Site Search

Ross making his home in defence at Bulldogs

Thursday, June 6, 2013 - 11:44 PM

EMERGING South Fremantle defender Dylan Ross has played two Foundation Derbies now and won on both occasions but even more importantly the former Claremont forward is making the centre half-back position at the Bulldogs his own.

Ross came through the ranks at Claremont as a key forward but could only break in for eight league games over 2009 and 2010 with the Tigers before making the tough decision to up and leave the club he grew up with and all his close friends were at for more opportunity.
That saw him arrive at South Fremantle ahead of the 2011 season and the first two years had its ups and downs as he adjusted to life at his new club, but now in 2013 he has found a regular spot at centre half-back and has been terrific playing every game for the season to date.
His ability to read the ball coming into the defensive 50 and chop of opposition kicks to take strong marks has been his strength while he's also been more than handy in setting up play coming out of the back-line as well.
That was best illustrated in last Sunday's Foundation Derby when he had 22 possessions and took 10 marks in South Fremantle's 67-point win over East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval.
The 23-year-old also played in the Bulldogs' 2011 Foundation Derby win over the Sharks on debut for South Fremantle so he has certainly enjoyed his first two tastes of the most traditional of WAFL encounters having missed out on playing in 2012. 
"I have certainly noticed what a big deal the Foundation Day derbies are here since I came across from Claremont and how important it is to win them, so this was a great win for us," Ross said.
"It's always good to have a win obviously and it's always good to beat East Freo, but I think we just did what we needed to do and went on our way. We have been doing the hard work on the track during the week so it's a good result in the end.
"Every game we've played we have been in it maybe apart from last week against Claremont. We have been there abouts in most games, but it was all about focusing on putting four quarters together and that's what we did this week."
It hasn’t always been easy being in South Fremantle's defence so far in 2013, but Ross enjoyed it on Sunday and feels that he is perhaps even best suited to the back-line than up forward even though he was largely used in attack in colts, reserves and league football at Claremont.
"It was good down back this week getting a bit of a rest which is what can happen when the boys further up the ground are doing so well," he said.
"I am enjoying it down back now. Obviously when I was at Claremont I played a fair bit forward, but I seem to read the play a bit easier in the back-line and I have been finding it easier having the game in front of me like that.
"I'm definitely getting more confidence that I belong out there each week that I play. It's been good that the coaches have given me a run and I get more and more confidence out of that all the time. It's been good."
Ross is also enjoying the mix in the back-line at the moment that he is developing with youngsters Nick Borovac, Brendon Gulley, Jason Maskos, Adam Carter and Mitch Carter, with Craig White and Adam McIntosh adding some experience down there.
He hopes they stick together for years to come.
"Hopefully over the next four or five years we can really form a strong bond there in the back-line and we will try to form the best defence in the WAFL," he said.
"We have a lot of guys there like the two Carter brothers, Borovac, Gulley and there's even Jason Maskos has played a bit of footy this year. Hopefully we can stick together and do well as a unit down there for a long time now."
Ross didn’t take his decision to leave Claremont at the end of the 2010 season coming off playing in the reserves premiership lightly, but now that he is in his third year with South Fremantle and playing the best football of his career he has no doubt he made the right decision.
"It was definitely one of the hardest decisions I made and I do still have a lot of close mates there at Claremont," Ross said.
"Maybe in the first year I didn’t make the transition as well as I could have and was still hanging around with my Claremont mates, but I have definitely fully bought in now and am really enjoying the boys down here. I have a lot of mates here now and my footy is better for it. I definitely made the right move."
Helping Ross feel even more at home with the Bulldogs has been the arrival of Ben Saunders and Alistair Gillespie over the past two seasons, and he was especially happy to see his close mate Gillespie play such a big role in the Foundation Derby with three goals and 27 possessions.
"I played colts footy with Dizzy so I'm pretty good mates with him and it's always good to have another couple of Claremont boys here," he said.
"We had Woodsy here as well so there were three or four of us, and it's always good to have some familiar faces around when you are trying to settle in at new club.
"It was good for Dizzy. He is a bit of a confidence player so it's good when he gets his hand on the footy and I was rapt to see him play such a good game."
Ross and South Fremantle now are looking to continue its good form from the derby this Saturday against Subiaco at Leederville's Medibank Stadium.
"We just have to make sure we switch on again this week and roll on to take on Subiaco with the same intensity we showed this week in the derby. Subi beat Claremont as well so we have to make sure we are switched on and things might go our way again," Ross said.
"We were in that game last time against Subi most of the day, but then had a few lapses of concentration for 10 or 15 minutes and that cost us. If we stay switched on for four quarters and bring on this sort of performance that we had against East Fremantle, then we will be a good chance of beating them."
By Chris PikeEMERGING South Fremantle defender Dylan Ross has played two Foundation Derbies now and won on both occasions but even more importantly the former Claremont forward is making the centre half-back position at the Bulldogs his own.

Ross came through the ranks at Claremont as a key forward but could only break in for eight league games over 2009 and 2010 with the Tigers before making the tough decision to up and leave the club he grew up with and all his close friends were at for more opportunity.

That saw him arrive at South Fremantle ahead of the 2011 season and the first two years had its ups and downs as he adjusted to life at his new club, but now in 2013 he has found a regular spot at centre half-back and has been terrific playing every game for the season to date.

His ability to read the ball coming into the defensive 50 and chop of opposition kicks to take strong marks has been his strength while he's also been more than handy in setting up play coming out of the back-line as well.

That was best illustrated in last Sunday's Foundation Derby when he had 22 possessions and took 10 marks in South Fremantle's 67-point win over East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval.

The 23-year-old also played in the Bulldogs' 2011 Foundation Derby win over the Sharks on debut for South Fremantle so he has certainly enjoyed his first two tastes of the most traditional of WAFL encounters having missed out on playing in 2012. 

"I have certainly noticed what a big deal the Foundation Day derbies are here since I came across from Claremont and how important it is to win them, so this was a great win for us," Ross said.

"It's always good to have a win obviously and it's always good to beat East Freo, but I think we just did what we needed to do and went on our way. We have been doing the hard work on the track during the week so it's a good result in the end.

"Every game we've played we have been in it maybe apart from last week against Claremont. We have been there abouts in most games, but it was all about focusing on putting four quarters together and that's what we did this week."

It hasn’t always been easy being in South Fremantle's defence so far in 2013, but Ross enjoyed it on Sunday and feels that he is perhaps even best suited to the back-line than up forward even though he was largely used in attack in colts, reserves and league football at Claremont.

"It was good down back this week getting a bit of a rest which is what can happen when the boys further up the ground are doing so well," he said.

"I am enjoying it down back now. Obviously when I was at Claremont I played a fair bit forward, but I seem to read the play a bit easier in the back-line and I have been finding it easier having the game in front of me like that.

"I'm definitely getting more confidence that I belong out there each week that I play. It's been good that the coaches have given me a run and I get more and more confidence out of that all the time. It's been good."

Ross is also enjoying the mix in the back-line at the moment that he is developing with youngsters Nick Borovac, Brendon Gulley, Jason Maskos, Adam Carter and Mitch Carter, with Craig White and Adam McIntosh adding some experience down there.

He hopes they stick together for years to come.

"Hopefully over the next four or five years we can really form a strong bond there in the back-line and we will try to form the best defence in the WAFL," he said.

"We have a lot of guys there like the two Carter brothers, Borovac, Gulley and there's even Jason Maskos has played a bit of footy this year. Hopefully we can stick together and do well as a unit down there for a long time now."

