The Roar
The Roar



The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions: Round 3

Autoplay in... 6 (Cancel)
Up Next No more videos! Playlist is empty -
17th June, 2020
5771 Reads

It was upsets galore last week, with Saturday night’s boilover and a tricky trio on Sunday putting a lot of tipsters off their game.

It was nice to have footy back, but if I’m going to be scoring three out of nine every week it’s going to be an even longer year than it’s already been.

It was a three-point week for all of us on The Roar’s AFL expert tipping panel, with the crowd coming out narrowly ahead with four. Thanks Melbourne.

Let’s hope for a better week this week…

Stirling Coates
Richmond, GWS Giants, North Melbourne, Collingwood, West Coast, Geelong, Gold Coast, Essendon, Port Adelaide

Everyone was running around like headless chickens over last Thursday night’s 36-36 draw, but the conditions at the MCG were so dewy, my TV started leaking at halftime.


That’s an excuse for Richmond, but Hawthorn have no such mitigating circumstances for their disastrous visit to Geelong the following evening. I wrote before the season resumed that the heavy recent investment in an old side means we may be witnessing the first mistake of the Alastair Clarkson era and performances like that back that thought up. I’ll back the Tigers to give the Hawks more misery.

Friday night is far more straightforward. The Giants were a lot closer to North than the 20-point margin suggests in their loss and, while they still lost, the Bulldogs have been hopeless so far this season and don’t warrant a tip.

The Kangaroos have a poor recent record against Sydney, but the last three matches have been decided by under a kick and you’d have to back Rhyce Shaw’s men to get the chocolates here. The Swans will probably still give it a shake but just lack the class of years gone by.

North’s win over the Giants also makes St Kilda look a bit better, with their crushing win over the Bulldogs also looking good on the CV. They’re a bigger threat to Collingwood than people realise, but I’m still backing the Pies for now.

Zak Jones

Zak Jones and the Saints looked good in Round 2. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Saturday night has one of the more interesting matches of the round, with Brisbane set to take on a West Coast side embarrassed by their Round 2 performance. Nothing’s more unimpressive than a seven-goal loss to the Suns, but the Eagles are very capable of responding and I haven’t been impressed at all with the Lions so far either. Visitors by three goals.

Saturday night also has one of the least interesting matches of the round. Geelong should have no trouble with Carlton at fortress Kardinia.

Gold Coast enter Sunday’s match against Adelaide as favourites in what feels like the first time in forever. This is their chance to make a huge, history-altering statement as a club. I hope they take it and I think they will.


If they do, they’ll finally cross the Crows off their list of teams to beat.

Essendon will move to 3-0 with another unimpressive win over Melbourne and their famously rational and grounded fan-base will keep the lid on, before Round 3 finishes with what should be a fairly routine win for Port Adelaide over Fremantle.

This week’s Shoe-In of the Week was harder to pick than usual, but I’ve had to go with the Cats over the Blues thanks to the venue.

Marnie Cohen
Richmond, GWS Giants, North Melbourne, Collingwood, West Coast, Geelong, Gold Coast, Essendon, Port Adelaide

I don’t know about you, but I am really keen to put last week’s putrid tipping efforts behind me and move onto Round 3.

I am not alone here, though. Richmond and Collingwood will be keen to show a little more than they did during the season re-opener. Hopefully, these games will give us a better indication of where they are in 2020, with both teams among early favourites to finish in the top four.

On the flip side, it’ll be interesting to see how both Hawthorn and St Kilda respond to their Round 2 performances.


Will Hawthorn fare better at a ground they’re more comfortable with? Or is there more beneath the surface?

Has St Kilda’s trade-week frenzy significantly improved them as a side? Many questions will be answered during these two games.

I am tipping North, because how could you not after last week’s performance? But Sydney is a danger team for North, as they haven’t won a game against them in Melbourne for over a decade. If there was ever a time to do it, it’s now and they will get the job done.

As for the Giants, they should be able to respond against a Western Bulldogs side that has been less than impressive in their first two games this season.

Marcus Bontempelli of the Bulldogs looks dejected after a loss

(Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

West Coast, too, should respond following that shock loss to Gold Coast.

If Geelong repeat their Round 2 performance, then this game will be over before Carlton show up at quarter time. I liked what I saw from the Bombers in Sydney and that form should give them a third victory for 2020.

In a world-first (I think), I’m tipping the Suns! They were very impressive over the weekend – let’s just hope (for their sake) it wasn’t a one-off and is instead the start of something new.


In the final game of the round, Freo will be competitive, but Port should be able to continue their dominant start to the season with a third straight win.

Richmond, GWS Giants, North Melbourne, St Kilda, Brisbane, Geelong, Gold Coast, Essendon, Port Adelaide

Last week was a strange tipping week, no doubt about it. This week, at first glance, seems a little easier. Famous last words, of course.

We begin with two teams that were rather poor last week: Richmond, who played the Pies to a low-scoring draw, and Hawthorn, who were terrible against Geelong. For mine, it’s the Tigers who should be winning this one. It’s just too hard to tip the Hawks after their performance last week.

Friday night sees the Bulldogs and Giants face off at Marvel Stadium. Again, neither side looked good – or won – last week, but given the Bulldogs’ ineptitude of late, I just cannot bring myself to tip them.

Then again, if they want to rebound – and these two sides have provided us with some fantastic games in recent years – a Friday night clash is the way to do it.

Saturday’s clashes are a mixed bag. Sydney travel south to play the Kangaroos. North’s strong win last week has given them momentum into this week, where I’m predicting they’ll comfortably beat a second NSW team in succession.

New North Melbourne coach Rhyce Shaw.

(Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)


Collingwood versus St Kilda is a match I’m looking forward to. The Magpies were rubbish after the first quarter last week, while the Saints were pleasantly excellent on Sunday. Collingwood seems like a smart tip – and they’re the favourites – but I’m going to go the Saints, just.

The Eagles play the Lions, and they’re bound to bounce back after last week’s disappointing loss. Will they beat the Lions, though, who were middling but secured a win against Freo last weekend? I honestly don’t know. Flip a coin, go the Lions. Finally: Geelong by plenty over Carlton.

Sunday’s games leave me zero per cent certain on any tips. Essendon to beat Melbourne is the easiest and I’ll lock it in.

Freo and Port clashing in the latter’s hub debut is an intriguing match-up: Freo’s had spurts of form in their previous duo of losses, while Port are perhaps the strongest team in the league right now (albeit with wins against middling opponents). I’ll go Port, but I’m thinking there could be an upset here.

To conclude, we have the Suns playing the Crows. My tip? Gold Coast. Adelaide have been atrocious in their two opening games, and the Suns will be out for blood. Expect the Queenslanders to move to 2-1.

Round 3 Stirling Marnie ADocker The Crowd
Richmond vs Hawthorn RCH RCH RCH RCH
Western Bulldogs vs GWS Giants GWS GWS GWS GWS
North Melbourne vs Sydney NM NM NM NM
Collingwood vs St Kilda COL COL STK COL
Brisbane vs West Coast WCE WCE BL BL
Geelong vs Carlton GEE GEE GEE GEE
Gold Coast vs Adelaide GCS GCS GCS GCS
Essendon vs Melbourne ESS ESS ESS ESS
Fremantle vs Port Adelaide PA PA PA PA
Last week 3 3 3 4
Total 9 7 9 10