What does form mean anyway!!!”

Big Jim looks at last weeks AFL results and dissects the best bets for Rd8…read more

Good luck in your tipping comps this year! Every game last week was won by the team on a lower spot on the ladder. Go figure. At the very least Big Jim had a very handy week and beat the bookies by 3 Units and that means $’s in your pocket if you followed the mail.

Might be some some close results this weekend with some very interesting match-ups. Great start to the week and three big crunch games on Sunday with all 6 teams realistic chances of recording wins.

Rd 7 Results: Big Jim +10 Units beat Bookies +7 Units

West Coast v Western Bulldogs (line 10.5)

This one really is tough. West Coast had a great win last year and will want to quickly erase their loss to the Dogs in Perth in the Elimination Final last year. The Dogs on the other hand will want to atone for their horrible outing last time in the West against Freo. Too hard to pick a winner at the line so going for a low scoring tight contest.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: Two Units Total Points Scored UNDER.

Hawthorn v Brisbane (line 43.5)

What a horrible match-up this is. Surly the Hawks will be too good for the struggling Lions but 43.5 is a big head start. Again not confident at the line here but hoping for sunny weather and plenty of goals.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Total Points Scored OVER.

St Kilda v Carlton (line 26.5)

Hard to imagine that this shapes as a block buster. Both sides are coming off two massive wins and confidence will be at an all time high. I am going to go with the Navy Blues again at the line as this one might be closer than many people think.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Carlton at the line.

GWS v Collingwood (line 31.5)

The Giants will have really enjoyed the 8 day break and will be out to dismantle the Pies today at home. Its a big start but Pies again are going to struggle to kick a total unless Fasolo and Elliot can break down the miserly GWS defence.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Giants at the line.

Essendon v Geelong (line -21.5)

Cats have been putrid for two weeks in a row and have looked like utter pretenders. This is usually the time they put a bad team to the sword. The Cats should be WAY too good for the Bombers today.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: Three Units Cats the line.

Adelaide v Melbourne (line 38.5)

The Melbourne Football club have the cattle but they still don’t have any belief, they just should have beaten the Hawks. Boy do they need big Maxy G back. Big line but Adelaide should bounce back in a big way after their horrible sojourn down to the Apple Isle.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Adelaide at the line.

Richmond v Freemantle (Line 17.5)

This is the game the Tigers just have to win. Freo are not what they were a couple of years ago but in saying that they are serious top 8 threats. I think the line is around the mark, but banking that the Tiges are made of stern stuff this year. Lets hope anyway.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Tigers at the line.

Gold Coast v Port (Line-19.5)

Shanghai Surprise!!! I am just going to forget that this game is being played in China. I don’t know that I feel about the whole experiment to be truthful and I am not sure which team (if any) if favours. I like Port against average sides but I’m not sure what sort of side the Suns are. If GC bring the kind of form they bought to the table against the Cats last week this seems a ridiculously sexy line.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: Two Units Suns at the line.

North Melbourne v Sydney pick

So much to hate about this game. The only thing is that the bookies have this game at a pick and that is about right on the money for me. I am going to go for a low scoring game even though both these sides piled on the points in big wins last week.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: One Unit Total Points Scored UNDER.

Big Jim FUTURES REPORT

There is a lot to like about St Kilda but I am pretty sure they cant go all the way THIS year so I think they are too short. I told you to jump on West Coast last weekend for the flag and they have rocketed into around the $8.00 mark, sorry guys no more $15.00 now! Ladbrokes has GWS and Bulldogs still at $4.00 and $7.00 respectively which I think both still offer excellent value in flag markets.

Australian Football 8 May  2017

Big Balme might be the best recruit of the year!”

Big Jim looks at Richmond’s appointment of Neil Balme as head of football operations at the Tiges…read more

For the first time (in a long time) Richmond fans can actually get excited about what their football department did off the field over the summer break. Regardless of what happens this year it will be hard to argue that the Tiges didn’t maximised their list for the start of the 2017 season. The recent loss to Adelaide was hard to swallow but the performance against the Dogs a few days ago reiterated that the Tigers CAN mix it with the best. A 7:3 start to the season is a very distinct possibility and no one at Tigerland could complain with that after what happened last year.

Letting Brett Deledio go was a bitter pill for everyone to swallow but it was the right move. The window appeared to be shut and “Lids” was never going to be influential in the Tigers moving forward in the medium to long term. Letting poor old Tye Vickery go was a “no brainer” and even though I think the big tall is a misunderstood player it was time for him to move on.

