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FALCONS TO JUGGLE INJURIES HEADING INTO FINALS

Wednesday, August 14, 2013 - 7:13 PM

WEST Perth might be in outstanding form and sitting comfortably in second position but the Falcons are going to face quite the juggling act as injured players fight to return to take part in finals action.

West Perth is in outstanding form having won three straight games and eight out of the last nine but it hasn’t been without injuries mounting up.
Defenders Luke Tedesco (calf) and Jordan Jones (cork) joined the injury list during Saturday's win over Perth in Moora with Michael Pettigrew (hamstring), Jay van Berlo (knee), Matt Johnson (hamstring) and Laine Rasmussen (cork) already there.
The Falcons now sit on a 13-5 record for the season with just two matches of the home and away season remaining starting this Sunday at Arena Joondalup against East Fremantle before a bye and then a final round clash with Swan Districts at Bassendean's Steel Blue Oval.
That means that some injured players might not return until the finals commence and that is even more reason why coach Bill Monaghan and everyone at West Perth is desperately hoping the reserves make the finals to give those returning players two options to come in and play.
"The bottom line of all of that is that players will get some opportunities and we've seen guys like Kris Shannon and James Batterham do well when they get an opportunity," Monaghan said.
"There's two or three guys in our reserves who are pushing hard to play league footy and we just hope they get the chance, and when they get their chance they perform their role.
"We have played one more game than a couple of other sides in the four, but getting our reserves into the finals is as important as anything right now not only for the kids' development but it means we have the option that Pettigrew, Rasmussen, Johnson and even van Berlo could play twos.
"We have got one eye on results in the twos as much as anything else and that will benefit the league side as well, but we also want our kids to taste a bit of finals footy as well."
Monaghan realises that there is a chance that those injured players that will return this year might not be available until the first week of the finals but having both the league and reserves side there will make that juggling act a lot easier.
"It's a very real possibility that a lot of those guys won't be healthy until the first week of finals and it will be a significant issue if we can play them or not," he said.
"It's not something we have thought a lot about because what we are working hard on is getting our reserves to qualify for finals.
"They have had a sustained run of good form to sneak into the four for the first time of the year after being 1-6 at one stage so it's a fantastic effort for those guys to get up and they are playing exciting footy."
As for the two injuries from the game in Moora, Jones is likely to only miss this week's clash with East Fremantle with his cork while Tedesco is going to face a race against time to return from his injured calf. However, the vice-captain will give himself every chance of getting back this year.
"Jordan Jones got a cork at the start of the last quarter on Saturday and he's hopeful that he will get up, but with the bye the next week we will be really conservative with him," Monaghan said.
"Luke Tedesco has a calf strain and traditionally that is four to six weeks, but Luke has put some things in place this week to try to get back sooner. He was up every couple of hours icing it on Saturday night and he shares a house with our physio who brought some equipment home so he is doing as many physio and treatment sessions as he can.
"He is the type of guy who will leave no stone unturned to get right. It will be really touch and go with him, but he thinks there has been significant improvement in the three games since the game. At best, you would think the last round or possibly the first round of finals for him though."
Van Berlo and Pettigrew both went down injured in West Perth's win over Peel the previous week but Monaghan is hopeful that van Berlo will return from his medial ligament injury to his knee in the final round while Pettigrew is still facing an uphill battle to be back at all from his torn hamstring.
"VB has been restricted to doing weights on his legs and doing some bike riding and swimming since hurting his knee, but he will run this week for the first time and our plan for him is to play the Swans game," he said.
"Michael Pettigrew is still fairly sore with his hamstring and he is a real long shot, he knows that but while there's life there is hope.
"We are hoping that he does some running this week and if he can run this week then you would think there is an outside chance. But if he starts to run and it's still too sore then it's going to be a real battle for him."
Exciting forward Johnson burst onto the scene this year with five goals in Round 1 against East Perth, but has been sidelined since hurting his hamstring against East Fremantle in Round 13. However, he is set to return in the reserves this Sunday against Peel.
"Johnson should play reserves this week. He has had some hamstring problems but nothing major so it's a bit like the Salecic one where it is back and nerve-related thing where he keeps pulling up tight," he said.
"We think we are on top of it now and hopefully he will play in the reserves this week and then it's a matter of how much fitness we can get into him."
Small defender Laine Rasmussen was in outstanding form early in the season but has now played just three games since Round 8 and none since Round 15. He won't play this week and is only some chance of playing in the reserves after the bye.
"Rasmussen has been a lot longer than we first thought and he is an outside chance to play footy in the last round," Monaghan said.
"He is no chance to play again this week and then after the bye, I would like to think he will be ready to play some reserves footy in the last round of the year. He is in pretty good nick still and he is one of our fittest players so he won't take long to get himself ready once he is back playing."
BY CHRIS PIKEWEST Perth might be in outstanding form and sitting comfortably in second position but the Falcons are going to face quite the juggling act as injured players fight to return to take part in finals action.

West Perth is in outstanding form having won three straight games and eight out of the last nine but it hasn’t been without injuries mounting up.

