ROUND 14 PREVIEW V SUBIACO

Friday, June 21, 2013 - 3:35 PM

WEST Perth and Subiaco meet in a crucial match at Arena Joondalup on Saturday with the Falcons looking to consolidate second spot and the Lions to get closer to a top-four spot.

West Perth hit back following disappointing losses to East Perth and Claremont with a tremendous performance last Sunday at East Fremantle Oval to control the contest from the start and end up beating the Sharks by 14 points.
That improved the Falcons to a 7-4 record to remain in second position on the ladder to be a game and percentage clear of East Perth in third, and two games and percentage ahead of the chasing pack made up of Perth, Swan Districts, East Fremantle and Subiaco.
The Lions stormed back into contention winning three straight games against Swan Districts, Claremont and South Fremantle leading into last Saturday's loss at home to Swans by 47 points.
However, Subiaco is still sitting on a 5-6 record and with a win on Saturday and if other results go the Lions' way, they could either sneak into the four or be right on the verge of a spot inside there.
The teams met earlier this season under lights at Medibank Stadium in Round 2 with West Perth winning a hard fought battle by 24 points.
West Perth loses exciting young forward Matt Johnson to a slight hamstring injury he went down with during last Sunday's impressive win over East Fremantle.
The Falcons are still without veterans Jason Salecic, Ray Bartholomew and Anthony Tsalikis, but could still have their team further strengthened with the return of Kody Manning from a knee injury.
Prior to getting injured, he was doing an outstanding job as a pressure forward and now after one game back in the reserves last week where he had 13 possessions, he could come straight back into the league line-up.
Rohan Kerr was also back from injury last week and will be better for the run this Saturday.
Mitch McPhee has been building strong form in the reserves all season long and had another four goals last week with defender Joe Morrow and small forward Steve Potente also pressing for a return with the Falcons.
Subiaco might have dropped a game to Swan Districts after impressive form prior to that with three straight wins, but the Lions' list of inclusions for this Saturday's trip to Joondalup will have them confident of returning to the winner's list.
Experienced SANFL recruit Tristan Gum had 28 possessions in the reserves last week after battling injury through the first half of the season to show he is ready for the WAFL debut.
Retired Fremantle 202-game defender Antoni Grover has now played two games back in the reserves after a knee injury for Subiaco as well to get himself ready for his first game of the season. He has been playing forward as well and could be set for a new role in the twilight of his career.
Then there is West Coast big man Callum Sinclair also set to return from a knee injury while fellow versatile big man Andrew McDougall is also back after missing last week's loss to Swans.
Abe Davey and Brad Stevenson are also pressing for a recall with the Lions and Charles Le Fanu in the mix to make his debut.
West Perth defender Jordan Jones knows how important last Sunday's win was over East Fremantle was in terms of consolidating second spot on the ladder, but he also knows what a big test Subiaco will present this Saturday at Arena Joondalup.
"The weekend's win was really important to try and maintain that second spot and we just have to keep trying to win each week now to hold onto that spot, and keep that gap open to third spot down to fifth where it's all pretty clattered on the ladder with everyone trying to fight for a spot in the four," Jones said.
"Both those losses coming into the game were really tough and we knew our backs were against the wall so to come back and have a good win against East Fremantle was a fantastic achievement by the boys.
"They've got some good players and they are starting to get a few guys back. I think Sinclair is a bit in for them and he really straightens them up, and has that flexibility to play in the ruck and he pushes forward so he's a really big in and that will make it a little tougher for us."
BY CHRIS PIKEWEST Perth and Subiaco meet in a crucial match at Arena Joondalup on Saturday with the Falcons looking to consolidate second spot and the Lions to get closer to a top-four spot.

West Perth hit back following disappointing losses to East Perth and Claremont with a tremendous performance last Sunday at East Fremantle Oval to control the contest from the start and end up beating the Sharks by 14 points.

That improved the Falcons to a 7-4 record to remain in second position on the ladder to be a game and percentage clear of East Perth in third, and two games and percentage ahead of the chasing pack made up of Perth, Swan Districts, East Fremantle and Subiaco.

The Lions stormed back into contention winning three straight games against Swan Districts, Claremont and South Fremantle leading into last Saturday's loss at home to Swans by 47 points.

However, Subiaco is still sitting on a 5-6 record and with a win on Saturday and if other results go the Lions' way, they could either sneak into the four or be right on the verge of a spot inside there.

The teams met earlier this season under lights at Medibank Stadium in Round 2 with West Perth winning a hard fought battle by 24 points.

West Perth loses exciting young forward Matt Johnson to a slight hamstring injury he went down with during last Sunday's impressive win over East Fremantle.

The Falcons are still without veterans Jason Salecic, Ray Bartholomew and Anthony Tsalikis, but could still have their team further strengthened with the return of Kody Manning from a knee injury.

Prior to getting injured, he was doing an outstanding job as a pressure forward and now after one game back in the reserves last week where he had 13 possessions, he could come straight back into the league line-up.

Rohan Kerr was also back from injury last week and will be better for the run this Saturday.

Mitch McPhee has been building strong form in the reserves all season long and had another four goals last week with defender Joe Morrow and small forward Steve Potente also pressing for a return with the Falcons.

Subiaco might have dropped a game to Swan Districts after impressive form prior to that with three straight wins, but the Lions' list of inclusions for this Saturday's trip to Joondalup will have them confident of returning to the winner's list.

Experienced SANFL recruit Tristan Gum had 28 possessions in the reserves last week after battling injury through the first half of the season to show he is ready for the WAFL debut.

Retired Fremantle 202-game defender Antoni Grover has now played two games back in the reserves after a knee injury for Subiaco as well to get himself ready for his first game of the season. He has been playing forward as well and could be set for a new role in the twilight of his career.

Then there is West Coast big man Callum Sinclair also set to return from a knee injury while fellow versatile big man Andrew McDougall is also back after missing last week's loss to Swans.

Abe Davey and Brad Stevenson are also pressing for a recall with the Lions and Charles Le Fanu in the mix to make his debut.

West Perth defender Jordan Jones knows how important last Sunday's win was over East Fremantle was in terms of consolidating second spot on the ladder, but he also knows what a big test Subiaco will present this Saturday at Arena Joondalup.

"The weekend's win was really important to try and maintain that second spot and we just have to keep trying to win each week now to hold onto that spot, and keep that gap open to third spot down to fifth where it's all pretty clattered on the ladder with everyone trying to fight for a spot in the four," Jones said.

"Both those losses coming into the game were really tough and we knew our backs were against the wall so to come back and have a good win against East Fremantle was a fantastic achievement by the boys.

"They've got some good players and they are starting to get a few guys back. I think Sinclair is a bit in for them and he really straightens them up, and has that flexibility to play in the ruck and he pushes forward so he's a really big in and that will make it a little tougher for us."

BY CHRIS PIKE