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Friday, July 29, 2022 - 12:58 PM by Chris Pike

SOUTH Fremantle hasn’t lost to West Perth at Fremantle Community Bank Oval since the 2018 preliminary final and if the Bulldogs keep that run going on Saturday, they could rise further up the WAFL ladder.

The Bulldogs return home to Fremantle Community Bank Oval on Saturday to take on West Perth in their best patch of form of the season having now won three straight matches to be only percentage off second position on the WAFL ladder.

However, West Perth arrives at the port ground on Saturday sitting on top of the ladder on the back of last week's win against the West Coast Eagles following a loss to Claremont.

South Fremantle has now won three straight games against Claremont, Swan Districts and East Fremantle, and now the Bulldogs conclude their run of playing the fellow top five sides this Saturday at home.

The Bulldogs currently sit in third position with a 9-4 record and a win on Saturday will see them join West Perth on 10 wins and it will be up to East Fremantle and Claremont to win their respective matches to see if they can get to the 10-win mark as well following Round 15.

West Perth has now won the past two meetings between the two teams including by six points in Round 20 last year and then Round 4 this season, both at Joondalup.

In that game earlier this year, Sasha Kernutt, Sam Rotham and Mitch Dobson kicked two goals each for West Perth with Luke Meadows collecting 27 touches, Shane Nelson 27 and Aaron Black 22.

Mason Shaw and Brendon Ah Chee kicked two goals apiece for South Fremantle with Ah Chee also gathering 28 possessions, Tom Blechynden 28, Haiden Schloithe 28 and Chad Pearson 25 to go with 14 marks.

Prior to the last two wins from the Falcons, the Bulldogs had enjoyed a dominance between the teams in recent times including having won five straight prior to that win in Round 20 last year.

West Perth did score a shock upset preliminary final win in 2018 but prior to that South Fremantle had also beaten them on nine consecutive occasions.

Prior to these last two wins for West Perth, South Fremantle had won 14 of 15 against the Falcons, and still has won 14 of the past 17 coming into Saturday's match up.

And at Fremantle Community Bank Oval, the Bulldogs have now won all four meetings over the Falcons since the 2018 preliminary final, and prior to that had six straight. So South Fremantle has won 10 of its last 11 home games with West Perth.

South Fremantle coach Todd Curley is looking forward to the chance to not only make it four straight wins, but to make it four victories against all their fellow top five teams over the past month leading into the bye.

"It will be a good test. They have obviously been a really consistent team and have been in good form," Curley said.

"Ladder positions probably doesn’t mean that much at this stage with so many games to go, but it is an opportunity for us to go on level points with them. It's incredibly tight for positions but hopefully we can make it a big tighter with a good performance."

Coming into Saturday's game, South Fremantle remains the best defensive team in the WAFL for 2022 having only conceded 55.2 points a game. West Perth is ranked second giving up just 61.0 points.

However, West Perth has been significantly more dangerous in attack ranked third for points for at 80.6 a game while South Fremantle is seventh with 67.5.

Meanwhile, West Perth is clearly the best starting team in the competition for 2022 having outscored their opponents by an average of 12 points over first quarters this season. South Fremantle is ranked fifth.

However, the Bulldogs are then the second best performing second quarter team where West Perth is ranked seventh. Then in third quarters, both teams can't be split having outscored their opponents by 44 points while in last terms, the Falcons are ranked third and the Bulldogs fifth.