Toby Nankervis might have been the greatest steal in the history of football recruitment and its nice to get the better of the Swans in a trade deal. There is no doubt former Suns gun midfielder Dion Prestia has bought the power to the Tigers midfield that we desperately needed. Finally the likes of Martin, Cotchin and Miles have more room and time in the corridor and we have depth where it really counts. Time will tell with former Cat Josh Caddy but I still think he may end up being a very cheap pick up for the Tiges. He is getting an A for effort at the moment and at only 24 years of age has time to develop into a new system and play his best football in the years to come. There are some exciting even younger talent starting to emerge as well that should see the Tigers continue to improve over the next 2-3 years.

The very biggest tick in regards to recruitment has to go to CEO Brendon Gale who was obviously instrumental in bringing Neil Balme back home. He is a strange football man as he is a big burly bloke who doesn’t always articulate himself in a way that makes you instantly think “football operations genius”. With Balme the proof is in the pudding, and this pudding tastes as good as any going around. How quickly we forget that the Cats were in crisis under the Bomber Thompson, Balme regime. Its amazing how three Premierships tends to over shadow the fact that the wheels were so very close to falling off down in Geelong. It is easy to draw comparisons to the predicament the Tigers faced after a dismal 2016.

Balme is a Richmond man. He obviously loves the club and his acumen speaks for itself. He appears responsible for being that rock of strength that Hardwick so desperately needed. Everyone at Richmond who was calling for Dimma’s head (me included) would love to eat their words. We all love Dimma but the yellow and black were so desperately starved of success that we felt someone had to go.

Now it appears that the game against the Swans at the end of last year (where we should have been beaten by 150 points) appears to be the “rock bottom” point. At the time it looked to be the start of pending annihilation and years of relegation to the bottom of the table. Thanks Neil, you have given the Tiger Army back its roar. Now we all feel that we are going to give the other 17 teams one hell of a fight, both on and off the field, in the next few years.

Australian Football 4 May 2017

Cowardly Cats and Champion Crows”

Big Jim takes a look at upcoming Round 7 of the AFL…read more

Prior to last weekend we had three unbeaten teams. Now its just the Crows as both the Cats and the Tigers slumped in far from convincing efforts. The Crows were just unstoppable on Sunday night so the new look Tigers have some excuse. The Cats on the other hand were insipid against the Pies and it just goes to show that this years Cats, look as brittle as last years Cats, when the pressure is applied.

This week there are going to be some really big lines which makes it tough as a tipster. That isn’t an excuse so no more moaning from me; Lets get down to picking a few winners out of this lot! It was tough last week as well and we still managed to end up in front!!! I am going to give you a tip for every game every round from now on, so no fence sitting. Just look at the Units suggested if you want to work out which bets I lean towards.

Rd 6 Results: Big Jim +4 UnitsBookies +3 Units

St Kilda v GWS

There was a lot to like about the Saints last week but they face sterner opposition here today. Might be a little emotional let down after they torched the Hawkers and the Giants look in ominous form.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit the Giants at the line

North v Adelaide

Hope the Roos enjoyed last week as the honeymoon is over boys. Crows will win easy and probably won’t even have to hit 2nd gear.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Crows at the line

Collingwood v Carlton

I liked the Pies a lot last weekend but the Blues will believe they can win this one after their heriocs last weekend against the swamp pit Swans. Its a traditional clash today against two teams that are playing at a similar level. That suggests a close game so we have to be on the UNDER and the Navy Blues at the plus.

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Blues at the line

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

Port v West Coast

I think Port will struggle against the better teams this year. West Coast will be HUNGRY to prove they can win away from Perth. Big head start for a game that I think the Eagles can win. I will be having some dollars on West Coast to win outright (money line) as well.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units West Coast at the line.

Gold Coast v Geelong

Horrible game to bet on. Both of these sides are so inconsistent. Either team could win by 10 goals. OVER total points but not with a whole lot of confidence.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points scored OVER

Western Bulldogs v Richmond

Really really tough again. Both coming off loses. Both will have something to prove. Think the line is about right. Will bank on the Richmond defence to be more effective against this set up then against the Crows.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points UNDER

Sydney v Brisbane

I would be surprised if ANY team in the history of the AFL started a game 6 goal favourites after losing 6 games on the trot. The Swans have to improve but they got beaten up by the Blues last weekend. Brisbane aren’t great but they aren’t totally legless either. Just a lot of points to cover for a team that has struggled to score all year.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Brisbane at the line.

