Round 11 Preview v West Perth

Friday, June 21, 2019 - 2:13 PM by Chris Pike

SWAN Districts is back home on Saturday afternoon to take on its fiercest of recent rivals, West Perth, with the black-and-whites desperate to put a four-quarter performance together to return to the winner's list.

Swans come into the clash with the Falcons having just six days earlier hosted Claremont also at Steel Blue Oval and putting in another strong showing for most of the afternoon.

Swan Districts led Claremont for the first half and then even most of the first three quarters before again being frustratingly overrun in the last term to lose to the Tigers by 34 points.

That left the black-and-whites with just two wins for the season but also having known they have played much better than that suggests, but just not for long enough in games and without being able to put enough of a score on the board or kick big enough scores.

But Swans have the chance to turn that around on Saturday afternoon against West Perth at Steel Blue Oval.

The league clash will bounce down at 2.25pm in what is the Count Me In Day for the 2019 season.

Count Me In Day will mean that the colts contest between Swan Districts and West Perth begins at 8.20am and the reserves at 10.50am to allow for an integrated match to be played leading into the league game from 1.30pm.

It should be a terrific day of action at Steel Blue Oval with the Swan Districts' colts desperate to bounce back from their first loss of the season against Claremont as well to maintain top position on the ladder.

But in the league contest, it's a pivotal game for Swans and a win will keep them in touch with the top five especially considering they have the best percentage of all teams outside the top five.

The record of 2-7 might not look fantastic, but the fact that Swans have been so competitive week after week even when not winning means that if they can start to string some wins together, the season can very quickly get back on track.

It will be the second clash with West Perth of the season for Swan Districts too. The first clash came back in the ANZAC Round at Joondalup's HBF Arena and that was a performance to give the black-and-whites plenty of confidence.

Swans beat the Falcons by 44 points in what was clearly their best performance of the season with Corey Gault kicking five goals, George Hampson three and Leigh Kohlmann two. Hampson also amassed 31 possessions, Jesse Turner 26, Matt Riggio 25 and Nathan Blakely 24.

That will give Swan Districts the confidence of knowing they can play well against West Perth, now they just need to replicate that on home soil. Bizarrely, Swans have struggled of late at Steel Blue Oval winning just one of their last 11 games at home.

Swan Districts coach Adam Pickering knows that everyone involved is getting frustrating with competitive efforts that end with fadeouts and hopes this week is the time they can turn things around.

"Our job as coaches is to keep them engaged and upbeat, and we'll have a light night on Monday, recover a bit on Tuesday and build into Thursday," Pickering said.

"Our next three games are West Perth, Peel and East Perth, and I see them as three winnable games. We break the year up into four-week blocks and we saw this as a winnable game against Claremont and the same as the next three against teams that are around our mark. 

"We just need to get over the line in one game, we need that reward for effort in one of these games and things might just click."

From the Swan Districts team that lost to Claremont last Sunday, there are no outs to the side at this stage while Josh Simpson, Chad Daniels and potential debutant Callum Garcia have been added to the squad.

Meanwhile, West Perth hasn’t played since beating the West Coast Eagles at HBF Arena by 36 points to improve to a 4-5 record on the season and having won four of their previous five matches since starting the season with four losses is succession.

From the team that beat the Eagles, West Perth also hasn’t named any outs at this stage. Only Nathan Alexandre, Conal Lynch and Tyson Moulton have been added to the squad.