Jay CronanIt’s the scene where so much debate was sparked last round. But for Greater Western Sydney, playing at Domain Stadium in Perth against Fremantle holds a purely football-related challenge.
And it’s a big one.
Not only are the Giants up against the 青岛夜生活网 competition front-runners, if they are to leave with four valuable points to keep them in touch with the top eight, they must overcome a terrible run of results playing in the west.
In five games at the stadium in Subiaco, the Giants have lost five times by margins of 95, 113, 111, 76 and 87. Three of those losses were to the Dockers and two were to West Coast, including their dismal defeat in round five, the low point of what has otherwise been a promising season for the young club.
“I’m not sure what it is,” said co-captain Phil Davis, who will make his return after a five-week injury lay-off.
“We always go there at the same time, we always train really well, there’s always a good feeling but for some reason it has turned not so well for us every time.
“A couple of times we were very light on with a lot of injuries. In round five this year we were in really good form and good condition. We went over there and played a very good side but we obviously didn’t bring our best football then either.
“It’s a tough place to play because of the travel. They’ve got a great fan base over there, they get very supportive. So if you don’t start well the 青岛商务模特 fans get heavily involved and it can be an even tougher place to play. It’s no excuse though and we expect to go over there and put in a really good performance.”
Davis’ experience will be crucial in containing Dockers’ goal-scoring spearhead Matthew Pavlich. His inclusion after a relatively quick comeback from an ankle ligament strain against Collingwood in mid-June is complemented by the selection of West Australian defender Nathan Wilson. Forwards James Stewart and Will Hoskin-Elliott have been included in a squad which needs to kick more than its six goals against Geelong last round. Nick Haynes (groin), Devon Smith (knee) and Zac Williams (hamstring) make way.
Davis said he was feeling refreshed after his time out.
“Missing out on the rigours of week in week out footy has made me a bit fresher than some blokes around the competition at the moment,” he said. “I haven’t had the bash and crash for a while. It would have been nice to stay out there and be rested rather than injured.
“Five weeks is a long period of time but I’ve been able to do a fair bit of training in the last few weeks, so I’m feeling pretty good.”
Davis returns at the end of a momentous week for the code, which began when Swans great Adam Goodes was taunted by sections of the crowd at Domain Stadium in Sydney’s match there against the Eagles. Davis spoke on behalf of his players when he put aside cross-town rivalry and called for Goodes to be treated respectfully.
“As players we fully support Adam,” the Giants foundation player said. “He’s done so much for the game and so much for so many aspects of society. He’s a great man. I’ve met him a few times personally and found him to be a really good guy. We fully support him as a footy club and as players.
“He deserves to be treated with utmost respect and we hope that he gets back to 青岛夜网论坛 playing football sooner rather than later.”
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