Best Of The West

Image courtesy of perthnow.com.au/Daniel Wilkins
Fremantle are set to take on local rivals the West Coast Eagles on Sunday. Image courtesy of perthnow.com.au/Daniel Wilkins
West Coast Eagles v Fremantle Dockers
Patersons Stadium
Sunday May 4 – 2:40 PM (AEST)

Form
Eagles:
WWLLL
Dockers: WLWLL

Regardless of where these two teams sit on the ladder, this one is always a classic. The only teams in WA, bragging rights are up for grabs. The rivalry between the West Coast Eagles  and the Fremantle Dockers  is well known. From the half-time brawl in 2000 that saw Dale Kickett cop a nine-match suspension, to Michael Braun’s foul mouth during his post-match address after winning the Ross Glendinning medal in 2007, this game has always had a bit of spite to it.

After last week’s loss to Carlton, the Eagles headed back home wondering what had gone wrong. With so much promise at the start of the season, they have lost three in a row and risk falling out of the top 8. The return of skipper Darren Glass from suspension will hopefully add some much needed direction to a team that has looked lost of late. Defender Shannon Hurn could possibly be a late inclusion into the side. His penetrating kicks out of their own half are what have been missing from the Eagles in the past few weeks.

The Dockers are in similar situation, having won three of their first six games this season. After leading in the last quarter, Freo blew a 24-point buffer with 10 minutes remaining against Carlton last Saturday. The return of Hayden Ballantyne from suspension is a massive boost, along with midfielder Michael Barlow back from a knee injury. But the big inclusion for the Dockers could be Anthony Morabito. Being sidelined since 2010, not even three knee reconstructions could keep the kid down.

With Freo ranked first for hit-outs and the Eagles just below them in third, the team that wins the ruck wins the game. In what is sure to be a close one, expect Freo to come away with the goods.

LIVE on FoxFooty

Click here to bet on all Round 7 AFL matches