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BILL'S GRILL – ROUND 10

Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 2:35 PM

FROM the outside of either East or West Perth it's a difficult concept to get your head around just how much a derby means to both clubs and their supporters.

You see them play in derbies over a number of years and sometimes you think why people are so passionate about but now the great thing about being the coach of the West Perth Football Club is you get to go and meet some of the past greats of the club. They talk about when Polly Farmer changed from one club to the other, they talk about when Don and Ray Marinko were going between East Perth and West Perth, and there's George Michalczyk and a lot of great players who have gone between the two clubs.
There is obviously a history of bad blood between the two clubs as well so that has been the really interesting part for me. I've learned a lot about the West Perth history by having derby stories told to me. There is so much passion there and the enjoyment West Perth people get from beating East Perth, it's just amazing.
As a coach coming from a background that wasn’t with East Perth or West Perth and to some extent the players who even now play the game, they are just wins. A win is a win no matter the opposition and afterwards we sit back, and reflect upon it. We might have a little bit more enjoyment because it is East Perth but our focus is always on preparing ourselves well and then making sure we perform well. If we can do that in a derby, then it holds a little bit more weight within the West Perth community and I'm sure East Perth is exactly the same.
The bizarre thing now is that there are a large number of West Perth supporters, especially those who are called 'Garlic Munchers' and are from that North Perth and Mt Lawley area that it's nearly an act of treason that East Perth plays out of Leederville Oval. For those who have been around the football club for a long period of time and have been through the Cardies and now the Falcons, beating East Perth means a lot to them.
It has been spelled out quite clearly to me by a number of people that there are only three things you need to do each year and that's win the three derbies, but when the temperature goes down a little bit it's not as simple as just beating East Perth. I tell them I will take three derby losses if we still play finals and are successful.
It still astounds me at times how passionate people are about the rivalry, but it's also something that I want the club to embrace and for it to continue. It gives us that little bit extra edge as two clubs when we play in a derby and that's great for the competition because we still have the ability to draw a 7 or 8000 person crowd. It's still a great day for both clubs to showcase their clubs and there is always good and bad publicity about it.
I think sometimes supporters and the press are looking for something to write or talk about in a derby. There is a lot of cats and dogs who don’t get kicked out at night when West Perth supporters go home after watching us win a derby.
As a player when I was at Subiaco in particular we never had one traditional rival over a long period of time. We were very successful at Subi when I first started and then I played in a period when we were often in finals, and made a couple of grand finals but didn’t win, and any rivalry we had was largely dependent on ladder positions at the time.
If you were near the top and played two or three times against another top side, then that became a real focus for that year and there was a period of time around 1995 when we had a strong rivalry with West Perth. We won 19 games that year at Subi and then West Perth knocked us off in the grand final. That then sprouted a rivalry and West Perth won 16 of the next 17 games against us after that and then it flipped the other way when Subi won nine in-a-row in the late 2000s.
It was probably West Perth who was our biggest rival at Subi so that was the closest I got to a derby-type rivalry, but it still wasn’t close to being on the same level. Before that when I first started there was a fair bit against East Fremantle because they were a good side and then through the late 1980s and early 90s Claremont was really successful.
The derby is unique, though, and I'm sure if you go back 25 or 30 years he passion at either a Fremantle or Perth derby was immense, and it's good to see that it has continued to a large degree.
From a players and coach point of view I don’t see anything noticeably different leading into a derby, but you do get a sense from people around the club like Vic Carbone, our team manager, and Bart DeVito, a long-time trainer, who walk around with more spring in their step. The board and supporters always send through messages and you even walk down the street and bump into friends and family who talk about the derby coming up.
You notice it a bit on the outside, but as a coach and player you are so focused on getting things right and on the processes and structures, and all those words that coaches trot out, that you get so absorbed in your work that it doesn’t have a big bearing on your week. The answer is that no it doesn’t affect us in preparation. We understand it happening around us, but it doesn’t take our focus off preparing right for the game.
BY BILL MONAGHANFROM the outside of either East or West Perth it's a difficult concept to get your head around just how much a derby means to both clubs and their supporters.

You see them play in derbies over a number of years and sometimes you think why people are so passionate about but now the great thing about being the coach of the West Perth Football Club is you get to go and meet some of the past greats of the club. They talk about when Polly Farmer changed from one club to the other, they talk about when Don and Ray Marinko were going between East Perth and West Perth, and there's George Michalczyk and a lot of great players who have gone between the two clubs.

There is obviously a history of bad blood between the two clubs as well so that has been the really interesting part for me. I've learned a lot about the West Perth history by having derby stories told to me. There is so much passion there and the enjoyment West Perth people get from beating East Perth, it's just amazing.

As a coach coming from a background that wasn’t with East Perth or West Perth and to some extent the players who even now play the game, they are just wins. A win is a win no matter the opposition and afterwards we sit back, and reflect upon it. We might have a little bit more enjoyment because it is East Perth but our focus is always on preparing ourselves well and then making sure we perform well. If we can do that in a derby, then it holds a little bit more weight within the West Perth community and I'm sure East Perth is exactly the same.

The bizarre thing now is that there are a large number of West Perth supporters, especially those who are called 'Garlic Munchers' and are from that North Perth and Mt Lawley area that it's nearly an act of treason that East Perth plays out of Leederville Oval. For those who have been around the football club for a long period of time and have been through the Cardies and now the Falcons, beating East Perth means a lot to them.

It has been spelled out quite clearly to me by a number of people that there are only three things you need to do each year and that's win the three derbies, but when the temperature goes down a little bit it's not as simple as just beating East Perth. I tell them I will take three derby losses if we still play finals and are successful.

It still astounds me at times how passionate people are about the rivalry, but it's also something that I want the club to embrace and for it to continue. It gives us that little bit extra edge as two clubs when we play in a derby and that's great for the competition because we still have the ability to draw a 7 or 8000 person crowd. It's still a great day for both clubs to showcase their clubs and there is always good and bad publicity about it.

I think sometimes supporters and the press are looking for something to write or talk about in a derby. There is a lot of cats and dogs who don’t get kicked out at night when West Perth supporters go home after watching us win a derby.

