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Round 8 Preview v East Perth

Friday, May 3, 2013 - 1:04 AM
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SOUTH Fremantle has dominated East Perth over the last decade and the Bulldogs will be desperately hoping that continues on Saturday at Medibank Stadium for their first win of the 2013 season.

Even though South Fremantle has shown good signs in most of the first six games of the season including leading early in the third quarter of last week's eventual 29-point Anzac Day derby loss to East Fremantle, the fact remains that the Bulldogs sit winless at 0-6.

With the State game to come next week, the Bulldogs will be desperate not to enter the break 0-7 in a result that would equal the club losing the first seven games of the 1965 WAFL season.

Working in South Fremantle's favour is the fact that the Bulldogs have beaten East Perth in 16 of the last 18 meetings between the two clubs.

After East Perth beat South Fremantle in the final round of the 2004 season under lights at Leederville Oval with the Royals out of the finals race and Bulldogs gearing up for an appearance in September, it was South Fremantle that assumed total dominance in the rivalry.

Between 2005 and and the end of 2011, South Fremantle won 16 straight matches against East Perth with the Royals only managing to break that streak by winning both clashes between the two teams last year.

South Fremantle has recalled two youngsters Shannon Burnett and Sam Lowrie after some impressive reserves form with experienced goal kicker Adam Guglielmana also back having recovered from a hamstring injury.

Experienced midfield pair Alex Grima and Reece Adams have lost their spot in the South Fremantle side with young small defender Jason Maskos also unable to hold his spot in the team to take on the Royals.

South Fremantle vice-captain and dual premiership star Craig White was there for all 16 straight victories over East Perth during that run and missed the two losses last year when he was playing and coaching in Sydney with the Balmain Dockers.

He knows that such a run will count for precious little once out on Medibank Stadium come Saturday, but he does hope that everything can click for South Fremantle to bring home the long-awaited first four points of the 2013 season.

"We were lucky enough to have the wood over them for a number of years but now it's a very new group and not too many of our boys would have enjoyed the success that we did against East Perth going back a few years," White said.

"We are really keen to get out there on Saturday. We've done a bit of soul searching over the 10-day break and are really hoping we can turn it around, and find some form that can get us that first win on the board. Then hopefully that gets the ball rolling."

By Chris Pike