Round 5 of the Toyota 2019 AFLW Premiership competition had an interesting impact on the ladder in the respective conferences.
Conference A now has three of the women’s clubs with identical 4 – 1 records following Adelaide sending the signal to North Melbourne, where the Crows dismantled the Kangaroos 64 – 29 and Fremantle got by the Western Bulldogs 52 – 34.
Adelaide tops the Conference A ladder, with a huge percentage advantage of just under 40 percent.
Melbourne ran roughshod over Greater Western Sydney, 57 – 18 and still finds itself fourth in the conference, despite having a percentage that would be the envy of every club on the men’s side.
If the finals were to start today, Melbourne would find itself on the outside, despite their clear superiority to the top two in Conference B, Geelong and Carlton.
Conference B presents Geelong at the top, but their 3 – 2 record, 12 premiership points and 90.3 percentage has them outside finals if both conferences are considered.
This is the sort of competition the AFL must have had in mind when the decision was made to trial a conference system, with the possible exception that they probably did not intend for the one conference to be so dominant over the other.
Round 6 has all the makings of another shaker.
Geelong will face Fremantle. Both clubs have to win, but only one can win. By all that is holy, a draw at this juncture would reverberate throughout the league.
Adelaide should have an easy time of it, with the Giants touring to South Australia.
We could say the same of North Melbourne, unless the Collingwood Magpies decide it is high time to wake up from their nightmare.
There is much at stake for Carlton and Brisbane, with the winner ascending to the number two spot in Conference B.
Western Bulldogs and Melbourne Demons both need to win, or they can say goodbye to any hopes of playing finals. Both clubs need some help from the other games, but a Melbourne win couple with a loss by Adelaide, North Melbourne or Fremantle would reorder things dramatically.