Round 16: Match Preview Demons v Sharks

Saturday, July 21, 2018 - 11:08 AM

PERTH and East Fremantle might have been battling for the wooden spoon 12 months ago but the growth of the Demons since is evidenced by what a win on Saturday over the Sharks at Lathlain Park could mean for them.

Perth and East Fremantle both won just three games each in 2017 before they were hopeful of some significant improvement in 2018 to rise up the ladder

Perth might have come into the season with little fanfare considering they appeared to have lost more talent than they gained over the off-season with the departures of the likes of Aidan Tropiano, Liam McKenna, Julian Jacobs, Brent Latch, Gordon Narrier and Brennan Stack.

The Demons then made a slow start winning just two of their opening eight matches. But the signs were encouraging. Even in that Round 9 loss to Swan Districts by five goals, that was a game they led during the second quarter by 40 points.

Perth then broke through to beat South Fremantle by a goal and backed it up with a 64-point thumping of East Fremantle in Round 11. The Demons were then competitive in a loss to West Perth leading into the Round 12 bye.

Then coming out of the break, Perth has beaten Swan Districts by four goals and Peel by eight last Saturday having kicked the first four goals of the last quarter.

That has seen Perth move up into fourth position on the ladder with a 6-7 record and they could well be clear by two games in fourth spot by Saturday night depending on other results.

Having not played finals since 1997, the Demons' destiny is now in our own hands to get there in 2018 and a win over East Fremantle on Saturday would be another significant step towards achieving that.

Perth enters Saturday's clash with plenty of form and momentum against East Fremantle and as a result there is plenty of pressure on for spots in the Demons' team perhaps for the first genuine time in a very long time.

Anton Scotney and Mitch Browne are out of the Perth line-up coming out of last Saturday's win against Peel Thunder.

Bell has earned selection, and will be making his first league appearance since Round 15, 2016, capping off a tremendous return from a horror run of knee injuries for the quality defender.


PERTH (6-7, 4th) v EAST FREMANTLE (2-11, 9th)

Selected teams, live stats 
Broadcast – Noongar Radio, Footy Radio