Key defender Peter Faulks looked set to earn his first senior game with Fremantle last Saturday night against Hawthorn, and it would have been well deserved.

The former Sydney Swan, who was recruited to Fremantle via the Gold Coast in the 2010 NAB AFL Draft, had put together a solid month of football and seemed a likely replacement for suspended backman Luke McPharlin.

A short Hawthorn forward line, the availability of Alex Silvagni and Antoni Grover and a wet night meant Faulks was left to continue in the WAFL, but he produced another high quality performance nonetheless.

Lining up on former Melbourne forward Danny Hughes, the 23-year-old faced a day of repeat running up and down the ground, and he handled it well, according to assistant coach Simon Lloyd.

“Hughes is a player who has played AFL football and that’s the type of running you’re subjected to at AFL level,” Lloyd said.

“It was really good to see him have to play that type of role and he equipped himself well.

“He was discussed heavily last week and he’ll be in contention yet again.

“He’s got his defensive game at WAFL level down pat, so we’re encouraging him to try and reposition his forward and get used himself. That’s still the focus with him.”

Eight Fremantle players were involved in round 19 of the state competition, with midfielder Byron Schammer also continuing a strong run of form with Claremont.

Ahead of Friday night’s clash with St Kilda, Lloyd shared his WAFL notes with¬†

Claremont 20.16 (136) d East Perth 10.10 (70)

Byron Schammer
Byron played as a midfielder and sporadically as a high half-forward for Claremont, and he continued to be influential at stoppages around the ground. His ability to spread offensively and defensively was a trademark and he was intelligent in how he used the corridor to push hard forward in passages of play. He kicked one goal for the day, but he played unselfishly and was involved in numerous scoring chains.

Hamish Shepheard
Hamish did well on the weekend playing under duress for East Perth. He shouldered a lot of ruck work again and also played periods as a key forward in an undermanned side. His leading patterns early were impressive as a forward, and his ruck work continues to show signs of improvement. He’s quite a dynamic player and he took a big contested mark in the second quarter, which was pleasing.

Swan Districts 11.7 (73) lost to East Fremantle 27.13 (175)

Ben Bucovaz
Ben played as a high forward and on the wing for East Fremantle and his ball-use by foot and hand was the main positive. He closed down space defensively and tackled well, and he showed good movement around stoppages. He played a team-orientated game, using the first option, and the main focus for Ben now will be working on his repeat efforts and showing long, sustained periods of running.

Perth 14.9 (93) lost to South Fremantle 15.18 (108)

Joel Houghton
Joel played off a wing and in the ruck for Perth, and while he didn’t have a great deal of impact on the game his work-rate and tackling pressure was high. He kicked a good snap goal in the third quarter, which was a highlight, and he had six tackles. He tended to get caught between contests, so we’ll continue to work with Joel on his running patterns.

Casey Sibosado
Casey alternated between full-forward and centre half-forward for Perth, and he kicked an opportunistic goal early in the first quarter. A big thing for us as a key forward is leading with authority and there wasn’t enough of that. He had his best period of the game when he worked higher up the ground to get free from his direct opponent, but he didn’t use the ball as well as he usually does.

Jayden Pitt
Jayden played through the midfield and also as a high forward for Perth, enjoying a good first quarter and spreading laterally to receive the footy. His highlight was a terrific contested ball win in the second quarter followed by an elite handball. He kicked a nice snap goal in the last quarter and his effective kicking was another highlight, but we were really pleased with the signs from that contested ball win.

Peel Thunder 10.11 (71) lost to Subiaco 17.13 (115)

Peter Faulks
Peter played key back for Peel and was opposed to former Melbourne player Danny Hughes, who had a terrific work-rate and ran Peter up the group continuously. Again, Peter was rarely beaten and he spoiled with authority. He showed some really hard defensive run and a nice release kick in the second quarter.

Jesse Crichton 
Jesse struggled to get going with a leg injury for Peel and it got worse as the game progressed. He ended up getting some treatment and attempted to come back on briefly in the third and fourth quarters. He’ll have a week off this week with the bye, which is good timing, and our medical and conditioning team will assess where Jesse is at physically.

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