This little brainiac must be a Cats or Hawks fan…no wonder he’s smiling!
It’s the halfway mark of the AFL season and that can mean only one thing…the League are meeting to invent a brand new way of boring football fans to death with their Grand Final pre-match ‘entertainment’! Actually, they have probably been holding sub-committee meetings since last October to come up with the ‘best’ possible lineup…
But now we are about to embark on the back-end of the season so it’s time to hound the coach most likely to be sacked, bag those sides are are now in tanking list-management mode and, most importantly, hand out those mid-season report cards! From professional football watchers to those pesky ‘cyber-bullies’ in the blog world, everybody loves having a go at summing up the season so far and predict where it is heading.
For those of us that have been watching the footy every weekend, we already know most of the stuff you will find in these reviews. Hawthorn = awesome? Melbourne = shithouse? Really? But don’t let that stop you checking them out! The Age have a fairly comprehensive review of the AFL season so far while the Herald Sun keep it short and somewhat sweet. And if you have the patience to navigate through the official AFL website, there are report cards for all sixteen teams…just in case you were wondering what they thought Fremantle’s best win of the season was!
Half Back Flanker won’t go into great detail on the fortunes of each club so far or offer any crazy predictions…besides, there will probably be a couple of results over the weekend that will makes us look even sillier than usual. But, as we look at this weekend’s games, we will ask the simple question of all sixteen teams…Pass or Fail?
- West Coast’s depth for short-arsed midfielders to be fully tested with Braun and Fletcher out!
- Brisbane lose Daniel Bradshaw but find a few handy replacements;
- Fremantle finally elevate a rookie for Paul Haselby and put him straight into the action;
- Good luck St Kilda…Barry Hall is back!
- Richmond dump some veterans…decide it’s time to instill that losing culture into some youngsters!
TIPS FOR PASS OR FAIL ROUND
BOMBERS by 2: Almost impossible to tip..don’t like the Eagles outside of Perth and don’t like Essendon…well, anywhere! We say the home team…and yes, we do barrack for them.
BULLDOGS by 3: Great match-up with both teams in form and looking for a top four spot. Then there’s the whole Akermanis thing..that nobody actually cares about anymore except for Aker himself!
DOCKERS by 18: Honestly, Freo are so messed up that the coach’s 43rd birthday might be the only thing that inspires them. Do the Dockers need party hats and cake as an incentive to play good???
SWANS by 41: You think that Ross Lyon is having trouble leaving Sydney behind? After the Swans crush St Kilda, don’t be surprised if he locks himself in the coaches box and refuses to come out!
HAWKS by 8: One team has Lance Franklin, the other team doesn’t…it is starting to become that simple really! The Hawks just need to keep Buddy away from the Ramsgate Hotel…
CATS by 20: Hopefully Mark Williams is relaxing down at Torquay right now before heading up to Geelong for Sunday’s game…because he will be very stressed out after this match!
MAGPIES by 18: The Pies have to win because you can’t flog Geelong but then get beaten by Carlton twice in the same season. It’s totally illogical!
TIGERS by 28: We would love nothing more than to see the Dees knock off Richmond…imagine the Tiger backlash! Problem is…Richmond are better and will prove it here.
Bachar Houli would be one of the few Essendon players who would crack a smile after reading their report card this season…
Telstra Dome, Melbourne – 7:40pm (local): Essendon v West Coast (SEVEN)
- ESSENDON – PASS OR FAIL? Blindsided the Roos in Round 1 and stole one from Carlton before they figured out how to win…haven’t really come close since. Apart from a few youngsters and some Matty Knights dummy-spits, there’s not a lot to love about the Bombers. FAIL!
- Knights says that you can’t expect the club’s leading goal kicker (and ninth all-time) to kick lots of goals any more…um, gulp!
- Dustin Fletcher and his dad are officially better than you and your dad!
- WEST COAST – PASS OR FAIL? It’s been a rapid fall for the once mighty Eagles. Losing Judd and Cousins is part of the reason but constant injuries have played their part. Still, this crap season is making Juddy look more like a legend with every loss. FAIL!
- John Worsfold has plenty of reasons why his side can’t win on the road…’not having Judd’ is not mentioned as one of them, though you couldn’t blame him if he threw that in from time to time!
- Worsfold’s assistant Peter Sumich swears that every game has been winnable despite losing nine out of eleven so far…which is probably why he is still an assistant!