Since the new AFL top-eight system was introduced in 2000, upsets have occurred in the First Elimination Final more often than any other match in the first week of the finals.
The eighth-placed team has beaten the fifth-placed team on eight occasions with Adelaide breaking the 8-8 deadlock last year when they defeated North Melbourne by 62 points.
It’s a good omen for West Coast who head into this year’s finals series as the eighth-placed team.
The Eagles face Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval and in a further boost for West Coast, they have won five of their six matches at the ground.
Conversely, the second qualifying final has produced the fewest surprises with the third-placed team beating the second-placed team on just four occasions. So history is well and truly against Richmond as they face Geelong at the MCG on Friday night.
Finals Week 1 Win-Loss (2000-16)
First Qualifying Final
First – 12 wins
Fourth – 5 wins
Second Qualifying Final
Second – 13 wins
Third – 4 wins
First Elimination Final
Fifth – 9 wins
Eighth – 8 wins
Second Elimination Final
Sixth – 11 wins
Seventh – 6 wins