Ross didn’t take his decision to leave Claremont at the end of the 2010 season coming off playing in the reserves premiership lightly, but now that he is in his third year with South Fremantle and playing the best football of his career he has no doubt he made the right decision.

"It was definitely one of the hardest decisions I made and I do still have a lot of close mates there at Claremont," Ross said.

"Maybe in the first year I didn’t make the transition as well as I could have and was still hanging around with my Claremont mates, but I have definitely fully bought in now and am really enjoying the boys down here. I have a lot of mates here now and my footy is better for it. I definitely made the right move."

Helping Ross feel even more at home with the Bulldogs has been the arrival of Ben Saunders and Alistair Gillespie over the past two seasons, and he was especially happy to see his close mate Gillespie play such a big role in the Foundation Derby with three goals and 27 possessions.

"I played colts footy with Dizzy so I'm pretty good mates with him and it's always good to have another couple of Claremont boys here," he said.

"We had Woodsy here as well so there were three or four of us, and it's always good to have some familiar faces around when you are trying to settle in at new club.

"It was good for Dizzy. He is a bit of a confidence player so it's good when he gets his hand on the footy and I was rapt to see him play such a good game."

Ross and South Fremantle now are looking to continue its good form from the derby this Saturday against Subiaco at Leederville's Medibank Stadium.

"We just have to make sure we switch on again this week and roll on to take on Subiaco with the same intensity we showed this week in the derby. Subi beat Claremont as well so we have to make sure we are switched on and things might go our way again," Ross said.

"We were in that game last time against Subi most of the day, but then had a few lapses of concentration for 10 or 15 minutes and that cost us. If we stay switched on for four quarters and bring on this sort of performance that we had against East Fremantle, then we will be a good chance of beating them."

By Chris Pike

Hasleby wants derby effort to become benchmark

Thursday, June 6, 2013 - 2:05 PM

SOUTH Fremantle put on its most emphatic performance of the season to win the Foundation Derby by 67 points but coach Paul Hasleby wants that effort to now be the benchmark rather that a one-off display from the Bulldogs.

South Fremantle had won just one game so far this season coming into the derby but aside from the previous week's loss to Claremont and the Round 6 loss to Subiaco, the Bulldogs had shown flashes of what they were capable of in every other game so far.
However, it wasn’t until Sunday at East Fremantle Oval when everything clicked with South Fremantle's defensive pressure on the Sharks enormous all over the field, and then the skills and running game was a delighted to watch as the Bulldogs cruised to the thumping win.
It was one of those days where everything just clicked for four quarters for the Bulldogs for the first time this season, and Hasleby enjoyed watching it all come together in front of 5120 people at Shark Park.
"We would have taken any win but it was one of the more enjoyable days in the coaching box that's for sure," Hasleby said.
"The boys just brought great pressure and effort, and were able to turn the ball over quicker than we normally do against the Sharks to get the ball back, and then we had some really good, efficient avenues towards goal in the forward-line which always helps.
"We had a big focus on their uncontested marks and keeping that pretty low, and we kept them to under 50 which is a world record for us. There is a lot of work rate that goes into that, but also the communication between ourselves and that really does help."
South Fremantle did not have a single player in its 22 who didn’t contribute strongly.
Hasleby liked how the forward-line came together with Alistair Gillespie, Ashton Hams and Adam Guglielmana all kicking three goals each, and Mitch Banner, Paul Mugambwa and John Sgherza two as the Bulldogs piled on 21 goals for the afternoon.
The coach was particularly delighted with the game of former Claremont versatile big man Gillespie who finished with not only three goals, but also 27 possessions after he filled in in the ruck once Sean Tighe went off with an ankle injury.
"The forwards were really good and Adam Guglielmana was very dangerous, and we had Kris Miller and Mitch Banner down there. Gumby always presents well and it was pleasing for Gillespie to finish with three goals and 27 possessions in what was his best game for the club. We now have to build on the chemistry that those guys had out there and take it into the Subi game," he said.
"He was feeling better with his knee for the first time in a while as well and that helped him. It was pleasing that when Sean did go down, he took it upon himself to do something about it and he was having quite an impact before that as well. The challenge for him now is to be able to do that every week now."
Without doubt the two most dominant performers on the field were Hams and captain Ryan Cook, and Hasleby is delighted to have them in his side but believes both should be running around in the AFL on a regular basis.
"They are both great players. In my opinion, they both should be back in the AFL or playing in the AFL particularly Ryan Cook with his season so far," he said.
"He has been an absolute star and he has really worked on some of the deficiencies in his game. I think he is ready now for another shot at the elite level."
While defensive pressure hasn’t always been South Fremantle's strong suit so far in 2013, one player who is making it his trademark is 20-year-old Jacob Martinez.
He laid another nine strong tackles on Sunday and also did a good job quelling the influence of South Fremantle's prolific midfielder Rory O'Brien.
"His defensive intensity reminds me a lot of Troy Cook in the way he goes about it," Hasleby said.
"He was also very good with ball in hand this week, but I thought he stopped O'Brien from having much influence on the game as well and he has cut us up quite a bit in the past. Full credit goes to 'Spaniard' for his effort."
Tim Kelly is one of a host of young players that Hasleby has given an opportunity this season, and he put in another solid effort against the Sharks in his second league game with 15 possessions, six marks, five clearances and a goal.
"Timmy had a fantastic year in the colts last year and he's so clean around stoppages and below his knees," he said.
"He hits the ball at the contest at speed, and is still able to take it away so he is going to be a great asset for us for many years now."
Hasleby hasn’t been afraid to drop players back to the reserves this season for them to work on particular aspects of their game.
It worked with Adam McIntosh and Martinez earlier in the year, and in the derby both Adam Carter and Alex Grima made strong returns to the league side after several weeks working on their games in the reserves.
"It was a great effort from both of them and they are very important players for us going forward when playing well," he said.
"We've had some success, if you call it that, with guys going back to play well and then come back into the league side to do well and do a job. That was pleasing from that point of view."
Even though Tighe didn’t come back on after hurting his ankle, Hasleby is backing him in to get up and take on Subiaco at Leederville's Medibank Stadium this Saturday.
"He's had to have some scans but he's a tough character. He tried to come back on after he limped off which was a good sign that it wasn’t too bad," he said.
"He will do all he can to get back up and I will back him in to be able to do that. We even had John Sgherza in the ruck there in the last half and he competed manfully, but you don’t want to have to do that too often."
As impressive as the derby win was, Hasleby knows it counts for precious little if South Fremantle doesn’t come out with the same effort and intensity levels this Saturday against a Subiaco team that shocked the unbeaten Claremont on Sunday at Claremont Oval.
"You are kidding yourselves if you don’t give that effort every week. As a club, that's what we strive for and if you bring that attitude in any game, you will be a chance," Hasleby said.
"Even though we are a young group, we need to learn that is now the standard effort and if we can continue that, and keep raising the standard then we will be a good football team in the future."
By Chris PikeSOUTH Fremantle put on its most emphatic performance of the season to win the Foundation Derby by 67 points but coach Paul Hasleby wants that effort to now be the benchmark rather that a one-off display from the Bulldogs.

South Fremantle had won just one game so far this season coming into the derby but aside from the previous week's loss to Claremont and the Round 6 loss to Subiaco, the Bulldogs had shown flashes of what they were capable of in every other game so far.

However, it wasn’t until Sunday at East Fremantle Oval when everything clicked with South Fremantle's defensive pressure on the Sharks enormous all over the field, and then the skills and running game was a delighted to watch as the Bulldogs cruised to the thumping win.

