Five Lessons Learned – AFL Prelim Finals

1. Umpires Don’t Know What Deliberate Out Of Bounds Is And They Never Will

The first Preliminary Final at The Adelaide Oval on Friday night was clouded in controversy after a deliberate out of bounds decision was paid late in the game.

It was a crucial decision that lead to a Richmond goal which was ultimately the difference between the two teams as the Tigers reached their third Grand Final in four years.

A rule such as this one, something so subjective, is always going to bring controversy but the amount of disbelief by the average punter is hard to fathom.

These are umpires after all. They should be given as little interpretation over the game as possible.

Give them black and white rules to follow.

We saw this with the advantage rule, we took it off them, (and back into the hands of the player), because they continually got it wrong.

The umpires have struggled with this rule and they will continue to, we just have to get used to it.

2. The Two Best Teams Of 2020 Will Be Playing This Weekend

Despite the fact that Port Adelaide and Brisbane filled the top two spots on the AFL ladder after the Home & Away season, the two best teams will be playing the 2020 AFL Grand Final.

Port Adelaide sat atop the AFL ladder for the best part of the season but the punters were cold on them all the way through the year.

Brisbane played some outstanding football as well including their best in a decade in the Qualifying Final at the Gabba against the Tigers but they too were shunned by the punters throughout the year.

Richmond will get their chance to cement their place in history with a third flag in four years this weekend and like many of the great teams in recent years, they simply find a way to win come the business end of the season.

Geelong find themselves in their first Grand Final since 2011 and they have many players that are in the prime of their career.

We are in for a cracker punters.

3. Either Tom Hawkins Or Tom Lynch Will Win The Norm Smith Medal

Both Tomahawk and Tom Lynch have been instrumental to their teams at different times throughout their respective finals series and if either can have a day out on Saturday night, their team will go a long way to winning.

A three or four goal performance would almost be enough to secure best on ground honours and at their current prices, it is worth a gamble in my opinion.

The 2020 All Australian Full Forward Tom Hawkins is currently $13.00 in current Norm Smith Medal betting.

Tom Lynch is $15.00.

4. Grand Final Week Won’t Be The Same In 2020

There are many AFL supporters across the country that feel cheated in the final week of the 2020 AFL season.

And rightly so, this pandemic has taken away many of the things we have taken for granted for many years but this week will feel extra hollow for many fans, especially those who support either Grand Final teams.

There is no Grand Final parade in the lead up and the vibe, in Melbourne especially, will be vastly different this year.

But the show must go on and we have a cracking game of football to look forward to so my advice is to make the most of the situation you are in and enjoy the first Grand Final played outside of Victoria!

And gamble responsibly.

5. Free Agency Isn’t Broken, Your Club Is.

The football public is up in arms after Jeremy Cameron has used his right as a free agent to nominate Geelong as his club of choice going into the 2020 trade period.

How dare he? Right?

Wrong.

This is a player that had no choice in his initial club, being selected by the Greater Western Sydney as an under age pick and gave 10 years of his life to the club.

He gave the Giants every possible opportunity to win a premiership and knowing that window is now probably closed, does he not have the right to move on?

Has he not earned the right to move closer to family and enjoy a lifestyle that he is more suited to?

The AFL has one of the most conservative approaches to free agency in professional sports right across the world and the fact that the football public reacts the way they have with this news is immature and smells of pure jealously more than anything.

If you find that top tier AFL talent does not nominate your club time and time again, don’t blame the system.

Blame your club.

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