Australian Football League Live Hawthorn Hawks vs Richmond Tigers Stream AFL 2015 Seasons Week 18 math will be kick off at Melbourne Cricket Ground Stadium, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, Friday 31 July 2015 online, 19.50 pm (AEDT) and its broadcast on Channel Seven, Foxtell.
The rampaging Hawthorn Hawks have won their last three games by an average of 100-points after absolutely demolishing Carlton last weekend. The Tigers fell agonisingly short against Fremantle and if they are to be a genuine finals threat they need to put a forward a good effort against Hawthorn.
The Hawks will likely replace Matt Spangher (hamstring) with James Frawley whilst Taylor Duryea (shoulder), Liam Shiels (quad) and Ben Stratton (ankle) all must pass fitness tests. If those three all return only Will Langford (knee) will be missing from their best 22. For the Tigers, Ben Griffiths (finger) will miss with Ty Vickery the logical replacement. Shaun Hampson (ankle) must pass a fitness test whilst Reece Conca and Liam McBean push for spots via performances in the VFL. Will Bachar Houli be dropped for his errant kick-out? The Wolf doesn’t think so.
The Hawks are in sublime form having won their last eight matches by an average of 61.5 points and their last three by an average of over 100-points – two of those against genuine premiership contenders in Fremantle and Sydney. They are third on the ladder but rank first for scoring and third for defence this year. They are 5-1 (4-2 against the line) vs teams in the eight this season. The Tigers have won eight of their last ten games with those two defeats at the hand of West Coast and Fremantle. They are fifth on the ladder but rank 11th for scoring and fifth in defence this year. Richmond is 4-2 (3-3 against the line) vs top eight teams this season.
Richmond and Hawthorn have met on 152 occasions with Richmond holding the advantage 84-68. Since 2010, the Hawks are 3-2 (2-3 against the line) vs Richmond with the Tigers winning two of their last three encounters in fact Richmond and Port Adelaide are the only teams to have a winning record against Hawthorn in their past three meetings via afl.com.au. The Hawks are 17-2 (10-9 against the line) on Friday night’s over the past two seasons. The Hawks are 22-0 (14-8 against the line) when favoured by 30-points or more in the last two years. Teams favoured by 30-points or more this season are 28-5 (14-19 against the line). The Hawks are 26-6 (16-16 ATL) at the ‘G since the start of 2013. The Tigers are 9-12 (9-12 against the line) at the MCG since the start of 2014. Richmond is 12-10-1 (13-10 against the line) in Thursday or Friday night matches since 2010. The Tigers are 7-8 (11-4 against the line) following a loss in the last two seasons. Jack Riewoldt has kicked 11 goals in his last three games against the Hawks. Four of their last five match-ups have totalled under 176-points.
In this vein of form, it’s hard to look past backing the Hawks despite the sizeable line. They absolutely toyed with a sub-standard Carlton side last week after dismantling the premiership credentials of Fremantle and Sydney a fortnight before that. They look to do the same against a Richmond side that suddenly has big man issues without Griffiths and with a side that (withstanding any unforseen injuries) is as strong as ever. They have the best forward line and backline in the league and should be able to exploit Richmond with their run and spread. They say premierships aren’t won in July but this is the most dominant three-week stretch of games that The Wolf has seen in a long, long time.
B: B.Stratton, B.Lake, S.Mitchell
HB: G.Birchall, J.Frawley, J.Gibson
C: B.Hill, S.Burgoyne, I.Smith
HF: C.Rioli, R.Schoenmakers, L.Shiels
F: J.Gunston, J.Roughead, L.Breust
Foll: D.Hale, L.Hodge, J.Lewis
Inter: P.Puopolo, B.Hartung, T.Duryea, B.McEvoy
Emer: J.Anderson, A.Litherland, J.O’Rourke
In: B.Stratton, J.Frawley, L.Shiels, T.Duryea
Out: M.Spangher (hamstring), M.Suckling (hamstring soreness), A.Litherland, J.O’Rourke
B: D.Grimes, J.Batchelor, T.Chaplin
HB: N.Vlastuin, A.Rance, B.Houli
C: B.Ellis, B.Deledio, K.McIntosh
HF: B.Lennon, T.Vickery, D.Martin
F: A.Miles, J.Riewoldt, T.Cotchin
FolI: I.Maric, S.Grigg, K.Lambert
Inter: C.Newman, T.Hunt, R.Conca, S.Lloyd
Emer: L.McBean, C.Menadue, S.Morris
In: T.Vickery, R.Conca
Out: S.Hampson (ankle), B.Griffiths (finger)