Live blog: Preliminary discussions
We'll leave it there for today everyone, thanks a lot for all the questions and comments. They call preliminary final weekend the "people's grand finals", let's hope there's big crowds at both and we get a couple of ripping contests leading into an even bigger one next week. Enjoy it all, and see you back here at 12pm next Thursday.
SO HISTORY triumphs over form. So far this September, anyway. Two weekends ago, some long-standing finals football maxims looked set to be seriously challenged. They weren't.
Never has a team looked as well qualified to give the flag a shake from beyond the top four as did Geelong. West Coast and Fremantle went into semi-final weekend in as good a touch as any of the sides that had finished above them. And they're all gone.
Again, we're left with the same four teams who finished the end of the home-and-away season in the top four spots. Again the capacity of a qualifying final loser to regain its equilibrium was underlined, the imposing statistic now 24 of 26 since the 2000 revamp of the final eight rebounding to win a preliminary final spot.
But the penultimate weekend of the AFL season gives us two preliminary finals in stark contrast. One, the Hawthorn-Adelaide clash, is looming as a bit of a mismatch, reflected in the odds, the Hawks at $1.18 the third shortest-priced favourite of the past 13 seasons.
The other, on Friday night between Sydney and Collingwood at ANZ Stadium, shapes as a potential classic. It's also a game in which two competing threads of recent history will be at counter-purposes.
To discuss this and all things footy, join the live blog with Rohan Connolly at midday.