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First Semi-Final Preview v South Fremantle

Monday, September 11, 2017 - 9:18 AM
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IT is a full day of Swan Districts WAFL first semi-final action at Fremantle Community Bank Oval on Sunday with the Swans' colts, reserves and league sides all looking to advance to the preliminary finals of 2017.

For the second straight week to open the AHG WAFL Finals Series, Swan Districts will have all three grades playing at the same venue on the same day.

This Sunday that will see Swans' league, reserves and colts sides all taking part in first semi-finals at Fremantle Community Bank Oval with wins seeing them advance to the preliminary final next Sunday. While a loss will mean it's season over.

Things begin at 8.50am at the port with Swan Districts' colts taking on East Perth. Then at 11.25am, Swans' reserves play Claremont and in the main event from 2.15pm, it is Swan Districts up against South Fremantle.

It is a significant achievement for Swan Districts to have all three grades taking part in the second week of finals action and with the opportunity of advancing to the preliminary finals.

Last Sunday at Steel Blue Oval, Swans' colts lost to Claremont by 18 points while the reserves beat Perth in a thriller by five points and the league side prevailed against West Perth by 15 points in a tremendous performance.

For the Swan Districts' colts, they had a strong season to finish in third position before losing to a Claremont team going for a third straight premiership last Sunday. 

But they will be confident of advancing up against East Perth on Sunday with the Royals having made the finals only because of a win in the final round before beating Peel Thunder last Sunday. A win and Swans will play either East Fremantle or Claremont in the preliminary final.

Swans' reserves did well last Sunday to win a thriller at Steel Blue Oval against Perth to set up a clash with a strong Claremont outfit with plenty of regular league players. 

But the Swan Districts team will feature the likes of Jake Nuich, Josh Cipro, Jackson Slater, Troy Yukich, Ethan Maguire, Josh Power, David McKay, Jesse Manton, Brayden Hackett, Chad Daniels and Steven Wityk among those looking to continue their good form to help Swans to a preliminary final against either South Fremantle or Subiaco.

Despite having lost four straight matches heading into the finals, Swan Districts' league team put in a strong performance last Sunday to beat West Perth.

The young defence including Sam Taylor, Jacob Ness and Tobe Watson were outstanding while Matt Riggio, Ryan Crowley, Freddie Clutterbuck and Jarrad Blight were outstanding through the middle, and Jamie Bennell, Taryce Stewart and Ricky Cary all stood up to kick two goals apiece.

It was a performance full of passion and heart from the black-and-whites as they look to repeat the dose on Saturday against South Fremantle.

Despite the Bulldogs winning 16 of 20 games through the season, Swans beat them well in Round 2 at Steel Blue Oval by 21 points before also leading them by 40 points in the second quarter in Round 17 at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.

Even though South Fremantle ended up winning that game by 40 points, the fact that Swans have outplayed the Bulldogs in six of eight quarters so far this season gives coach Greg Harding plenty of reasons to be feeling good heading into Sunday's first semi-final.

"We are really confident in what we are going to get from the senior boys and I think that was proven last week with Crowley, Ellard and those guys playing so well. But when we look at South Fremantle we think they go really deep so to be competitive those young kids coming in are going to have to be super strong," Harding said.

"But I was ecstatic with how those boys stood up last week and even the ability of Taryce who hadn’t had a great day in the first three quarters but then impact when needed was really strong. We are pretty confident with young Taylor, Tobe Watson, Ness and those guys. They are pretty calm, laid back characters and that was evident last week in a game that had a big crowd and great atmosphere.

"There's certainly a positive energy that came out of the game and we needed to gain some momentum after a pretty average four weeks. There was momentum out of our performance and out of our supporters as well. They got going and I have no doubt that we will go down the road and look to outnumber the South Fremantle supporters and there's going to be another fantastic atmosphere at the game on Sunday."

LEAGUE FIRST SEMI-FINAL
SWAN DISTRICTS v SOUTH FREMANTLE – FREMANTLE COMMUNITY BANK OVAL, SUNDAY 2.15PM
Broadcast – 91.3 SportFM, Footy Radio

RESERVES FIRST SEMI-FINAL
SWAN DISTRICTS v CLAREMONT – FREMANTLE COMMUNITY BANK OVAL, SUNDAY 11.25AM

COLTS FIRST SEMI-FINAL
SWAN DISTRICTS v EAST PERTH – FREMANTLE COMMUNITY BANK OVAL, SUNDAY 8.50AM

By Chris Pike.