Pre Finals bye and Qualifying Final winners - 1 game in 28 days

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ep2018

Bigfooty Pessimist
Sep 16, 2006
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It got changed because Ross Lyon (x2) and Brad Scott rested 10+ players to gain an advantage in their first final matchups.

North in 2015 and Freo in 2013 were the lower teams in their matchup and won, potentially with the advantage of having a much more rested lineup
I think it was the last round North vs Richmond game in 2015 that force the bye. At the start of the last round North were in a unique situation: win, and play in Adelaide first week, or lose, and play in Melbourne. Brad Scott hinted heavily at the start of the week that a "number of North players were sore" and punters at the time realised what was going to happen, and placed some massive bets on Richmond. Which led to betting agencies suspending betting for the game. The pre finals bye has nothing to do with teams resting players, it had all to do with betting agencies losing some serious coin. Now with the bye, teams will unlikely mass rest players in the last round.
 

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footyfan1978

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That's irrelevant. You shouldn't be disadvantaged by winning.

Playing 1 game in almost a month is not great preparation.
Four time premiership player Wayne Johnston would be laughing.
Every time he was on winning side in a grand final it wad this type of preparation.
If you good enough, you just win.

As a supporter though, I hate the week with no football.
Just not good for the sport overall but for players it is clearly to their benefit.
 

estibador

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Mar 2, 2007
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This sounds like the old Final Five days.
Top placed got the bye (Elimination and Qualifying finals) then the Second Semi, then another bye (Preliminary final) then the Grand Final. One game in 28 days, cherry ripe.
This is the interesting comparison. I thought I'd heard somewhere that 1st place had a very good record of winning under the Final 5 system?

Though that was back in the semi-pro days so the demands of the modern game might have a different effect.
 

banzai

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Oct 14, 2003
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Hurt you in 2018. Pies took advantage of your sloppiness similar to Geelong against Brisbane tonight.

100% the pre finals bye needs to be scrapped.
There have been many games where teams have just been way off. Geelong v Sydney in 2016, Richmond v Collingwood 2018, Collingwood v GWS 2019, Brisbane tonight really never looked in it. Has to go.
 

emuboy

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Only 4 out of 10 Qualifying Final winning teams have made it through to the GF. Before the bye it was 17 out of 18. There's definitely something in it.
Every finals series from 2016 onwards has produced freaky results since the bye was introduced. You could put 2016 down as a one-off, but when strange finals results have happened in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 as well there is a problem. For the past two years neither of the top two teams have made the Grand Final. Before 2019 it hadn't happened since 1980.
 

RandB

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Sep 9, 2007
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The loss of momentum (Bris, Port) didnt help due to the extra week off but it's being overplayed a bit here.

I think a bigger factor was that Geelong and Richmond effectively had training runs against Pies (cooked from travel and quarantine) and Saints (key injuries and flat). They both pulled up squeaky clean rather than battered and bruised.

It's a f’ed up year due to Covid but thems the breaks.

In the wash, Port and Brisbane had decent cracks, they were just outplayed on their home decks.
 

banzai

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The loss of momentum (Bris, Port) didnt help due to the extra week off but it's being overplayed a bit here.

I think a bigger factor was that Geelong and Richmond effectively had training runs against Pies (cooked from travel and quarantine) and Saints (key injuries and flat). They both pulled up squeaky clean rather than battered and bruised.

It's a f’ed up year due to Covid but thems the breaks.

In the wash, Port and Brisbane had decent cracks, they were just outplayed on their home decks.
Semi finals are often quite poor games. You get the odd week 2 classic but mostly they aren't the most intense matches.
 

footyfan1978

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there is a problem. For the past two years neither of the top two teams have made the Grand Final.
Geelong and Richmond have been the two best teams this year. Percentage indicated this already. Not really such a strange result.
Just a shame there is no real fair dinkum game lengths to make it feel like a real finals series.
For me it feels like the Escort Cup in mid 80's on a Tuesday night at Waverley due to such short quarters and poor quality footy due to night conditions only.

