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The Friday Scramble

The Friday Scramble Round 20: Finals Week 1

Finals time is here! The first round of the Fantasy finals are upon us and we can’t wait! This is what we have all played for this season and it is now time for your team to deliver. Plenty of things to consider as we SCRAMBLE!!

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Wow, where has that season gone? Hard to believe we are at finals already. Now I know that some of you may have already started finals or don’t start for another week because of customisable leagues, but I am referring to the traditional leagues where the finals are played across the last four weeks of the AFL season. We have battled through lots of injuries, suspensions and just all round rubbish scoring to get to this point, the part of the season where legends are made!  So…. what does it all mean and what do we do now?  Well join me as we scramble our way through the first finals week.

How do Finals Work?

Well in the vast majority of leagues they work just like the AFL top 8 system does. And if you aren’t sure, just click onto the Finals tab in your league and you can see the graphic that shows you how it all works. Basically you want to be in the top four. This gives you a double chance so if you lose this week you are still in and if you win you get next week off.

Having that week off in the second week of the finals is massive. What this means is that if there are any one week injuries this week or someone gets suspended for a week you can (assuming you are only focused on one league or get the week off in all leagues and don’t care about ranking) just do nothing and rock one of your bench players for a week and you aren’t stressed about maxing out points.

Finals Trading Strategy

Something that you can do, which is easier in AFL Fantasy with two trades per week, is a tactic I have mentioned here in recent weeks and that is to look at your opponents team and either neutralise their best player by getting that player in or trading a player you both have out for one that is better to try and get the edge. This part of the season is where this is often a tactic.

In Supercoach you can often take that one step further and by using the rolling lockout you can make decisions on the fly as to whether or not you actually need to trade. If you have the game won before the player you were looking at trading out has to play then you can just hold that trade for another week and see what pops up then. There are lots of ways to play this. Just make sure you think trades through as once you have made them there is no guarantee you will be able to trade a player back next week (assuming you have enough trades left in RDT and SC).

Did you finish in the bottom 10? Well if you are in the bottom 2 then you are done for the year and you are now only playing for ranking and pride. But if you are in the consolation finals then you can still regain a bit of pride and finish as the best of the rest.

How Many Trades in RDT and SC?

The age old question is how many trades should you have left? Well my theory is that I would like to have at least two trades left over the last three weeks. However, if you are in a knockout situation and you need to trade to go down to 1 to win then by all means that is what you should do.

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Bench Cover

Throughout most of the year we tend to ignore our bench cover most of the time as we generally don’t need it (unless you have a heap of Geelong players). But as we get closer to the end of the long season we see a lot more late outs than we often do early in the year. Coaches do like to play a few games and blokes are often sore and are given right up until the last second a chance to prove their fitness. And as if that wasn’t enough you don’t want to be the person that loses a final just because you didn’t have any bench cover.

Selection Table

Image result for quinton narkleQuinton Narkle – Many would have been relying on him as bench cover for this week. He is just being rested so we expect to see him in round 21.
Shaun Higgins – Expected to just miss the one week so if you have cover you may want to hold him.
Brodie Smith – Back for the Crows for his first game of the season! In Draft you may want to pick him up!
Tom Doedee – Back from Concussion this week and those that still have him will be keen to put him back on field.
Shane Savage – He has been hanging out in the back line for a number of teams but is out injured with a hamstring complaint. He could be a forced trade for you.
Tim Taranto – OUT with a knee injury. If you have him you may need to trade him. But I haven’t seen any details on how long he could be out for.
Dylan Shiel – Shiel is also out with an ankle injury. It would be best to trade him out.
Michael Barlow – Finally back in the squad after about 100 possessions in each of his last couple of NEAFL games.
Michael Hibberd – STILL OUT. I think those that held him would have traded when he first went out if we knew it would have been that long.

If you had players like Hibbo still in your team and were rocking Savage you could find yourself stuck for trading and having no choices. Others could have gotten through with no issues this week. That is simply the luck of playing these games. I must say this is where the two trades a week that you have in AFL Fantasy really starts to pay off.

Things To Remember

  • If you are in an elimination final, don’t hold back! Go for it!! Don’t have any regrets.
  • If you are in the qualifying final then just keep an eye on the future, you know that you still have another week to fight on.
  • Loyalty goes out the window now. If someone is not performing or is out for even a week or two then you have a green light to trade them out.
  • Look at the run home of any one that you look at trading in. Check Cal’s Scale of Hardness just to see who is the best option.
  • Don’t focus too much on the past average of players (obviously it is a factor) but the key is what they will score over the next four weeks.