It was one of those days where everything just clicked for four quarters for the Bulldogs for the first time this season, and Hasleby enjoyed watching it all come together in front of 5120 people at Shark Park.

"We would have taken any win but it was one of the more enjoyable days in the coaching box that's for sure," Hasleby said.

"The boys just brought great pressure and effort, and were able to turn the ball over quicker than we normally do against the Sharks to get the ball back, and then we had some really good, efficient avenues towards goal in the forward-line which always helps.

"We had a big focus on their uncontested marks and keeping that pretty low, and we kept them to under 50 which is a world record for us. There is a lot of work rate that goes into that, but also the communication between ourselves and that really does help."

South Fremantle did not have a single player in its 22 who didn’t contribute strongly.

Hasleby liked how the forward-line came together with Alistair Gillespie, Ashton Hams and Adam Guglielmana all kicking three goals each, and Mitch Banner, Paul Mugambwa and John Sgherza two as the Bulldogs piled on 21 goals for the afternoon.

The coach was particularly delighted with the game of former Claremont versatile big man Gillespie who finished with not only three goals, but also 27 possessions after he filled in in the ruck once Sean Tighe went off with an ankle injury.

"The forwards were really good and Adam Guglielmana was very dangerous, and we had Kris Miller and Mitch Banner down there. Gumby always presents well and it was pleasing for Gillespie to finish with three goals and 27 possessions in what was his best game for the club. We now have to build on the chemistry that those guys had out there and take it into the Subi game," he said.

"He was feeling better with his knee for the first time in a while as well and that helped him. It was pleasing that when Sean did go down, he took it upon himself to do something about it and he was having quite an impact before that as well. The challenge for him now is to be able to do that every week now."

Without doubt the two most dominant performers on the field were Hams and captain Ryan Cook, and Hasleby is delighted to have them in his side but believes both should be running around in the AFL on a regular basis.

"They are both great players. In my opinion, they both should be back in the AFL or playing in the AFL particularly Ryan Cook with his season so far," he said.

"He has been an absolute star and he has really worked on some of the deficiencies in his game. I think he is ready now for another shot at the elite level."

While defensive pressure hasn’t always been South Fremantle's strong suit so far in 2013, one player who is making it his trademark is 20-year-old Jacob Martinez.

He laid another nine strong tackles on Sunday and also did a good job quelling the influence of South Fremantle's prolific midfielder Rory O'Brien.

"His defensive intensity reminds me a lot of Troy Cook in the way he goes about it," Hasleby said.

"He was also very good with ball in hand this week, but I thought he stopped O'Brien from having much influence on the game as well and he has cut us up quite a bit in the past. Full credit goes to 'Spaniard' for his effort."

Tim Kelly is one of a host of young players that Hasleby has given an opportunity this season, and he put in another solid effort against the Sharks in his second league game with 15 possessions, six marks, five clearances and a goal.

"Timmy had a fantastic year in the colts last year and he's so clean around stoppages and below his knees," he said.

"He hits the ball at the contest at speed, and is still able to take it away so he is going to be a great asset for us for many years now."

Hasleby hasn’t been afraid to drop players back to the reserves this season for them to work on particular aspects of their game.

It worked with Adam McIntosh and Martinez earlier in the year, and in the derby both Adam Carter and Alex Grima made strong returns to the league side after several weeks working on their games in the reserves.

"It was a great effort from both of them and they are very important players for us going forward when playing well," he said.

"We've had some success, if you call it that, with guys going back to play well and then come back into the league side to do well and do a job. That was pleasing from that point of view."

Even though Tighe didn’t come back on after hurting his ankle, Hasleby is backing him in to get up and take on Subiaco at Leederville's Medibank Stadium this Saturday.

"He's had to have some scans but he's a tough character. He tried to come back on after he limped off which was a good sign that it wasn’t too bad," he said.

"He will do all he can to get back up and I will back him in to be able to do that. We even had John Sgherza in the ruck there in the last half and he competed manfully, but you don’t want to have to do that too often."

As impressive as the derby win was, Hasleby knows it counts for precious little if South Fremantle doesn’t come out with the same effort and intensity levels this Saturday against a Subiaco team that shocked the unbeaten Claremont on Sunday at Claremont Oval.

"You are kidding yourselves if you don’t give that effort every week. As a club, that's what we strive for and if you bring that attitude in any game, you will be a chance," Hasleby said.

"Even though we are a young group, we need to learn that is now the standard effort and if we can continue that, and keep raising the standard then we will be a good football team in the future."

By Chris Pike

Bulldogs hammer Sharks in Foundation Derby

Wednesday, June 5, 2013 - 3:17 AM

SOUTH Fremantle turned on its best performance of the year and saved it for the biggest day of the WAFL season to thump East Fremantle by 67 points in the Foundation Derby at East Fremantle Oval.

The Bulldogs turned on a clinic at times kicking four goals in 13 minutes in the first quarter, six in 17 to start the second term and eight in the first 21 of the third to lead by as much as 83 points before winning by 67, 21.13 (139) to 10.12 (72).
South Fremantle has been threatening such a performance all season showing glimpses of outstanding running and attacking football, and defensive pressure and for the first time on Sunday in the Foundation Derby it all came together for four quarters.
The Sharks had no response for the tackling and defensive pressure applied on them all over the ground, and with that pressure South Fremantle was able to cause turnover after turnover.
And then with ball in hand, South Fremantle's skills were exquisite with the running power more than East Fremantle could cope with and the Bulldogs managed to lead by as much as 83 points in the third quarter, before winning by 67 in what could be a season-defining victory.
There was not a South Fremantle player who didn’t step up and play a strong game in the derby even ruckman Sean Tighe had dominated the ruck with 22 hit outs before he went off with an ankle injury.
Alistair Gillespie had already put together a strong game by that point up forward with three first half goals, but he carried the ruck throughout the second half in the absence of Tighe for his best performance of the season for South Fremantle.
The former Claremont athletic big man finished with 27 possessions, five marks, five hit outs, five clearances, four entries inside-50 and the three goals.
While Gillespie was outstanding, it was Ashton Hams and Ryan Cook who dominated the contest and vied for best on ground honours right throughout the afternoon.
Hams was outstanding both up forward and in stints on the ball with the dual-premiership star and West Coast-listed player finishing with 34 possessions, seven marks, seven clearances, six inside-50 entries and three goals.
Captain Cook ran hard all day to continue to lead the way for the Bulldogs whether on the wing or on the ball. He finished with 31 disposals, seven marks, five clearances, eight inside-50 entries, a goal and several direct assists for goals to teammates.
There were star performers everywhere you looked, though, and when it comes to pressure once again 20-year-old midfielder Jacob Martinez led the way with another nine tackles to go with his 23 possessions.
Alex Grima and Mitch Carter both earned a recall into the league side and made the most of it with Grima finishing with 24 possessions, five tackles, four clearances and a goal off the wing, and Carter 18 touches, six marks and six rebounds from defensive 50 off half-back.
The rest of South Fremantle's defence was rock solid as well with Justin Monaco playing his second straight Foundation Derby, and keeping returning East Fremantle big man Rob Young quiet. Last year, Monaco kicked five goals against South Fremantle.
Dylan Ross continued his outstanding form as a key defender with 22 possessions and 10 marks. Nick Borovac was also terrific keeping Ryan Lester-Smith goalless and sneaking forward to kick the first goal of his 30-game league career as well.
Adam Carter also had 18 touches in the back-line, and Craig White 17 and 10 marks.
Toby Bairstow was another prolific ball winner picking up 30 possessions with Mitch Banner gathering another 23 to go with two goals.
The South Fremantle forward-line not only benefited from the good work up the ground, but dominated the Sharks' defenders.
Adam Guglielmana kicked three classy goals with John Sgherza and Paul Mugambwa adding two apiece to go with three majors from Hams and Gillespie.
South Fremantle's reserves might have gone down to East Fremantle by 17 points, but there were some strong performers with none better than premiership player Reece Adams who picked up 27 disposals, took six marks and kicked a goal.
Brendan Verrier also worked hard to finish with 27 possessions with Jarrod Parry picking up 21 while also laying seven tackles as he continues his impressive return from a horror run of two knee reconstructions.
Warrick Andreoli also gathered 19 possessions, Andrew Moody 17 and Sean Lynch 16.
Meanwhile, the colts got the day off to a terrific start recovering from trailing by two goals at quarter-time to beat East Fremantle by 37 points, 13.10 (88) to 8.3 (51).
Jarrod Pickett led the way for South Fremantle with 23 possessions and four goals with Bailey Matera also terrific with 23 disposals and three goals. Tim Stewart also gathered 25 possessions and kicked a goal for the Bulldogs.
SOUTH FREMANTLE 4.4 11.5 19.7 21.13 (139)
EAST FREMANTLE 2.1 5.3 7.10 10.12 (72)
SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: Hams, Gillespie, Guglielmana 3; Sgherza, Mugambwa, Banner 2; Cook, Grima, Winter, Miller, Borovac, Kelly.
Best: Hams, Cook, Gillespie, Martinez, Ross, Grima, Banner, M Carter, Bairstow.
EAST FREMANTLE – Goals: Simpson, Young 2; Howlett, MacDougall, McGough, Dick, Boyle, Duffy.
Best: Hadley, McGough, Simpson, Duffy, O'Brien.
By Chris PikeSOUTH Fremantle turned on its best performance of the year and saved it for the biggest day of the WAFL season to thump East Fremantle by 67 points in the Foundation Derby at East Fremantle Oval.