As a player when I was at Subiaco in particular we never had one traditional rival over a long period of time. We were very successful at Subi when I first started and then I played in a period when we were often in finals, and made a couple of grand finals but didn’t win, and any rivalry we had was largely dependent on ladder positions at the time.

If you were near the top and played two or three times against another top side, then that became a real focus for that year and there was a period of time around 1995 when we had a strong rivalry with West Perth. We won 19 games that year at Subi and then West Perth knocked us off in the grand final. That then sprouted a rivalry and West Perth won 16 of the next 17 games against us after that and then it flipped the other way when Subi won nine in-a-row in the late 2000s.

It was probably West Perth who was our biggest rival at Subi so that was the closest I got to a derby-type rivalry, but it still wasn’t close to being on the same level. Before that when I first started there was a fair bit against East Fremantle because they were a good side and then through the late 1980s and early 90s Claremont was really successful.

The derby is unique, though, and I'm sure if you go back 25 or 30 years he passion at either a Fremantle or Perth derby was immense, and it's good to see that it has continued to a large degree.

From a players and coach point of view I don’t see anything noticeably different leading into a derby, but you do get a sense from people around the club like Vic Carbone, our team manager, and Bart DeVito, a long-time trainer, who walk around with more spring in their step. The board and supporters always send through messages and you even walk down the street and bump into friends and family who talk about the derby coming up.

You notice it a bit on the outside, but as a coach and player you are so focused on getting things right and on the processes and structures, and all those words that coaches trot out, that you get so absorbed in your work that it doesn’t have a big bearing on your week. The answer is that no it doesn’t affect us in preparation. We understand it happening around us, but it doesn’t take our focus off preparing right for the game.

BY BILL MONAGHAN

TSALIKIS NAMED AAMI WAFL PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 2:34 PM

VETERAN West Perth forward Anthony Tsalikis continued his terrific form in Saturday's 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup and as a result has been named the AAMI WAFL Player of the Week for his efforts.

Tsalikis put in a terrific performance to help the Falcons to the 17.13 (115) to 12.7 (79) victory over Perth and has been named the AAMI WAFL Player of the Week to earn $250 for the Ocean Ridge Junior Football Club and $250 for himself, and he goes in contention for the overall $5000 AAMI WAFL Player of the Year Award.
The 30-year-old is enjoying a tremendous season with the second-placed Falcons so far having kicked 16 goals in the eight games to be equal on the club's tally with Josh Mellington.
He certainly is no stranger to that as a five-time West Perth leading goalkicker having kicked 49 goals in 2005, 58 in 2006, 42 in 2010, 39 in 2011 and 22 in 2012.
Tsalikis has now kicked 290 goals in his 158 games with West Perth, and his form this season has been as good as ever including his 16 possessions, 10 marks, four inside-50 entries and three goals in last Saturday's win over the Demons at Arena Joondalup.
West Perth coach Bill Monaghan is delighted with the way Tsalikis is travelling this season as well where he is still kicking goals, but also enjoying the freedom of getting further up the ground to use his pace and strong marking ability to full effect.
"He had a really good pre-season and was really keen to finish his career off on a high note whether that be this year or next year," Monaghan said.
"He looks after himself, he's working really hard and is getting good reward for that. He is enjoying the freedom of being up the ground as well where he can use his pace.
"I have been involved in WAFL footy for a long period of time and I don’t think I've seen anyone with better hands than him in terms of when he marks the ball. He isn’t a pack mark, but on the lead at pace his ability to catch the ball is as good as anyone's in the competition."
By Chris PikeVETERAN West Perth forward Anthony Tsalikis continued his terrific form in Saturday's 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup and as a result has been named the AAMI WAFL Player of the Week for his efforts.

Tsalikis put in a terrific performance to help the Falcons to the 17.13 (115) to 12.7 (79) victory over Perth and has been named the AAMI WAFL Player of the Week to earn $250 for the Ocean Ridge Junior Football Club and $250 for himself, and he goes in contention for the overall $5000 AAMI WAFL Player of the Year Award.

The 30-year-old is enjoying a tremendous season with the second-placed Falcons so far having kicked 16 goals in the eight games to be equal on the club's tally with Josh Mellington.

He certainly is no stranger to that as a five-time West Perth leading goalkicker having kicked 49 goals in 2005, 58 in 2006, 42 in 2010, 39 in 2011 and 22 in 2012.

Tsalikis has now kicked 290 goals in his 158 games with West Perth, and his form this season has been as good as ever including his 16 possessions, 10 marks, four inside-50 entries and three goals in last Saturday's win over the Demons at Arena Joondalup.

West Perth coach Bill Monaghan is delighted with the way Tsalikis is travelling this season as well where he is still kicking goals, but also enjoying the freedom of getting further up the ground to use his pace and strong marking ability to full effect.

"He had a really good pre-season and was really keen to finish his career off on a high note whether that be this year or next year," Monaghan said.

"He looks after himself, he's working really hard and is getting good reward for that. He is enjoying the freedom of being up the ground as well where he can use his pace.

"I have been involved in WAFL footy for a long period of time and I don’t think I've seen anyone with better hands than him in terms of when he marks the ball. He isn’t a pack mark, but on the lead at pace his ability to catch the ball is as good as anyone's in the competition."

By Chris Pike

WARRIOR GUADAGNIN EARNS FALCONS' LIFE MEMBERSHIP

Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 8:54 AM

MATT Guadagnin has been the ultimate warrior for West Perth over the past decade and now the tough and courageous midfielder becomes a life member of the club when he plays his 150th game for the Falcons in Monday's derby against East Perth at Leederville's Medibank Stadium.

