Watching the AFL preliminary finals with some mates this weekend? Look like the expert you think you are as we look at the four remaining sides’ strengths and potential room for growth. Use these handy stats wisely when watching the games this weekend.
The best part of finals footy is the tension during games. Well, that is what I would be saying in any other finals series besides this one. To be fair, the matches have been disappointing. Fear not though, the preliminary finals look set to be crackers. Regardless, even if they’re not, we are still going to watch them. There are only three games of footy left in 2017, so savour them. Use these bonus facts and statistics to get yourself through the telecast with your mates.
Adelaide Crows v Geelong Cats
- Despite being a team that seems to win more than they lose, the Crows actually have the second largest Grand Final drought in the league.
- The Crows have amassed a massive 256 goal assists this season. Easily the best in the league, and averaging 1.5 assists a game more than second place.
- Aiding their heavy scoring is the Crows’ midfield dominance. The Crows average the most contested possessions in the league and are second in clearances.
- The Cats are a tackling team, averaging over 75 tackles a match. Scott Selwood averages over eleven by himself.
- Of the players who have played significant minutes this season, Patrick Dangerfield and Joel Selwood have two of the three highest frees-for rates. ‘Dangerwood’ win on average 5.7 free kicks a match.
- Whilst the Cats are the sixth-best clearance side in the league (37.2 a game), they rank towards the bottom in centre clearances.
Richmond Tigers v GWS Giants
- In typical Richmond fashion, they make things hard on themselves; The Tigers average the least amount of uncontested possessions per match.
- Dustin Martin is a centre clearance machine. He averages 3.6 a match by himself. To put that in perspective, the Tigers are average in centre clearances and only average 12.9 a match as a side. So yeah, Dusty averages over 35% of their centre clearances by himself.
- What makes Dusty’s work even more impressive is that the Tigers average the least hit-outs in the league. In fact, the Tigers average thirteen fewer hit-outs than the Giants.
- Around the stoppages, the Giants are the best team in the league. They lead the league in hit-outs, first in clearances, and second in centre clearances.
- When the Giants run, they are borderline unstoppable. They average the second most bounces in the league.
- For a side that plays with a tall forward line, the Giants only average 11.6 marks inside forward-50 a match, thirteenth in the league.