The Observer - - SPORT | RACING -

You won’t see many big names run­ning around in AFLX this week­end, with clubs us­ing the games to blood youth rather than risk their guns, but there is still plenty of bet­ting in­ter­est. St Kilda ($3.75) is the favourite to win the Mel­bourne tour­na­ment with Lad­brokes, but Essendon ($4) looks par­tic­u­larly suited to the fast­paced for­mat, with the likes of Adam Saad and An­thony McDon­ald-Tipung­wuti zip­ping around.

The big mar­ket mover for Satur­day’s tour­na­ment in Syd­ney has been the Swans af­ter they sur­prised ev­ery­one at the se­lec­tion table. No­to­ri­ous for thumb­ing their noses at pre-sea­son com­pe­ti­tions, they’ve named a much stronger side than Lad­brokes ex­pected and they look to have a fairly soft draw. “The pun­ters have swooped, with them be­ing the best backed of the AFLX com­pe­ti­tion, mov­ing from $7 into $3.75,” Seaton said. “With matches against West­ern Bull­dogs and Gold Coast, per­haps (coach John) Long­mire and the Swans have a fresh ap­proach in 2018.”

A young Bris­bane Lions out­fit is on the sec­ond line of bet­ting at $4 from the Suns at $4.50, while pun­ters don’t ex­pect Rich­mond ($7) to em­u­late their Septem­ber glory.

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