DFS Fantasy

Draftstars AFL 23 Saturday Round 9 Tips

Rare to have the seven of the top nine teams on a five-game slate with most avoiding each other. But, for the Swans, Power and Demons they get a soft match on this Saturday. This presents some great opportunities for stacking options which Draftstars Veteran ‘Tbetta’ will share in today’s edition of Stargazing.

$75,000 Main ($15 entry, 125 max)
$10,000 High Roller ($150 entry, 3 max)
$5,000 Fiver ($5 entry, 50 max)
$3,000 Mini ($2 entry, 15 max)
$2,500 Buck Hunter ($1 entry, 100 max)
$2,000 Micro ($0.50 entry, 100 max)

AFL Saturday


SYD vs FREM – SCG: Showers.
NTH vs PORT – Blundstone Arena: Fine.
HAW vs MEL – MCG: Fine.
BRIS vs ESS – Gabba: Showers.
CAR vs WBD – Marvel Stadium: Under the roof.



I’m surprised that Neil Erasmus ($6,750 FWD) didn’t cop more of a price hike following his 85 points last week, so with Fremantle going in unchanged, I’m happy to target him and his part-time midfield role as salary relief once again.

We’re blessed with a few options in the mid-range on this slate, starting with Tom Sparrow at $9,680. His CBAs are up around the 50% mark over the past fortnight (the same as Christian Petracca, for context) which have resulted in his two highest scores for the season of 79 and 89. Jake Stringer ($9,890 MID/FWD) is an interesting pivot with some of Darcy Parish’s CBA’s potentially heading his way, but Brisbane is a rough backdrop. Then we have Liam Shiels ($11,100 MID/FWD), who in 6 months have gone from a retired Hawk to a key part of North’s midfield with 50% CBAs over the past fortnight, culminating in monster scores of 108 and 128.

If you’re paying up in the forward line, it’s hard to resist Errol Gulden ($14,960 MID/FWD) following back-to-back season-highs of 116 and 161 in the last couple of weeks. As we’ve spoken about previously, the move from half forward to a wing has been unreal for his potency – it’s interesting to note that he had 0% CBA’s last week with that midfield role a purely outside gig. Bailey Smith, Caleb Daniel and Zak Butters are all putting their hands up as alternatives, with the climate conditions looking ripe for inside midfield minutes in Round 9.

Essendon have been known to concede a few extra points to wingmen, so Harry Sharp ($6,780 MID) could be an option at this price with the opportunity to improve on last week’s 56 at the Gabba. His more experienced teammate Jarrod Berry ($11,290 MID) is in the same boat at a higher price bracket, but the rewards are equally as high – evidenced by his 29 touches and 9 marks for 114 points against the Blues last week.

Speaking of the wing, Riley Bonner ($8,850 MID) filled Xavier Duursma’s boots perfectly in that role against the Bombers last week for 83 and an even juicier match-up against the Roos looms. Justin McInerney ($8,880 MID) clearly needed his freshen up after a month of drastically declining scores, because he was back to his best last week with 89 on the opposite wing to Errol Gulden for the Swans. Hugh Greenwood ($9,260 MID) is the cheap inside bull to target this week, with CBA’s locked in following Ben Cunnington’s dumping – the journeyman has scores of 116 and 83 under his belt at VFL level recently.

The Parish news has some big DFS consequences, with Dylan Shiel ($12,780 MID) now looking mighty cheap with CBA’s about to explode again. Even Will Setterfield (see below) could receive a reprieve in the form of inside minutes again. It’s a price range littered with high-risk, high-reward options though, as Jaeger O’Meara ($12,500 MID), Jack Macrae ($13,130 MID), Chad Warner ($13,230 MID), and Lachie Neale ($13,490 MID) at home all present themselves as viable pivots.

With all the value available on the slate, you might find yourself paying up for some big dogs this Saturday. Andrew Brayshaw ($16,510 MID) reminded us of his ceiling last week with a massive 157 and material confirmation that he’s over that knee niggle. Carlton’s midfield is back on track after a shaky start to 2023, making Adam Cerra ($15,580 MID) look like value at this salary following a purple patch of 130, 137 and 130 on the trot, while Sam Walsh ($16,080 MID) is yet to score below triple figures this year.

As you’ll discover below, I love the stacking options in the DEF line this Saturday, so I’m not sure how many “core” defenders you’ll want in your player pool. I’m not interested in any of the basement-priced options for instance, with James O’Donnell ($6,000 DEF) himself not even able to believe he was getting a game for the Bulldogs after making the list a month ago, while Will Gould ($6,000 DEF) required an injury crisis for Horse Longmire to put his selection vendetta aside.

I still like Bailey Dale’s ($11,110 DEF) ceiling with a game of ping-pong likely to break out with the Bulldogs under the Dome, especially with forward tagger Ed Curnow dropped. Dan Houston ($13,510 DEF) against the Roos and Sam Docherty ($16,000 DEF/MID) with a potential switch to half-back against the leaky Bulldogs forwards are other rollercoasters to consider in the hope that you ride them at their crest.