Defenders Luke Tedesco (calf) and Jordan Jones (cork) joined the injury list during Saturday's win over Perth in Moora with Michael Pettigrew (hamstring), Jay van Berlo (knee), Matt Johnson (hamstring) and Laine Rasmussen (cork) already there.

The Falcons now sit on a 13-5 record for the season with just two matches of the home and away season remaining starting this Sunday at Arena Joondalup against East Fremantle before a bye and then a final round clash with Swan Districts at Bassendean's Steel Blue Oval.

That means that some injured players might not return until the finals commence and that is even more reason why coach Bill Monaghan and everyone at West Perth is desperately hoping the reserves make the finals to give those returning players two options to come in and play.

"The bottom line of all of that is that players will get some opportunities and we've seen guys like Kris Shannon and James Batterham do well when they get an opportunity," Monaghan said.

"There's two or three guys in our reserves who are pushing hard to play league footy and we just hope they get the chance, and when they get their chance they perform their role.

"We have played one more game than a couple of other sides in the four, but getting our reserves into the finals is as important as anything right now not only for the kids' development but it means we have the option that Pettigrew, Rasmussen, Johnson and even van Berlo could play twos.

"We have got one eye on results in the twos as much as anything else and that will benefit the league side as well, but we also want our kids to taste a bit of finals footy as well."

Monaghan realises that there is a chance that those injured players that will return this year might not be available until the first week of the finals but having both the league and reserves side there will make that juggling act a lot easier.

"It's a very real possibility that a lot of those guys won't be healthy until the first week of finals and it will be a significant issue if we can play them or not," he said.

"It's not something we have thought a lot about because what we are working hard on is getting our reserves to qualify for finals.

"They have had a sustained run of good form to sneak into the four for the first time of the year after being 1-6 at one stage so it's a fantastic effort for those guys to get up and they are playing exciting footy."

As for the two injuries from the game in Moora, Jones is likely to only miss this week's clash with East Fremantle with his cork while Tedesco is going to face a race against time to return from his injured calf. However, the vice-captain will give himself every chance of getting back this year.

"Jordan Jones got a cork at the start of the last quarter on Saturday and he's hopeful that he will get up, but with the bye the next week we will be really conservative with him," Monaghan said.

"Luke Tedesco has a calf strain and traditionally that is four to six weeks, but Luke has put some things in place this week to try to get back sooner. He was up every couple of hours icing it on Saturday night and he shares a house with our physio who brought some equipment home so he is doing as many physio and treatment sessions as he can.

"He is the type of guy who will leave no stone unturned to get right. It will be really touch and go with him, but he thinks there has been significant improvement in the three games since the game. At best, you would think the last round or possibly the first round of finals for him though."

Van Berlo and Pettigrew both went down injured in West Perth's win over Peel the previous week but Monaghan is hopeful that van Berlo will return from his medial ligament injury to his knee in the final round while Pettigrew is still facing an uphill battle to be back at all from his torn hamstring.

"VB has been restricted to doing weights on his legs and doing some bike riding and swimming since hurting his knee, but he will run this week for the first time and our plan for him is to play the Swans game," he said.

"Michael Pettigrew is still fairly sore with his hamstring and he is a real long shot, he knows that but while there's life there is hope.

"We are hoping that he does some running this week and if he can run this week then you would think there is an outside chance. But if he starts to run and it's still too sore then it's going to be a real battle for him."

Exciting forward Johnson burst onto the scene this year with five goals in Round 1 against East Perth, but has been sidelined since hurting his hamstring against East Fremantle in Round 13. However, he is set to return in the reserves this Sunday against Peel.

"Johnson should play reserves this week. He has had some hamstring problems but nothing major so it's a bit like the Salecic one where it is back and nerve-related thing where he keeps pulling up tight," he said.

"We think we are on top of it now and hopefully he will play in the reserves this week and then it's a matter of how much fitness we can get into him."

Small defender Laine Rasmussen was in outstanding form early in the season but has now played just three games since Round 8 and none since Round 15. He won't play this week and is only some chance of playing in the reserves after the bye.

"Rasmussen has been a lot longer than we first thought and he is an outside chance to play footy in the last round," Monaghan said.

"He is no chance to play again this week and then after the bye, I would like to think he will be ready to play some reserves footy in the last round of the year. He is in pretty good nick still and he is one of our fittest players so he won't take long to get himself ready once he is back playing."

BY CHRIS PIKE

Falcons Nail Road Trip

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 5:14 PM

FALCONS NAIL ROAD TRIP

West Perth continued their impressive build up to the finals with a comprehensive sixty point victory against Perth in Moora on Saturday. The game was played under an overcast sky with intermittent showers but the Falcons adjusted to the conditions to dominate from quarter time onwards. For the second time in three games West Perth kept a side goalless in the second half and this is a credit to the mindset of the team. Credit must also be given to the condition of the oval that the game took place on. It was very good and better than a number of WAFL grounds. This helped to make the day a success.