Melbourne v Hawthorn

If Melbourne find some self belief they are certain to make the 8 this year. This is one of those games they just have to come out and win at all costs. It appears the West Coast game was the anomaly for the Hawks after what the Saints did to them last week.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units the Demons at the line.

Fremantle v Essendon

Well this all comes down to “Fyfe Gate”. Hard to know what sort of mental state the Dockers are going to be tin. Regardless they should be too good for the Bombers who were beyond bad last weekend against the D’s.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Unit Freo at the line.

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT
The Crows are currently the best team in football. No doubt in my mind! Are they unbeatable??? Hell Yeah…There is a lot of water to flow under the bridge this year and a lot can happen. I thought that the market might have gone over board but Ladbrokes still has the Crows at $3.50 which seems about the right price. GWS at $3.75 seems sexy. Bulldogs at $7.00 seems sexy. Cats at $9.00 is too short. Port at $11.00 is WAY too short and West Coast at $12.00 seems super sexy. The rest are at 33/1 or worse and should really be closer to 50/1. Just remember look to back teams to win the flag that are coming off a loss or are going to have a huge win in the upcoming week. Remember that one game doesn’t make or break a season at this stage!!!

Australian Football 1  May 2017

Gill gets an A”

Big Jim takes a look at Gill McLachlan and his tenure as the man running the AFL…read more

There is little doubt that Gillon took all the good genes on offer in the McLachlan family. If only his idiot brother had half a brain they would be one hell of a powerhouse family.

Gill Joined the AFL as a very young man. He wasn’t loved or even respected early on, but through dogmatic hard word and constantly picking the right people to back, he worked himself into a position where the head job was always going to be his. Rugby League tried their best to steal the up and coming CEO but Gill knew where his heart was and most importantly knew that he was a lock. Like any position of power he inherited some of his predecessors successes and failures. For the most part he has improved on the good things and fixed up some of the areas that needed attention.

I still feel that the AFL competition would be stronger with 16 teams. Gill was locked into an 18 team competition and that was simply what he had to work with. The demise of the Hawks, Swans, Pies and North and the emergence of the Bulldogs and the Giants is a huge tick for equalisation and a strong competition. The AFL spent the money to get this and finally there appears to be light at the end of every tunnel for every team and more importantly every supporter who are the ones ultimately footing the bill.

Getting a Good Friday game and getting over 80,000 people for a Melbourne home game on ANZAC Day Eve is an amazing feat. The next thing Gill wants is a twilight Grand Final and he will get his wishes. Blind Freddy could see this makes sense and its only narrow minded traditionalists rabbiting on with stupidity that stand in Gills way. Gill is smarter than them, a twilight GF will happen and it will be an amazing success.

The launch of the Women’s AFL competition has been another chapter of the McLachlan tenure that makes for very pleasant reading. Yeh, its not perfect, but the ticks massively outweigh the crosses and with some tinkering the future of the game being played at a high level by both sexes looks assured.

The AFL has continued to move in the right direction with sexism, racism, multiculturalism and the rest of the long list of political correct-isms that we have to painfully put up with in this day and age. McLachlan understands that change in this regard has to happen organically and only then will it become the norm. Gill just states the AFL’s position and then lets other machines like the media do his work for him.

The biggest test for McLachlan was that he didn’t cut his teeth on “football operations” and he doesn’t have the football pedigree that some of his predecessors had. Rules like the deliberate out of bounds and deliberate rush behinds are a big problem for the AFL and they need to be addressed. Gill will make sure that he gets the right people making the right decisions when it comes to the on field integrity of the game. After all Stalin wasn’t a soldier.

Not sure about the video ref, Essendon’s continually disgraces and it would be nice to see Gill muzzle Eddie McGuire more; But hey, the world isn’t perfect. Running the AFL is the toughest job in Australian Sport and Gill has put in an A grade (David Gallop like) performance thus far.

1 Unit Port at the line.

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

Geelong v Collingwood

This appears to be set up for the Cats to put in one of their below par performances. They might not win but the Pies will put in a better performance for their embattled off field leaders than they did on ANZAC day.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Collingwood the line.

Adelaide v Richmond

I know the Crows are in red hot form but 5 goals is a big head start to give the unbeaten Richmond. The Tiges are traditionally a team that travels well and if they follow Jack’s lead of taking a “nothing to lose” mentality into this game this should be an absolute Sunday Arvo blockbuster.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Richmond the line.

