BY SEAN COWAN
He mightn’t have the biggest frame in the WAFL, but West Perth is hoping midfielder Steven Potente can add some real fight to the Falcons’ midfield after joining the club from Swan Districts over the summer.
Despite having a solid reputation at Bassendean, where he played 24 League games after making his debut in 2009, the 70kg Potente decided to make the switch to Arena Joondalup after missing most of the past two seasons.
He spent 2012 on the sidelines after tearing his posterior cruciate ligament and also battled a stress fracture to his pelvis in 2011.
Potente said he hadn’t necessarily been looking to leave the black-and-whites, but the Falcons’ approach had come at the right time.
“Ross Parker rang me up and said Bill and the other coaches were interested in me coming over,” he said.
“I just thought it was a good idea to get a fresh start at a new club and so far it’s been everything that I could have asked for.
“I was a bit tired of it all over there (at Swans). And even though it’s a bit of a drive from Lesmurdie (to Joondalup) and it can take about 50 minutes to get to training, it’s all worked out well.”
Potente, 22, is expected to push for a midfield berth this season, but knows he faces stiff competition from a raft of West Perth youngsters.
Though the club will be stretched to cope with the loss of Brent LeCras (retired), Dustin Burns (retired), and Dion Fleay (Goldfields) from the backline, its only loss in midfield was Joel Rice (retired).
It also signed James Embley from Swan Districts and will be hoping for big things from the likes of Aaron Black, Steven Browne, Jordan Jones, Mark Hutchings, Shane Nelson and Laine Rasmussen.
“I’ve probably looked a lot at Jason Salecic since I got here because he is very professional with what he does and there are a few other senior players I look up to as well,” Potente said.
“And there’s a lot of players who have impressed the coaches over the pre-season. It’s going to be tough to get a spot and once I get one I want to play consistent league football from then on. That’s really my goal.
“But I’ve been happy with my fitness since I got here. It’s probably the fittest and strongest I’ve ever been and I’m just looking forward to the season now.”