ROUND 20 PREVIEW V SUBIACO

Friday, August 5, 2016 - 2:44 PM by Chris Pike

WEST Perth can keep its top two WAFL hopes alive on Saturday taking on Subiaco at Kingsway Reserve in the third grand final rematch of 2016.

Subiaco and West Perth head to Kingsway Reserve for a community showcase match and it should be a tremendous battle in the third grand final rematch for 2016.

The Lions and Falcons have already beaten one another once each this season and now Saturday's clash will be crucial to both of them for different reasons heading towards the finals.

Kingsway Reserve has pulled out all the stops to host its first WAFL fixture as well thanks to the City of Wanneroo for the battle of the northern suburbs clubs who share bordering zones.

If West Perth wins and South Fremantle loses to Perth in Carnarvon, the Falcons would break into the top two for the first time in 2016.

But a Falcons and Bulldogs win on Saturday would see West Perth remain third but still just percentage behind South Fremantle with games to finish against Claremont and Swan Districts. But the Bulldogs have a game in hand.

AARON BLACK PERTHNOW COLUMN 
BILL MONAGHAN ROUND 19 Q & A 

Subiaco comes into the contest two games and percentage clear on top of the WAFL ladder and a win over West Perth would secure a second straight minor premiership as the Lions chase a third successive flag.

Subiaco finishes the season after that with two tough games against East Perth and Peel Thunder before the final round bye.

Meanwhile, a loss for Subiaco and top spot is just up for grabs still for both South Fremantle and West Perth.

The first grand final rematch this season saw Subiaco beat West Perth by 44 points at HBF Arena back in Round 3 before the Falcons hit back in Round 10 at Medibank Stadium overrunning the Lions to win by 26 points.

Both teams are in some good form as well with Subiaco having won four of its last five games to sit in top spot while West Perth has now won 10 of its last 12 matches following a 1-4 start to 2016.

West Perth coach Bill Monaghan knows that the Falcons need to still improve from what they delivered last week against Perth if they want to beat Subiaco.

"It's always a challenge when you take on the top side. They are a couple of games clear of us and not only are they the top side this year, they've won the last two premierships. They have a lot of quality all over the park and are big and strong," Monaghan said.

"It will give us a good gauge of where we're at, but if we play at the same intensity that we did this week or with the same style we won't win against Subi.

"From all reports the people at Kingsway have done a wonderful job to get the ground in great nick. It's one v three so I think a lot of people should get there and it should be an exciting game, but we just need to play better or else I don’t think we can win."

West Perth put together a solid win over Perth last Saturday to remain in the race for a top two finish and the Falcons did that without key defender Nick Rodda and small forward Steve Potente – both of whom again won't play this Saturday against Subiaco at Kingsway.

Despite the likes of Brayden Antonio, Matt Guadagnin, Matt Johnson, Kris Shannon, Mitch Peirce, James Batterham, Keegan Knott and Seva Mozhaev among the players in West Perth's reserves at present wanting another league opportunity, the Falcons do look to have a settled line-up.

There are no outs at this stage from the West Perth team that beat Perth last Saturday but Corey Chalmers, Jordan Mills and Luke Tedesco have all been added to the squad.

Chalmers gathered 17 possessions and kicked four goals in the reserves last Saturday against Perth while Mills finished with seven disposals and a goal, and Tedesco 12 touches.

Subiaco will be again without key premiership players Lachlan Delahunty, Kyle Halligan and Hayden Kennedy, but 2014 premiership forward Rhys Waters is a chance to come in for his second league game of 2016.

He looked solid in the reserves last week against Swan Districts with 13 possessions and 11 tackles to give himself a chance of his first league game since Round 7 against South Fremantle.

Waters has now managed two games back in the reserves to be a chance of another league opportunity in time to try and secure a place in the line-up ahead of another finals campaign.

Hard-at-it midfielder Adam Cockie will also return after a week off with a suspension. Prior to his week off he found some strong form again for the Lions in the Thursday night victory over South Fremantle at Medibank Stadium.

Young defender Greg Clark is another in contention to play for Subiaco's league side again.

He had a solid game two weeks ago in the win over the Bulldogs but was in the reserves last week against Swan Districts where he had 21 possessions and seven marks to put himself back in contention for what would be his 13th game of the season.

ROUND 20
SUBIACO (13-4, 1st) v WEST PERTH (11-6, 3rd) – KINGSWAY RESERVE, SATURDAY 2.15PM
Broadcast –
KIX Digital

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