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT
I think its a good week to get on the Dogs or the Giants depending on what happens on Friday Night. Friday looms as a danger game for the Giants but if they come out and blow the Premiers away they will be the flavour of next week in Flag betting. Same can be said about the Dogs. West Coast is the other value bet this week as they are better than the putrid vomit they served up against the Hawks. As long as they don’t buy into this MCG hoodoo that media morons like Robbo is beating up they are as good a chance as any team this year of winning it all.

Australian Football  29 April 2017

Irrelevant Roos take some of the heat off Bucks”

Big Jim takes a look at upcoming Round 6 of the AFL…read more

The football Gods must have taken pity on Collingwood and Bucks this week with a whole lot of irrelevant shenanigans going on down at Arden St (I know that is an oxymoron). Bucks appears to be on life support at Collingwood and with any luck Fast Eddie should be preparing to say good bye to the Presidency. One can only hope. Brad Scott should look at politics as being a good liar and universally disliked are big attributes in that game. Swallow is totally gonzo and even though I am a huge fan of Thomas his form warranted being dropped. Time for the Roos to admit to themselves that they are cooked and continue on their mass rebuilding and leave the football to the teams with realistic chances in 2017.

Rd 5 Results: Big Jim +8 UnitsBookies +6 Units

Hawthorn v St Kilda

St Kilda should have received a good old fashioned roasting after a pathetic final quarter against the Cats. They have the talent, form and youth to run the Hawks off their legs its just a matter of bringing it. This is a really interesting game.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Saints at the line.

Brisbane v Port

I have a theory that Port has found its culture and mojo again. I feel that they are going to struggle against good teams but should win the games that they are expected to through accountable football and a solid game plan. They should just grind Brisbane slowly into the mud this afternoon.

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Port at the line.

2 Units Total Points scored UNDER

Geelong v Collingwood

This appears to be set up for the Cats to put in one of their below par performances. They might not win but the Pies will put in a better performance for their embattled off field leaders than they did on ANZAC day.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Collingwood the line.

Adelaide v Richmond

I know the Crows are in red hot form but 5 goals is a big head start to give the unbeaten Richmond. The Tiges are traditionally a team that travels well and if they follow Jack’s lead of taking a “nothing to lose” mentality into this game this should be an absolute Sunday Arvo blockbuster.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Richmond the line.

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT
I think its a good week to get on the Dogs or the Giants depending on what happens on Friday Night. Friday looms as a danger game for the Giants but if they come out and blow the Premiers away they will be the flavour of next week in Flag betting. Same can be said about the Dogs. West Coast is the other value bet this week as they are better than the putrid vomit they served up against the Hawks. As long as they don’t buy into this MCG hoodoo that media morons like Robbo is beating up they are as good a chance as any team this year of winning it all.

 

Australian Football 24 April 2017

Sledging Is a Joke

Big Jim feels for the players in regards to sledging in the AFL…read more

I don’t think Heath Shaw is the sort of bloke I would like to sit down and have a beer with but I certainly felt sorry for the GWS star this week. What a farcical joke sledging has become in the AFL.

I believe that the media often gets blamed by over paid coaches and players for merely doing their job but in this instance (along with the AFL) they deserve a large portion of the blame for this stupidity. Australian Football is one of those rare contact sports that sees two players from opposing teams playing directly on each other. Two players can spend a whole afternoon standing shoulder to shoulder with a player they are directly expected to play better than. It doesn’t come as a surprise that sledging is part of the fabric of the game. Well it used to be, however.

So every time we see a bit of argy bargy and trash talk all the commentators and fans stand up and applaud the fact that our game hasn’t gone soft and that the passion is as strong as ever. But what can a player actually say these days to express his frustration? We have ruled out anything to do with race, religion, sexual preference and gender totally. So what is left as “fair game” to the players who are in one hand encouraged to show passion while the other hand waits with a club to smash them when in the heat of battle a particular sledge is deemed offensive.

Heath Shore called another player a “retard” after being put in a headlock. I don’t think Heath for one second was actually implying that the Sydney Swan player in question was suffering any form of acute long term mental retardation. And I am also sure that Heath wasnt trying to offend anyone that does suffer from any form of mental disorder. The use of the word “retard” has been used across school yards in Australia for decades. It has been considered a throw away line in the softer range of insults. You can argue the broader social impact of that reality but it still doesn’t change the reality.

