Monday, March 5, 2018

AFL WOMEN’S Power Rankings: Round 5 2018

With two rounds to go in the 2018 AFL Women’s season one spot in the Grand Final is fairly set, while the other is up for grabs between four sides. In terms of the former the Western Bulldogs’ ranking points came down a touch this week – it was unlikely they would repeat last week’s amazing performance against Carlton – but they are still clearly the top-rated side, and a huge chance of taking out one of the top two positons. On the ladder itself the Dogs are one match and a huge chunk of percentage clear of any other team, meaning that one win and not getting thrashed in the other game themselves will see them in.     
As for the other spot the Brisbane Lions and Melbourne are the two teams most likely, both with three wins, putting them half a win above the GWS Giants and Adelaide Crows. Melbourne continued to be wasteful in front of goal on the weekend, but managed to get over the line against Brisbane to stay just behind their opponents on the standings. Arguably the rankings under-rate Melbourne a little given their midfield has been pretty good, and it’s mainly been their inaccuracy in front of goal that has dragged their scores down over the past few weeks. But of the two teams you would rate Brisbane as the more likely to make it through, with Brisbane having a home match against Collingwood next week, while Melbourne has to take on the Bulldogs in the final round (albeit a Dogs team that may have less incentive to go at their hardest due to already having sealed a Grand Final spot).
The Giants and Crows have weaker chances of making the final play-off, as they would likely need to win both their matches and hope that the teams above them fail at least once on the way home. The Crows have the easier draw, as they will be big favourites at home against Fremantle next week, and have last-placed Collingwood in the final round, although the Magpies’ performances over the past couple of weeks have been much closer to those of a top-ranked side. The Giants face both the Dogs and Lions, but they do at least get to play both sides at home. If the Demons, Giants, and Crows can all win next week – and at least two of those teams will be big favourites to do so – then we could be in for a very exciting final round.

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