ROUND 6 of the 2022 WAFL season sees football return to the WACA Ground on Saturday with East Fremantle hosting Subiaco while there are four other fascinating contests that same afternoon.
All five matches in Round 6 of the WAFL competition again take place on Saturday with West Perth, East Fremantle and Claremont attempting to maintain their hold on spots at the top of the ladder.
South Fremantle is then attempting to win its fourth game of the season with Peel Thunder, East Perth, Swan Districts, Subiaco and Perth all trying to improve on their 2-3 records, and the West Coast Eagles hunting their first win of 2022.
The Round 6 WAFL action gets underway on Saturday at 11.40am at Mandurah's Lane Group Stadium with Peel Thunder hosting Claremont.
Then at 1.30pm at Leederville Oval it's East Perth at home to the West Coast Eagles with the Royals looking to snap a three-game losing slide with the Eagles still hunting their first win of 2022.
The other three matches all take place at 2.10pm with East Fremantle playing Subiaco at the WACA Ground. It's the first WAFL fixture at the venue since the 1994 finals double-header with the Sharks attempting to win a fifth straight match and the Lions a third in-a-row.
West Perth then puts its hold on top spot on the line when the Falcons host Perth at Joondalup's Pentanet Stadium.
Finally it's Swan Districts at home to South Fremantle at Bassendean's Steel Blue Oval with Swans trying to win a third game for the season so far the Bulldogs a fourth.
PEEL THUNDER v CLAREMONT
Peel Thunder is back at home to host Claremont at Mandurah's Lane Group Stadium in Round 6 of the WAFL season on Saturday.
It's the early starting game for Saturday with a bounce down time of 11.40am with the match shown live on Channel 7 and there's a lot on the line for both teams.
The Thunder are coming off a loss to South Fremantle last Saturday and now will be looking to bounce back with a win to break from the flock of teams coming into the round on a 2-3 record.
The Tigers also head south for the contest fresh off a big win against East Perth last Saturday which sees them improve to a 4-1 record on the season and a chance to finish this round on top of the ladder depending on how other results go.
This will be the first meeting between the two teams since Round 15 last season when Claremont won a tight one in Mandurah by nine points over the Thunder.
That was a sixth consecutive win for the Tigers against Peel even though four of the victories have been by single-figure margins.
The Thunder's last win against Claremont was back in Round 9, 2018 at Revo Fitness Stadium. That was a fifth consecutive win for Peel against the Tigers, but they haven't managed a win against them since coming into Saturday's clash in Mandurah.
Peel went down to South Fremantle last Saturday afternoon but there were plenty of positive signs in the performance at the same time. They now have made four changes coming into Saturday's clash at home with Claremont.
Brodie Carroll, Lachlan Cullen, Neil Erasmus and Ben Middleton are the Thunder players to come into the squad to take on the Tigers on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Jye Amiss, Ethan Hughes, Jack Sears and Darcy Tucker go out from the team that lost to South Fremantle a week ago.
Claremont has elected to make no changes from the team that beat East Perth last Saturday with Jacob Blight, Charlie Malone, Alex Pearce and Oliver Sheldrick remaining their four emergencies against Peel on Saturday.
EAST PERTH v WEST COAST EAGLES
East Perth and West Coast Eagles are two teams in need of a victory when they lock horns at Leederville Oval on Saturday as part of Round 6 in the WAFL.
With East Perth looking to snap a three-game losing run and West Coast attempting to win a first game of 2022, neither team will be lacking in motivation when they run out onto Leederville Oval.
The Royals started the new season impressively with wins against Swan Districts and Perth, but they have since suffered losses at the hands of East Fremantle, Subiaco and Claremont.
The Eagles, meanwhile, have found the going tough so far in 2022 with losses to Perth, South Fremantle, Peel Thunder, East Fremantle and West Perth by an average of 67.4 points.
This will be just the fifth clash between the two teams in the WAFL and the first since Round 16 last season when it was a thrilling two-point win for the Eagles against the Royals at Leederville Oval.
In fact, all four previous meetings between the two teams have all been played at Leederville Oval. The first was Round 6, 2019 with East Perth winning by 34 points before West Coast won later that same season by 24 points.