Goals to Matt Fowler and Josh Mellington got the ball rolling for the Falcons. They came within the first four minutes of the game. Play settled down before Simon Tunbridge put Perth on the scoreboard but a strong mark by Chris Keunen resulted in Marc Crisp getting on the board with a clever left foot snap. The lead was out to eleven at the sixteen minute mark but from here it was all Perth. They pressed hard and piled on the last three goals of the quarter to take a seven point lead into the first change. The Demons led 4.2 (26) to 3.1 (19).

A nine goal second quarter was the springboard for the Falcons victory. The quarter started in ideal fashion for West Perth when Chris Keunen received a free and fifty at the centre bounce. His straight kick narrowed the margin to one. A goal to the hard working Rowan Kerr restored the lead for the Falcons and a behind to Anthony Tsalikis made the difference one straight kick. The classy Perth skipper, Paul Bevan, broke free to score his first and even the scores. Jordan Jones had been having an impact and this resulted in a pass to Matt Fowler forty out on an angle. His straight kick was the second of his five for the day. Kody Manning then displayed the attack on the football that Falcons supporters love. He chased,  tackled an opponent and received a free twenty out. He converted and gave West Perth a twelve point lead. Paul Bevan narrowed the margin but the next three majors went to the Falcons to take them out to a twenty four point lead at the twenty five minute mark. A left foot pass by Matt Fowler set up “Slick” for his first, a long kick forward by Jason Salecic resulted in a major by Shaun Marusic from the square and Marc Crisp chimed in with his second. Kyle Reimers then kicked his second but a goal to Matt Guadagnin and a third to Matt Fowler saw West Perth finish the half with a thirty point lead. It was a tremendous quarter of team football that was highlighted by pressuring their opponents every time they had the ball. Scores were 12.3 (75) to 7.3 (45).

The third quarter started with some showers and as a result the standard of football suffered. It wasn’t until the twelve minute mark before the first score resulted. Perth scored two behinds before a run and carry passage of play started by Andrew Strijk in the back pocket resulted in Marc Crisp finishing from twenty. It was a terrific passage in testing conditions. Once again Perth was unable to find the big opening and scored two behinds before West Perth kicked the only other major for the quarter. It went to Steven Browne after he received a free and fifty metres. At the final change West Perth had increased their lead to thirty eight; 14.4 (88) to 7.8 (50).

Perth had a number of opportunities to kick goals in the last quarter but their inaccuracy continued to plague them. West Perth, however, continued their straight kicking with four. Matt Gaudagnin scored his second at the eight minute mark but from here points were the order of the day until the twenty minute mark. At this point Anthony Tsalikis kicked his third and Matt Fowler the last two of the game to take his tally to five. At the final siren West Perth had registered a comfortable ten goal victory; 18.7 (115) to 7.13 (55).

Injuries to Luke Tedesco and Jordan Jones are the major concern to come out of the game. Both have been in fine form and hopefully will overcome them to be ready for finals. Players to receive awards were Matt Fowler, Aaron Black, Chris Keunen, Shane Nelson, Matt Guadagnin and best was Andrew Strijk who was rarely beaten in a contest. The Reserves continued their great form with a comfortable victory over the top side. There is a lot to look forward to so be there next Sunday to support the teams against the Sharks at the Arena. It is the International Round so there should be a big crowd.

Meet our new club Mascot

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 12:57 PM

The West Perth Football Club will launch a new and exciting club Mascot on Sunday August 18th at International Round.

The Mascot - yet to be named, will be a welcome addition to Home Game Matches, Falcons School Visits, Junior events and other community events.

Come down to International Round at Arena Joondalup on August 18th and meet our new Mascot!

WAFL 2013 Grand Final Tickets

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 12:40 PM

WAFL 2013 GRAND FINAL TICKETS

Tickets go on sale tomorrow Thursday, August 15, for the 2013 WAFL Grand Final at Patersons Stadium.

The game will be played at 2.15pm on Sunday September 22.

In 2013, the best WAFL Grand Final seats in the house will be available for pre-purchase online. Fans seeking a great seat are encouraged to pre-purchase their tickets to take advantage of the reduced pre-sale prices and avoid the queues on match day.

Tickets

Tickets for this match will be on sale as of 9am Thursday, August 15. Tickets can be purchased from Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.com.au) or by phoning 1300 135 915.

2013 WAFL Grand Final ticket prices are:

Category

Premium Reserved Seating
(Pre-purchase only)

General Admission Seating (Purchase on the day at the gate)

Adult

$30.00

$35.00

Concession

$25.00

$30.00

Child (15 & under, 5 & under free)

$7.00

$10.00

Family (2 x adult & 3 x child)

$58.00

$60.00

Member*

$22.00

$25.00

*Member may be any WAFL club member

In addition to the WAFL Grand Final, tickets entitle fans access to the Colts Grand Final and the Reserves Grand Final ahead of the main event which bounces down at 2.15pm.

