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NAB Cup Betting - February - March 2014

NAB Cup Betting

It is the warm up before the season proper. The NAB Cup is the AFL pre-season hit-out between the 18 clubs, currently run over four rounds. The month-long competition is traditionally referred to as the Lightening Premiership, in reference to the majority of matches which are held of a night. The 2012 NAB Cup series started on February 17, with the grand final on March 17. The Adelaide Crows took out the 2012 grand final in front of a home crowd at AAMI Stadium.

NAB Cup betting is tough; team form is limited to the previous seasons’ performances and pre-season rumours. But a successful bet on NAB Cup matches is possible if you do you research. Jump online, visit for all the NAB Cup odds.

Facts about the NAB Cup

  • NAB Cup 2012 trial rules included: two interchange players and two substitutes per club, a free kick against a player who drags or holds a ball under an opponent, free kick for deliberate out of bounds and fourth rule, ruckmen cannot make contact prior to bounces and throw-ins.
  • NAB Cup super goals – majors scored beyond the 50m arc – are worth nine points.
  • The fairest and best player in the grand final is awarded the Michael Tuck Medal.
  • The team that finishes top of the table hosts the grand final.


The NAB Cup has a rather complicated history. Originally played as a post-season competition in 1956 known as the VFL Night Premiership, then a mid/pre-season competition with allowances for non-VFL clubs, it has existed in its current pre-season format since 1988. While still not considered as significant as the premiership season, some weight is given to the team that enters the season proper as ‘pre-season premiers.’

Previously played as a knock-out tournament, the format changed in 2011 with the introduction of the Gold Coast Suns and again in 2012 when the league expanded to 18 teams with the inclusion of Greater Western Sydney. Under the current system, the teams are divided into six pools with three teams in each. Over four weeks, each pool takes part in a round robin series of lighting matches then full length matches, culminating in the grand final.

All NAB Cup games, with the exception of the grand final, have been used as an experimental ground for rule changes prior to, if any, implementation into the season proper.

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NAB Cup Winners and Runners Up

The title of most successful AFL side in pre-season/NAB Cup history over the past decade is shared by four clubs. The Crows, the Saints, the Blues and the Cat all have two to their name since 2002.

The pre-season- premiership double is an elusive title. Since 1988 – the start of the pre-season era – only five clubs have achieved the milestone; Hawthorn (1988 and 1991), Essendon (1993 and 2000) and most recently Geelong in 2009. The Crows are set to join this club in 2012 if they can replicate their NAB Cup grand final form in September.

Season Winner Runner Up
2013 Brisbane Carlton
2012 Adelaide West Coast
2011 Collingwood Essendon
2010 Western Bulldogs St Kilda
2009 Geelong Collingwood
2008 St Kilda Adelaide
2007 Carlton Brisbane Lions
2006 Geelong Adelaide
2005 Carlton West Coast
2004 St Kilda Geelong
2003 Adelaide Collingwood
2002 Port Adelaide Richmond
2001 Port Adelaide Brisbane Lions
2000 Essendon North Melbourne

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AAMI Stadium Adelaide - NAB Cup Betting Odds -

NAB Cup Venues

The NAB Cup is also used as a marketing tool for the AFL with matches played all across the country, at regional venues not used during the premiership season. Along with the usually AFL venues, Etihad Stadium, Patersons, Metricon, AAMI, Simonds, Aurora and to a lesser extent Manuka and Blacktown, the competition reaches out to the fans at 10 alternate sites. These include: Bruce Purser Reserve, in Kellyville, approximately 40 km north-west of Sydney, Rushton Park, Mandurah, 70 km south of Perth, Traeger Park, Alice Springs, Encounter Bay Oval, Victor Harbour on the Fleurieu Peninsula, 80km south of Adelaide, Maroochydore Multi Sports Complex, 100 north of Brisbane on the Sunshine Coast, Lavington Sports Ground, near Albury, some 330km north-east of Melbourne and Eureka Stadium, North Ballarat, 115km west of Melbourne.

In 2012, the showgrounds at Wangarrata, 230km north-east of Melbourne, was a scheduled venue, however, the match was cancelled. Essendon travelled to the match via chartered planes, but due to torrential rain, the planes were unable to land. The Saints, who travelled via bus, did not disappoint the sell-out crowd of 11,000 putting on a scrap match.

Many of the round four NAB Cup matches between the 16 remaining teams were played NAB Cup grand final weekend at former AFL regular venue Visy Park. Also known as Princes Park or Optus Oval, Visy Park is located in Carlton North, Victoria and hosted its final AFL home and away match in 2005.

The NAB Cup Grand Final was held at AAMI Stadium in Adelaide. As the team with the most points after the three rounds, the Crows benefited from a home ground advantage. Known as ‘Footy Park’ to locals, the 165m X 133m ground in Adelaide’s west, is the only site where AFL matches are held in the state.

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