Marc Pittonet ($10,160 RUC) is the solo ruckmen again for Carlton, and it’s hard to provide any knock on him after scores of 91 and 87 without De Koning. Even the match-up of imminent All-Australian Tim English ($17,100 RUC) isn’t as scary as you’d imagine, with his opponents scoring 112 (Darcy), 108 (solo Reeves) and 85 (solo Flynn) in the past few weeks.

The DvP loves Todd Goldstein ($11,430 RUC) against Port however, and he also ticks the solo ruckman and strong form (100 last week) boxes. He’s the clear ruck pick on this slate, in my opinion.


Will Setterfield ($12,850 MID)

After soaking up more CBA’s than any other Bomber over the first three weeks of the season, Setterfield was completely cast aside in Round 8 with the dreaded duck egg – 0 CBAs as a defensive wingman. The former Giant and Blue has a wide range of outcomes this week given the role uncertainty created by the Parish injury on top of some key defensive pillars in Jake Kelly and Jordan Ridley, so this is more of a PSA than a blanket ban. Be alert.

Clayton Oliver ($17,260 MID)

When you’re the highest-priced player on the slate and you’re expected to attract a tag, you probably shouldn’t expect a lot of DFS ownership that week. Conor Nash has been unsettling superstars for weeks and now it’s Oliver’s turn, especially after the gun has rattled off scores of 145, 121, 126 and 126 in his last four clashes with the Hawks. Clarry has been nothing short of amazing this season, but his glow has dimmed slightly whenever he cops a hard tag, such as the 108 against Setterfield and the 104 against David Swallow last week.

Jack Ziebell ($14,630 DEF)

This is a scary call to make following a monstrous 168 the week prior, but the DvP numbers support it. St Kilda concede easily the most points to deep DEF’s than any other side this season, so once the former skipper lined up in defence, a big score was on the cards. On the flipside, Port is the second-hardest team for backmen to score against, strongly suggesting that Ziebell won’t have the freedom to rack up another 18 (mostly) uncontested marks this Saturday.


The Prodigal Son

We’ve been on the lookout for weeks and now Midfield Mills Season is finally here! As the Swans have slowly regained defenders from the injury list, Callum Mills has equally slowly transitioned back to a midfield role with his CBA’s increasing in every game over the past month, culminating in 63% against the Pies. It should come as no surprise to anyone that the extra midfield burn resulted in a season-high score of 110 – which should continue based on Sydney’s lodged Teamsheets this week.

Treloar’s Treat

Bevo’s list of available midfielders has a huge impact on this article each week, with the Bulldogs back to 5 fit men in the trenches following Adam Treloar’s setback. Tom Liberatore and Marcus Bontempelli are locked into full-time roles, so expect the extra reps to be shared by the thirsty committee of Jack Macrae, Bailey Smith and Caleb Daniel after heavy forward roles last week. You’ll have change leftover from $13.5k to obtain the services of any of these gentlemen this weekend, with Jack Macrae ($13,130 MID) the cheapest of the lot and with the most to gain from extra inside time.

Bomber Back-Ups

Injuries are a huge downer in all sports and you never like to see them, but there are silver linings for others in the ridiculous world of fantasy. The Bombers have some key personnel missing the clash with the Lions, which require careful consideration. I’m liking the trend of Zach Merrett scoring an extra 29.5 points without Darcy Parish last year, while Mason Redman’s +28 without Jordan Ridley was from a small sample size of two games, but piques my interest regardless.


Port – Full Stack

Every man and his dog (and their bone) will be setting up for the Power stacks this Saturday, and for good reason. North are conceding a league-high 1666 to opposition teams over their last 10 performances, including losing the fantasy stakes by an average of a sliver under 300 points in their last six. Wild numbers.

The DvP matrix suggests that you target Key FWDs and DEFs against North, and I’m personally very keen on the latter after mere infantrymen in Nathan Wanganeen-Milera (125) and Liam Stocker (127) were able to both to smash their career-highs to smithereens against the Roos last weekend.

Carlton – Full Stack

The Bulldogs trail only North in terms of fantasy points conceded, while Carlton are the second-highest scoring side – including averaging +435 points on their opponents in the last few. Throw in a fast Marvel deck under the roof and it’s a recipe for high-octane footy. The DvP says to hit the DEF and MID lines heavily.

Melbourne – Full Stack

I know it’s a 10-team slate and I should expect there to be some good stacking options, but copping the top three on the same day (without playing each other) is overkill. Hawthorn gives up the 3rd-most points overall and have serious flaws in their armour, conceding a truck load of points to onballers and key forwards. Thankfully, Jacob Van Rooyen ($6,870 FWD) just escaped his two-match suspension on appeal to provide a cheap option in attack that fits the criteria.



In a parallel universe:

  • Hawks have named one too many defenders – could we see a switch forward for Impey or Jiath…?
  • Kaine Baldwin the defender? Despite two goals for Essendon’s VFL side following a late swing forward, Baldwin has been playing in defense at VFL and will be needed back there with the losses of Kelly and Ridley in the same week…
  • Does Docherty remain in the midfield mix with the Blues down a defender – which would mean Kennedy needs to slot in at half-back as he has done at times this year – or does Carlton play a straighter bat by sliding Doch back and restoring Bam Bam’s more familiar mid-forward role…?



Ready to go? Draftstars multi game Saturday slate will close at 1.45pm AEST. ENTER NOW!

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