Corporate boxes and suites are also available for purchase. For more information or to download a booking form visit www.waflfinals.com.au

2013 WAFL FINALS FIXTURES

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 11:42 AM

2013 WAFL Finals Fixtures

 

West Australian Football League finals fixtures have been confirmed for the first three Sundays in September.

 

WAFL Operations Manager Cameron Knapton said the finals had been scheduled to maintain a consistent break between games and avoid clashing with the Federal Election and AFL Finals where possible.

 

ABC TV will televise the First Semi Final with live crosses to the Second Semi Final, and then cover the Preliminary Final and Grand Final.

 

WAFL broadcast partners ABC Radio, 990AM, Sport FM, Radio Fremantle and Hot Country Digital will also cover WAFL Finals matches on radio.

 

For more information visit www.wafl.com.au/finals

 

Sunday, September 8

1st Semi Final

3rd v 4th

2.05pm at home ground of 3rd

2nd Semi Final

1st v 2nd  

2.05pm at home ground of 1st  

 

Sunday, September 15

Preliminary Final

Winner of 1st Semi v Loser of 2nd Semi

2.05pm at home ground of Loser of 2nd Semi

 

Sunday September 22

Grand Final

Winner 2nd Semi v Winner Preliminary Final

2.05pm at Patersons Stadium

FALCONS DOMINATE DEMONS IN MOORA

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 2:30 AM

WEST Perth all but secured a double chance come finals time with an emphatic performance after quarter-time in Moora on Saturday to beat Perth by 60 points.

The Falcons completely controlled the contest in Moora after quarter-time kicking 15 goals to three in the last three quarters of the game, and the only six majors of the second half to secure the eventual 18.7 (115) to 7.13 (55) victory.

The win improves West Perth to a 13-5 record on the season to now be three games clear of the third and fourth-placed Swan Districts and East Perth with a superior percentage to all chasing teams.

The Falcons now have two games of the season remaining starting next Sunday at home to the sixth-placed East Fremantle before a bye and then the final match of the home and away campaign against Swan Districts at Bassendean's Steel Blue Oval.

Matt Fowler continued to show that he could be West Perth's answer out of the goal square with Nick Rodda now required to play down back with the injury to Michael Pettigrew.

Fowler booted another five goals on Saturday against Perth in Moora from just the eight kicks and five marks.

Small forward Marc Crisp copped a knock to his head during the day, but still managed to continue his outstanding season with another three goals while veteran Anthony Tsalikis added another two to stretch his lead on top of the team's leading goalkicking race.

Veteran midfielder Matt Guadagnin was judged best afield, though, after finishing the afternoon with 24 possessions and two goals.

Falcons wingman Aaron Black also racked up 33 possessions and young midfielder Shane Nelson another 28 to go with six tackles.

Queensland recruit Trent Manzone gathered 25 possessions, Steven Browne 22, Ray Bartholomew 22, Steve Potente 20, Rohan Kerr 20 to go with six inside 50s, Shaun Marusic 18 and Andrew Strijk 18.

Ruckman Chris Keunen dominated for West Perth as well finishing with a career-high 66 hit outs to go with 11 possessions and a goal.

West Perth started the game in Moora well with the first two goals of the afternoon but Perth was playing to return to the top-four and came back hard to lead by seven points at quarter-time.

However, the Falcons took control of the contest from that point on and turned on some inspired, and exciting, football in the second quarter piling on nine goals in a blistering second quarter to suddenly lead by 30 points at half-time.

West Perth then rammed home its advantage in the second half booting the only two goals of the third quarter with the Demons managing just the five behinds while Perth again kicked five points in the final term with the Falcons banging home four majors to eventually win by a commanding 60 points.

While the league side made the trek to Moora on Saturday, the two other sides did battle with Perth at Lathlain's Brownes Stadium.

The West Perth colts started the day with a 25-point loss to Perth with Ryan Simcock booting three goals for the Falcons with Kyle Egan collecting 20 possessions, Ashley Smith 19, Kirk Bartel 18, Nick Bowe 18 and Troy Manners 18.

Tim Sutherland did well in the ruck finishing with 16 possessions, seven marks and 34 hit outs.

And then the Falcons reserves side pulled off a convincing 52-point victory over the Demons with a dominant performance from the outset.

Drew Rohde kicked four goals from just six kicks for West Perth with Max Alexander banging home another three majors and Corey Chalmers two.

Ben O'Regan collected a team-high 20 possessions to go with six inside-50 entries and a goal for West Perth with Joel Latham finishing with 19 disposals, Frank Stockley 18 (and 56 hit outs), Tom Shadbolt 18 and Brayden Antonio 17.

WEST PERTH                                      3.1          12.3        14.4        18.7        (115)

PERTH                                                   4.2          7.3          7.8          7.13        (55)

WEST PERTH – Goals: Fowler 5; Crisp 3; Guadagnin, Tsalikis 2; Kerr, Browne, Keunen, Marusic, Mellington, Manning.

Best: Guadagnin, Black, Manzone, Keunen, Nelson, Fowler, Kerr.

PERTH – Goals: Bevan, Reimers 2; McInnes, Moody, Tunbridge.

