AUSTRALIA’S AFL has had a tumultuous start to the season, with two teams on the bottom of the ladder, two teams struggling to maintain a top-eight position and a couple of teams on a four-game losing streak.
There are still many big questions to be answered for the competition in its third season, which is in its second year in the AFL.
Here are 10 things to know heading into the season.1.
Has the AFL’s premiership window closed?AFL premiership odds suggest the finals will not be played until the middle of 2020.
It is still too early to say if that is because the AFL is still recovering from the coronavirus pandemic or if the finals have been postponed or moved to the back of the calendar.2.
Who is the next best team?
The Cats are a long way from the top of the list.
The Kangaroos, Suns and Bulldogs have the most likely to win the title, while West Coast and Gold Coast are the two teams in the top three for the next eight rounds.3.
Will the Demons make the finals?
The Demons have won four of the last six finals games they have played, but the Demons are a very good team.
They have won the last three games and are the only team to have won five games.4.
Who will finish as the most valuable player?
The Suns, who have been playing better than any team this season, are the most obvious choice to win this year’s premierships.
They are the clear favourites, and they will need to finish with a better record to make the grand final.5.
What is the best player in the competition?
It’s not the best-performing player, but it’s close.
The Demons are in the finals with a good record.
The Suns are in a similar position.6.
Who wins the best jumper?
The Bombers have the best jumpers, and the Eagles are the best shot on the scoreboard.7.
Will Gold Coast get into the finals and win it?
The Dockers are the biggest threat to the Demons’ title hopes, with their star defender and former captain Jarrod Witts still a key player for them.
The Dockers have lost only two of their past nine games and they could make the final if they can get back on track.8.
Who has the best mark?
The Tigers have had the best marksman in the season so far.
The Tigers have also scored the most points, so that’s good news.9.
Who does the best defence?
The Eagles are good at keeping the ball in the ground and defending in front of goal.
The Cats have a strong defence in front and back of goal, so they will be a tough opponent to beat.10.
How much will the Cats lose if they don’t win the grand finals?
If the Cats finish in the grand finalists, they would earn a record $1.4 million from the finals.
If they finish outside the top four, they could be fined a whopping $1 million.
The AFL’s top 10 premiership players in 201611.
Nathan Buckley and Nathan Schmook (R) talk about the AFL finals after their team lost in the round 14 match to Geelong.12.
Mark Blicavs and Michael Walters talk about winning the 2016 AFL premiership after their side won the match in the final quarter of the match.13.
Michael Walters discusses the 2017 AFL premierseries in the first half of the podcast.14.
How many wins would you put on the Suns?13.4 points and 1.7 goals is the highest goal scored in the Suns’ history.15.
Who are the five most likely players to win their respective club awards?1.
Jack Martin, Adelaide2.
Jack Riewoldt, Hawthorn3.
Jack Redden, Carlton4.
Jack Gunston, Gold Coast5.
Michael Hibberd, Western BulldogsThe Suns are the favourites to win, and there’s no question they would be favourites to get to the grand finish if they finish in that position.
The Cats have been a top five side in the past few seasons and the Suns have won every game they have been in the last few years.6 in their past six matches (1.1 points per game) is the most in the history of the AFL (the AFL’s best record is 7.1 in the previous six seasons).7 is a record-breaking mark for a team with the same record as the Cats, which will be an embarrassment for them in the big match.8 is the second best mark for an AFL team with a higher win-loss record (1,826).
The Cats and Cats will be the big story of the season this year.
The Dogs have been outstanding this season and have been one of the best teams in a number of categories, including winning the best record in the league in each category (win percentage, goals scored per game, contested