AFL W2W4, R13: Is Saints vs. Suns the match of the round?

For a round of football which is offering up just six matches, there's surprisingly an awful lot to look forward to.

Thursday night footy returns with the Power looking to firm up their place inside the top eight when they host the Bulldogs at Adelaide Oval. Twenty-four hours later we're set for one of the matches of the season as Sydney and West Coast clash at the SCG.

Despite their lowly ladder positions, Gold Coast vs. St Kilda is set to be an intriguing game on Saturday afternoon. Should the Suns lose we're likely to hear calls (again) for the team to be axed but if it's the Saints who fail to fire it could spell the end for head coach Alan Richardson.

Hawthorn and Adelaide's meeting on Saturday night comes with enormous importance before the round concludes on Sunday afternoon when the Cats and Tigers meet in an MCG blockbuster.

Here's What To Watch For in Round 13.

St Kilda vs. Gold Coast: the round's most intriguing game?

Much like a trainwreck, it will be hard not to watch this one.

And the pressure could not be greater on the two clubs -- and their coaches -- ahead of the Saturday twilight clash at Metricon Stadium.

After Saturday's capitulation against the Giants, the Suns' woes are the talk of the football world and for obvious reasons: They've lost 19 straight quarters, and have tallied just two solitary behinds in their past three fourth-quarters.

They undoubtedly stink but in terms of this week's opponents, they're relatively flying, with 12 premiership points in the bank to the Saints' paltry six.

St Kilda hasn't won since Round 1 and is coming off another car crash of a loss, this time a 71-point shellacking at the hands of the Swans at Etihad Stadium. The Saints allowed their opponents to boot the opening nine goals and "weren't in the fight," according to coach Alan Richardson.

Richardson, who is under mounting pressure, must find answers quickly, because if the Saints lose to the Suns, it'll be their longest streak of games (12) without a win since 1986 and St Kilda powerbrokers may decide change is needed sooner rather than later.

The off-broadway clash against Gold Coast certainly doesn't have top-eight ramifications but the fallout could be extreme if the Saints drop their bundle -- again.

Hawks, Crows brace for mini elimination final

There's a number of games which can genuinely stake claims for being the match of the round but in terms of importance, this one wins out by the length of the Flemington straight.

The Hawks host the Crows at the MCG on Saturday night in what is essentially a June elimination final. We're not yet convinced the winner will play finals in 2018, so there's absolutely no way the loser will be in the mix come September.

Both sides find themselves outside the top eight and with similar records heading into Round 13. Adelaide sits 10th at 6-6 with a percentage of 106.1 while Hawthorn is just behind them on the ladder at 6-5 -- having had the bye last week -- with a percentage of 104.8.

Coming off a grand final appearance in 2017, the Crows have been just about the biggest disappointing of the season and last week's loss to the Dockers now has them on the brink. The Hawks have more or less met expectations but with the quality and experience In their side it would still be a shock for them to miss finals two years in succession.

A quick glance to the fixture will show how difficult Adelaide's run home is. Don Pyke's side faces the top-of-the-table Eagles after their bye then returns to the MCG to play reigning premier Richmond before hosting Geelong. Hawthorn's upcoming matches are much friendlier with games against Gold Coast, GWS, Western Bulldogs, Brisbane, Carlton, Fremantle and Essendon and St Kilda to follow.

Shaun Burgoyne will play game No. 350 this week so there's extra motivation for the Hawks to secure the four points -- not that they really need it.

Sydney vs. West Coast: home field advantage on the line?

Since losing to the Swans at home in Round 1, the West Coast Eagles have been unstoppable. Unstoppable in Perth, unstoppable in Melbourne, unstoppable across the country.

But when the Eagles make the trip east to face Sydney at the SCG on Friday, will memories of Lance Franklin's epic eight-goal haul inspire them to revenge, or will the Swannies double the dose -- lifting their own premiership chances while simultaneously casting the tiniest doubt over West Coast's hopes?

It makes for a compelling Friday night affair; relatively speaking, Sydney are flying under the radar at 9-3 and in third spot on the ladder, while the high-flying Eagles will be two games clear on top with a win.

In essence, this game could help shape the upper parts of the ladder come September; with a top-two finish come home ground advantage -- something both of these teams would love in what looks again like and even year.

Another point of interest is that West Coast is coming off the bye and may be sluggish, but while the Swans did play the Saints down at Etihad Stadium last Friday night, it was nothing more than a glorified training run.

Thankfully we've got a Friday night fixture worth watching.