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Sean Callander's AFL Grand Final Preview

Posted at 11:17 2010-09-24

It is hard to believe, but we've hit the eve of the end of the AFL season. The Grand Final parade will take place in Melbourne today, and then it's onto the MCG tomorrow for St Kilda and Collingwood who will look to end big Premiership droughts. Who is Sean Callander taking?

Saints to end the 44-year drought or the Magpies to make it a first flag in two decades and just a second since 1958? “Oh when the Saints, go marching in …”

Collingwood v St Kilda:

It’s been easy to get swept up in the fervour surrounding Collingwood’s return to the big stage this year. After casting Geelong aside in a “perfect storm” last week, the Magpies enter the 2010 Grand Final as deserved favourites against St Kilda. I thought the betting was pretty close to the mark although there are other factors to consider. Collingwood’s display in the first half last week was incredible, but I don’t like sides easing up late in the game no matter how far ahead they are on the scoreboard. Conversely, I’m concerned that St Kilda has selected a number of players who are clearly carrying injuries, such as Gram, Koschitzke and Dal Santo. Statistically, there’s not as much between the sides as you’d expect, with key indicators such as clearances and tackles almost even. Ross Lyon has masterfully underplayed the impact of last year’s Grand Final loss to Geelong, and I think that can be a telling factor in this game. This is no one-horse race, and I’m comfortable making a play on St Kilda at the +17.5 and a small bet on the outright victory. If the Saints can dictate the tempo, the -167.5 game total also comes into play. But it’s easy to make a case either way, so no major plays on this game. Enjoy the day.

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