Round 1 Review



If you had read part 2 (Footy Analysis Wisdom / Early Season Help), you would not have been surprised by any winner in round 1; however, the margins may have surprised you a little.  When you refer to the entire 2009 year, the expert tipster was, on average, 28 points out in tipping the winner and margin.  In the 176 games, the experts were within 2 goals 46 times or 26% and within 4 goals 91 times or 52%.  This leaves a whopping 48% of times the experts cannot get within 4 goals of the right team and margin. In fact, they were wrong by more than 8 goals 34 times or 19% last year.  This proves that tipping is difficult.  and it is hard because of the chaos factor, injuries, key moments in a game can have a dramatic effect etc etc. Sometimes being out is not much of a problem.  As a tipster, you don’t mind if you had tipped the Blues in round one 2010 by 16 points and they win by 56.  You are 40 points out, but still pick a winner.  What hurts is when the 40 points goes the other way and then the Tigers win by 24 points (“if only”, we hear some fans cry).  Such an example was the Dogs vs Pies game on the weekend.  In this case, the variance between the estimated and actual changed the winner.

The last two games of the round may cause the most confusion.  Let us tackle them one at a time.

The Dogs were suspect on a couple of fronts.  Firstly, it was their first grand final win of any sort for either 40 years (they won the night series in 1970, but that was only played between teams who missed the finals) or 56 years (back to the REAL flag in 1954). So it was a real big deal to win anything.  And coming down from the win was going to be a challenge.  Furthermore, the win was against the Saints, who had beaten them narrowly in the 2009 prelim.  This added extra “meaning” to the NAB Cup victory.  Refer also to Penny Dredfell’s article on Bubbles in the Heart Blame section of the website.  This discusses the rise and fall of teams within a season.

Secondly, there were the injured or underdone players.  Brad Johnson was not expected to play and the analysis on this website (leading to tipping the Dogs by 9 points) was done on that basis. There was also risk on a couple of players injured on the NAB Cup grand final.  Then, on the day, Dale Morris pulls out unexpectedly and BINGO, the Pies grab a win.

So why pick the Dogs?  The case FOR the Dogs was that they were on a roll and a lot of NAB Cup winners start the season well (none better than the Saints in 2004 with 10 straight wins).  They can often tend to hit a flat spot a few rounds into the season. 

The 56 point win by Freo may have been the most surprising of all.  After all, they finished 14th last year and the Crows could’ve almost nearly made the prelim.  The golden rule of this website is to do your homework pre season.  Or let someone else who you can trust do it for you.  As per part 2 above, Freo and the Crows were ranked equal as a 5 out of 10 team.  The Crows best team would be expected to beat Freo’s best on a neutral ground.  But they are ranked equal because of the bad injuries and less than ideal pre season that the Crows endured.  Add to this the home ground advantage for Freo and the forecasted margin comes out at around 4 goals.  Then there was the pull-out by Johncock with a broken thumb (the team with the most injuries is the most likely team to get the next injury).  A late withdrawal of a core player like Johncock would equate to approx a 1 goal negative.  When a team has a long injury list which includes key players, the effect can often be greater – maybe 2 goals. The experts picked the Crows narrowly, but this was based on 2009 form and not the current status of both teams.

Finally, if you are a few games away from 8 wins, here is some good news.  Now is the best time to be off the pace.  You have 21 rounds to catch up.  Furthermore, you don’t need to catch up in round 2.  Stick to your method and get the basics right. Review your tips each week and try to assess how you went.  This will help in the long run.



Round 1 Review