The Bulldogs turned on a clinic at times kicking four goals in 13 minutes in the first quarter, six in 17 to start the second term and eight in the first 21 of the third to lead by as much as 83 points before winning by 67, 21.13 (139) to 10.12 (72).

South Fremantle has been threatening such a performance all season showing glimpses of outstanding running and attacking football, and defensive pressure and for the first time on Sunday in the Foundation Derby it all came together for four quarters.

The Sharks had no response for the tackling and defensive pressure applied on them all over the ground, and with that pressure South Fremantle was able to cause turnover after turnover.

And then with ball in hand, South Fremantle's skills were exquisite with the running power more than East Fremantle could cope with and the Bulldogs managed to lead by as much as 83 points in the third quarter, before winning by 67 in what could be a season-defining victory.

There was not a South Fremantle player who didn’t step up and play a strong game in the derby even ruckman Sean Tighe had dominated the ruck with 22 hit outs before he went off with an ankle injury.

Alistair Gillespie had already put together a strong game by that point up forward with three first half goals, but he carried the ruck throughout the second half in the absence of Tighe for his best performance of the season for South Fremantle.

The former Claremont athletic big man finished with 27 possessions, five marks, five hit outs, five clearances, four entries inside-50 and the three goals.

While Gillespie was outstanding, it was Ashton Hams and Ryan Cook who dominated the contest and vied for best on ground honours right throughout the afternoon.

Hams was outstanding both up forward and in stints on the ball with the dual-premiership star and West Coast-listed player finishing with 34 possessions, seven marks, seven clearances, six inside-50 entries and three goals.

Captain Cook ran hard all day to continue to lead the way for the Bulldogs whether on the wing or on the ball. He finished with 31 disposals, seven marks, five clearances, eight inside-50 entries, a goal and several direct assists for goals to teammates.

There were star performers everywhere you looked, though, and when it comes to pressure once again 20-year-old midfielder Jacob Martinez led the way with another nine tackles to go with his 23 possessions.

Alex Grima and Mitch Carter both earned a recall into the league side and made the most of it with Grima finishing with 24 possessions, five tackles, four clearances and a goal off the wing, and Carter 18 touches, six marks and six rebounds from defensive 50 off half-back.

The rest of South Fremantle's defence was rock solid as well with Justin Monaco playing his second straight Foundation Derby, and keeping returning East Fremantle big man Rob Young quiet. Last year, Monaco kicked five goals against South Fremantle.

Dylan Ross continued his outstanding form as a key defender with 22 possessions and 10 marks. Nick Borovac was also terrific keeping Ryan Lester-Smith goalless and sneaking forward to kick the first goal of his 30-game league career as well.

Adam Carter also had 18 touches in the back-line, and Craig White 17 and 10 marks.

Toby Bairstow was another prolific ball winner picking up 30 possessions with Mitch Banner gathering another 23 to go with two goals.

The South Fremantle forward-line not only benefited from the good work up the ground, but dominated the Sharks' defenders.

Adam Guglielmana kicked three classy goals with John Sgherza and Paul Mugambwa adding two apiece to go with three majors from Hams and Gillespie.

South Fremantle's reserves might have gone down to East Fremantle by 17 points, but there were some strong performers with none better than premiership player Reece Adams who picked up 27 disposals, took six marks and kicked a goal.

Brendan Verrier also worked hard to finish with 27 possessions with Jarrod Parry picking up 21 while also laying seven tackles as he continues his impressive return from a horror run of two knee reconstructions.

Warrick Andreoli also gathered 19 possessions, Andrew Moody 17 and Sean Lynch 16.

Meanwhile, the colts got the day off to a terrific start recovering from trailing by two goals at quarter-time to beat East Fremantle by 37 points, 13.10 (88) to 8.3 (51).

Jarrod Pickett led the way for South Fremantle with 23 possessions and four goals with Bailey Matera also terrific with 23 disposals and three goals. Tim Stewart also gathered 25 possessions and kicked a goal for the Bulldogs.

SOUTH FREMANTLE 4.4 11.5 19.7 21.13 (139)

EAST FREMANTLE 2.1 5.3 7.10 10.12 (72)

SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: Hams, Gillespie, Guglielmana 3; Sgherza, Mugambwa, Banner 2; Cook, Grima, Winter, Miller, Borovac, Kelly.

Best: Hams, Cook, Gillespie, Martinez, Ross, Grima, Banner, M Carter, Bairstow.

EAST FREMANTLE – Goals: Simpson, Young 2; Howlett, MacDougall, McGough, Dick, Boyle, Duffy.

Best: Hadley, McGough, Simpson, Duffy, O'Brien.

By Chris Pike

Lucky Lottery Winners - Draw 8

Monday, June 3, 2013 - 9:48 PM

Congratulations to the following members!

Donald Doig -  188
Kevin Erbe -  216
Barbara Hosking -  331
Pat Ricci -  574
Joan Garcia -  765

Foundation (WA) Day Derby Preview

Friday, May 31, 2013 - 3:28 AM

IF EVER South Fremantle was going to find something and breathe some life into its season then it would be in the traditional Foundation Day Derby even if it is on Sunday, but it's an important game for East Fremantle to win at East Fremantle Oval as well.