It hasn’t always been an easy road for the farmer from Southern Cross who endured a knee reconstruction during the premiership year of 2003 and a badly broken leg in 2011 that he has only now just gotten on top of, but when on the field there has been no more respected West Perth player.
Guadagnin made his league debut with the Falcons in 2002, missed all of 2003 and ever since has been a mainstay of the Falcons' midfield brigade as one of the best in and under ball winners in the competition but also a skilful user of the ball when he's out in some space.
Now his terrific career reaches a significant milestone in Monday's Foundation (WA) Day derby against East Perth.
The 29-year-old also played his 100th game on the same day in a loss in 2010 so he hopes for a different result this time around, but even more so he's tremendously proud to now become a life member of the West Perth Football Club.
"I got to play my 100th against them as well and we went down that day so to get to play my 150th against them is a massive day, and hopefully we can get over them," Guadagnin said.
"It's something that I will definitely treasure and from a personal standpoint it will be the highlight of my career at this stage."
While finals success is the one thing left for Guadagnin to accomplish given he missed the 2003 premiership win meaning he is yet to play in a winning final in his career, his passion for West Perth is obvious with the way he plays and that's why life membership means so much to him.
"You just imagine the names who are amongst the life member group at the club and to now be a part of that is a massive honour. It's taken me a fair while to get there, but that makes it even more worthwhile. I can't wait to get out there," he said.
"It's always something in the back of your mind, but I never really thought about finishing up just yet.
"I just love it at the club and seeing young guys coming through makes it worthwhile to keep playing because they keep you enthused, and you get a different mix of players. I'm loving football and can't wait for next week now."
Right throughout his career Guadagnin has seen neither West Perth nor East Perth be able to gain an ascendancy over the other for any period of time so that's why he is fully aware that the Royals will again provide stiff opposition on Monday despite the Falcons having beaten them by 75 points in Round 1 at Arena Joondalup.
"We did get over them in Round 1 and it was a bit of a surprise how much we beat them by, but my gut feel is that the longer the year goes the better they will get and the better they will gel," he said.
"No matter what, though, when it's a derby it's on for young and old and like most games the start is going to be very important. Whoever settles first will get a big advantage so we will be ready, but I'm sure they will be as well."
Guadagnin's form is building nicely this season as well. He struggled throughout most of 2012 with complications continuing from his broken leg of 2011 and as a result had a limited pre-season.
That helped his body freshen up and allowed the stress fractures in his leg to go away, and now his form is showing the benefits including his 22-possession effort in last Saturday's 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup.
"I definitely had a slow start to the year and that was to be expected because I didn’t really do a big pre-season so I could get my body right," Guadagnin said.
"After breaking my leg a few years ago I've had a few niggling problems so I really didn’t start running until February so I thought I would have a slow start. It was a little frustrating, but now I'm building momentum and hopefully I can have an even bigger impact come the business end."
Following that win over Perth following a three-week break since beating East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval, the Falcons moved a game clear in second place on the ladder with a 6-2 record, and Guadagnin is delighted with the first half of the campaign so far.
"We couldn’t really be happier with the season so far. In the Claremont game we did a lot of things right and didn’t quite have the polish, and against Swans we controlled the game but again our foot skills let us down and then in the last 10 or 15 minutes we let them run over the top," he said.
"That was very disappointing but overall if you could have told me we'd be 6-2 at this stage of the year you would take it every time. We are fit. Last year we had a bit of interruption with our fitness guys and had two or three different ones, which didn’t help but this year we are fit and strong, and had a really good pre-season.
"We are thinking about the way we defend a lot more as well and we are doing well turning the ball over, which can make you look a bit quicker on the counterattack when you have more space to use the ball in. it's a good feeling amongst the boys at the moment that's for sure."
With exciting youngsters like Aaron Black, Shane Nelson, Nick Rodda and Matt Johnson continuing to emerge and experienced campaigners like himself, Jason Salecic, Ray Bartholomew, Anthony Tsalikis, Dan Hunt, Michael Pettigrew, Chris Keunen and Andrew Strijk still leading the way, Guadagnin is happy with the mix at the club at the moment and is excited about the future as well as 2013.
"We do have a healthy list, which we probably haven’t had the last couple of years. The depth we have is good too and we have six or seven young blokes coming through who probably deserve to play, so that holds us in good stead for the future," Guadagnin said.
"The depth is there and that's why everyone keeps playing well so they hold onto their spot. Those middle tier of players have really stepped up and Blacky has been outstanding, and Nelly has been really good and they have taken on leadership roles as well. You can't ask for much more than that from guys who are only 20 or 21. Over the next couple of years they are going to be dynamite."
BY CHRIS PIKEMATT Guadagnin has been the ultimate warrior for West Perth over the past decade and now the tough and courageous midfielder becomes a life member of the club when he plays his 150th game for the Falcons in Monday's derby against East Perth at Leederville's Medibank Stadium.

It hasn’t always been an easy road for the farmer from Southern Cross who endured a knee reconstruction during the premiership year of 2003 and a badly broken leg in 2011 that he has only now just gotten on top of, but when on the field there has been no more respected West Perth player.

Guadagnin made his league debut with the Falcons in 2002, missed all of 2003 and ever since has been a mainstay of the Falcons' midfield brigade as one of the best in and under ball winners in the competition but also a skilful user of the ball when he's out in some space.

Now his terrific career reaches a significant milestone in Monday's Foundation (WA) Day derby against East Perth.

The 29-year-old also played his 100th game on the same day in a loss in 2010 so he hopes for a different result this time around, but even more so he's tremendously proud to now become a life member of the West Perth Football Club.

"I got to play my 100th against them as well and we went down that day so to get to play my 150th against them is a massive day, and hopefully we can get over them," Guadagnin said.

"It's something that I will definitely treasure and from a personal standpoint it will be the highlight of my career at this stage."

While finals success is the one thing left for Guadagnin to accomplish given he missed the 2003 premiership win meaning he is yet to play in a winning final in his career, his passion for West Perth is obvious with the way he plays and that's why life membership means so much to him.

"You just imagine the names who are amongst the life member group at the club and to now be a part of that is a massive honour. It's taken me a fair while to get there, but that makes it even more worthwhile. I can't wait to get out there," he said.

"It's always something in the back of your mind, but I never really thought about finishing up just yet.

"I just love it at the club and seeing young guys coming through makes it worthwhile to keep playing because they keep you enthused, and you get a different mix of players. I'm loving football and can't wait for next week now."

Right throughout his career Guadagnin has seen neither West Perth nor East Perth be able to gain an ascendancy over the other for any period of time so that's why he is fully aware that the Royals will again provide stiff opposition on Monday despite the Falcons having beaten them by 75 points in Round 1 at Arena Joondalup.

"We did get over them in Round 1 and it was a bit of a surprise how much we beat them by, but my gut feel is that the longer the year goes the better they will get and the better they will gel," he said.

"No matter what, though, when it's a derby it's on for young and old and like most games the start is going to be very important. Whoever settles first will get a big advantage so we will be ready, but I'm sure they will be as well."

