The decade of the 1980's has concluded in Australian Rules Football after 1386 home & away matches and 60 finals games leading up to the ten premierships. With the help of a computer, the results can be used to obtain conclusions about the best teams over the entire decade, the best of the single-season teams, scoring trends, the advantage of playing at home and the predictability of the matches. The conclusions obtained by relatively sophisticated methods can be compared with those obtained by the average football follower. Both authors have long been interested In using a computer to predict football matches. Using least squares methodology to produce a team rating, Stefani (1977,1980,1987) has forecast the results of several thousand matches in the U.S.A and Europe. Using ratings that were exponentially smoothed depending on the margin of victory, Clarke (1981, 1988) provided computer tips for a Melbourne daily newspaper from 1981 to 1986. In 1987 collaboration began on Australian Rules Football - Stefani & Clarke (1990). It was found the results produced by the 2 algorithms are surprisingly similar All the results detailed here have been obtained with the Stefani method.
Vol. 10, no. 3 (Sept. 1991), p. 11-15