The game is the first time it has not been played on the Foundation (WA) Day Monday since 1987. That derby that year was played on a Saturday afternoon on May 30 with South Fremantle winning 22.22 (154) to 17.11 (113) in a high-scoring shootout at East Fremantle Oval.
South Fremantle comes into the game after its biggest loss of the season to date going down at Fremantle Oval to Claremont by 67 points.
That was on the back of the Bulldogs beating Peel the previous week for their first win of the season but now they have slipped two games behind Subiaco, Peel and Swan Districts just above them on the ladder.
East Fremantle hasn’t played for two weeks after also losing to Claremont by 42 points. The Sharks had a Foxtel Cup win in the meantime, but they sit on a 4-4 record and present and could slip out of the four with a loss.
The Sharks have also struggled at home so far this season losing to Swan Districts, East Perth and West Perth while recording a win over Subiaco. One win from four home games isn’t what East Fremantle would have expected so won't want to drop another one on Sunday.
The two teams met on Anzac Day at Fremantle Oval with East Fremantle ending up cruising to a 29-point win on that occasion.
Ever since the Fremantle derby grand final of 1997 that South Fremantle won by a goal in a thriller, derbies on Foundation Day have continued to draw massive crowds and throw up fascinating results.
South Fremantle has won nine of the 15 clashes and there have been some massive hidings to go with thrillers along the way.
South Fremantle thumped East Fremantle in 2005, 06 and 07 by 82, 63 and 157 points along the way to six straight Foundation Day wins, but the Sharks hit back winning in 2009 and 10 before the Bulldogs won again in 2011 by 17 points.
It was another thriller last year at Fremantle Oval with East Fremantle holding on to win by eight points.
The crowds, not that they weren’t before, have been amazing to Foundation Day clashes as well with 108,913 fans coming through the gates of either Fremantle Oval or East Fremantle Oval in those 15 games since 1997.
That's an average of 7261 to each derby and there's no reason not to expect something similar this Sunday even if it is called WA Day now as a holiday, and it is being played on Sunday.
East Fremantle had the bye last weekend following the loss to Claremont and with a Foxtel Cup win over Norwood in Adelaide in the meantime.
From the side that lost to the Tigers by 42 points a fortnight ago, East Fremantle's defence has been savaged with the loss of West Coast's Mitch Brown and former Docker Steven Dodd. Eagle Bradd Dalziell had 31 possessions that day and also goes out of the side.
There are some terrific inclusions, though, especially to strengthen the forward-line with Brad Dick and Max Duffy back. Big man Rob Young is also a chance for a shock return for his first game since Round 1 after injuring his knee.
Tom Hooker, Scott Jansen, Adrian Ricciardello and Kurt Tropiano are all a chance to get a call up to the Sharks' line-up as well.
From the team that lost to Claremont last Saturday at home, Mitch Carter, Warrick Andreoli, Alex Grima, Reece Adams and Kingsley Smith are pushing for a recall with the Bulldogs.
Youngster Shannon Burnett and Fremantle-listed midfielder Haiden Schloithe are out of the South Fremantle team at this stage.
By Chris PikeIF EVER South Fremantle was going to find something and breathe some life into its season then it would be in the traditional Foundation Day Derby even if it is on Sunday, but it's an important game for East Fremantle to win at East Fremantle Oval as well.

The game is the first time it has not been played on the Foundation (WA) Day Monday since 1987. That derby that year was played on a Saturday afternoon on May 30 with South Fremantle winning 22.22 (154) to 17.11 (113) in a high-scoring shootout at East Fremantle Oval.

South Fremantle comes into the game after its biggest loss of the season to date going down at Fremantle Oval to Claremont by 67 points.

That was on the back of the Bulldogs beating Peel the previous week for their first win of the season but now they have slipped two games behind Subiaco, Peel and Swan Districts just above them on the ladder.

East Fremantle hasn’t played for two weeks after also losing to Claremont by 42 points. The Sharks had a Foxtel Cup win in the meantime, but they sit on a 4-4 record and present and could slip out of the four with a loss.

The Sharks have also struggled at home so far this season losing to Swan Districts, East Perth and West Perth while recording a win over Subiaco. One win from four home games isn’t what East Fremantle would have expected so won't want to drop another one on Sunday.

The two teams met on Anzac Day at Fremantle Oval with East Fremantle ending up cruising to a 29-point win on that occasion.

Ever since the Fremantle derby grand final of 1997 that South Fremantle won by a goal in a thriller, derbies on Foundation Day have continued to draw massive crowds and throw up fascinating results.

South Fremantle has won nine of the 15 clashes and there have been some massive hidings to go with thrillers along the way.

South Fremantle thumped East Fremantle in 2005, 06 and 07 by 82, 63 and 157 points along the way to six straight Foundation Day wins, but the Sharks hit back winning in 2009 and 10 before the Bulldogs won again in 2011 by 17 points.

It was another thriller last year at Fremantle Oval with East Fremantle holding on to win by eight points.

The crowds, not that they weren’t before, have been amazing to Foundation Day clashes as well with 108,913 fans coming through the gates of either Fremantle Oval or East Fremantle Oval in those 15 games since 1997.

That's an average of 7261 to each derby and there's no reason not to expect something similar this Sunday even if it is called WA Day now as a holiday, and it is being played on Sunday.

East Fremantle had the bye last weekend following the loss to Claremont and with a Foxtel Cup win over Norwood in Adelaide in the meantime.

From the side that lost to the Tigers by 42 points a fortnight ago, East Fremantle's defence has been savaged with the loss of West Coast's Mitch Brown and former Docker Steven Dodd. Eagle Bradd Dalziell had 31 possessions that day and also goes out of the side.

There are some terrific inclusions, though, especially to strengthen the forward-line with Brad Dick and Max Duffy back. Big man Rob Young is also a chance for a shock return for his first game since Round 1 after injuring his knee.

Tom Hooker, Scott Jansen, Adrian Ricciardello and Kurt Tropiano are all a chance to get a call up to the Sharks' line-up as well.

From the team that lost to Claremont last Saturday at home, Mitch Carter, Warrick Andreoli, Alex Grima, Reece Adams and Kingsley Smith are pushing for a recall with the Bulldogs.

Youngster Shannon Burnett and Fremantle-listed midfielder Haiden Schloithe are out of the South Fremantle team at this stage.

By Chris Pike

Googs' Gabble – Adam Guglielmana column May 30

Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 10:37 AM

SOUTH Fremantle is a proud football club with a rich history built on legendary teams of great players and coaches.

To be sitting at the bottom of the ladder after nine rounds is hard for the supporters and players alike.

To start our climb back up the ladder will take leadership and experience, two qualities we have lost a lot of in recent times. The best leaders of the last few years were all different characters that left their heart and soul on the ground.

Jaymie Graham and Ray Smithers were fierce competitors on the football field and two of the kindest and most considerate people off of it.

I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time with 'Jigga' in his last year at the club as we both had knee reconstructions within weeks of each other. Jaymie was a great captain as he got to know every player on a personal level, and treated everyone equal regardless of ability or status.

If something needed to be said or done for the betterment of the club, 'Jig' or Ray would say it, despite it not being in their nature to offend or upset.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The best leaders often prefer to let their actions inspire, rather than words. Toby McGrath was one of these types. He was hard as nails and could get a centre clearance when needed, kick a goal, or play deep in defence. Toby hated being beaten and rarely was. Opposition players shrunk in his presence and as a teammate you always walked a lot taller knowing he was on your side.

In 2009, South Fremantle was lucky enough to recruit two AFL superstars in Peter Bell and Jeff Farmer. As a former AFL captain 'Belly' brought a professionalism to his training and preparation that was to second to none. He was generous with his time and advice off the field as well.

I have to admit that I never really liked 'Wiz' when watching him play for Melbourne and Fremantle in the AFL, but he was an infectious character in person and trained at an unbelievable intensity, which really surprised me. I think he just loved playing football.

