More than 42,000 people packed into Subiaco Oval for the semi-final match, the vast majority hoping the Dockers could perform a demolition job on the opposition and propel themselves into the preliminary final, and just one win away from a second chance to win that first premiership cup.
The first half saw the team play to that plan perfectly, the purple midfield smothering their counterparts and not allowing the Power to have any of their trademark run.
The Dockers went into the main break four goals up and many Fremantle fans may have had one eye already on the next game.
Port Adelaide had a different idea though, and a rampaging second half saw them produce a 40-point turn-around, running Fremantle off their legs in the final quarter to win themselves through to the preliminary final against Haw-thorn this weekend.
But fans remained upbeat after the game, voicing their pride over how the team played this season and sending themselves home with a rendition of their theme song.
On Sunday, Fremantle captain Matthew Pavlich said there were some good signs in the first half, but as the game went on, Port Adelaide’s midfield got on top and the Dockers would have to improve to get to the grand final again.
‘Last year we got to the ultimate game and fell short there, it doesn’t really matter, it’s always hard to lose a final regardless of in what manner,’ he said.
‘Regardless of the expectation, it’s not a great feeling, nobody wants to go out the way we did. Nobody wants to lose a final, but the reality is we weren’t good enough, port were too good and they beat us on the night.’