Buddy at open training. Credit: Mollyfud of AFLspace.com

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If you had taken the Hawks and Swans betting lines this year you would have done very well but not as well as The Weekly Punt. For those that have read all year I’m sure you pleased with having more than quadrupled the return on the intial investment. If you are a late comer you may be wondering what all the fuss is about given the finals tipping has been below par. The Hawthorn line put us back in the red for finals but the tipping has been generally good, with the last two weeks all correct. No line this week, just straight up heads up.

Hawthorn have a couple of things going for them coming into the Grand Final; they are slightly better overall form having lost only once in their last 15 games, and in that one loss it was after the siren to Geelong. Sydney on the other hand lost three of their last four games of the home and away matches coming into the finals. I do not know any team that has won a Grand Final with that record and I have checked back as far 1980.

The other thing in the Hawks’ favour is in their last meeting between the two, Hawthorn managed to beat Sydney at SCG. Now that the game is at neutral ground you expect the Hawks to perform better. So does this mean Sydney is very little chance for Saturday? Not quite.

The Swans have not been a great wet weather team this season but Hawthorn are even worse. Three of Hawthorn’s five losses have come in the wet. The Hawks high possession precise kicking game relies to a certain degree on dry conditions, given there is a forecast for possible hail, the Swans should have a slight edge there if it were to bucket down. Also Hawthorn’s player outs are little more significant than Swans.

So when we look at those things there is probably nothing separating those teams, except one thing. Hawthorn finished the year with their best percentage in their club’s history a good 15% more than the Swans, this with a slightly more difficult draw.

Prediction: Hawthorn by 7 points.

Almost 90% of Norm Smith medalists come from the winning teams. Rioli was the Hawks BOG in their prelim escape against Adelaide. He also scored the highest Champion Data score in a final this year. We know he can perform on the biggest stage and four years later expect another Rioli to light up the MCG.

Current Betting Fund: $4,263.00

Total staked so far: $1,003.50

(Best Market Odds)

Hawthorn  v Sydney – Head-to-Head – $200 @ $1.55 Betfair

Rioli Norm Smith – $100 @ $16 Betfair

(Bet is on team in Bold)

Odds correct at time of posting – for latest odds go to odds.BigFooty.com.