Timmy Malseed and Kris Miller were different types of leaders. They were, and still are, knockabout blokes who got along with every age group at the club once they made the switch from East Fremantle. They were important people as they bridged the gap between young and old and always kept a positive atmosphere in the change rooms. Timmy in particular had a horrible run with injury, ultimately costing him a spot in the 2009 league grand final, but he never complained and celebrated as hard as anybody once it was won.

As the season has progressed this year, and we are now almost halfway through, current players have started to show the traits of these leaders gone by, which should be heartening for the supporters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Each week we marvel at the courage of Nick Borovac and the tenacity of Jacob Martinez, the intense running of Ryan Cook and Toby Bairstow, the ability of Dylan Ross to play through injury, Jarrod Parry’s meticulous rehabilitation from two knee reconstructions, and Sean Tighe’s ability to carry the ruck duties almost single handedly.

Unfortunately this hasn’t culminated in much success to date, but with a little more experience the wheel will turn and hopefully that starts on Sunday in the WA Day Derby. 

By Adam Guglielmana

Bulldogs fall to Tigers at home

Tuesday, May 28, 2013 - 2:51 AM

SOUTH Fremantle might have gone down to the unbeaten reigning premiers Claremont on Saturday, but there were still some encouraging performances at Fremantle Oval and some strong outings in the reserves could have several players in the frame for a Foundation Day derby call up.

The Bulldogs came into the clash against the unbeaten Tigers and winners of the last two WAFL premierships coming off their first win of the season last week against Peel Thunder, but couldn’t quite replicate that on Saturday against Claremont at Fremantle Oval.
Claremont got off to a flying start with four goals to one in the opening quarter to lead by 23 points at quarter-time and then 45 points at half-time after another five-goal to one second term.
South Fremantle came out strongly in the third quarter and showed some fight at one stage kicking four goals in succession, but Claremont steadied to lead by 41 points at three quarter-time and then 67 by the final siren to record the 20.12 (132) to 9.11 (65) victory.
The Bulldogs midfield worked hard all day and as a team, South Fremantle actually picked up 20 more disposals than Claremont but could only manage 35 inside-50 entries to 61 from the Tigers.
Fremantle's rookie-listed on-baller Haiden Schloithe led the way for South Fremantle picking up 32 possessions while captain Ryan Cook gathered 31 to go with eight marks. Mitch Banner racked up another 30 disposals to go with seven marks, four inside-50 entries and a goal.
Sean Tighe worked hard in the ruck up against experienced pair Mark Seaby and Mitch Andrews, and finished with 15 possessions and 32 hit outs.
Adam Guglielmana picked up 21 possessions while taking four marks, laying three tackles, driving the ball inside-50 three times and kicking a goal.
Adam McIntosh gathered 18 disposals, Adam Carter 17, Sam Lowrie 17, Dylan Ross 17 and Tim Kelly was impressive on debut with 16 disposals and a goal.
Jacob Martinez continued his strong defensive pressure laying another seven tackles for the Bulldogs while Kris Miller had six inside-50 entries from his 16 possessions.
Meanwhile up forward, John Sgherza, Ashton Hams and Paul Mugambwa all worked hard and kicked two goals apiece.
The news was much better in the reserves with South Fremantle running out 16.7 (103) to 9.5 (59) winners over Claremont.
Jarrod Parry was outstanding in his second game back from his second knee reconstruction finishing with 28 possessions, four inside-50 entries and a goal for the Bulldogs in the 44-point victory.
Reece Adams worked hard in the midfield as well finishing with 28 possessions while Mitch Carter picked up 22 disposals, James Laurino 21, Andrew Moody 20 and Brendan Verrier 18.
Alex Grima did well for 21 possessions and two goals as well with Kaiden Matera booting six majors and Kingsley Smith four.
Myles Bolger had a good game in the ruck with 14 possessions, eight marks and 26 hit outs.
The South Fremantle colts went down to Claremont by 15 points to start the day at Fremantle Oval.
Jermaine Lewis kicked four goals for the Bulldogs with James Culleton adding two and Tim Stewart racking up 27 possessions, Matthew Nicholson 24, Matthew Gundry 19 and Tom Wheeler 17.
SOUTH FREMANTLE 1.0 2.3 7.6 9.11 (65)
CLAREMONT 4.5 9.6 13.11 20.12 (132)
SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: Hams, Mugambwa, Sgherza 2; Guglielmana, Banner, Kelly.
Best: Banner, Cook, Schloithe, Guglielmana, Tighe, Kelly.
CLAREMONT – Goals: Medhurst 5; Richardson, Hamp 3; Murphy, Jones, Smith 2; Foster, Andrews, Seaby. 
Best: Murphy, Medhurst, Foster, Laurie, Fong, McGinnity, Browne.
By Chris PikeSOUTH Fremantle might have gone down to the unbeaten reigning premiers Claremont on Saturday, but there were still some encouraging performances at Fremantle Oval and some strong outings in the reserves could have several players in the frame for a Foundation Day derby call up.

The Bulldogs came into the clash against the unbeaten Tigers and winners of the last two WAFL premierships coming off their first win of the season last week against Peel Thunder, but couldn’t quite replicate that on Saturday against Claremont at Fremantle Oval.

Claremont got off to a flying start with four goals to one in the opening quarter to lead by 23 points at quarter-time and then 45 points at half-time after another five-goal to one second term.

South Fremantle came out strongly in the third quarter and showed some fight at one stage kicking four goals in succession, but Claremont steadied to lead by 41 points at three quarter-time and then 67 by the final siren to record the 20.12 (132) to 9.11 (65) victory.

The Bulldogs midfield worked hard all day and as a team, South Fremantle actually picked up 20 more disposals than Claremont but could only manage 35 inside-50 entries to 61 from the Tigers.

Fremantle's rookie-listed on-baller Haiden Schloithe led the way for South Fremantle picking up 32 possessions while captain Ryan Cook gathered 31 to go with eight marks. Mitch Banner racked up another 30 disposals to go with seven marks, four inside-50 entries and a goal.

Sean Tighe worked hard in the ruck up against experienced pair Mark Seaby and Mitch Andrews, and finished with 15 possessions and 32 hit outs.

Adam Guglielmana picked up 21 possessions while taking four marks, laying three tackles, driving the ball inside-50 three times and kicking a goal.

Adam McIntosh gathered 18 disposals, Adam Carter 17, Sam Lowrie 17, Dylan Ross 17 and Tim Kelly was impressive on debut with 16 disposals and a goal.

Jacob Martinez continued his strong defensive pressure laying another seven tackles for the Bulldogs while Kris Miller had six inside-50 entries from his 16 possessions.

Meanwhile up forward, John Sgherza, Ashton Hams and Paul Mugambwa all worked hard and kicked two goals apiece.

The news was much better in the reserves with South Fremantle running out 16.7 (103) to 9.5 (59) winners over Claremont.

Jarrod Parry was outstanding in his second game back from his second knee reconstruction finishing with 28 possessions, four inside-50 entries and a goal for the Bulldogs in the 44-point victory.

Reece Adams worked hard in the midfield as well finishing with 28 possessions while Mitch Carter picked up 22 disposals, James Laurino 21, Andrew Moody 20 and Brendan Verrier 18.

Alex Grima did well for 21 possessions and two goals as well with Kaiden Matera booting six majors and Kingsley Smith four.

Myles Bolger had a good game in the ruck with 14 possessions, eight marks and 26 hit outs.

The South Fremantle colts went down to Claremont by 15 points to start the day at Fremantle Oval.