Best: Smith, Hodge, White, Manuel, Leeson, Florio.

BY CHRIS PIKE

PHOTOS BY DAN WHITE PHOTOGRAPHY

ROUND 21 PREVIEW V PERTH

Friday, August 9, 2013 - 4:06 PM

MOORA will host the match of the round on Saturday afternoon when Perth heads to its country zone to host West Perth with both sides desperate to come home with the four points.

Perth has been inside the top-four for all but two weeks of the 2013 season to date, but the 28-point loss to East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval last Saturday saw the Demons fall out of the top-four again.
That means the Demons desperately need to bounce back and beat West Perth this Saturday with tough games to come against East Perth, Claremont and South Fremantle to finish the season.
In order for the Demons to play finals for the first time since 1997, they will likely need to win three of those last four games so starting with a win this Saturday over West Perth is crucial to their September ambitions.
However, beating West Perth is going to be far from an easy task.
The Falcons currently sit three games clear of East Fremantle, Swan Districts, Perth and East Perth in second position on the ladder and can go a long way to securing that position, and the finals double chance, with a win over Perth in Moora on Saturday.
Despite a hiccup in Round 18 at home to South Fremantle, West Perth has been in terrific form since losing back-to-back games in Rounds 11 and 12.
The Falcons won four straight games after that before the loss to the Bulldogs and now have beaten East Perth and Peel the last fortnight to improve to 12-5 record on the season to be looking strong in second spot on the ladder.
Perth and West Perth have met just the once so far this season with the Falcons getting the better of the Demons by 36 points back in Round 10 at Arena Joondalup.
Perth last hosted a WAFL game in Moora back in 1999 when 1746 fans turned out to see the Demons record a 27-point victory over Swan Districts.
West Perth coach Bill Monaghan has been impressed with how Perth has turned itself around this season so far under coach Damien McMahon, and he is under no illusions of how big of a challenge the Demons will present to the Falcons.
"Perth has had an outstanding season and Damien and their whole club have really taken them forward. There has been a lot said about where Perth has been over a period of time, but they have seemed to turn that around this year and they have played really positive footy. They look as though they have turned the corner in terms of culture and leadership as well," Monaghan said.
"At their very best, they are dangerous. They move the ball as well as anybody else, their foot skills to hit up short targets is very good and their forward-line is a little bit different with Bevan, Stack, Reimers and Leeson. They have a lot of smallish type forwards but they have McInnes and Tunbridge down there, and Lleyendekkers and Eyres give them another tall option."
Perth's hopes of pulling off the victory won't be helped with the loss of two of its most important players coming into the contest.
Hawthorn premiership midfielder from 2008 Chance Bateman is out of the side after hurting his hamstring in last week's loss to East Fremantle while Matt Tedesco is also a massive loss from the half-back line against his former side.
Tedesco has emerged as one of the very best running defenders in the competition this season for the Demons averaging 21.8 possessions a game and he even sneaked forward for two long goals last Saturday against East Fremantle, but he's a big loss from the side to face West Perth.
On the positive side, though, for the Demons they have some handy inclusions with Brennan Stack to return after a week in the reserves. He has kicked 40 goals this season and will resume his dynamic duo act up forward with captain Paul Bevan who has booted 47 majors so far in 2013.
Cameron Manuel, Kane Ransted and Matthew Hunt are the other Perth players vying for selection and whoever gets picked will have a big job to try and replace the job that Tedesco has been doing so well all season so far.
West Perth hasn’t named anyone out at this stage from its team that beat Peel comfortably last week but veteran defender Dan Hunt will return so there will be at least one change to the line-up.
Peel wasn’t able to take advantage of a West Perth defence last week that was without Hunt and Michael Pettigrew, but Nick Rodda stepped up in the full-back role strongly and now Hunt is back to add some further height and experience to that defensive set up.
Ben McNamara and Jack Thrum have both been in good form in the reserves for the Falcons as well and continue to press for selection, and the coaching staff will be seriously considering playing them this Saturday in Moora against Perth.
BY CHRIS PIKEMOORA will host the match of the round on Saturday afternoon when Perth heads to its country zone to host West Perth with both sides desperate to come home with the four points.

Perth has been inside the top-four for all but two weeks of the 2013 season to date, but the 28-point loss to East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval last Saturday saw the Demons fall out of the top-four again.

That means the Demons desperately need to bounce back and beat West Perth this Saturday with tough games to come against East Perth, Claremont and South Fremantle to finish the season.

In order for the Demons to play finals for the first time since 1997, they will likely need to win three of those last four games so starting with a win this Saturday over West Perth is crucial to their September ambitions.

However, beating West Perth is going to be far from an easy task.

The Falcons currently sit three games clear of East Fremantle, Swan Districts, Perth and East Perth in second position on the ladder and can go a long way to securing that position, and the finals double chance, with a win over Perth in Moora on Saturday.

Despite a hiccup in Round 18 at home to South Fremantle, West Perth has been in terrific form since losing back-to-back games in Rounds 11 and 12.