Good luck in your finals, hopefully you are still in the game next week! Even if you do happen to drop out don’t give up, there are still rankings to play for and you should be looking to finish as high up as you can.



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    Alan J

    August 3, 2018 at 7:20 am

    What’s the chance we’ll see O’Riordan again this year with the old crew back in?

    At the moment I’ve got the Irish to Freeman via Smith DPP which means I JUST miss out on upgrading Telly to Cripps, so looking at bringing in the Little Master instead with the extra $$ saved going to Macrae, Cogs or Kelly next week.

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      August 3, 2018 at 2:40 pm

      Yes, sometimes that money is extremely important at the end of the year… O’Riordan’s injury doesn’t seem to be that big. Wouldn’t be surprised if he comes back next week. 70-30 chance. Important to be positive in the Finals!

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        the internet

        August 3, 2018 at 4:16 pm

        That is pure speculation. Swans are desperate for wins & O’Riordan has been poor the last two weeks. I reckon he won’t make the senior side again any time soon. He’s gone from my SC this week & Fantasy next week (thankfully don’t have him in RDT)

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    August 3, 2018 at 7:32 am

    Best of luck in our RDT matchup this week Dunny.

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    Daniel Kotronis

    August 3, 2018 at 7:46 am

    Emergency on Freeman or Sier for Taranto

    • AF Rising Star

      AF Rising Star

      August 3, 2018 at 9:02 am


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      the internet

      August 3, 2018 at 4:18 pm

      Freeman for me: bloke has had good form in the VFL & will be very desperate to prove himself at the highest level. Sier will be good for 60 though

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    August 3, 2018 at 7:52 am

    1. Dusty to Shuey
    Neale to Ablett

    2. Neale to Macrae
    Rookie downgrade

    Feel like Dusty will outscore Neale this week so will hold him and trade him next week if I go option 2

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    August 3, 2018 at 7:56 am

    Im in the same boat.
    I think Sier, he has shown that he can score reasonably and freeman might get limited game time.

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    August 3, 2018 at 8:29 am

    Do i field dusty and hurn or do i go whitfield and ahern?

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      August 3, 2018 at 11:43 am

      Whitfield and Ahern feels like more points this round.

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        the internet

        August 3, 2018 at 4:21 pm

        I agree. But, surely Dusty is due…? I am super tempted to bench him myself, but I just can’t…

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    August 3, 2018 at 9:12 am

    Great article as always Dunny. Bench cover is a huge issue for me this week.

    1. McLean to Dunkley (no defence emergency) or
    2. Ridley to Freeman (Joel Smith as emergency)

    Cash is no issue as I’m pretty much sideways trading from here (my other considerations were to trade out Zorko or Heeney). Also, I only care about overall.

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      The Cricket

      August 3, 2018 at 4:25 pm

      Ridley to Freeman I reckon. Grab a bit of cash which may be handy for you.
      I’m not convinced there’s much to be gained from trading McLean to Dunkley. And having no emergency cover is not good at this stage (with visits from the General surely on the cards lol)
      Good luck with your ranking – you’re so close Demonetise!

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        August 3, 2018 at 5:06 pm

        Thanks Cricket! I’ll need a lot of luck to go top 10, but it’s still possible. Leaning heavily towards the safe option (Freeman) and I’ll hope McLean outscores Dunkley.

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    Mad Fish

    August 3, 2018 at 9:21 am

    Which trades?

    Taranto –> Heeney
    Tim Kelly –> Ablett


    O’Riordan –> Freeman (DPP with J Smith)
    Tim Kelly –> Macrae

    The second trade means I’ll be playing Ahern as cover for Taranto.

    Have cover in every line, so that doesn’t matter.

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      the internet

      August 3, 2018 at 4:23 pm

      first one by miles! Macrae could cop Steele this week & was rubbish against Hutchings 2 weeks ago

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    August 3, 2018 at 9:30 am

    Need some help people-finished top 4 in AF league by some twist of fate but still have ahern (f6)/lienert(d6) on field and not enough cash to upgrade either this week.

