Predictions and Betting Picks for Week 1 of the 2020 AFL Finals

| September 25, 2020 11:40 pm PDT

As I said to a good friend last night, I’m not committing to making a prediction for who wins the 2020 AFL Grand Final. Not yet, at least.

Instead, I’m going to focus on the four Qualifying and Elimination finals we have coming up in Week 1. A good move, all things considered. And you don’t even have to ask why, do you? 2020 has given us the “season like no other,” and you can’t really bet against a couple of more surprises coming our way.

But when it comes to betting on the AFL, consistency is what we want. Will the four upcoming ties allow us the opportunity to get our picks right this week? I’m hoping for a clean sweep, anyway.

It’s time to check out the odds and bets for the four AFL finals matches scheduled to be played between Thursday, October 1, and Saturday, October 3. When you’re ready…

Port Adelaide Power (-125) vs. Geelong Cats (+100)

Minor premiers Port Adelaide face-off with Geelong Cats in the first qualifying final on Thursday, October 1 at the Adelaide Oval.

This is the fourth final played between the Power and the Cats, who clashed in the 2007 Grand Final. That day, Geelong smashed Port Adelaide 103-44. Their 119 point win is a record that has yet to be beaten.

These two clubs also met in the 2013 semi-final as well as a  qualifying final in 2004. Needless to say, both sets of fans have a little history to get over. You know how it works.

In 2020, Port Adelaide has enjoyed an awesome campaign. The Power won the minor premiers earning the fourth McClelland Trophy in their AFL history, and their first since 2004. More impressively, Ken Hinckley’s men managed to finish as the first team to sit on top of the ladder in every round since Essendon Bombers at the turn of the century.

Port Adelaide’s odds to beat Geelong come in at a very tempting -125. With 14 wins and just 3 losses throughout their campaign, you can still get odds of +550 on the Power winning the Grand Final.

But before Port Adelaide can dream of glory, they must first get past the Cats. Geelong have been impressive, though not perfect, with 12 wins and 5 losses this season.

When these two sides met at the Metricon earlier this season, the Cats ran out winners with a ten goal deficit. I expect things to be much closer this time around, especially with Port’s home advantage.

I’ll take Port Adelaide to get revenge when it matters most.

  • Port Adelaide

Brisbane Lions (+120) vs. Richmond Tigers (-150)

The second qualifying final goes down on Saturday, October 3 at the Gabba. And what a game this should be.

Second place Brisbane Lions square off with third-placed Richmond. When the fixtures were announced, Lions fans understandably shook their heads. Not only is this the second year they have met in the second qualifying final, but Richmond always seems to come out in top against their boys.

Brisbane has failed to beat Richmond since 2009. Last year, the Tigers battered the Lions into submission by way of a 47 point win, and they enter the favorites for Friday’s match.

The Lions will look to their preliminary final victory over Richmond in 2001 for inspiration. That day, they won by 68 points. But I can’t see that happening against a side that knows how to turn it on at this stage.

I fancy Richmond to take it by around ten points. It could be closer, however, so I’ll take them for the win.

  • Richmond to Win

St Kilda Saints (+105) vs. Western Bulldogs (-134)

A second elimination final between sixth-placed St Kilda and seventh-placed Western Bulldogs goes down on Saturday, October 3 at the Gabba.

This one will also have a familiar feel to it, as both sides have clashed on five previous occasions in the finals, including back to back preliminaries in 2009 and 2010.

This year marks the first finals appearance for the Saints since 2011. The impressive form of some of their young recruits certainly paved the way for Brett Ratten’s boys getting this far, and they can really upset the applecart if they can find a way past the Dogs.

With that said, the Saints, just like Western, have struggled with consistency this season. So in many ways, you don’t know which version of both teams is going to show up. The Saints on their day have been excellent. But they have also dropped points that should have been theirs. The same applies to their opponents on the day.

All things weighed up, I think St Kilda have proven themselves to better against the upper half of the ladder. In what looks destined to be a war of a match, they should come through this one with the win.

  • St Kilda Saints

West Coast Eagles (-239) vs. Collingwood Magpies (+187)

The final game of Week 1 goes down on Sunday, October 3. West Coast Eagles clash with Collingwood Magpies in the first elimination final that day, and according to the bookies, it will likely go one way.

These two teams have met in previous finals matches, with 2018’s Grand Final freshest in the minds of fans. That day, West Coast pipped Collingwood to the premier with a 79-74 win. Can the Magpies get their revenge this weekend?

Well, no. I don’t think they can. There are too many factors playing against Collingwood this year. Injuries, suspensions, and underperformances have made 2020 one to forget for Nathan Buckley’s boys.

The Eagles have really hit form in the latter half of the season. At least when compared with the Pies’ inconsistency. As such, I’ll take West Coast to win the game with a margin of 1-39 points.

  • West Coast Eagles 1-39 Points

Closing Thoughts

It’s finals time. Yes, that time of year when bragging rights are earned both on and off the pitch.

I’m expecting some great footy this week, with Brisbane vs. Richmond almost certain to be the tie of the round. Although Port Adelaide vs. Geelong will undoubtedly be a contender for that mantle.

So, you have my picks for Week 1 of the 2020 AFL Finals. If you something you like, head over to the best sites for betting on Aussie Rules and get your money down.

Whatever you decide to go with, good luck with your bets!

Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA, boxing, and combat sports.

When Adam isn't writing about those, as well as politics, rugby, and Gaelic Games, he can be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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