The Head-to-Head and Line Funds called it about right this week as three of the four home-team favourites failed to record expected victories. That was bad news for the only wagers we had, which were SuperMargin wagers, all eight of which lost.
Wagering restrictions imposed on all Funds for the Finals series, however, saw the loss to the Portfolio kept to a barely perceptible 0.6c, leaving it still in profit, now by 6.8c on the season.
With the defeat of the team finishing 4th by the minor premiers, the defeat of the team finishing 2nd by the team finishing 3rd, and victories by 7th over 6th, and 8th over 5th, the summary of Finals outcomes by ladder position finish now looks as follows for the seasons 2000 to 2013.
Notwithstanding this weekend's unusual results, for three of the four matchups seen each year in the first round of the Finals the higher-finishing team still has the vastly superior record across history, having won 10 times out of 14.
The 5th versus 8th clash has, however, frequently provided an upset result, as it did again this weekend, so often in fact that the teams from these ladder positions now share 50% records in this Elimination Final.
Next weekend sees 2nd face 7th on Friday night, which is a pairing we've seen only once before in the 2000 to 2013 period - last season, when the 2nd-placed Crows defeated the 7th-placed Dockers 81-71. The other game pits 4th versus 8th, a pairing we've seen four times before, each ending well for the higher-placed team.
Actually, semi-finals have generally been kinder to the teams from the top half of the Finalists than to teams from the bottom half. The collective record in the second week of the Finals of teams finishing between 1st and 4th is an astonishing 24 and 2.
If you want to remind yourself of the progression of each of those 14 Finals series, here's a thumbnailed snapshot of them all.
Now, back to this week's results.
TIPSTERS AND PREDICTORS
All 17 of the remaining, active Head-to-Head Tipsters selected victories by the home team favourites this weekend, so all recorded just one correct tip. The upset results also blew out the mean absolute prediction errors (MAPEs) of all the Margin Predictors and allowed Bookie_LPSO, whose predictions were the 2nd-best of the Predictors, to nudge out Combo_7 and move into 3rd place on the MAFL Leaderboard. RSMP_Weighted still has a comfortable lead over RSMP_Simple at the top of that Leaderboard.
The Head-to-Head Probability Predictors suffered on account of the upset victories too, all recording negative probability scores for the round. WinPred did worst but retained 4th spot on the Leaderboard, while the Predictor based on the Overround Equalising variant of Bookmaker Implicit Probabilities did best, enabling it to narrow the gap to the Risk Equalising and LPSO variants that lie above it on the ladder.
Revelling in the uncertainty was the Line Fund algorithm, which recorded a positive Probability Score for the second successive week, its fifth in the last nine weeks.
There's not much to talk about in reviewing the SuperMargin Performances of the Margin Predictors this week as none selected the correct bucket in any game. The nearest, in fact, that any Predictor came was to miss the final margin by a couple of buckets, a result that the four H2H-based Predictors achieved in the Geelong versus Fremantle game.