If the AFL punishes Heath Shaw for this then they are kidding themselves. This issue of sledging has to addressed and it has to be addressed right now. There needs to be clarification on what players can and can’t say. This is NEVER going to happen because anything that is given the green light will offend some small part of the community. This means that the sledge is basically dead and buried. All that I can say is that “what stayed on the field” should have “stayed on the field” and sadly now the banter must be barred totally. This is the result of groups using “throw away comments” made on sporting fields as a flag for their cause with vagrant disregard for the individual who slipped up. Well guys this is the end result and its the game and the culture of the game that is going to suffer.

Australian Football  19 April 2017

Its red alert for the Swans but the Hawks are already jumping overboard.

Big Jim takes a look at the best bets for RD 5…read more.

Nathan Bourke was a wonderfully tough footballer but his rant about Alistair Clarkson on Fox Sports was laughable. The Hawks are in serious trouble Nathan, and that falls largely on the shoulders of Clarko. If you can’t see that then you have no business on TV commentating on football matters. If you are just sugar coating the facts you may as well go and get a job as a Lawyer and get paid better to peddle horse shite.

Words like “rabble” spring to mind when describing the Hawks over the last fortnight. I agree that the Hawks wont be throwing the baby out with the bathwater but Mr Grumpy better get his pampered pooches playing like a football team and he better do it soon. At least Clarko isn’t listening to the likes of Bourke and has promised that the Hawks will stop the “rubbish” sometime soon. Don’t do it on our behalf Alistair, most of us are enjoying the yellow and poo browner’s getting thumped every week.

This is going to be a BELTER round of football so lets get straight into it.

Rd 4 Results…Big Jim +4 UnitsBookies +4 Units

Port v Carlton

Blues have stood firm this year but tonight is going to be a big test. The Power are coming off two losses but they were competitive in both and came at the hands of the Crows and the Giants who look to be the best two teams in football. I just think Port do everything a bit better than Carlton and at home with everything to play for might pile on a big score.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Port at the line.

Western Bulldogs v Brisbane Lions

Again I think this represents a statement game for the Dogs and that is unfortunate for the Lions. The Bulldogs form is a shadow of what they showed in the finals last year and they will be desperate to find some continuity against the Lions at Eithad.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 2 Units Bulldogs at the line.

Gold Coast v Adelaide

This may be the biggest test so far for the unbeaten Crows. I am predicting a high scoring game here as both clubs seem to rack up 100 points per game in a canter. This game looms as another one of the really awesome match-ups in a huge round of football.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Total Points score OVER.

Sydney v GWS

The nightmare isn’t over for the Swans yet with their cross town rival coming to the SCG in ominous form. Being back at home is a huge plus for the Bloods but its always hard coming back from the West. The eight day turn around is another plus and I expect Sydney to continue with the hard accountable football they showed against West Coast. I think this could really turn into a slog so I love the UNDER here.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

Freo v North

It would be tough to find two teams in different head spaces right about now. Freo will be in a very happy space after two big wins here they started clear under dogs. North will feel like the world hates them at the moment. This could get ugly for Brad Scott and his boys today.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 3 Units Freo the line.

St Kilda v Geelong

These two played an epic a few years ago and this looms as a big game for both clubs. I am leaning towards the Saints as they have had extra rest and its being played at the dome not the MCG. I also think Geelong can go very soft after big wins.

Big Jim Suggested Bet: 1 Unit St Kilda at the line.

Essendon v Collingwood

This is a game where both teams have plenty to lose. Its ridiculously early to say that the loser here is out of finals contention but it might not be that far off the mark. Collingwood should have too much polish for the Bombers. I think both of these clubs struggle with goal scoring power up front so it could be another defensive battle.

Big Jim Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Collingwood the line

1 Unit Total Points scored UNDER

Big Jim FUTURES ALERT

I think the Bulldogs and the Eagles represent value and I still think the Cats are massive unders in regards to Flag markets. I just cant ever see Geelong winning three finals on the trot. Ladbrokes has Freo at $3.00 and the Suns at $5.00 to make the top eight. Both sit at 2:2 (wins losses) and I think both sides represent massive value with their huge home field advantage. The Saints at $2.4 to make the top 8 also seems a great price especially if you think they can topple the Cats this weekend, which could easily happen.

Australian Football  13 April 2017

A tough week for Tipsters but Big Jim gets the chocolates!!!

Big Jim looks to back up his winning tips from Rd 3 with another big effort in Rd 4 of the AFL…read more

First and foremost the AFL is out of its mind for not having a game on Good Friday. Its a joke, in fact its worse than a joke, its a down right disgrace. They don’t mind cashing in on ANZAC day but for some reason won’t put a game on a religious holiday that was stolen from a Pagan festival! Its 2017 AFL…..GET WITH THE PROGRAM!