Guadagnin's form is building nicely this season as well. He struggled throughout most of 2012 with complications continuing from his broken leg of 2011 and as a result had a limited pre-season.

That helped his body freshen up and allowed the stress fractures in his leg to go away, and now his form is showing the benefits including his 22-possession effort in last Saturday's 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup.

"I definitely had a slow start to the year and that was to be expected because I didn’t really do a big pre-season so I could get my body right," Guadagnin said.

"After breaking my leg a few years ago I've had a few niggling problems so I really didn’t start running until February so I thought I would have a slow start. It was a little frustrating, but now I'm building momentum and hopefully I can have an even bigger impact come the business end."

Following that win over Perth following a three-week break since beating East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval, the Falcons moved a game clear in second place on the ladder with a 6-2 record, and Guadagnin is delighted with the first half of the campaign so far.

"We couldn’t really be happier with the season so far. In the Claremont game we did a lot of things right and didn’t quite have the polish, and against Swans we controlled the game but again our foot skills let us down and then in the last 10 or 15 minutes we let them run over the top," he said.

"That was very disappointing but overall if you could have told me we'd be 6-2 at this stage of the year you would take it every time. We are fit. Last year we had a bit of interruption with our fitness guys and had two or three different ones, which didn’t help but this year we are fit and strong, and had a really good pre-season.

"We are thinking about the way we defend a lot more as well and we are doing well turning the ball over, which can make you look a bit quicker on the counterattack when you have more space to use the ball in. it's a good feeling amongst the boys at the moment that's for sure."

With exciting youngsters like Aaron Black, Shane Nelson, Nick Rodda and Matt Johnson continuing to emerge and experienced campaigners like himself, Jason Salecic, Ray Bartholomew, Anthony Tsalikis, Dan Hunt, Michael Pettigrew, Chris Keunen and Andrew Strijk still leading the way, Guadagnin is happy with the mix at the club at the moment and is excited about the future as well as 2013.

"We do have a healthy list, which we probably haven’t had the last couple of years. The depth we have is good too and we have six or seven young blokes coming through who probably deserve to play, so that holds us in good stead for the future," Guadagnin said.

"The depth is there and that's why everyone keeps playing well so they hold onto their spot. Those middle tier of players have really stepped up and Blacky has been outstanding, and Nelly has been really good and they have taken on leadership roles as well. You can't ask for much more than that from guys who are only 20 or 21. Over the next couple of years they are going to be dynamite."

BY CHRIS PIKE

2013 MAJOR CLUB RAFFLE RESULTS

Monday, May 27, 2013 - 5:42 AM

The 2013 West Perth Football Club Major Club Raffle was drawn at the West Perth vs Perth home game on Saturday 25 May during the President's Luncheon.

The winner of the amazing first prize was Colin O'Malley who will enjoy a brand new home theatre entertainment package. In extraordinary circumstances, Colin was also lucky enough to pick up 4th prize and will enjoy $100 cash to spend as well! Congratulations to Don Valentino and Kay Lee who have also won $100 cash to spend. All winners have been notified and informed of how to collect their prizes.

We are extremely grateful to everyone who supported the raffle and helped to raise valuable income for the West Perth Football Club. We raised over $13,000 for our football department which is a fantastic achievement by all involved.

WEST PERTH 2013 MAJOR CLUB RAFFLE RESULTS

1ST PRIZE

HOME THEATRE ENTERTAINMENT PACKAGE 

VALUED AT $6,016


Changhong 55" 3D FULL HD SMART LED LCD TV

Panasonic Smart Network 3D Blu Ray Player

Marantz Slim 3D AV Surround Receiver

Jamo 5.1 Home Theatre Surround Sound Speaker Pack

KD Furniture Igloo Entertainment Unit

WINNER: TICKET NUMBER 06192  COLIN O'MALLEY

2ND PRIZE – $100 CASH

WINNER: TICKET NUMBER 05210 - DON VALENTINO

3RD PRIZE – $100 CASH

WINNER: TICKET NUMBER 03150 - KAY LEE

4TH PRIZE – $100 CASH

WINNER: TICKET NUMBER 06199 - COLIN O'MALLEY

If any members have their raffle book unsold, we would kindly ask that you still return the book to the West Perth Football Club for our final reconciliation.

Thanks again to all of our members for your generosity and support of this raffle.

FALCONS SECURE SECOND SPOT

Sunday, May 26, 2013 - 11:09 PM

Second spot on the ladder was up for grabs when the Falcons took on the Demons at the Arena Joondalup on Saturday.

An impressive four quarter effort by West Perth saw them run out comprehensive thirty six point victors and finish the round with a 6-2 record. The Falcons midfield provided the forwards with plenty of opportunities and this was rewarded with five of them kicking two or more goals.

Paul Bevan was very busy for the Demons early kicking their first two scores. Their seven point lead was reduced to just one after Anton Saylor took advantage of some good work by Anthony Tsalikis to score from forty. Consecutive behinds to the Falcons gave them the narrowest of leads before Fraser McInnes got clear to score a major. Each side took it in turns kicking goals in the first term and Josh Mellington continued the trend with a strong mark and conversion from forty. It was the first of three for the day in a strong display that included time in the midfield. Ashley Smith kicked a long bomb from sixty before Anton Saylor scored his second after taking the ball off hands. It was no surprise when Perth scored the next but the last for the term went to Anthony Tsalikis who marked and scored from fifty. “Slick” kicked three for the day and took ten marks in an impressive display. It was an even first term and at its end the Falcons held a one point lead; 4.3 (27) to 4.2 (26).

West Perth went a long way towards setting up victory with a three goal to none second quarter. They controlled the term for large periods and the defence combined to pressure the Perth forwards out of scoring opportunities. Behinds were the order of the day until the twelve minute mark when West Perth led by three. At this point in time Josh Mellington kicked to big man Nick Rodda who scored from thirty. Shortly after Marc Crisp received a free twenty out and converted. The last goal of the half went to Nick Rodda who scored his second from forty five. A dominant quarter saw West Perth lead by twenty one at the main change; 7.8 (50) to 4.5 (29).