Night series winners

YearWinnersGrand FinalistScoresVenueCrowdMarginSeason Result
1977HawthornCarlton14.11 (95) – 11.5 (71)VFL Park27,40724Preliminary Finalist
1978FitzroyNorth Melbourne13.18 (96) – 2.8 (20)VFL Park26,420769th
1979CollingwoodHawthorn12.8 (80) – 7.10 (52)VFL Park37,75328Grand Finalist
1980North MelbourneCollingwood8.9 (57) – 7.12 (54)VFL Park50,4783Elimination Finalist
1981EssendonCarlton9.11 (65) – 6.5 (41)VFL Park42,26924Elimination Finalist
1982SwansNorth Melbourne13.12 (90) – 8.10 (58)VFL Park20,028327th
1983CarltonRichmond14.16 (100) – 10.6 (66)VFL Park32,92734Elimination Finalist
1984EssendonSydney Swans13.11 (89) – 5.8 (38)VFL Park30,82451Premier
1985HawthornEssendon11.11 (77) – 10.8 (68)VFL Park24,8129Grand Finalist
1986HawthornCarlton9.12 (66) – 5.6 (36)VFL Park19,62730Premier
1987MelbourneEssendon8.10 (58) – 8.6 (54)VFL Park26,8604Preliminary Finalist
 

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juss

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1 game in a month leading into a grand final is unheard of in any professional sport. What's the reason to have it again?
I get the theory, it stops finals teams resting players in final rounds causing farcical final weeks and it gives finals teams the best chance of having their best teams, having players fit and available, and fresh.

The theory is there, but I'm not sure in practice its working. For me the bigger issue is it kills the momentum of the season and grinds it to a halt. Perhaps they could finish round 22 a little earlier so no games on the Sunday.
 

Snarls Barkley

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I think it was the last round North vs Richmond game in 2015 that force the bye. At the start of the last round North were in a unique situation: win, and play in Adelaide first week, or lose, and play in Melbourne. Brad Scott hinted heavily at the start of the week that a "number of North players were sore" and punters at the time realised what was going to happen, and placed some massive bets on Richmond. Which led to betting agencies suspending betting for the game. The pre finals bye has nothing to do with teams resting players, it had all to do with betting agencies losing some serious coin. Now with the bye, teams will unlikely mass rest players in the last round.
Could be. Anything to do with gambling and a professional sports organisation wouldn’t be outside the realms of belief.

Don’t think it was a good look regardless that three times in three years that a team rested all their best players and threw their last round game and went on to beat their finals opponent the following week who didn’t have the benefit of resting their players.

Maybe the solution is to have a late season bye with one or two rounds left instead of at the end of the season. I don’t really want to go back to a system where teams throw their last round games again
 

The Final Word

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I get the theory, it stops finals teams resting players in final rounds causing farcical final weeks and it gives finals teams the best chance of having their best teams, having players fit and available, and fresh.

The theory is there, but I'm not sure in practice its working. For me the bigger issue is it kills the momentum of the season and grinds it to a halt. Perhaps they could finish round 22 a little earlier so no games on the Sunday.
It's classic AFL sledgehammer to break a walnut.
 

Father Jack

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It was becoming farcical, teams who were lucky enough to have a guaranteed position in the 8 could rest players, giving them an advantage over teams who didn't, not to mention potentially gifting an advantage to the teams they were playing if they were fighting for spots as well.

Maybe a bye the week before the final round is the answer, as has been suggested.
 

The Final Word

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It was becoming farcical, teams who were lucky enough to have a guaranteed position in the 8 could rest players, giving them an advantage over teams who didn't, not to mention potentially gifting an advantage to the teams they were playing if they were fighting for spots as well.

Maybe a bye the week before the final round is the answer, as has been suggested.
Wasn't Freo there only major case?

Seriously the week off is becoming a joke.
 

2121

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Jun 4, 2007
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I don't really get it, what's the ******* point of the finals series if people are going to b*tch if the top 2 don't make it.

May aswell play first v second the after the HnA and then people won't have sh*t to complain about.
Its not bitching about the top two making it, it disadvantages the teams that win the first week and the results indicate that.
 

Topkent

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Its not bitching about the top two making it, it disadvantages the teams that win the first week and the results indicate that.
Bullshit, take your loss like a man.
It's the first time in history first or second haven't made it with a final 8.

Maybe your sides weren't that good and just benefitted from having the only home ground advantage for the year.
 

RUNVS

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Feb 28, 2007
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Bullshit, take your loss like a man.
It's the first time in history first or second haven't made it with a final 8.

Maybe your sides weren't that good and just benefitted from having the only home ground advantage for the year.
I didn't lose anything the last few days, Swans are not even in the finals and I think that teams that win in the first week and get a bye are now disadvantaged thanks to the pre-finals bye. It used to be an advantage, as it gave teams a chance to heal up for the last few matches, but now all it does is break continuity, so the top 2 teams only play 1 game in 25+ days and that is a big disadvantage.
 

2121

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Bullshit, take your loss like a man.
It's the first time in history first or second haven't made it with a final 8.

Maybe your sides weren't that good and just benefitted from having the only home ground advantage for the year.
Wasn't based on the results of just this year alone, look at all the results from previous years since the byes come in.
You have a better chance making the grand final by losing the qualifying final.
 

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