Jermaine Lewis kicked four goals for the Bulldogs with James Culleton adding two and Tim Stewart racking up 27 possessions, Matthew Nicholson 24, Matthew Gundry 19 and Tom Wheeler 17.

SOUTH FREMANTLE 1.0 2.3 7.6 9.11 (65)

CLAREMONT 4.5 9.6 13.11 20.12 (132)

SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: Hams, Mugambwa, Sgherza 2; Guglielmana, Banner, Kelly.

Best: Banner, Cook, Schloithe, Guglielmana, Tighe, Kelly.

CLAREMONT – Goals: Medhurst 5; Richardson, Hamp 3; Murphy, Jones, Smith 2; Foster, Andrews, Seaby. 

Best: Murphy, Medhurst, Foster, Laurie, Fong, McGinnity, Browne.

By Chris Pike

Colts Report - Round 10

Tuesday, May 28, 2013 - 1:23 AM

IT WAS the biggest game of the year on Saturday for the young SFFC colts side as they took on the undefeated Claremont colts.

They were under enormous pressure early and withstood an inaccurate Claremont barrage. Settling late in the first quarter, the boys were able to fight back to a reasonable position, with some clever goals off the boot of Jermaine Lewis (K Craft Bullbars award winner), and finished the first term with a handy lead.

Jermaine along with livewire Jarrod Garlett and James Culleton caused many headaches for the bigger Claremont backline.

Unfortunately the team was unable to sustain the intensity required to win against the stronger bodies of the top side and found the going tough in the second stanza, consequently letting the opposition dictate the contested ball, which they converted into a 10-point lead at half-time.

With an even contest for the rest of the day, the result was not ensured until late into the final term. Our young side is developing very well and we as a coaching group are looking forward to watching their progression over the coming weeks and hopefully making an impact in the business end of the season. There are many positives with this group and their best is getting closer as each week passes.

Other good performers for the South team were Matty Nicholson, Tim Stewart and Jayden D’Vauz who played his first game of the year. Jayden’s recovery from hip surgery over the season break has been long and arduous. It is a credit to him on the way he has dedicated himself to his rehabilitation and is set to make an impact not only at colt level but also within the senior ranks.

We look forward to another big challenge this week as we prepare for the Derby clash this Sunday.

Arthur Maskos
SFFC Colts Coach

Round 10 Preview v Claremont

Friday, May 24, 2013 - 1:20 AM

THE good news for South Fremantle out of last week was that the Bulldogs recorded their first win of 2013, the bad news is that waiting for them in response is the unbeaten, two-time reigning premiers Claremont at Fremantle Oval on Saturday.

While being competitive and having chances to win several games, South Fremantle went into last Saturday's home clash against Peel having lost its first seven matches.
The Bulldogs responded by kicking the first five goals of the game but Peel got back to within a point during the last quarter.
That has happened to South Fremantle several times this season with the opposition finishing the stronger, but it was the Bulldogs who finished the better last week to beat the Thunder by 15 points in the end.
Now given the closeness of the competition, an upset South Fremantle win on Saturday against Claremont, and if Subiaco loses to Swan Districts and Peel goes down to East Perth, and the Bulldogs could suddenly rise up to seventh position on the ladder.
However, it's a huge ask for the Bulldogs to pull that off against Claremont.
Claremont has played in the last three WAFL grand finals, won the last two premierships, won last year's Foxtel Cup and so far this season has won its first eight games including a 48-point win over South Fremantle at Claremont Oval in Round 1.
Claremont has also won the last seven meetings it has had with South Fremantle since the Bulldogs won the 2009 premiership. The average winning margin over those seven victories has been almost 46 points with the biggest margin 102 points in 2010 and closest three points in 2011.
South Fremantle's team looked instantly strong last week with the inclusions of Ben Saunders, Ashton Hams and John Sgherza to the forward-line. Hams and Saunders combined for seven goals before Saunders re-injured his collarbone late in the contest.
He is out of the side and so is key defender Brendon Gulley. Ashton Hams has been named out, but the Bulldogs will be desperately hoping he is still cleared to play by West Coast.
Claremont loses State player Ryan Neates with Jack Bradshaw, M Goyder, Casey Sibosado and Keifer Yu trying to break into a line-up that is still missing the likes of Trinity Handley, Jeremy McGovern and Luke Blackwell.
South Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby and his playing is excited by the challenge now presented to take on the unbeaten Claremont.
"We gain some confidence out of getting over the line and we aren’t afraid of Claremont. We will throw up our very best against them," Hasleby said.
"We know they are a very good side with some absolute key players for them but we will go about our business, try to disrupt their plans and take it from there. Our boys are really looking forward to this challenge on our home deck with a bit of excitement.
"The challenge for us is just to maintain our intensity for another game against a really high quality opposition and we know that if we have any of those lapses that we had against Peel and East Perth that they will dominate us more than those sides did. It's a challenge for us and we are looking forward to it."
By Chris PikeTHE good news for South Fremantle out of last week was that the Bulldogs recorded their first win of 2013, the bad news is that waiting for them in response is the unbeaten, two-time reigning premiers Claremont at Fremantle Oval on Saturday.

While being competitive and having chances to win several games, South Fremantle went into last Saturday's home clash against Peel having lost its first seven matches.

The Bulldogs responded by kicking the first five goals of the game but Peel got back to within a point during the last quarter.

That has happened to South Fremantle several times this season with the opposition finishing the stronger, but it was the Bulldogs who finished the better last week to beat the Thunder by 15 points in the end.

Now given the closeness of the competition, an upset South Fremantle win on Saturday against Claremont, and if Subiaco loses to Swan Districts and Peel goes down to East Perth, and the Bulldogs could suddenly rise up to seventh position on the ladder.

However, it's a huge ask for the Bulldogs to pull that off against Claremont.

Claremont has played in the last three WAFL grand finals, won the last two premierships, won last year's Foxtel Cup and so far this season has won its first eight games including a 48-point win over South Fremantle at Claremont Oval in Round 1.

Claremont has also won the last seven meetings it has had with South Fremantle since the Bulldogs won the 2009 premiership. The average winning margin over those seven victories has been almost 46 points with the biggest margin 102 points in 2010 and closest three points in 2011.

South Fremantle's team looked instantly strong last week with the inclusions of Ben Saunders, Ashton Hams and John Sgherza to the forward-line. Hams and Saunders combined for seven goals before Saunders re-injured his collarbone late in the contest.

He is out of the side and so is key defender Brendon Gulley. Ashton Hams has been named out, but the Bulldogs will be desperately hoping he is still cleared to play by West Coast.

Claremont loses State player Ryan Neates with Jack Bradshaw, M Goyder, Casey Sibosado and Keifer Yu trying to break into a line-up that is still missing the likes of Trinity Handley, Jeremy McGovern and Luke Blackwell.

South Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby and his playing is excited by the challenge now presented to take on the unbeaten Claremont.

"We gain some confidence out of getting over the line and we aren’t afraid of Claremont. We will throw up our very best against them," Hasleby said.

"We know they are a very good side with some absolute key players for them but we will go about our business, try to disrupt their plans and take it from there. Our boys are really looking forward to this challenge on our home deck with a bit of excitement.

"The challenge for us is just to maintain our intensity for another game against a really high quality opposition and we know that if we have any of those lapses that we had against Peel and East Perth that they will dominate us more than those sides did. It's a challenge for us and we are looking forward to it."

By Chris Pike

Hasleby relieved with Bulldogs' first win of 2013

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 - 1:23 PM

SOUTH Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby was relieved to get the Bulldogs' first win of the season over Peel but was most proud that his team responded to being challenged in the third quarter to run away with the 15-point victory.