Josh Mellington got the ball rolling in the third quarter when he ran onto the ball and scored on the run from fifty. Paul Bevan then bobbed up with his second and Perth’s first since the twenty six minute mark of the first quarter. West Perth then iced the game by kicking the next five goals and taking the lead out to fifty two after eighteen minutes. It was an impressive display of team football. Anthony Tsalikis scored from thirty, a terrific intercept by Jordan Jones set up Josh Mellington for his third, “Slick” marked outside fifty, played on and kicked his third and Jason Salecic took advantage of great forward line pressure to hit the scoreboard. Welcome back “Sala”!

The final goal in the run went to big man Chris Keunen who showed his skills by intercepting a kick out of defence and running into goal from thirty. The last three goals of the quarter went to dangerous Perth forward Brennan Stack. Up to this point he had been held to just one possession. At the final change West Perth held a six goal advantage; 13.11 (89) to 8.5 (53).

Matthew Johnson scored from thirty within two minutes to extend the lead but Brennan Stack kicked his fourth in a quick reply. Matthew Johnson then soccered his second from the square in a hectic start to the final term. The teams continued to trade goals with a second to the Demons Michael Florio, Matt Guadagnin then took the footy from a spillage to kick accurately and take the lead out to forty three.

The next two goals went to Perth and the lead was reduced to thirty with just minutes to go. Jay Van Berlo kicked the last for the game after an assist from Anthony Tsalikis. The teams had fought a draw in the last quarter but it was enough for the Falcons to record a six goal victory. Final scores were; 17.13 (115) to 12.7 (79).

It was an impressive victory to the Falcons who appeared refreshed after their two week break. Players to receive awards included Anton Saylor, Chris Keunen, Josh Mellington, Anthony Tsalikis, Dan Hunt who is in wonderful form and best was Jordan Jones whose use of the footy set up many attacking moves.

The Reserves recorded a very good victory against top side Perth. It was just reward as they have been very close to victory on a number of occasions. Best players included Cameron Branch, Matt Fowler, Kris Shannon, Steven Potente, Laine Rasmussen and best was Brayden Antonio. All of these players and a number of others are ready to make the step up to league footy when the opportunity arises. Another tough round of football starts next week with the WA Day Derby at Medibank Stadium on Monday. Be there to help get the boys over the line.

BY DARRELL KENT

PHOTOS BY BELINDA TAYLOR PHOTOGRAPHY

FALCONS DOWN PERTH TO MOVE CLEAR IN SECOND

Sunday, May 26, 2013 - 3:28 PM

WEST Perth showed no signs of rustiness after a three-week break in between games moving clear in second position on the ladder after a commanding 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup.

Both the Falcons and Demons came into the clash with identical 5-2 records and it was West Perth who moved a game clear in second spot and to remain in contention with the unbeaten Claremont by recording an impressive 17.13 (115) to 12.7 (79) victory.
West Perth last played on Saturday May 4 and recorded an also impressive 23-point win over East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval in a high-scoring shoot out that day, and despite the weeks without a game in between carried on that momentum on Saturday against the in-form Perth.
Perth had lost just two games this season to Claremont and East Fremantle by a combined seven points so the Demons were always going to prove a big test for West Perth, and in the end it was one the Falcons passed with flying colours.
West Perth came into the game having lost Mark Hutchings to West Coast but captain Jason Salecic returned from a hamstring injury for his first game since Round 2.
Laine Rasmussen also went out of the side that beat East Fremantle with the Falcons opting for two ruckmen as Frank Stockley came into the side to battle Perth's big men.
While the Falcons midfield and forward-line had terrific days as well, it was the home side's back-line that really stood out against the Demons.
Trent Manzone was given the big job on former Western Bulldogs forward and WA representative from this year Brennan Stack, and the pair had an enthralling battle.
While Stack kicked five second half goals, Manzone kept him very quiet in the first half and there was little he could have done on a lot of occasions with Stack isolated deep in attack. The Queensland recruit also did well running off with 19 possessions and seven marks for West Perth.
Meanwhile, veteran key defenders Michael Pettigrew and Dan Hunt were rock solid ensuring that Perth big forwards Haydn Busher and Fraser McInnes, and the resting ruckmen had no impact.
Jordan Jones continued his outstanding defensive form while also racking up 29 possessions and taking 12 marks. Luke Tedesco was outstanding in defence with 19 disposals and seven marks with Andrew Strijk having another 21 disposals and 10 marks.
State wingman Aaron Black continued his strong form for West Perth with another 31 possessions with Steven Browne also racking up 24 disposals, Ray Bartholomew 22, Matt Guadagnin 22, Marc Crisp 21 and Jay van Berlo 18.
Up forward, Josh Mellington kicked four goals to go with his 23 possessions and 12 marks. Anthony Tsalikis was also terrific with 16 disposals, 10 marks and three goals with Matt Johnson and Anton Saylor adding two majors apiece.
It was a terrific first quarter of football from both teams with each kicking four goals and with the game going from end to end with good skills, and quick ball movement.
There were eight lead changes in the first quarter alone with West Perth going into quarter-time one-point up, but it was all the home side in the second term. The Falcons kept Perth goalless with Mellington, Crisp and Nick Rodda kicking goals to make the half-time margin 21 points.
West Perth then turned on some scintillating play midway through the third quarter with their running game and skill level on full display. The margin got out to as much as 52 points before Perth showed some fight just before three quarter-time with three goals to Stack.
Two quick goals to Johnson to start the last quarter steadied West Perth again, though, and the Falcons went on to cruise to the 36-point win.
The West Perth reserves also recorded a 10-point victory against Perth on Saturday at Arena Joondalup with Matt Fowler kicking five goals from seven kicks.
Max Alexander also kicked two goals with Joel Latham racking up 25 possessions, Brayden Antonio 22 and Rasmussen 21.
The Falcons colts went down, though, to the Demons by 54 points despite three goals from Thomas Wells and 20 possessions to Joel Brown, and 18 to Ashley Smith.
WEST PERTH 4.3 7.8 13.11 17.13 (115)
PERTH 4.2 4.5 8.5 12.7 (79)
WEST PERTH – Goals: Mellington 4; Tsalikis 3; Saylor, Johnson 2; Rodda, Keunen, van Berlo, Guadagnin, Crisp, Salecic.
Best: Jones, Black, Mellington, Hunt, Browne, Guadagnin, Pettigrew.
PERTH – Goals: Stack 5; Bevan 3; Florio 2; McInnes, Ashley Smith.
Best: Ashley Smith, Jacobs, Bevan, Hodge, Stack, White, Sinclair.
BY CHRIS PIKEWEST Perth showed no signs of rustiness after a three-week break in between games moving clear in second position on the ladder after a commanding 36-point win over Perth at Arena Joondalup.