The Falcons won four straight games after that before the loss to the Bulldogs and now have beaten East Perth and Peel the last fortnight to improve to 12-5 record on the season to be looking strong in second spot on the ladder.

Perth and West Perth have met just the once so far this season with the Falcons getting the better of the Demons by 36 points back in Round 10 at Arena Joondalup.

Perth last hosted a WAFL game in Moora back in 1999 when 1746 fans turned out to see the Demons record a 27-point victory over Swan Districts.

West Perth coach Bill Monaghan has been impressed with how Perth has turned itself around this season so far under coach Damien McMahon, and he is under no illusions of how big of a challenge the Demons will present to the Falcons.

"Perth has had an outstanding season and Damien and their whole club have really taken them forward. There has been a lot said about where Perth has been over a period of time, but they have seemed to turn that around this year and they have played really positive footy. They look as though they have turned the corner in terms of culture and leadership as well," Monaghan said.

"At their very best, they are dangerous. They move the ball as well as anybody else, their foot skills to hit up short targets is very good and their forward-line is a little bit different with Bevan, Stack, Reimers and Leeson. They have a lot of smallish type forwards but they have McInnes and Tunbridge down there, and Lleyendekkers and Eyres give them another tall option."

Perth's hopes of pulling off the victory won't be helped with the loss of two of its most important players coming into the contest.

Hawthorn premiership midfielder from 2008 Chance Bateman is out of the side after hurting his hamstring in last week's loss to East Fremantle while Matt Tedesco is also a massive loss from the half-back line against his former side.

Tedesco has emerged as one of the very best running defenders in the competition this season for the Demons averaging 21.8 possessions a game and he even sneaked forward for two long goals last Saturday against East Fremantle, but he's a big loss from the side to face West Perth.

On the positive side, though, for the Demons they have some handy inclusions with Brennan Stack to return after a week in the reserves. He has kicked 40 goals this season and will resume his dynamic duo act up forward with captain Paul Bevan who has booted 47 majors so far in 2013.

Cameron Manuel, Kane Ransted and Matthew Hunt are the other Perth players vying for selection and whoever gets picked will have a big job to try and replace the job that Tedesco has been doing so well all season so far.

West Perth hasn’t named anyone out at this stage from its team that beat Peel comfortably last week but veteran defender Dan Hunt will return so there will be at least one change to the line-up.

Peel wasn’t able to take advantage of a West Perth defence last week that was without Hunt and Michael Pettigrew, but Nick Rodda stepped up in the full-back role strongly and now Hunt is back to add some further height and experience to that defensive set up.

Ben McNamara and Jack Thrum have both been in good form in the reserves for the Falcons as well and continue to press for selection, and the coaching staff will be seriously considering playing them this Saturday in Moora against Perth.

BY CHRIS PIKE

BILL'S GRILL – ROUND 20

Friday, August 9, 2013 - 4:00 PM

IT IS a great concept to play country games. What the best part of it is, though, is that country people are the lifeblood of our country and state in many ways so to get the game out to them is fantastic, especially if they aren’t able to get to the city to watch games.

They are always really supportive and you always get a good feed out there at country games with a little bit of humour.

