It’s Essendon this week. Time was that a win over Port Power,
even in Adelaide, was not considered to be all that much, but not in 2014 where
the Power’s strong form – particularly at home – has led to Adelaide Oval being
dubbed the ‘Portress’. But the Bombers broke through there with a two-point
victory on the weekend; even if Port had kicked another goal to steal the win
the Bombers’ strong showing would have been enough to see them jump from
twelfth to tenth. And reflecting that we are getting to the time of year where
the AFL ladder and rankings start to reflect each other, that is where they sit
on the ladder as well.
No team significantly fell down the ranking spots this week.
But St. Kilda’s stature – or what is left of it – deteriorated further, after
they lost heavily to Carlton, who are in no great shape themselves. Since the
start of the 2013 season the Saints have lost over 65 ranking points – about the
equivalent of the difference between Sydney and GWS – and have dropped in the
rankings from sixth to last. Even Lucifer and his rebel angels barely fell so
far and fast.
ALSO OF NOTE
Sydney is now on top of the AFL ladder, but
Hawthorn is still just holding them off the top of the rankings here. The Swans’
average net margin over their past 22 games is +15 points, putting them in the
realm of Port Adelaide (+17), and North Melbourne and Collingwood (both +13),
and well below Hawthorn (+31) and Fremantle (+27). But the strength of Sydney’s
recent form puts them up with the Hawks and Dockers as the teams rated most
likely to take out the flag in 2014.