Both the Falcons and Demons came into the clash with identical 5-2 records and it was West Perth who moved a game clear in second spot and to remain in contention with the unbeaten Claremont by recording an impressive 17.13 (115) to 12.7 (79) victory.

West Perth last played on Saturday May 4 and recorded an also impressive 23-point win over East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval in a high-scoring shoot out that day, and despite the weeks without a game in between carried on that momentum on Saturday against the in-form Perth.

Perth had lost just two games this season to Claremont and East Fremantle by a combined seven points so the Demons were always going to prove a big test for West Perth, and in the end it was one the Falcons passed with flying colours.

West Perth came into the game having lost Mark Hutchings to West Coast but captain Jason Salecic returned from a hamstring injury for his first game since Round 2.

Laine Rasmussen also went out of the side that beat East Fremantle with the Falcons opting for two ruckmen as Frank Stockley came into the side to battle Perth's big men.

While the Falcons midfield and forward-line had terrific days as well, it was the home side's back-line that really stood out against the Demons.

Trent Manzone was given the big job on former Western Bulldogs forward and WA representative from this year Brennan Stack, and the pair had an enthralling battle.

While Stack kicked five second half goals, Manzone kept him very quiet in the first half and there was little he could have done on a lot of occasions with Stack isolated deep in attack. The Queensland recruit also did well running off with 19 possessions and seven marks for West Perth.

Meanwhile, veteran key defenders Michael Pettigrew and Dan Hunt were rock solid ensuring that Perth big forwards Haydn Busher and Fraser McInnes, and the resting ruckmen had no impact.

Jordan Jones continued his outstanding defensive form while also racking up 29 possessions and taking 12 marks. Luke Tedesco was outstanding in defence with 19 disposals and seven marks with Andrew Strijk having another 21 disposals and 10 marks.

State wingman Aaron Black continued his strong form for West Perth with another 31 possessions with Steven Browne also racking up 24 disposals, Ray Bartholomew 22, Matt Guadagnin 22, Marc Crisp 21 and Jay van Berlo 18.

Up forward, Josh Mellington kicked four goals to go with his 23 possessions and 12 marks. Anthony Tsalikis was also terrific with 16 disposals, 10 marks and three goals with Matt Johnson and Anton Saylor adding two majors apiece.

It was a terrific first quarter of football from both teams with each kicking four goals and with the game going from end to end with good skills, and quick ball movement.

There were eight lead changes in the first quarter alone with West Perth going into quarter-time one-point up, but it was all the home side in the second term. The Falcons kept Perth goalless with Mellington, Crisp and Nick Rodda kicking goals to make the half-time margin 21 points.

West Perth then turned on some scintillating play midway through the third quarter with their running game and skill level on full display. The margin got out to as much as 52 points before Perth showed some fight just before three quarter-time with three goals to Stack.

Two quick goals to Johnson to start the last quarter steadied West Perth again, though, and the Falcons went on to cruise to the 36-point win.

The West Perth reserves also recorded a 10-point victory against Perth on Saturday at Arena Joondalup with Matt Fowler kicking five goals from seven kicks.

Max Alexander also kicked two goals with Joel Latham racking up 25 possessions, Brayden Antonio 22 and Rasmussen 21.

The Falcons colts went down, though, to the Demons by 54 points despite three goals from Thomas Wells and 20 possessions to Joel Brown, and 18 to Ashley Smith.

WEST PERTH 4.3 7.8 13.11 17.13 (115)

PERTH 4.2 4.5 8.5 12.7 (79)

WEST PERTH – Goals: Mellington 4; Tsalikis 3; Saylor, Johnson 2; Rodda, Keunen, van Berlo, Guadagnin, Crisp, Salecic.

Best: Jones, Black, Mellington, Hunt, Browne, Guadagnin, Pettigrew.

PERTH – Goals: Stack 5; Bevan 3; Florio 2; McInnes, Ashley Smith.

Ashley Smith, Jacobs, Bevan, Hodge, Stack, White, Sinclair.

BY CHRIS PIKE

Round 10 PREVIEW V PERTH

Friday, May 24, 2013 - 1:20 AM

WEST Perth and Perth have been two of the form teams of the 2013 season to date and now do battle for the first time this year with second spot up for grabs.