Sometimes the logistics of moving 40 people from each club around, especially the ones that involve air travel, can get difficult and there's been a couple of iffy situations with late flights. Then in this case, we will be going by bus and you have to weigh up what is a suitable amount of time to be sitting on a bus on the day of the game. So there are a few things that can be issues, but they are issues for both sides so no one is advantaged or disadvantaged by that.
Our plan for Saturday is to leave Arena Joondalup by bus at 9.30am and it's expected to take about two and-a-half hours to get there. We will basically get off the bus and start our pre-game routine. We normally have our pre-match meeting before half-time in the reserves so it's a bit before 12.30 usually. We will probably stop the bus about halfway up and we will make sure the players have enough food and water on the bus because we want to make sure that they are in a good state when they get off the bus. It does pose a different challenge but we will try to keep it as normal as possible other than that.
It can depend where you go but we went to the thriving metropolis of Kalannie a couple of years ago which has a population of about 100 people. That can be an issue in terms of crowd sizes but the small communities deserve that opportunity as much as the bigger ones like Geraldton and Bunbury.
I think it's our job to take the game to the people and country football is huge, and is a fabric of their communities just like it is with netball, lawn bowls, tennis and sports like that. Without the sport in those regional communities, there's not always a lot to do so if we can play any part to help that then that is our responsibility.
The way you get received can often depend on whether or not the town is in your zone as well. If it isn’t, you generally just go up on a bus, play the game, have a quick feed and go home but when it is your zone we would normally send an entourage of coaches and/or players up early to run some school clinics, coaching courses, training sessions with the local teams and all of that.
When you do that, you get to experience the real country hospitality and they like to give you plenty to eat, and you have to keep knocking back offers to drink beer and all of that. You see that they are really proud of their communities and so they should be.
This pre-season we went up to Bruce Rock for a camp and that was really successful. They were proud to show off their facilities and town to us. When it is your country area it is a real privilege to be there, and they do really welcome you and they are excited to have you there. You always run into groups of kids who look up to the players. When I was a kid I idolised footballers and sports people, and this is their opportunity to see some top-level footballers.
The AFL has become such a big business now that it really has become just about out of reach of the normal families so the WAFL has a unique place in the sporting culture in our state. The fans can still go out on the oval at the quarter-time breaks, you can have a kick with them before and after the game, and it really is like a festival feeling when you play country games.
The players really enjoy the country games as well. Especially after the game when they get the chance to see how important part of a role WAFL football plays in bringing the game to the people who don’t usually get to experience it.
It's very exciting to take such an important game to the country as well. I'm not sure that country games are usually played this late in the season either and there is a lot of stake this week for both us and Perth.
We are trying to tick off a couple more boxes to finish where we want to and Perth had a bit of a setback last week so the people of Moora and the surrounding area are going to be treated to a fantastic game. It should be good from that perspective and hopefully a good crowd will turn out to watch it with both sides putting on a good spectacle.
They are well-rounded up forward and have been a high-scoring team all year. Their midfield is also good and their backs are solid so we know that we are going to have to be at our very best and it will take a strong defensive performance to cut them down.
Dan Hunt is the only player that will come back from the guys who missed last week. VB and Petters are two, three or four weeks away and that will cut it pretty fine for those two but Dan will be back this week.
Physically the East Perth game took a lot out of us and it was a real slog against a big-bodied side, and there was a lot at stake. I thought we handled and played the conditions very well, but it did take a little bit to get our bodies over that and I think that contributed to our inconsistency last week against Peel.
We are in a reasonably good spot with our list at the moment with just the three or four injuries with VB, Petters, Rasmussen and Johnson who we would prefer to have out on the park but we are working hard to spread the load so that whoever plays does their job. 
BY BILL MONAGHANIT IS a great concept to play country games. What the best part of it is, though, is that country people are the lifeblood of our country and state in many ways so to get the game out to them is fantastic, especially if they aren’t able to get to the city to watch games. They are always really supportive and you always get a good feed out there at country games with a little bit of humour.

Sometimes the logistics of moving 40 people from each club around, especially the ones that involve air travel, can get difficult and there's been a couple of iffy situations with late flights. Then in this case, we will be going by bus and you have to weigh up what is a suitable amount of time to be sitting on a bus on the day of the game. So there are a few things that can be issues, but they are issues for both sides so no one is advantaged or disadvantaged by that.

Our plan for Saturday is to leave Arena Joondalup by bus at 9.30am and it's expected to take about two and-a-half hours to get there. We will basically get off the bus and start our pre-game routine. We normally have our pre-match meeting before half-time in the reserves so it's a bit before 12.30 usually. We will probably stop the bus about halfway up and we will make sure the players have enough food and water on the bus because we want to make sure that they are in a good state when they get off the bus. It does pose a different challenge but we will try to keep it as normal as possible other than that.

It can depend where you go but we went to the thriving metropolis of Kalannie a couple of years ago which has a population of about 100 people. That can be an issue in terms of crowd sizes but the small communities deserve that opportunity as much as the bigger ones like Geraldton and Bunbury.

I think it's our job to take the game to the people and country football is huge, and is a fabric of their communities just like it is with netball, lawn bowls, tennis and sports like that. Without the sport in those regional communities, there's not always a lot to do so if we can play any part to help that then that is our responsibility.

The way you get received can often depend on whether or not the town is in your zone as well. If it isn’t, you generally just go up on a bus, play the game, have a quick feed and go home but when it is your zone we would normally send an entourage of coaches and/or players up early to run some school clinics, coaching courses, training sessions with the local teams and all of that.

When you do that, you get to experience the real country hospitality and they like to give you plenty to eat, and you have to keep knocking back offers to drink beer and all of that. You see that they are really proud of their communities and so they should be.

This pre-season we went up to Bruce Rock for a camp and that was really successful. They were proud to show off their facilities and town to us. When it is your country area it is a real privilege to be there, and they do really welcome you and they are excited to have you there. You always run into groups of kids who look up to the players. When I was a kid I idolised footballers and sports people, and this is their opportunity to see some top-level footballers.

The AFL has become such a big business now that it really has become just about out of reach of the normal families so the WAFL has a unique place in the sporting culture in our state. The fans can still go out on the oval at the quarter-time breaks, you can have a kick with them before and after the game, and it really is like a festival feeling when you play country games.

The players really enjoy the country games as well. Especially after the game when they get the chance to see how important part of a role WAFL football plays in bringing the game to the people who don’t usually get to experience it.

It's very exciting to take such an important game to the country as well. I'm not sure that country games are usually played this late in the season either and there is a lot of stake this week for both us and Perth.

We are trying to tick off a couple more boxes to finish where we want to and Perth had a bit of a setback last week so the people of Moora and the surrounding area are going to be treated to a fantastic game. It should be good from that perspective and hopefully a good crowd will turn out to watch it with both sides putting on a good spectacle.

