For the second week in a row, both West Coast and Fremantle enjoyed the taste of victory in the Queensland Hub in what would be their last visit before jetting home to Perth for a huge Western Derby this coming Sunday.
But what was good about both our WA Teams on Saturday?
We look at what we learned from Round 6 Of The AFL Season.
Fremantle def. St.Kilda By 6 PointsEmbed from Getty Images
Youngsters again find their calling
Some games are won by Superstars, some games are won by the young bloods and for the second game in a row, it was the youngsters who found their calling when the stars are struggling for possession of the football.
When Fyfe was shifted to the forward line after the 1st quarter – where the Dockers conceded 7 Goals – the midfield stood up and Michael Walters 26 touches were huge.
But the contributions by players like Brayshaw who is improving his game week by week and Adam Cerra, the top pick South Australian was steady on his feet when gathering the football, were crucial.
It is a way off the total polished product but the Dockers have showcased some good young players that are on the way to big futures and this game against the Saints was a prime example, even without a Premiership contender squad.
Never say die
The adage of Never Say Die can be applied to football on any given day, but the Dockers earn that tag on Saturday Afternoon on the Gold Coast.
It was a day where the Dockers fought back against all the odds and expectations.
When the Dockers were 36 points down at Quarter Time there was no hope and Bob Hope for Fremantle.
But it took guts and determination to take the points, it will be remembered as one of Fremantle’s best wins in recent years and one due to a modern masterstroke.
Longmuir’s stroke of genius
Everyone loves a gambler, one that takes a chance hoping it will pay off and Justin Longmuir took the risk, when he started his genius moves by shifting Nat Fyfe to the forward line to start the third term.
Longmuir was even more ambitious by leaving Fyfe there for the remainder of the match and Fyfe marked his presence inside the Forward 50 which rattled the Saints defensive structure to the point of constant turnovers that more often then not resulted in scoring opportunities for the Dockers.
They had to win the ball first and they held their nerve for the final 2 quarters to sneak home in a thrilling contest.
Paul’s Top Five Dockers
1- Michael Walters
2- Andrew Brayshaw
3- Caleb Serong
4- Nat Fyfe
5- James Aish
West Coast Def. Adelaide By 33 PointsEmbed from Getty Images
Kelly’s True Colours
West Coast are starting to find their groove in the last 2 weeks and one major attribute has been the rising form of Tim Kelly, the former Geelong gun. whom despite the pressure of hub life was again a key contributor in the Eagles win.
Kelly had 25 disposals and a game high 8 clearances, and while his first 5 games were good, Saturday’s game was great – he went up a level and relished his chance as the leading midfielder in Luke Shuey’s absence.
His attitude in a match is often applauded by his teammates and justifiably so as the pressure of hub life does take a bit out of you but if you have a good game on the field, it just about disappears.
Kelly is in for a huge 2020 if he keeps this form up.
Silver lining in the centre
The Eagles midfield may have taken a slight hit in the last 2 weeks with skipper Luke Shuey missing both games with a hamstring injury, but it has allowed some of the other centremen a chance to climb their way back into form.
Dom Sheed and Jack Redden proved themselves once again in their skipper’s absenc and Sheed for the last 2 weeks has relished a greater on ball presence.
His 24 touches & 7 Marks should give him the opportunity to move to an on-baller role while Jack Redden’s 18 Touches was also a prominent contribution for the Eagles.
Defender and stand in Skipper Jeremy McGovern truly was back to his best along with Oscar Allen who doesn’t look like getting dropped any time soon.
Who won that ruck battle?
It all started with a accidental tweet, another prime example of 2020 weirdness.
Reilly O Brien’s tweet, which leaked his match notes on Nic Naitanui, spurred on the battle between the two ruckmen.
The battle went on as expected and it was an even contest, Naitanui got on top early on in the match but O’Brien outworked him around the ground as he predicted.
Naitanui however would be victorious as his taps to Sheed & Yeo steered the Eagles to dominate the Inside 50 Count 49-24 and Centre Clearance count 13-4.
The exchange post match where Nic Nat handed O’Brien a new phone in a box was all class and illustrates some good can come out of banter.
Paul’s Top Five Eagles
1- Tim Kelly
2- Elliot Yeo
3- Jeremy McGovern
4- Dom Sheed
5- Oscar Allen
Next Week – Fremantle VS West Coast – Sunday Evening at Optus Stadium – 4:35PM AWST
Be sure to click on the WA Daily next week where a special Derby Preview will be featured as well as the TOP 5 Derbies in the 25 years since the first clash back in 1995 as well as the game review.