The Falcons and Demons head into Saturday's clash at Arena Joondalup both with 5-2 records and the winner will move clear in second spot on the ladder behind top-of-the-ladder Claremont, a game ahead of the loser in this game and well clear of the fourth-placed side.
Perth has been the surprise packet of the season so far with the Demons showing that despite losing a host of talented players including Ross Young, Leon Davis and Aaron Elari, that having a well-coached and disciplined group who is 100 per cent committed to the cause is capable of big things.
The Demons have won five of the seven games but they could easily be 7-0 with the two losses coming when East Fremantle stole victory with the last kick of the game and then Claremont just held on in a thriller by five points.
West Perth has also been tremendous so far this season though. The Falcons came flying out of the blocks beating East Perth, Subiaco, South Fremantle and Peel Thunder before dropping two games to Claremont and Swan Districts.
However, the Falcons hit back on Saturday May 4 with a terrific win in a high-scoring shootout against East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval. West Perth hasn’t played since then, though, so it will be intriguing to see how the Falcons come out with three weeks in between matches.
While Aaron Black, Andrew Strijk and Jay van Berlo did play in the State game victory for WA over Victoria in Northam on May 11 while several young players also played in the rising stars game that Friday night, but the rest of the group has had two full weeks off from playing a competitive hit out.
West Perth will make at least two forced changed from the team that did beat East Fremantle with small defender Laine Rasmussen out injured and Mark Hutchings called up to play his second game with the West Coast Eagles against the GWS Giants.
Captain Jason Salecic is set to return from a hamstring injury for his first game since Round 2 with former Swan Districts small forward Steve Potente a chance to make his West Perth debut after a game in the reserves following injury.
Shaun Marusic, Frank Stockley and Jack Thrum are also pushing for selection for the Falcons.
Perth loses West Coast's Ashley Smith from the team that beat Subiaco by 25 points last Saturday with four players all looking to break into the side to either make their WAFL debuts, play their first game of the season or first with Perth.
David Johnston has joined Perth this season after time with both Swan Districts and Peel, and could come in for the Demons to play his first game while Matthew Hunt is a chance for his first game of 2013 with both Kieran Hug and Tyler Chrimes in the mix for their WAFL debuts.
While confident that West Perth can get the job on Saturday, Falcons coach Bill Monaghan can't help but be impressed with the transformation Perth has made so far this season.
"Even though there has been a bit of turnover on the Perth list, I don’t think it's been a talent issue at Perth for a number of years. I'm not on the inside of the club so I'm not going to comment directly on any culture issues they might have had, but people at the club have openly said they have tried to change the culture," Monaghan said.
"Having people like Paul Bevan around who has been part of the successful Sydney era would help that and it drifts down the entire playing squad. They have assembled a good list, they are playing an exciting brand of footy and get up the ground, and run back hard and defend hard.
"Talent-wise they have enough of that to be a strong team and it's now a fact that Marty Atkins is having an impact as CEO and the coach Damien McMahon has upped his expectations on the playing group.
"It just goes to show that if you have strong beliefs within the group and standards that you demand are met then you get your reward. They should be commended on what they have done so far."
BY CHRIS PIKEWEST Perth and Perth have been two of the form teams of the 2013 season to date and now do battle for the first time this year with second spot up for grabs.

The Falcons and Demons head into Saturday's clash at Arena Joondalup both with 5-2 records and the winner will move clear in second spot on the ladder behind top-of-the-ladder Claremont, a game ahead of the loser in this game and well clear of the fourth-placed side.

Perth has been the surprise packet of the season so far with the Demons showing that despite losing a host of talented players including Ross Young, Leon Davis and Aaron Elari, that having a well-coached and disciplined group who is 100 per cent committed to the cause is capable of big things.

The Demons have won five of the seven games but they could easily be 7-0 with the two losses coming when East Fremantle stole victory with the last kick of the game and then Claremont just held on in a thriller by five points.

West Perth has also been tremendous so far this season though. The Falcons came flying out of the blocks beating East Perth, Subiaco, South Fremantle and Peel Thunder before dropping two games to Claremont and Swan Districts.

However, the Falcons hit back on Saturday May 4 with a terrific win in a high-scoring shootout against East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval. West Perth hasn’t played since then, though, so it will be intriguing to see how the Falcons come out with three weeks in between matches.

While Aaron Black, Andrew Strijk and Jay van Berlo did play in the State game victory for WA over Victoria in Northam on May 11 while several young players also played in the rising stars game that Friday night, but the rest of the group has had two full weeks off from playing a competitive hit out.

West Perth will make at least two forced changed from the team that did beat East Fremantle with small defender Laine Rasmussen out injured and Mark Hutchings called up to play his second game with the West Coast Eagles against the GWS Giants.

Captain Jason Salecic is set to return from a hamstring injury for his first game since Round 2 with former Swan Districts small forward Steve Potente a chance to make his West Perth debut after a game in the reserves following injury.

Shaun Marusic, Frank Stockley and Jack Thrum are also pushing for selection for the Falcons.

Perth loses West Coast's Ashley Smith from the team that beat Subiaco by 25 points last Saturday with four players all looking to break into the side to either make their WAFL debuts, play their first game of the season or first with Perth.

David Johnston has joined Perth this season after time with both Swan Districts and Peel, and could come in for the Demons to play his first game while Matthew Hunt is a chance for his first game of 2013 with both Kieran Hug and Tyler Chrimes in the mix for their WAFL debuts.

While confident that West Perth can get the job on Saturday, Falcons coach Bill Monaghan can't help but be impressed with the transformation Perth has made so far this season.

"Even though there has been a bit of turnover on the Perth list, I don’t think it's been a talent issue at Perth for a number of years. I'm not on the inside of the club so I'm not going to comment directly on any culture issues they might have had, but people at the club have openly said they have tried to change the culture," Monaghan said.

"Having people like Paul Bevan around who has been part of the successful Sydney era would help that and it drifts down the entire playing squad. They have assembled a good list, they are playing an exciting brand of footy and get up the ground, and run back hard and defend hard.

"Talent-wise they have enough of that to be a strong team and it's now a fact that Marty Atkins is having an impact as CEO and the coach Damien McMahon has upped his expectations on the playing group.

"It just goes to show that if you have strong beliefs within the group and standards that you demand are met then you get your reward. They should be commended on what they have done so far."

BY CHRIS PIKE

WOMEN KICKING GOALS AT THE FALCONS

Thursday, May 23, 2013 - 5:16 AM

The West Perth Football Club continues to be one of the most progressive clubs in the WAFL. This year the Falcons have a number of women in key strategic positions within its ranks.

We are all aware that for the coaches and players, female partners play an important role when it comes to assisting there partner prepare for a game of WAFL football. This can be by preparing healthy meals during the week and carrying the load of domestic chores.

But the Falcons have lifted women’s involvement in football to well beyond the family home.

This year we have the following women taking on important senior roles within the club:

Rebecca (Bec) Daniels – Board of Directors

Jess Hayes – Head Trainer

Julie Carpenter – Colts Team Manager

Karly Hoar – Reserves Runner

This is not necessarily an innovative move by the Falcons because all these ladies have been involved with the club for a number of years. Karly and Julie are into their second year in their respective roles, Bec formerly worked for the Falcons in administration and Jess has served a number of years as a trainer.

Falcon’s President Brett Raponi said the club welcomed the influx not just because they’re women but because they were all highly capable in their roles.

“Women are one half of the world’s population. Football has always been seen as a man’s domain but at West Perth we see men and women as all-encompassing and with a role to play,” Raponi said.

“Like all WAFL clubs, we have many more ladies assisting with match day, sandwiches and raffles but for our club to continue to grow we recognise the need to get more women involved and holding senior positions within the club". 

The West Perth Football Club also wish to acknowledge some of the other ladies who also assist with match day including Natalie Sharman, Kathleen Tompsitt and Janet O’Neill to name a few. 