They are well-rounded up forward and have been a high-scoring team all year. Their midfield is also good and their backs are solid so we know that we are going to have to be at our very best and it will take a strong defensive performance to cut them down.

Dan Hunt is the only player that will come back from the guys who missed last week. VB and Petters are two, three or four weeks away and that will cut it pretty fine for those two but Dan will be back this week.

Physically the East Perth game took a lot out of us and it was a real slog against a big-bodied side, and there was a lot at stake. I thought we handled and played the conditions very well, but it did take a little bit to get our bodies over that and I think that contributed to our inconsistency last week against Peel.

We are in a reasonably good spot with our list at the moment with just the three or four injuries with VB, Petters, Rasmussen and Johnson who we would prefer to have out on the park but we are working hard to spread the load so that whoever plays does their job. 

BY BILL MONAGHAN

EDDYSTONE PRIMARY SCHOOL FREE FOOTY CLINIC

Thursday, August 8, 2013 - 4:53 PM

Eddystone Primary School Students are encouraged to sign up for a free half time AFL footy clinic at the 2013 International Footy Festival at the Joondalup Arena on Sunday the 18th of August.


Click here to register

FALCONS CONTINUE RUN TO FINALS

Monday, August 5, 2013 - 11:53 AM

West Perth recorded a most impressive victory against Peel at the Arena on Saturday. Supporters would have expected a close contest with Peel bolstered by the return of AFL listed players and the Falcons losing three key players; Michael Pettigrew, Dan Hunt and Jay Van Berlo. But this was not to be as West Perth led all day to record a comprehensive forty nine point victory.

The first score of the game didn’t come until the eighth minute of the opening term. Shane Nelson kicked a clever goal out of a congested pack. A minute later dangerous Peel forward Bradley Holmes took advantage of a West Perth defensive error to even up the scores but from here the term belonged to the Falcons as they kicked five unanswered goals. The first went to Josh Mellington who marked in the square after a kick forward by Anthony Tsalikis. Andrew Strijk’s terrific defensive pressure resulted in the skipper, Jason Salecic, snapping from thirty. Matt Guadagnin then showed his class with a give and go out of the middle and a goal on the run from fifty. Once again the Falcons took the ball straight out of the centre courtesy of some hard work by Marc Crisp. Matt Fowler kicked the first of his four after marking forty out. In the blink of an eye the lead was out to twenty four. At the twenty five minute mark Matt Fowler instigated a passage of play that saw Kris Shannon and Steven Potente involved before he ran forward to receive the ball and kick his second. Peel finished the quarter with a major to Docker Viv Michie but at the first change West Perth led by twenty three; 6.1 (37) to 2.2 (14).

Once again it took both sides time to settle into the quarter but the first goal went to West Perth. Kris Shannon finished on the run from forty. In only his third game he certainly didn’t look out of place. Peel steadied to kick the next two and by the eighteen minute mark the lead had been reduced to seventeen. Shortly after Matt Fowler marked and kicked his third and he was once again involved shortly after when he cleverly tapped the ball out to Josh Mellington who received a free and fifty to kick his second from the square. The Falcons had extended their lead at the main break to twenty eight; 9.4 (58) to 4.6 (30).

It was an even third term with both teams kicking three goals. At the two minute mark a rocket like pass from Matt Guadagnin was marked by “Slick” who scored from a sharp angle. Anthony Tsalikis soccered his second shortly after and when Josh Mellington scored his third at the thirteen minute mark the lead was out to forty nine. The game appeared to be done at this stage but to Peel’s credit they kicked the last three of the quarter to reduce the margin to twenty nine at the final change. Scores were 12.8 (80) to 7.9 (51).

When Viv Michie kicked his second for Peel at the two minute mark the lead had been reduced to four straight kicks and a comeback similar to what had occurred in Mandurah seemed likely but the Falcons responded in the best possible way by kicking the next four goals. Anthony Tsalikis kicked his third after some terrific work at ground level, a clever kick by Ray Bartholomew set up Matt Fowler for his fourth, Frank Stockley took a strong mark thirty out and converted and the final major in the run came from Jason Salecic who was on the receiving end of a Josh Mellington handpass. At the eighteen minute mark the lead was out to fifty. Four minutes later Marlon Motlop got onto the scoreboard for Peel before a long goal from Marc Crisp completed the game. The final margin of forty nine was a credit to the disciplined team brand of football played by the Falcons. Final scores were 17.12 (114) to 9.11 (65).

It was a day out for West Perth as they won all three grades for the first time this year. Well done to all concerned. Players to receive awards included Andrew Strijk, Shane Nelson, Steven Potente, Kody Manning, Marc Crisp and best was Matt Guadagnin. The Reserves remain on the fringe of the four after recording a strong victory. Best players were Cameron Branch, Ben McNamara, Mitch Van Berlo and Jack Thrum. The Falcons travel to Moora to play Perth next weekend. A victory should shore up second place on the ladder.

BY DARRELL KENT

PHOTOS BY BELINDA TAYLOR PHOTOGRAPHY