The run home: Who will snatch the last finals spot?

FIVE teams have now qualified for finals, with just one spot still up for grabs as we turn for home and head into the final round of the season.

All eyes – especially those of Carlton, Western Bulldogs and even GWS – will be on North Melbourne's clash with Fremantle on Saturday: a win for the Roos will lock them into finals, but a loss could make for a nervous wait.

Richmond, West Coast, St Kilda, Gold Coast and Geelong have not been considered

AFLW FIXTURE Check it out here

1. Brisbane

28 points (seven wins, one loss), 218.5 per cent
It was a fait accompli, but the Lions have now officially qualified for finals after a commanding victory over fellow finals aspirant North Melbourne. With a very healthy percentage, Brisbane will be hoping for a win over the Dees to lock up a home preliminary final. A loss will leave the Lions vulnerable to dropping out of the top two, with percentage the deciding factor if Adelaide or Fremantle win.

The run home
R9: Melbourne @ Casey Fields

AFLW Match Highlights: Brisbane v North Melbourne

05:10 Mar 20. 2021. 6:54 PM

The Lions and Kangaroos clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

2. Collingwood

28 points (seven wins, one losses), 217.0 per cent
The Pies lifted their percentage by 21.4 after a comfortable win over St Kilda and cannot drop out of the top six. Collingwood will be pushing for a top-two spot and home preliminary final, but Adelaide away from home poses as a significant challenge. A loss to the Crows will most likely see the Pies lose that preliminary final berth, dependent on percentage.

The run home
R9: Adelaide @ Norwood Oval

AFLW Match Highlights: Collingwood v St Kilda

04:05 Mar 20. 2021. 5:41 PM

The Magpies and Saints clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

3. Adelaide

24 points (six wins, two losses), 210.7 per cent
A huge victory over the Western Bulldogs was just what the doctor ordered for Adelaide, jumping into third position and banking 18.1 per cent. The Crows are nicely poised to pinch a preliminary final spot if they beat Collingwood on Sunday (with percentage set to play a part). A bad loss could see the Crows drop as low as sixth if North Melbourne knocks off Fremantle.

The run home
R9: Collingwood @ Norwood Oval

AFLW Match Highlights: Adelaide v Western Bulldogs

04:07 Mar 21. 2021. 6:00 PM

The Crows and Bulldogs clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

4. Fremantle

24 points (six wins, two losses), 200.6 per cent
While the Dockers have qualified for finals, they blew a golden opportunity to put themselves in the box seat for a top-two spot and home preliminary final. Losing to Melbourne not only cost Fremantle four points, but a loss of 31.3 per cent as the Dees found the middle of the sticks. A win against North would mean percentage would dictate if they finish top two, but a loss could see them drop as low as sixth.

The run home
R9: North Melbourne @ Arden Street Oval

Roux bursts through for six

00:24 Mar 21. 2021. 7:30 PM

Roxanne Roux pushes through her opponent and runs into an open goal to give Fremantle a much-needed major

5. Melbourne

24 points (six wins, two losses), 133.9 per cent
Mick Stinear's side just keep on defying expectations, having now defeated fellow finalists Adelaide and Fremantle in successive weeks. The Dees have now qualified for the top six, with their game against a red-hot Brisbane to dictate their finishing position. Considering their percentage, Melbourne is only an outside chance to finish in the top two if it defeats Brisbane, and a loss combined with a North Melbourne win would most likely see Melbourne in sixth.

The run home
R9: Brisbane @ Casey Fields

AFLW Match Highlights: Fremantle v Melbourne

03:53 Mar 21. 2021. 8:30 PM

The Dockers and Demons clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

6. North Melbourne

20 points (five wins, three losses), 147.3 per cent
The final spot up for grabs. North Melbourne's brains trust would be more than a little edgy after a 15-point loss to Brisbane. More significantly than the missed opportunity to bank four points is the decrease in percentage of 15.6, especially with Carlton on the charge from outside the top six. Ideally, the Roos will knock off Fremantle at home, but it's more likely to come down to a wait on other results and percentage to see if North Melbourne's blue-chip midfield will take to the field in April.

The run home
R9: Fremantle @ Arden Street Oval

Roos forward kicks truly with a classy dribble

00:22 Mar 20. 2021. 5:26 PM

Sophie Abbatangelo gets North's first goal of the match with a clever dribble kick

7. Carlton

16 points (four wins, four losses), 128.1 per cent
Beware the Blues. Carlton needed a thumping victory against Gold Coast and ended up recording the highest-ever AFLW score (87), lifting its percentage from 108.8 to 128.1. Next week against GWS is a must-win, and if it's big enough, the Blues might just sneak into the six on percentage if North Melbourne loses badly to Fremantle.

The run home
R9: GWS @ Blacktown International Sportspark

AFLW Match Highlights: Gold Coast v Carlton

04:47 Mar 19. 2021. 7:44 PM

The Suns and Blues clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

8. Western Bulldogs

16 points (four wins, four losses), 82.8 per cent
One of the youngest teams in the competition is starting to tire as the season progresses, having now lost three straight games. The Dogs need to win big against an in-form Richmond and hope North Melbourne loses badly to Fremantle and Carlton loses to GWS. Very much an outside chance of finals.

The run home
R9: Richmond @ VU Whitten Oval

This tackle was just Toogood

00:34 Mar 21. 2021. 4:55 PM

Bonnie Toogood's crunching tackle results in her second major of the game

9. Greater Western Sydney

16 points (four wins, four losses), 71.6 per cent
We're still in miracle territory in order for GWS to make finals, but you have to be in it to win it. The Giants needed a much bigger win over Geelong than they recorded (seven points in a low-scoring, torrid affair), and will need a near-record win over Carlton – and both North Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs to lose horribly – to have any chance whatsoever.

The run home
R9: Carlton @ Blacktown International Sportspark

AFLW Match Highlights: Geelong v GWS

03:46 Mar 20. 2021. 3:43 PM

The Cats and Giants clash in round eight of the NAB AFL Women's competition

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