RODDA STANDING TALL FOR FALCONS

Thursday, May 23, 2013 - 1:23 AM

TEENAGE big man Nick Rodda continues to impress for West Perth in whatever role he is given and so far this season he is stepping up in attack as the one big target with a host of talented mid-sized players at his feet.

The 18-year-old stands at 194cm and despite still being young, is solidly built and is more than capable of holding his own physically against some of the more experienced brutes in the WAFL.

While he did spend much of his colts career with West Perth as a key defender and he is capable of spending time in the ruck, with Dan Hunt and Michael Pettigrew holding down the defensive posts, Rodda has been used forward so far in 2013 to terrific effect.

Rodda has done well kicking eight goals in the seven games including three against Peel Thunder in Round 5, but his main job is to provide a target, create a contest and at least bring the ball to ground, which he is doing well.

The team is performing well also with a 5-2 record to sit in second spot on the ladder following the win over East Fremantle way back on May 4, and leading into this Saturday's clash with Perth at Arena Joondalup.

"It definitely has been a good start to the year. I had a good pre-season and it's just good that we are winning games now and have started the season off pretty well. Hopefully we can just continue that on," Rodda said.

"It has been a good start for the team. We had a big emphasis going into the East Fremantle game that we would rather be 5-2 than 4-3 so getting that win to be 5-2 heading into the couple of weeks off solidified our spot near the top of the ladder. That puts us in good stead for the rest of the year."

Even though Rodda did earn a taste of league football in 2012 playing three games, now that he has done a full pre-season with the group, played every game so far and given such a key role in the side he now feels much more part of the Falcons' senior side.

"It definitely feels a lot better this year after doing a full pre-season with the boys. That helps you feel a much bigger part of the team and that has probably helped my form as well," he said.

"I probably feel more comfortable down forward nowadays. Last year I was pretty comfortable down back, but this year I have been put down forward and I'm enjoying it. I'm pretty comfortable there."

Rodda has emerged as West Perth's main tall forward target this season with the likes of Anthony Tsalikis, Rohan Kerr, Marc Crisp, Josh Mellington and his good friend and fellow youngster Matt Johnson around him offering him support.

"I have a lot of responsibility on myself to be that tall target down there and make a contest, but I have a lot of good players around me like Slick, Johnno and Chipper. Even if I don’t mark it, there's guys like that around to kick plenty of goals for us," he said.

"Johnno is one of my best mates and to have him down forward with me lets us have a lot of fun and we just try to do our bit for the team, but more importantly we really enjoy playing together out there."

Even though West Perth had the two-week break since beating East Fremantle with the State game and then the bye last weekend, over that first weekend Rodda played in the rising stars match at Medibank Stadium and now following the bye, is ready to now take on Perth this Saturday at Arena Joondalup.

"It's probably good in a sense that we had that game last Friday so I didn’t go without a game for two weeks to that was good and now it's all about freshening up to take on Perth," Rodda said,

"We have a two-week break and sometimes you can get a little carried away with not doing a lot, but we got a good win under our belt coming into it and now our focus is keeping on improving in these couple of weeks. We play Perth next week and hopefully we can keep our form going."

BY CHRIS PIKE

BLACK CONTINUES EMERGENCE ON THE WING

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 - 2:28 PM

AARON Black's continued emergence as one of the brightest WAFL stars continued when he played a key role for Western Australia against Victoria as the wingman now gears up to help West Perth continue its winning ways.

The 20-year-old has had an outstanding 2013 season to date for West Perth largely playing on the wing averaging 26.3 possessions a game and his form was rewarded by being selected to represent WA in the State clash with Victoria in Northam.

Not only did Black play, but he starred finishing with 21 possessions and two goals while spending most of the afternoon on the wing as the Black Swans ran over the top of the VFL and won by 17 points.

Black was confident that the WA side could overrun the visitors and in the end it was without doubt one of the highlights of his blossoming football career.

"It's one of the best games that I've been part of and best things that I've achieved so far in my career. I'm really excited to be part of it," Black said.

"There definitely was a good feel about the group this year and we thought we had a team that we could beat them with. We knew that even if we were down, if we came out and kept running and stayed fairly close, that we would run over them in the end."

Black started the State game in the best possible way when he kicked the first goal after just over a minute with a terrific long shot from just outside-50.

That helped him relax and settle into the contest, but really he was already calm going into the game and was glad that the WA coaching staff had the faith in him to play him on a wing and do a similar job to what he has become accustomed to doing at West Perth.

"It was a great way to start and it was really exciting to get a kick in that area. I knew I could go back and kick it with the wind so it was a really pleasing start. It got my confidence going as well early on in a game like that," he said.

"I think I was reasonably relaxed actually coming into the game. That's how I usually prepare for games is to stay relaxed so I can enjoy it. I tried to take everything in and then once the game started I knew that I had business to do, and it felt the same as a normal game really.

"I was really pleased to play the same role that I have been playing at West Perth. I knew that I could go out and have an impact in the game so it was really pleasing that the coaching staff had the confidence in me that I could go and do that."

Black certainly did notice that the game was a step up in intensity and pressure from a normal WAFL contest, but he was always confident that the WA team would have the fitness to overrun the Victorians and that's exactly how it panned out.

"I thought in the first half of each quarter we were really good with our pressure skills up," he said.

"We knew if we pressured them and turned the ball over that we could get them on the counterattack, and we stayed close enough in the second half where we knew that we could run over them in the last quarter. I think everything went to plan.

"That Victorian team was definitely really good inside and in-close at the contest like everyone said they would be. We knew we had a challenge coming into the game that we at least had to halve them at the stoppages so that was probably their biggest strength."

Black was glad to share the State game experience with West Perth teammates Jay van Berlo and Andrew Strijk, and now the trio have turned their focus back to the Falcons and Saturday's clash with Perth at Arena Joondalup after having last weekend to freshen up.

"It's great to have those guys who you play with back at West Perth to share something special with," Black said.

"Especially after not beating Victoria 22 years so to share it with VB and Strijky made it all the sweeter I suppose. It was a good week off with a light week on the track and now hopefully we can come into the Perth game ready to go by then after two weeks off."

BY CHRIS PIKE