1. The return of the Friday Night blockbuster
After weeks of sub-par encounters and performances under the Friday night lights, this week we finally can relish a clash to savour as Port Adelaide and Richmond lock horns at the Adelaide Oval.
Port Adelaide’s disappointing loss to Hawthorn last weekend sees them sit in 8th place on the table, and they will be eager to make amends and push themselves back into the top-four frame with a win over the Tigers tonight.
For the Tigers, they made it two wins in a row following their barnstorming win over Essendon last Saturday night, and although they did lose their last match at the Adelaide Oval, they defeated the Power at the ground last season, giving them some extra confidence going into this clash.
2. Geelong vs North Melbourne
Both sides are in-form and currently sit in 5th and 6th place on the ladder, equal on 28 points, making this match-up one of the most anticipated clashes of the round.
The Cats bounced back to the form we know they can produce in their comprehensive win over Gold Coast last weekend, with a strong performance from Gary Ablett the catalyst behind their 84-point triumph.
North Melbourne made it three wins in a row with their 54-point win over Brisbane last weekend, with a dominant first half setting the win up.
And despite losing their last two encounters with Geelong, they will be looking to continue their momentum and make it four wins in a row.
3. GWS continuing to build momentum
The Giants finally produced a performance fitting of their lofty preseason expectations in their win over Adelaide last Sunday, and they will be looking to continue that into this weekend’s match with the Suns who were diabolical last weekend.
Gold Coast made their first appearance at their home ground last Saturday night against Geelong, and they were nothing short of disgraceful, putting in a poor showing in front of their home crowd in their 84-point thumping.
GWS, on the other hand, regained their form in a remarkable 18-point win over the Crows on Sunday, and with a superb record against the Suns where they have won their last five matches against them, all the odds are in the Giants’ favour to make a charge for September.
4. Sydney making it 9 wins in a row against the Saints
The Swans are on a four-game winning run at the moment, and as they are currently sitting in fourth place on the table, they are well placed to win their 9th match in a row against St Kilda this weekend.
The Saints have had a terribly disappointing season, with their last win coming in round 1 against Brisbane.
They were smashed early in their match against West Coast last weekend, but a fourth quarter revival saw the margin be only 13-points.
Sydney continued their recent form with a 30-point triumph on Friday night against Carlton, and have a strong record against the Saints, as well as at Etihad, so expect a Sydney victory on Saturday night.
5. Brisbane v Essendon – who bounces back?
Both sides put up disappointing performances last weekend, and will both be eager to make amends when they go to battle on Sunday at the Gabba.
The Lions matched it with the Roos in the second half in their clash last weekend, but the damage was done in the first half as Brisbane fell by 54-points.
The Bombers, on the other hand, were just simply outclassed in their match against the Tigers last Saturday night, being easily beaten by 71-points.
This matchup presents a great opportunity for either side to bounce back, and will undoubtedly be a tight one come Sunday.
6. Adelaide attempting to snap a two-game losing streak
The Crows have been hampered by injuries throughout this season, but the last two weeks has seen the club slump to a new low as they lost both matches and are currently sitting outside the top-eight.
This week they take on Fremantle over there in Perth, a difficult task but one which they should be able to overcome.
The Dockers have lost their last three matches of the season, including their last one at home which was a loss to North Melbourne two weeks ago. Adelaide is primed to bounce back in this clash, but Fremantle is by no means a push-over, especially at home.
7. The Queen’s Birthday clash
Melbourne will be going for seven wins in a row, whilst the Pies will be aiming for four, as both sides lock horns in the much-anticipated Queen’s Birthday encounter.
The Dees are undoubtedly the in-form team in the competition and are well on their way to locking up a drought-breaking finals berth this season if they are to continue on this uphill trend.
Collingwood meanwhile has been going along rather nicely, and quite under the radar, with three wins in a row to show for their efforts and a 7th placing at this current stage of the season.
Although Melbourne will be favourites, the Pies did win the last time these two faced off last season, something which Collingwood will be hoping may be give them a slight match in what is otherwise an expected Melbourne win.