What a memorable round of football we got served up last round. Freo derail the Dogs, Pies fall over the line against the Swans, Carlton give the Bombers the Blues and the Gold Coast makes the sun set for the Hawks. For the last few years many AFL experts have predicted a massive shift in power at the top of the AFL ladder. With the Swans and the Hawks now both sitting at 0:3 it looks as if the inevitable is finally becoming a reality. It’s a long road back for the two most dominant teams of the last decade. Hawks are travelling like a busted crab and the Swans have a tough couple of weeks coming up and have a long list of casualties.

Lets see if Big Jim can keep the ball rolling here with another big week of tips.

West Coast v Sydney

Crucial game for both of these clubs as they look to erase the memory of last weeks losses. Both clubs would have expected to have won last weekend against inferior opposition and the loser here has big reasons for concern. For that reason I think Sydney will revert to what they do best and that is play pressure intense football. This usually results in grinding low scoring matches.

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Total Points Scored UNDER

North v Bulldogs

Just love the Bulldogs here. This is very simple. North are no good. The Bulldogs are very good and will want to bounce straight back after last weeks shocker against the Dockers. Woof Woof!!!

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Bulldogs at the line.

Collingwood v St Kilda

I still think the Pies are over rated. Outside of the annoying Fasolo I have no idea how they kicked enough goals to beat the Swans. It took the Saints awhile to get it all together against the Lions but when it did they looked pretty damn good against a side that are a hell of a lot better than they were last year. Saints in what should be a good game.

Suggested bet:1 Unit St Kilda at the line.

Brisbane v Richmond

Just to prove that I won’t back Richmond every week I am going to go for the Lions here at the line. The Lions have been big improver’s this year and could have easily snatched an unlikely win against St Kilda last week on the road. The Tigers have been great but they are going to have to be right at the top of their game to cover the spread. I will be praying the Tiges can get the 4 points but the smart play is the Lions at the line.

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Brisbane Lions at the line.

Hawthorn v Geelong

This might be the Easter Monday Dudbuster. Hawks are going so bad and you never know what you are going to get from the Cats. These two sides usually fight out top of the table nail bitters but the Cats (unless they are bloated on chocolate) should be too good against a confidence ravaged Hawthorn.

Suggested Bet:1 Unit Geelong at the line.

FUTURES ALERT

You are certainly going to get value about the Swans and the Hawks right about now but it might just be throwing away good money. Its going to be hard to win the GF from outside of the top 4 and both clubs are going to need to go 15:4 from here on in to make that dream a reality. Adelaide keep on marching on but their value is starting to fade. Good week to jump on the West Coast and Bulldogs after their hiccups against the Tigers and Freo last weekend.

7 April 2017

Don’t go 0:3 in this league!!!

Big Jim looks at Round 3 in the AFL…read more

Some big names currently sit winless at the bottom of the ladder after two consecutive losses. It’s going to be a long road to the finals from zero and 3.

Will Dusty wear a helmet, will Fyfe stay a Docker and what was Jorden Lewis thinking? These are the headlines that top the charts around the AFL this week. Not that all of that bull shite really matters but for the record:

  • Probably not, too tough!
  • Probably not, but should!!
  • Who the F*** knows!!!

Let’s cut the crap and get straight onto the action. Time to make some money!!!

Sydney v Collingwood

You couldn’t have asked for a better Friday night ball-tearer to open the round than this one.  Eddie will be sharpening the knife for Bucks if the Pies fall to zip and three. The problem for Eddie is there will be men in black and white suits sharpening their knives for him! I just can’t see Sydney losing three on the trot, especially at home in front of a big Sydney Friday night crowd. Elliot would be a massive plus if he is fit for the Pies and Sydney’s lack of ruck stock is a problem but you would need Moses to part the Red Sea for the Pies to win this one.

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Sydney at the line.

 

Richmond v West Coast

As I have said, I am scared to tip my beloved Tiges. My good mate Sean “Kenny” Calander from www.insidewordonline.com (a fellow tiges tragic) also agrees with me that the line on offer for the mighty Tigers is just to juicy to pass up. Just don’t blame me if you blow your arse out on this one. This is personal and it’s about time the yellow and balck started 3:0!!!

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Richmond the line.

 

 North Melbourne v GWS

North were stoic against Geelong with both the “sooky sooky la la” twins having babies in the coaches box’s. I just think North “aint” no good and the Giants juggernaut is coming off an impressive training drill against the Suns and is just starting to warm up. GWS won’t flog North by a hundred points but they will win with relative ease.

