Rhys and Jack back in the pack
Luke McPharlin is out because of a one-match ban courtesy of the tribunal, while Nick Suban misses with soreness after one game back in the senior side.
Fremantle assistant coach Todd Curley said Anthony had earned his spot back in the side through strong form in the WAFL.
“He was really good last week for Subiaco, playing his most complete game for the year,” Curley said.
“He comes in with some good form behind him which should help him on Saturday.”
Curley said that, while Anthony kicked goals last week, it was also his overall team contribution that was pleasing.
“He got on the scoreboard but he also brought others into the game and helped set up multiple goals.”
Curley also added that Palmer would be fresh after missing the Derby.
“He’s raring to go and hopefully he can have a real impact,” Curley said.
Saturday’s match will be Adam McPhee’s 200th AFL game, with the 28-year-old having played 57 for Freo and 142 for his former club Essendon.
McPhee said that, when he made his AFL debut for Fremantle back in 2001, he never imagined he would ever reach the mark.
“The amount of steps that I’ve taken to achieve 200 games, I’m very proud of,” he said.
“There are a lot of ups and downs in football and the best challenge that I’ve had is being able to get through them mentally.
“It’s great when you’re playing your best football, but when you’re not playing your best football, that’s when it presents the times of hardship, and that’s when it really tests your mental capacity.
“I think guys that have played 200-plus games have certainly been able to look back on their career and say they’ve been able to get through a lot of challenging moments.
“That’s the most pride that I’d take out of my career, being able to fight through those challenges as a player.”
Curley said it was a significant milestone for McPhee, who he said was an important part of Freo’s structure because of his flexibility.
“He can play forward, midfield or back,” he said.
“He brings a big physical presence and a real hardness to the team.”
Since returning from injury in round 17, McPhee has been playing as a defensive forward, but his shutdown effort on Hawks’ captain and midfield general Luke Hodge in 2010’s Elimination Final was significant.
Curley said it was possible that McPhee could line up alongside Hodge again on Saturday night.
“Whenever you’ve got a good record against a player you’re name will come up,” he said.
“Adam’s certainly one option we could look at for Hodge, but we also think he’s been doing a pretty good job playing forward, whether as a marking target or for the pressure he applies on the opposition.”
Fremantle went down by 22 points to Hawthorn at the MCG in round 11 earlier this season in a match it had controlled for three quarters.
One factor in the home side’s favour on Saturday, however, will be an imposing record in the second leg when it plays two matches consecutively at home.
Fremantle has won the second match on the past six occasions when it played at home the previous week.