North Melbourne v GWS Giants Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Can the Kangaroos claim another scalp?

Adam Cusworth 15 May 2018
  • The AFL's surprise packets take on GWS in AFL Round 9. Here is our preview of the Blundstone Arena clash

One of the key games of AFL Round 9 will be when North Melbourne take on the GWS Giants at Blundstone Arena in Hobart on Saturday May 12. 

The 1.45PM encounter pits 9th (GWS) against 10th (North) and little separates the two sides in the early head to head betting. All the action can be seen live on Fox Footy. 

Match Preview


Early season predictions placed the Giants as one of the premiership fancies, while many tipped North as a wooden spoon candidate. After a number of surprise results both sides sit with four wins from eight and this represents a real fork in the road type of game. 

North Melbourne pushed the premiers, Richmond, in Round 8, going down by 10 points, while the week before they defeated Sydney in Sydney by two points. 

GWS have won just one of their past four as they battle form and a host of injuries to key players. Last weekend they went down to West Coast at Spotless Stadium by 25 points and the week prior they were no match for Geelong in Geelong, dropping that clash by 61 points. The Giants have won just one of three interstate games this year. 

With the likes of Josh Kelly, Brett Deledio and Tom Scully all out injured, the expansion club have relied heavily on Callan Ward, Stephen Coniglio and Lachie Whitfield. That trio should help the Giants find plenty of the the footy on the weekend but their coach, Leon Cameron, will need to find a way to sort out his sides goal kicking woes. They have lacked system when heading forward and have booted just 12 goals in the last two weeks. 

There have been no such issues at North Melbourne's end of the ground, with Ben Brown leading the charge on the goalkicking table this year, booting 26 goals. He will be one of the keys for the Roos, as will Ben Cunnington, Shaun Higgins and Sam Jacobs. Cunnington picked up 38 disposals in the loss to Richmond last weekend, while Jacobs blanketed Richmond's Dustin Martin. Expect him to tag one of the Giants ball winners. 

At stake in this game is a positive win-loss record and a spot in the top eight at the conclusion of the round. The winner will be 5-4, while the loser will be 4-5. GWS, who were as short as $1.08 in most markets at the start of the year to make the top four and can probably kiss their hopes goodbye of featuring in that bracket at seasons end if they miss out here. 

Match Odds


North Melbourne $1.90
GWS Giants $1.90

*Correct at the time of writing.

Team News


North Melbourne may make a couple of changes and it will be interesting to see if they go with their three-pronged forward line. Jarrad Waite is in some doubt with a corkie. 

Phil Davis and Matt de Boer are the likely outs for GWS. Davis suffered a concussion in the loss to West Coast, while de Boer injured his hamstring. Josh Kelly and Matt Buntine are among the possible inclusions. 

Stats


North Melbourne have won five of the seven clashes between the two sides but the Giants have won the last two, including the Round 3 clash last year by 42 points. 

On that occasion, Josh Kelly, Jeremy Cameron and Callan Ward were the stars for the Giants, while Jack Ziebell and Robbie Tarrant were among North's best. 

Prediction and Tips


North Melbourne have shown that they are to be respected this season and they have done little wrong so far. Their recent form is better than the Giants and if they hold their nerve they can register another victory. 

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North Melbourne v GWS Giants Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Can the Kangaroos claim another scalp?

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