Suggested Bet: 2 Units GWS at the line.

 

Port Adelaide v Adelaide

You have to be impressed by the Port and the Crows start to the season. Both look to have come out of the gates flying. Adelaide have beaten two serious teams so far this year and across the board are a more complete team than their cross town rivals. I am going with Port today because I think these “Showdowns” are great levellers which means the head start on the power looks very inviting.

Suggested Bets:

1 Unit Port Adelaide the line.

2 Units Total Points OVER

 

Carlton v Essendon

I hope I am not throwing good money after bad but I am going to continue to stick with the Blues and pot the Bombers. Last round Carlton was competitive against Melbourne in a fiery encounter and the Bombers were lucky against the Lions. Again I think the Bombers are a better football team but I like the juicy head start we can get about the Blues.

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Carlton at the line.

 

Gold Coast v Hawthorn

Well we have to wait till the end of the round for my “three unit special”. What a horrible start to the season for these two sides. Both of their respective experience coaches will try and get back to basics this weekend. One thing that I am pretty confident about is that the effort from both teams is going to be there. This leads me to thinking that this will be a low scoring game. In the past it has always been a risky proposition to take the UNDERS in a Hawthorn game as they have in recent years piled on points once they break the spine of their opposition. Today the Brown and Yellow stripes will do anything just to escape with the 4 points.

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Total Points scored UNDER.

 

FUTURES ALERT:

Sydney is the obvious standout if they beat the Pies. They have been far from awful the first two rounds and they have plenty of talent coming back. If you think the Hawks are a lock against the Suns then again it’s a good time to jump. Be careful of the Tigers, Bombers and the Demons. They are undefeated but you have to ask yourself does their form really stack up? This week will tell.

 


 

28 March 2017  

Australian Rules Football

Hawks look like the money to me!!!

Big Jim has a look at the best bets for Round 2 of the AFL Season…Read more

Well it was a record setting opening round for the AFL in regards to crowd numbers and with a host of upsets everything is looking up for Gill and his boys and girls at the AFL. If only Gill could put a muzzle on his brother everything would be rosy. Freo still looks like they are going to struggle to score and the Blues look like they might have a mortgage on the spoon but plenty of optimism remains for most.

Richmond v Collingwood

Big Jim bleeds yellow and black just to let you know so be weary when I tip the Tiges. Not sure they beat much last week but Dusty is in sublime touch, Rance is the best back-man in the game and finally their midfield and ruck has some depth. This should be enough fire power to get over the Pies. I think the Bulldogs were guilty of some “globe trotting” last weekend and I still have grave concern about Collingwood’s ability to pile on points this year. This is going to be one hell of a game and expect a monster crowd. Its always nice to see Eddie and Bucks getting of to a zip and two start to the season.

Suggested Bet: 2 Unit Richmond at the line.
Hawthorn v Adelaide

A lot of so called experts are predicting a Hawthorn slide. That may or may not happen but to dismiss the season after one shock loss would be a grave mistake considering the talent they still have at their disposal. The Crows were great last weekend but it was an emotional win at home in oppressive conditions. This game is at the MCG and Hawthorn under the Clarkson regime doesn’t make a habit of getting on long losing streaks.

Suggested Bet: 3 Units Hawthorn to WIN
GWS v Gold Coast

The Giants should get the points here but they are giving away a big start at the line. The Gold Coast will be livid after their loss at home and they will want to prove that they are at least competitive against their fellow co-expansion team. The Giants are coming back after a tough road trip and they still have quite a few of their best out. Giants to get the chocolates but should be closer than many people think.

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Gold Coast at the line.
Brisbane v Essendon

Yeh yeh yeh….great return Bombers but lets not get carried away. I expect a big emotional hang over this week and the Dons can expect to face a fairly confident Brisbane Lions outfit. The Lions are getting a tasty head start at the line and could easily cause a boil over.

Suggested Bet: 2 Units Brisbane Lions at the line.
Geelong v North Melbourne

I thought the Roos were brave last week but they are really going to struggle against sides that can pile on points this year. Dangerfield showed that he isn’t nursing any hangovers from Brownlow night and I expect the Cats to pile on some late points against the Roos. I don’t love the Cats but I really think North are on the nose.

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Geelong at the line.
Melbourne v Carlton

It was a tough day at the office for Melbourne last weekend. It was very hot in the dome and Carlton has had an extra two days to lick their wounds. The D’s maybe the real deal this year and I think we can safely assume the Blues aren’t that great. The thing is that this is a big head start for two Melbourne Clubs facing off at the MCG.

