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AFL mid-season review (part II)

Roar Guru
12th June, 2013
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We are now at the half-way point in the AFL season. Who has stepped up and who has fallen short of the mark? Here is part II of my mid season review.

Here are the sides currently sitting outside of the eight.

9 Richmond (24 points, game in hand)
Is this the year the Tigers make the finals? Fans will certainly be hoping (and praying) so. Sitting just outside the eight with a game in hand, the Tigers will certainly hoping their can break their 12-year finals hoodoo.

Their convincing win against the Eagles in Perth shows they may be coming of age under Damien Hardwick. Big game against the Crows this week.

Score: 7/10

10 Adelaide (20 points)
Many expected the Crows would find it difficult to emulate their 2012 performance and to date this has proven to be the case.

The loss of Kurt Tippett to the Swans and Taylor Walker to a season ending knee injury have not helped their cause.

However after a break-through year in 2012, other sides have done their homework on the Crows.

Though they were competitive against the Hawks and Dockers, a 73 point shellacking at the hands of the Swans shows they have plenty to work on. They will struggle to make the finals.

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Score: 5/10

11 Port Adelaide (20 points, game in hand)
The Power were the early season surprise packet winning their first five games on the trot. However being so high on the ladder obviously led to light headedness as they are currently sitting on a five game losing streak.

Their loss to the Bulldogs was disappointing and will be desperate to get back onto the winners list when they play GWS. Have improved but still a fair way to go.

Score 6/10

12 Gold Coast (20 points)
After spending two years at the league’s whipping boys, the Suns have turned a page and are now starting to show their much hyped potential.

Though all of their wins have come against teams unlikely to feature in September, the fact league front runners Geelong and Hawthorn had to earn their respective victories shows they are well on their way.

Gary Ablett is a proven star and with their young guns starting to fire, things are looking up.

Score 6.5/10

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13 North Melbourne (16 points)
If you asked their fans whether they would like to watch a replay of the North Melbourne’s games to date or endure the Chinese water torture, most would choose the latter. Four losses by under a goal have the Roos languishing in 13th spot.

Their most recent loss to the Gold Coast despite holding a five goal lead adds insult to injury. A far better side than their ladder positions suggest, they are capable of causing some upsets but would need a stellar second half of the year to make the finals.

Score 4/10

14 Western Bulldogs (12 points, game in hand)
Currently in a rebuilding phase and their ladder positions reflects this. However, a couple of recent wins suggests there is still bark in the old dogs yet. 7-8 wins for the year would probably be a decent result for them

Score: 4/10

15 Brisbane (12 points, game in hand)
Have had a disappointing season to date. After a decent 2012 season and winning the pre-season the Lions were expected to be on the rise but they have fallen well short of expectations.

Michael Voss is on the last year of his contract and it is likely he will be shown the door at the end of the season.

Score: 3/10

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16 St Kilda (8 points)
The once mighty Saints are a shadow of their former selves. Have had a handful of honourable losses and Nick Riewolt had led from the front but the reality is they only have two wins for the season and there are hard yards ahead.

Score: 3/10

17 Melbourne (4 points)
Oh dear. For Demons fans, it has been another year from hell.

Their solitary win came against cellar dwellers GWS where they produced their greatest quarter ever.

I suppose that’s something, but the foot of the ladder will be the Demons natural habitat this year and probably several more to come.

Score 1/10

18 GWS (0 points)
Last and certainly least we have GWS who like Gold Coast last year has experienced the second year blues.

Yes they are a still a bunch of kids but the reality is not only are they winless they haven’t got within a bull’s roar of any side to date when the final siren has sounded.

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If you want positives, Jeremy Cameron is a star in the making and their performances against Essendon and Geelong suggest there is hope on the horizon but is going to be another training year for the Giants.
Score: 0.5/10

Summary
You might summarise the season to date by arguing the more things change the more they stay the same. Geelong, Hawthorn, and Sydney, arguable the most successful sides in the past 10 years will again be around the mark to capture the flag.

Unlike previous years there has been no out and surprise packet that has bolted into top four contention. North Melbourne and Brisbane have been the most disappointing teams so far this year.

How much will things change in the second half of the year remains to be seen. However history shows, the top eight stays remarkably stable, and it is likely only ladder positions of the teams inside the eight are likely to change.

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