    Whats the best plan here:
    1) stef is current r2-can get him up to grundy and by dg bench rook. (Gawn other ruck)
    2) curnow is m8-can get him to anyone with dg bench rook (titch, gaff, j.kelly, coniglio, m.crouch, oliver, mclean)
    3) dg 2 bench rooks and have 200k+ to upgrade an on field rook next wk (currently D:Laird,whit,yeo,brayshaw,simpson and F:heeney,rocky,billings,danger,devon)


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    August 3, 2018 at 9:45 am

    Which mid,

    Pendles or Ablett?

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      The Cricket

      August 3, 2018 at 2:25 pm

      That’s a tough one! I’d say Pendles, but they could both get a rest some time with finals coming up. Pendles is arguably less injury prone than Ablett?

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    Nacho Libre

    August 3, 2018 at 9:52 am

    Would it be a bad idea to do this?

    Curnow to Macrae
    Sier to Shuey

    Next week;
    Shuey/Gibbs to Oliver/Gaff
    Ahern to Freeman

    Trying to think of a way to maximise cash production but also points on ground. Curnow has been trash since his bye, surely Shuey can better him this week and also make me some coin with his low BE?

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    August 3, 2018 at 9:53 am

    What’s better also.
    O’Riordan to Johnson and Taranto to Pendles
    Or Polson to Freeman and Taranto to Steven?

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      August 3, 2018 at 10:19 am

      I’ve had Steven all year…by a cruel twist of fate I’ve not been able to move him on to uber, always with other more pressing matters (forced trades etc). I’d say avoid Steven if you think you’re trading in a premo. Sure he’s had some ups, but plenty of sh!te thrown in. I think Rd. 1 & 2, the only time he’s scored consecutive 100+ and barely another cpl consecutive runs of 100+. Rollercoaster!!!

      If it’s coin holding you back surely there’s another player of similar value who’s a better option?

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        August 3, 2018 at 11:58 am

        I go Johnson and Pendles

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      the internet

      August 3, 2018 at 4:25 pm

      definitely the first one for me

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    Grovers Guns

    August 3, 2018 at 10:02 am

    $2k short of going TKelly/Parker to Macrae/Cripps.

    Also have Neale in mids which could get me those two players.

    Should I trade Neale or trade Parker for someone cheaper than Macrae or downgrade Waterman bench in FWD) for Freeman (Polson DPP) and use the $247k left over next week to go Ahern (F6)to DSmith?

    Before trades (Don’t laugh I have picked every injured premo this year)

    DEF – Whitfield, LLoyd, Simpson, Laird, Brayshaw,Yeo (Oriordan, Redman)
    MIDS- Titch, JKelly, Cogs, Gaff, NEALE, PARKER, TKELLY, Shuey (Polson, JSmith)
    Ruck – Grundy, Gawn (Cameron, Big O)
    Fwds – Bruest, Rocky, Wingard, Heeney, McLean, Ahern (WATERMAN, TSmith)

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      Alan J

      August 3, 2018 at 10:52 am

      Tough call GG, but I’d be looking at cashing in some of your bench players otherwise you’ll end up with plenty of cash on the pine at seasons end..

      Telly to Cripps and Waterman down to Freeman this week will give you enough $$ to bring in Smith/Danger next week AND possibly even upgrade Neale/Parker to Macrae depending on everyone’s BE

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        Grovers Guns

        August 3, 2018 at 1:33 pm

        Yeah that’s what I have ATM. Cheers for your feedback.

        Macrae and Devon high BE and Neale Parker reasonable BE so might be able to make it next week

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    August 3, 2018 at 10:15 am

    Vandenberg hasn’t played for almost two years yet he is priced at $301,000. Go figure.

    Jacobs to Grundy, and O’Riordan to Farrell for me.

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    August 3, 2018 at 10:30 am

    Bring in Ablett or Pendlebury for the last few weeks?

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      Me Mums Me Dad

      August 3, 2018 at 2:19 pm

      pendles brah

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      The Cricket

      August 3, 2018 at 4:30 pm

      Pendles (see above)

  16. Stuart


    August 3, 2018 at 10:33 am

    Best fwd downgrade option?

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    August 3, 2018 at 10:41 am

    westhoff or dunkley ?

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      August 3, 2018 at 1:20 pm

      The Hoff

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    August 3, 2018 at 11:03 am

    Hurley or Crisp to Laird or Lloyd?