The Royals then won by 57 points in Round 7, 2021 in the biggest differential between the two teams across the four previous meetings.
East Perth has made three changes to its team as they attempt to snap a three-game losing streak that continued against Claremont last Saturday.
Jedd Busslinger comes into the East Perth team while Tom Edwards-Baldwin and Jackson Ramsay both return to act some quality and experience to the line-up.
Going out of the East Perth team from the one that lost to Claremont last week are Kyle Hamersley, Gordon Narrier and Eddie Simpson.
The Eagles have also made three changes to their team that lost to West Perth last week as they attempt to break their duck for the 2022 season.
Joey Deegan, Dom Sheed and Elliot Yeo are the three players to come in for West Coast, but the amount of game time and roles that AFL premiership players Sheed and Yeo will be allowed to play on their returns from injury will remain to be seen.
Going out of the Eagles team from the side that last to the Falcons last week are Lachlan Feeney, Cooper Nitschke and Luke Strnadica.
EAST FREMANTLE v SUBIACO
Two in-form teams take their talents as WAFL football returns to the WACA Ground on Saturday with East Fremantle taking on Subiaco.
Subiaco might have had a remarkable dominance over East Fremantle this century, but coming into Saturday's clash, it's the Sharks sitting near the top of the ladder and the Lions trying to build some momentum.
It will also be the first game at the WACA Ground in 28 years and the occasion is marked by what looms to be a fascinating contest between East Fremantle and Subiaco.
The Sharks come into the game in second position and just 2.53 per cent behind the top placed West Perth. They lost their first game of the season to Peel Thunder but have since impressively defeated Swan Districts, East Perth, West Coast and Perth.
The Lions, meanwhile, had a rocky start to their premiership defence in 2022 with losses to South Fremantle, Claremont and West Perth, but they have now won their past two matches against East Perth and Swan Districts to be on a two-game winning run coming into Saturday's clash.
East Fremantle beat Subiaco in Round 19 last year in a stunning 44-point upset at Leederville Oval. That was a shock result late in the season with the Sharks going on to miss the finals for a seventh consecutive season while the Lions went on to win another premiership.
However, prior to that Subiaco had won nine matches in-a-row against East Fremantle by an average of 61.4 points. And then even before another shock Sharks upset by 80 points in Round 8, 2016, the Lions also won five straight against East Fremantle.
Subiaco has won 14 of the last 16 against East Fremantle coming into Saturday's clash, but being at the WACA Ground adds in another level of intrigue.
Saturday marks just the fourth ever time the two teams have played at the world famous venue, and the first since Round 11, 1990 when the Sharks won by 32 points.
The other two clashes were more than 100 years ago with East Fremantle winning by 49 points in 1902 and Subiaco by 25 points in 1915.
Overall, Saturday will be the 778th WAFL game ever played at the WACA Ground, but it will be the first since a finals double-header in 1994 where East Fremantle beat West Perth in the qualifying final, and Subiaco beat Swan Districts in the elimination final with 11,835 fans turning up.
East Fremantle has played 139 times at the WACA Ground over history, with the first time being Round 1, 1898 when they lost to Rovers and the last being that qualifying final win in 1994. All up in the 139 games, the Sharks have won 82, lost 54 and drawn three.
Subiaco, meanwhile, has played a total of 118 games in history at the WACA Ground with the first time being Round 7, 1901 when they lost to West Perth by 45 points. Their first win wasn't until Round 10, 1903 at the ground against North Fremantle by 15 points.
All up, the Lions have 48 times at the WACA Ground, lost 70 and never played in a draw there.
East Fremantle is looking to extend their winning streak to five matches and coming back into the team to help achieve that against Subiaco is State representative Jonathon Marsh.
Sam Medland is also coming into the Sharks line-up after playing for the Eagles against East Fremantle out of necessity two weeks ago.
The Sharks do have two significant omissions, though, in the form of reigning fairest and best winner Kyle Baskerville and veteran utility Ryan Lester-Smith.
Subiaco is looking for a third straight win as well on Saturday at the WACA Ground with the Lions making two changes with premiership youngster Ben Golding coming back into the side along with Jaimon Alone.
