Pav record likely to stick
Fremantle coach Mark Harvey believes Matthew Pavlich’s eventual club games record is unlikely to be overtaken, with fewer players able to push towards the 300-game mark in the modern era.
Pavlich will break former full-back Shane Parker’s 238-game record when Fremantle clashes with Adelaide at AAMI Stadium on Saturday, and the durable skipper could reach 300 games within his current four-year contract.
Harvey said it was important not to make too much of the occasion with the players, but the club might not see a player with Pavlich’s longevity and durability again.
“The relevance of it and the importance of it is the fact that this might be the last time a player breaks a record like this, the way the game’s going,” Harvey said from Fremantle Oval on Wednesday.
“I’m not sure whether we’re going to see too many more 300-game players (across the AFL), let’s say, if he gets to that particular stage. I’m looking a little bit down the track.
“I just think that the game’s demanding more than ever now. It’s taxing.”
Harvey said Pavlich had asked to keep the occasion low-key this week, but president Steve Harris will speak about the captain’s achievement.
Fremantle kicked its way out of last Saturday night’s clash with Geelong, booting 3.9 in the second half to eventually lose by 11 points.
Harvey said fatigue shouldn’t be an excuse for the missed shots on goal and players had to get used to taking pressure shots late in games.
While the interchange rules fatigue players, Fremantle has gained an edge in both of its matches from the selected substitute.
Dylan Roberton was the substitute against the Brisbane Lions, while Rhys Palmer impressed against Geelong after being injected into the game in the third quarter.
“You’re probably more looking at the player that can expose the game when it is fatigued,” Harvey said of his substitute strategy so far this season.
“Hence, you’re looking at running players that can amass possession quickly and hurt the opposition.
“But you’ve got to be careful [not to select players consecutive weeks] otherwise you’re finding guys like Rhys, who had to run at the end of the game because of the week before as well.
“We probably don’t like to have the same players involved.”
Fremantle will consider recalling versatile defender Garrick Ibbotson this week, after his pre-season was interrupted by an ankle injury, and key defender Alex Silvagni (illness).
“They’re going to train tonight and we’re going to see how they go. It would come down to how much training they can do,” Harvey said.
“We’ll probably look at [Ibbotson] in a running capacity in defence.”