Round 5 Preview v Claremont

Saturday, April 28, 2018 - 10:39 AM by Chris Pike

SOUTH Fremantle has won its past two games this season as the Bulldogs head to Albany this Saturday to look to stretch that winning run to three and to make it four straight against Claremont in the process.

South Fremantle is coming off a big win against East Fremantle in the Anzac Derby heading into the clash with Claremont at Albany's Centennial Stadium. Bounce down is 2.40pm with the game shown on the big screen back at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.

Meanwhile, South Fremantle's colts will play Claremont from 10am on Saturday morning also at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.

And the reserves will be in action on Sunday morning from 10am at Claremont Oval.

Centennial Stadium in Albany will host Saturday's contest between Claremont and South Fremantle with the game set to bounce down from 2.40pm. It will be broadcast live on Noongar Radio and Footy Radio.

The game will be the fifth played in Albany throughout WAFL's history but the first ever at Centennial Stadium.

The previous four matches in Albany have all taken place at Collingwood Park, all with Claremont as the home club. The first was in 1989 when Claremont beat South Fremantle by 20 points in front of a monster crowd of 4638 people.

The next trip to Albany for Claremont was in the Tigers' premiership year of 1996 when they beat Subiaco by 84 points again in front of 2200 people.

Then in 2001, the Tigers took on East Perth and again won impressively by 89 points even though the Royals went on to win the premiership that year. A crowd of 2500 watched on for that occasion.

The last WAFL fixture in Albany took place in 2009 with South Fremantle beating Claremont by 17 points at Collingwood Park. A crowd of 2394 watched on that day.

Now this Saturday will be the first chance for Centennial Stadium become the latest WAFL venue and it's shaping as a fascinating contest to boot.

South Fremantle is building into the 2018 season nicely, though, following the bye in Round 1 and then a first up 58-point defeat at the hands of Subiaco.

Since then the Bulldogs have beaten West Perth by eight points at HBF Arena and then hammered East Fremantle in Sunday's Anzac Derby at East Fremantle Oval to the tune of 94 points.

So the Bulldogs head to Albany full of confidence and with a strong recent record against Claremont as well.

South Fremantle won all three games against Claremont in 2017 by an average of 40.7 points. 

The Tigers' last win over the Bulldogs came in Round 16, 2016 at Fremantle Community Bank Oval by 31 points.

Claremont currently sits on the bottom of the ladder but the Tigers have reason to expect to be significant improvers in 2018 despite the way it has started.

Claremont has lost to West Perth and Subiaco to start the season while only just overcame East Fremantle when Keifer Yu goaled after the siren. 

But the Tigers have a chance to show their improvement on Saturday against South Fremantle as they attempt to bounce back from last Thursday night's defeat by 86 points at the hands of Subiaco at Leederville Oval.

Claremont's starts and finishes to games so far in 2018 has been a concern, even though the Tigers did snatch a win late against East Fremantle. The Tigers have been outscored by 37 points over their three first quarters so far in 2018 and by 33 points in the last quarters.

South Fremantle's starts haven’t been crash hot so far in 2018 with the Bulldogs outscored over their first three games in opening quarters by 11 points. But over the last three quarters they have outscored their opposition by 55 points.

South Fremantle coach Todd Curley is looking forward to the chance to get to the country environment and isn’t concerned about the short break.

"I don't think it really matters with the short break. We still have six days and it's not like we were playing Anzac Day and playing four days later. We'll be fine and aren’t worried about that turnaround at all," Curley said.

"We'll recover and then train, and head down there on Friday. Some of the boys always joke it's a long way to Joondalup so it might not be much further for some of them to go to Albany. It's a great opportunity to go to the country regions and play. Claremont will provide another really good challenge for us."

There is just the one player out at this stage from the South Fremantle team that beat East Fremantle so impressively on Sunday with Jason Maskos to not make the trip to Albany to take on Claremont.

But there are some handy potential replacements for South Fremantle with Steven Edwards in line to come back in to play his former team.

Adam McIntosh is also in line for a recall after a couple of weeks in the reserves to earn some form and match fitness. Jake Solomon could also come in to add some extra size for the Bulldogs with Daniel Cabassi a potential debutant.

Claremont will hope that 2012 Sandover Medallist Kane Mitchell is passed fit to take his place in the team for the clash in Albany against South Fremantle after he hurt a knee early in the Round 3 contest with East Fremantle.

Declan Hardisty, Tom Shanahan, Isaac Wallace and Jeremy Goddard are the other players in the mix to come into the Tigers team to take on the Bulldogs.

Fraser Gilbert and Nick Winmar are the two players already out of the Claremont line-up from the team that lost to Subiaco by 86 points last Thursday night.

Broadcast –
Noongar Radio, Footy Radio