Going out for Subiaco are premiership winning pair Brandon Matera and Max Walters who got hurt during last Saturday's win over Swan Districts in Kalgoorlie.
WEST PERTH v PERTH
West Perth has enjoyed a remarkable recent dominance against Perth so the job appears ahead of the Demons in Saturday's contest at Joondalup's Pentanet Stadium.
Not only has West Perth won 20 of the last 21 clashes against Perth over the last decade, but the Falcons are also in terrific form so far in 2022.
West Perth sits on top of the WAFL ladder coming into Round 6 having won their past four matches after a first up loss to Claremont to start the season.
Perth has beaten West Coast and Peel Thunder so far in 2022, but they've also lost to East Perth, Swan Districts and East Fremantle to be sitting on a 2-3 record coming into Saturday's match up with West Perth at Joondalup.
Perth finally broke through for a win against West Perth in Round 9 last year with a 10-point win at Joondalup, but the Falcons hit back with a 50-point win in Round 22 on the way to another finals appearance.
Prior to that win for the Demons in Round 8 last year, the Falcons had won the previous 19 clashes between the two teams. Perth's previous win was Round 18, 2011 also at Arena Joondalup.
In between Round 5, 2012 and the first semi-final of 2020, West Perth racked up that remarkable 19-match winning streak by an average of 38.2 points.
In a strange quirk, Perth's last two wins against West Perth have come at Joondalup while the Falcons have won 26 of the 33 clashes at their home venue against the Demons dating back to 1994.
West Perth is on a four-game winning streak and has made two changes coming into the clash with Perth on Saturday on home turf.
State representative Luke Meadows and ruckman Troy Yukich coming back into the Falcons' line-up.
Ruckman Ben Delaporte and youngster Luke Reilly are the players going out of the West Perth side that beat West Coast last Saturday.
Perth has been forced into mass changes coming into the clash with West Perth with Jack Avery, Dakota Baldwin-Wright, Mitch Browne, Jye Clark, Corey Hitchcock, Kane Johnston, Sam Perkusich and Matthew Taylor all coming back into the line-up.
Going out for the Demons from the side that lost to East Fremantle last Saturday are Regan Clarke, Jacob Coniglio, Austin Davis, Andrew Fisher, Clayton Giblett, Kieran Hug, Christian Martin and Conor McPartland.
SWAN DISTRICTS v SOUTH FREMANTLE
With Swan Districts attempting to bounce back and South Fremantle looking to build some momentum, it shapes as another tantalising Round 6 WAFL match up when the Swans and Bulldogs lock horns at Steel Blue Oval.
South Fremantle will head to Steel Blue Oval to face Swan Districts in Round 6 of the 2022 WAFL season with the Bulldogs attempting to win their fourth game of the campaign and Swans their third.
South Fremantle comes into the game on the back of beating Peel Thunder by 26 points last Saturday at Fremantle Community Bank Oval while Swan Districts lost to Subiaco in Kalgoorlie by 14 points.
The Bulldogs come into the game in fourth position on the WAFL ladder with a 3-2 record while the Swans are seventh at 2-3 highlighting the significance of Saturday's contest at Steel Blue Oval between two teams that played finals in 2021.
This is the first meeting between the two teams of 2022 with the last clash coming in Round 21 last year when South Fremantle won by five points at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.
It continued the recent dominance for the Bulldogs over Swans with South Fremantle having won the previous nine clashes between the teams by an average of 34.8 points.
The last win for the black-and-whites against the Red V came in Round 2, 2017 and that was also at Steel Blue Oval. But South Fremantle has won the last nine matches since including the past three at the Bassendean venue.
Swan Districts is attempting to bounce back from losing to Subiaco in Kalgoorlie with Tarir Bayok, Jackson Beck, debutant Brenton Hilton and young ruckman Brodie Morris coming into the team.
There's a shock at selection too with dual Swan Medal winner and 269-game Swans great Tony Notte to miss the game through COVID protocols meaning his streak of 194 consecutive matches will be coming to an end.
Seb Bright, Matthew Germs and Anthony Stephens are also out of the line-up from the Swan Districts team that lost in Kalgoorlie to Subiaco.