The Bulldogs came out on fire on Saturday at Fremantle Oval kicking the first five goals of the game against Peel and still led by 20 points at half-time.
However, the Thunder hit back during the third quarter and closed to within a point during the last.
That same scenario has happened several times so far this season with South Fremantle unable to get over the line, but on Saturday it was the Bulldogs who finished the stronger to win by 15 points much to the relief of Hasleby.
"The feeling was more relief I reckon," Hasleby said.
"We didn’t play our best footy and as I said to the guys afterwards we had played better this year and lost games, but on this occasion we were able to eke out the win.
"We are under no illusions that Peel certainly had their chances in that third quarter, but we strung together three pretty good quarters which got the job done for us, so that was pleasing."
The Bulldogs' loss to East Perth at Medibank Stadium prior to the State game break followed a very similar storyline. South Fremantle dominated the first half but didn’t put the Royals away and had a disappointing third quarter before steadying to lead by 15 points midway through the last term.
However, East Perth went on to kick the last five goals that day to win by 19 points so that made Hasleby even more relieved when South Fremantle was able to reverse that trend in the last quarter on Saturday against the Thunder.
"We dominated the first half and then we had a very poor third quarter for the second game in a row. The challenge was there for the lads and it was very similar from the East Perth game so from a coaching point of view it's impressive to see that they learnt from that game," he said.
"They took a few more risks, won a few more contests around the ground and were able to finish off with a couple of goals which was nice. It's a work in progress for us to try and change the momentum when it's going against us.
"A few teams have scored quite a high number of goals in a row against us, so from a playing and coaching perspective we have a bit of work to do on how to stop teams getting 10 straight scoring shots against us. We will continue to work on that but once the third quarter was over we had to reset, and we did that to come away with the points."
While Sean Tighe dominated the ruck and Kris Miller, Mitch Banner, Ryan Cook, Toby Bairstow, Jacob Martinez, Shannon Burnett and Sam Lowrie were terrific around the ground, the presence of Ben Saunders and Ashton Hams was massive up forward for the Bulldogs.
Hams kicked four goals from his 24 possessions and eight marks with the returning Saunders kicking three goals before again going off injured late in the game.
"It was great to have both those guys back. It was the best team we've put on the park this year and it just goes to show how important Ben Saunders is to us and also Ashton Hams," Hasleby said.
"I believe he is the best AFL player when he comes back and plays in the WAFL with his impact on games and on the scoreboard.
"We had some other guys forward who have been doing it pretty tough because they've been the main targets in Paul Mugambwa, Sgherza and Gillespie so it strengthens them and makes them better players to have those guys around them as well."
While South Fremantle's experienced players performed well against Peel, so did the youngsters highlighted by 23 possessions and seven marks to Lowrie, and 22 disposals, four inside 50s and a goal to Burnett.
"It was Burnett's best game for the club which was pleasing after he was a little bit quiet the game before," he said.
"He took his opportunity this week and Sam showed from the very first game he played for us last year that he's up to the level. I told him that the challenge for him is to make himself an outstanding WAFL player which I believe he has the capabilities of doing."
With Hams and Saunders back into the team as well as Jarrod Parry and Warrick Andreoli returning in the reserves along with Alex Grima, Reece Adams, Mitch Carter, Justin Monaco, Jason Maskos, Willie Rioli and Kingsley Smith putting pressure on, Hasleby is glad to be getting closer to having a full squad available as well.
"We had our strongest league team of the year which reflected in the reserves who had a strong team as well," Hasleby said.
"Warrick Andreoli came back and played well, Justin Monaco continued to press for selection and it's a very good position to be in for the club in terms of depth. Right now is the best position of depth we've been in since my time at the footy club."
By Chris PikeSOUTH Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby was relieved to get the Bulldogs' first win of the season over Peel but was most proud that his team responded to being challenged in the third quarter to run away with the 15-point victory.

The Bulldogs came out on fire on Saturday at Fremantle Oval kicking the first five goals of the game against Peel and still led by 20 points at half-time.

However, the Thunder hit back during the third quarter and closed to within a point during the last.

That same scenario has happened several times so far this season with South Fremantle unable to get over the line, but on Saturday it was the Bulldogs who finished the stronger to win by 15 points much to the relief of Hasleby.

"The feeling was more relief I reckon," Hasleby said.

"We didn’t play our best footy and as I said to the guys afterwards we had played better this year and lost games, but on this occasion we were able to eke out the win.

"We are under no illusions that Peel certainly had their chances in that third quarter, but we strung together three pretty good quarters which got the job done for us, so that was pleasing."

The Bulldogs' loss to East Perth at Medibank Stadium prior to the State game break followed a very similar storyline. South Fremantle dominated the first half but didn’t put the Royals away and had a disappointing third quarter before steadying to lead by 15 points midway through the last term.

However, East Perth went on to kick the last five goals that day to win by 19 points so that made Hasleby even more relieved when South Fremantle was able to reverse that trend in the last quarter on Saturday against the Thunder.

"We dominated the first half and then we had a very poor third quarter for the second game in a row. The challenge was there for the lads and it was very similar from the East Perth game so from a coaching point of view it's impressive to see that they learnt from that game," he said.

"They took a few more risks, won a few more contests around the ground and were able to finish off with a couple of goals which was nice. It's a work in progress for us to try and change the momentum when it's going against us.

"A few teams have scored quite a high number of goals in a row against us, so from a playing and coaching perspective we have a bit of work to do on how to stop teams getting 10 straight scoring shots against us. We will continue to work on that but once the third quarter was over we had to reset, and we did that to come away with the points."

While Sean Tighe dominated the ruck and Kris Miller, Mitch Banner, Ryan Cook, Toby Bairstow, Jacob Martinez, Shannon Burnett and Sam Lowrie were terrific around the ground, the presence of Ben Saunders and Ashton Hams was massive up forward for the Bulldogs.

Hams kicked four goals from his 24 possessions and eight marks with the returning Saunders kicking three goals before again going off injured late in the game.

"It was great to have both those guys back. It was the best team we've put on the park this year and it just goes to show how important Ben Saunders is to us and also Ashton Hams," Hasleby said.

"I believe he is the best AFL player when he comes back and plays in the WAFL with his impact on games and on the scoreboard.

"We had some other guys forward who have been doing it pretty tough because they've been the main targets in Paul Mugambwa, Sgherza and Gillespie so it strengthens them and makes them better players to have those guys around them as well."

While South Fremantle's experienced players performed well against Peel, so did the youngsters highlighted by 23 possessions and seven marks to Lowrie, and 22 disposals, four inside 50s and a goal to Burnett.

"It was Burnett's best game for the club which was pleasing after he was a little bit quiet the game before," he said.

"He took his opportunity this week and Sam showed from the very first game he played for us last year that he's up to the level. I told him that the challenge for him is to make himself an outstanding WAFL player which I believe he has the capabilities of doing."

With Hams and Saunders back into the team as well as Jarrod Parry and Warrick Andreoli returning in the reserves along with Alex Grima, Reece Adams, Mitch Carter, Justin Monaco, Jason Maskos, Willie Rioli and Kingsley Smith putting pressure on, Hasleby is glad to be getting closer to having a full squad available as well.

"We had our strongest league team of the year which reflected in the reserves who had a strong team as well," Hasleby said.

"Warrick Andreoli came back and played well, Justin Monaco continued to press for selection and it's a very good position to be in for the club in terms of depth. Right now is the best position of depth we've been in since my time at the footy club."

By Chris Pike