WAFL: West Perth under no illusions about Swan Districts challenge

West Perth won the Charity Shield over Peel. Picture: Matt Beilken
West Perth won the Charity Shield over Peel. Picture: Matt Beilken

WE experimented with backman Scott Simpson in the ruck instead of Seva Mozhaev in our win over Peel last week.

Seva has done some really good tap work for us, but hasn’t been finding a lot of the ball around the ground.

We thought we’d play someone with the ability to get midfield-type numbers and Scott answered the challenge with 27 disposals and a goal.

It’s a move we’ll probably make again – at least for this week against Swan Districts – but Seva’s a good ruckman and we believe he’s got a long-term future at the club.

We didn’t recruit Scott from Victoria to play as a ruckman, so I’m unsure how often he’ll be in the role.

We need to get the balance right against Swans at Arena Joondalup on Saturday.

We’ve got some great in-and-under ball winners, but we need to match that with outside run.

Only our best is going to better the undefeated Swans.

They’ve added some impressive former AFL talent in David Ellard, Jamie Bennell, Ryan Crowley and Xavier Ellis, who not only bring quality but strong leadership as well.

We’ll take a lot of confidence from our 15.18 (108) to 11.7 (73) win over Peel in Mandurah on Friday.

The players responded as I expected them to after South Fremantle defeated us so heavily the week before.

I’m really comfortable with our squad so it was just a matter of backing them in and hoping they had belief in themselves, which proved to be the case.

We went with a basic game plan – to get the ball in our forward half as quickly as possible.

The players executed that terrifically.

Swan Districts recruit Rudy Riddoch made his debut for our league side perhaps earlier than expected after just two reserves games.

Our poor performance against Bulldogs definitely helped his cause for inclusion against Peel, but we also consulted a number of senior players, who supported his place in the team.

It was pleasing to see him get on the scoreboard in his first game.

The challenge for him is to string together some solid performances.

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