Friday Night Footy Preview: St Kilda vs GWS

Another great Friday clash tonight, with both clubs coming off solid wins last week: the Giants rolled the reigning premiers, whilst St Kilda went to town on a pitiful Hawthorn. Our expert AFL analysts have put together another quailty preview.

St Kilda vs GWS

St Kilda vs GWS

Friday, 4 May 2017

The hype around last week’s preliminary final rematch turned out to be warranted: we got to enjoy a back-and-forth, low-scoring, tight game that was in the end decided by just two points. GWS were probably lucky to get away with the victory, as the Dogs were extremely wasteful in front of goal in kicking a miserable 9.19 to GWS’s 11.9.

This week GWS return for their second Friday night match in as many weeks, heading down to Melbourne to take on St Kilda on their preferred track Etihad Stadium. St Kilda are coming off a demolition of Hawthorn last week, and will look to improve their win/loss record to above 50% for the first time this season.

While St Kilda go in with a relatively full-strength side, minus strong on-baller David Armitage, the Giants miss stars Toby Greene due to suspension and Nick Haynes due to a groin injury. These players add to a growing injury / suspension toll which also includes Lachie Whitfield, Ryan Griffen and Brett Deledio.  While Greene and Haynes are huge losses, their replacements are equally as talented. Stephen Coniglio comes back in as does Phil Davis, and each of these players will slot in nicely to fill the void of their missing teammates, meaning GWS’s relative team strength remains largely unchanged compared to last week. St Kilda have just the one change with Nathan Wright coming in for Mav Weller, which represents a very mild reduction in team strength.

Going to the numbers, the table below illustrates why GWS are second in the flag betting whereas St Kilda are more towards the middle of the pack. St Kilda is a team made up of plenty of very capable “average” AFL players, with a handful of stars who rate above average or elite. GWS on their other hand ooze class, with 13 of the 22 named this week rating as above average or elite:

St Kilda vs GWS quality

St Kilda are an even AFL team, who are certainly capable of beating anyone on their day. They have great bookends in Carlisle and Riewoldt. The main area of the ground GWS have them covered is in midfield quality. Shane Mumford is having an amazing season, and he has the likes of Dylan Shiel, Josh Kelly, Callan Ward, Tom Scully and Coniglio to work with at the stoppages. Billy Longer is a capable ruckman, but St Kilda only have Jack Steven in their midfield who rates at the same level of GWS’s 5 main onballers. GWS also shade St Kilda in both the forward and defensive 50s, whereas St Kilda’s even depth is on display with them boasting quite a strong bench.

St Kilda vs GWS depth

We think this will be an entertaining Friday night match to enjoy watching. St Kilda will certainly be giving everything to show that they can beat one of the best in competition, but we believe that the class of GWS will rise to the top by the end of the night, and they will prove too formidable an opponent for St Kilda.


GWS by 24 points


GWS -13.5 @ $2.02 (rated price: $1.63).

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Best of luck for the weekend ahead!


Together with his partner-in-crime Stephen, Daniel runs Champion Bets’ highly successful AFL package, which returned over 130 units profit for members across the 2015 and 2016 seasons.