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      Me Mums Me Dad

      August 3, 2018 at 2:18 pm

      geeeez, couldn’t go wrong with moving on either to be honest. get laird though

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    August 3, 2018 at 11:15 am

    Hello all . I am trying to get freeman in but am having trouble doing so . I traded out battle in the fwd line then swap wilson from mids via dpp to fwd that would have let me get freeman but it will not let me get him in ? Am I going something wrong! Thay are all bench cover only . Can anyone help thanks .

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      August 3, 2018 at 11:28 am

      Roll back your team and start again. If still a problem, try advanced trades

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      August 3, 2018 at 11:28 am

      put battle & wilson onfield then try do the trade

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      August 3, 2018 at 2:01 pm

      Have you tried turning it off and on again?

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    August 3, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks coolfire and suckerpunch . I put them onfield and it worked . That has stuffed me around on to trades this year if only i asked sooner. Thanks a lot guys

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    August 3, 2018 at 1:04 pm

    parker-gaff/beams/oliver or stef martin-grundy?? who will score more out of parker and martin?

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    August 3, 2018 at 1:09 pm

    Which midfielder under 677k excluding gibbs, neale and t.adams should i get?

    • AF Rising Star

      AF Rising Star

      August 3, 2018 at 1:41 pm

      I’ve got the same problem, Mitch Duncan or Josh Dunkley? I’ve got no DPP’s in the mid.

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        The Cricket

        August 3, 2018 at 2:30 pm

        Duncan every time

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    August 3, 2018 at 1:10 pm

    Upgrade Nankervis to Grundy and field Ahern at F6 or
    Upgrade Ahern to Weshoff, Menegola and field Nank at R2??

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      Me Mums Me Dad

      August 3, 2018 at 1:21 pm

      upgrade nank to grundy brah

      • AF Rising Star

        AF Rising Star

        August 3, 2018 at 1:38 pm


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    August 3, 2018 at 1:32 pm

    Stef to Grundy
    Neale to Macrae?

    • AF Rising Star

      AF Rising Star

      August 3, 2018 at 1:39 pm

      Get Grundy

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    August 3, 2018 at 1:55 pm

    Hey guys, need some help please in SC. Do I swing McDonald forward and play him over Hogan and have Hogan and Ahern on the bench and then play Webster on the field? Few options to go with and not trusting Hogan too much, but then again, will he score more than Webster? Too many decisions!!! AAggghhhh….. Want to get into the top 50 this week and this is make or break IMO.

    Def: Lloyd, Yeo, Laird, Simpson, Brayshaw, McDonald (Webster, Austin)
    Mid: Mitchell, Cripps, Dangerfield, Oliver, Merrett, Pendlebury, Kelly, Coniglio (Giro, J.Smith, Daniels)
    Ruck: Gawn, Martin (McInerney)
    Fwd: Smith, Wingard, Hogan, Heeney, McLean, Gray (Ahern, Keeffe)

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    August 3, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    Murphy heppell or duncan?

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    zac dawesome

    August 3, 2018 at 2:51 pm

    Lads, would love some input. Trading out Dusty, but for Cripps or Beams or Oliver? If I get Cripps, I would need to downgrade Ahern (who sits on my bench) to rookie Fergus Greene; but I’d also have 150k for next week. Otherwise, I’d downgrade Joel Smith to Freeman which would allow me to get Beams/Oliver and keep Ahern on my bench. Cheers! Cripps has a great run of fixtures and is on fire so I’m thinking it might be worth it?

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      The Milkmen

      August 3, 2018 at 4:27 pm

      If not fielding Ahern you may as well downgrade him. Cripps is in beast mode.

  28. Stuart


    August 3, 2018 at 3:08 pm

    Baker or Greene?

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    The Milkmen

    August 3, 2018 at 4:15 pm

    Neale and Taranto to Oliver and Yeo.
    Suck on that bitches.

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    August 3, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    Hi guys thinking of selling Taranto, can’t decide who tho, menegola, Dunkley, rocky or wingard

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    Ronin Lite

    August 3, 2018 at 5:21 pm

    I have Westhoff, Danger, Roccliff, D Smith. Thinking of going
    F5 B. Fritsch and F6 B Ronke + 318k to Dunkley and McLean or…. any suggestions cheers

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    August 3, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    Peace and love to all.

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    August 3, 2018 at 6:39 pm

    Me too

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