Suggested Bet: 1 Unit Carlton at the line.
FUTURES ALERT:

My suggestion is don’t get carried away by any first round results. If you still like the Hawks, Swans or GWS then its a good time to throw a few dollars on. I don’t think there were any results that will shape a 22 round home and away season. If you like the Eagles and they were to come out and smash the Saints then they may rocket into Flag Favourites but I still think you will get a chance to back them later in the year at a good price straight after an unexpected loss (a round 3 loss to the Tiges would be a nice time for this to happen).

 


 

21 March 2017  

AFL

Bout bloody time!!!

Big Jim tells us who he thinks represents the best value in top 8 betting in the upcoming AFL Season…read more

Its been a long wait but the footy is back!!! Nothing like opening week of the football. Every team and supporter harboring dreams of a good season. Like every season there will be winners, losers and a few surprises. If you would like to have a look at a good article on the likely look of the Final 8 then track down Matt Cowgill’s article at ESPN. His data suggests that Swans, Crows, Bulldogs, Giants, Eagles, Geelong and Hawthorn all have better than a 62% chance of making the 8. Then he has Port, North, Pies, Demons, Saints and Tigers ranging from 50-70% chances of NOT making the 8. Then you go down to Carlton, Gold Coast, Freo, Essendon, Brisbane. Who are 85% or worse chances of missing the 8.

Cowgill uses a very scientific process which is not my proffered method but It does give the reader food for thought. I agree that his top 7 SHOULD all make the 8 but I would be amazed if they all did. Usually at least one side has a meteoric disaster. Hawks, Geelong and Sydney are aging and have all been up the top for a long time. Bulldogs and Giants are still young and both will carry great weight on their shoulders in 2017. That leaves Adelaide and West Coast who I feel are probably the two best “sure things” to make the 8 when you look at risk V reward.

I think Port and Collingwood are too high on this list and represent bad value. I think Lions, Bombers, North and Carlton have very limited chances so I put a line through them. That leaves the Demons, Saints, Tigers, Suns and Freo who I think all have a chance at scraping in. Most importantly I think they are over the odds.

So here is my recap to make things easy for top 8 betting.

Best Bets: Eagles and Crows. Both have huge geographical advantages and good lists. Can’t see them missing. (2)

Worth thought at the value: Demons, Saints, Tigers, Suns and Freo (5)

Too short in regards to risk v reward: Swans, Hawks, Cats, Dogs, Giants. (5)

Will struggle too much risk even considering their price: Port, Pies, Lions, North, Bombers, Carlton. (6)

That works out to 18 teams. Good luck and good punting!!!

1 March 2017

AFL  

 I Dig Chicks!

Big Jim takes a look at the new Women’s AFL Competition. Read more….

The womens AFL competition has been a huge success. Love it or hate it anyone who argues differently than that is a fool. The product is far from perfect but lets look at it constructively. The women’s game (at this level) is in its infancy and clubs have recuited athletes many whom have basically never played the game. This was a smart move as strength of body, fitness and top level sporting experience helps to bridge the gap. These elite women will only get better as they learn the game and with limited preparation one can only gasp in amazement at the level that has been shown to the public.

The skills will get better, the depth will improve and the sport already stands on the cusp of domination. Most of Australia is Australian Football mad and no other women’s sport has come close to having the support and coverage this new competition has received. More and more girls will be trading in the soccer ball and netball for a Sheridan and this will make AFL the biggest woman’s sport in Australia by the length of the straight. This process will and most importantly should take time. The money, the endorsements and the fame will follow. It should happen naturally and on its own merits with guidance and support from the AFL. If you create a product that isn’t naturally sustainable then it will only have limited appeal and then have a limited lifespan.

Some of the women journalists crying out for more money and more coverage at this early stage should understand that they are doing damage to the game they pretend to support. The AFL, players, clubs, supporters and media should all be proud of the way this product has been embraced. Already. Women’s team sport has never enjoyed this level of support and that is great! Lets not turn this amazing positive into a soap box for moaning feminists. These women only want air time for themselves regardless of the negative impact their poison has on the general public. Its the support of the general public that will be the litmus test for the sport in the long run. The general public is happy to embrace this as long as it is natural and isn’t jammed down their throats under the banner of “equality”. This isn’t a suffragette movement, its a sport and if people want it to succeed concentrate of the myriad of positives.

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