Dockers set to welcome back big guns - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dockers set to welcome back big guns

By Justin Chadwick 09/07/2008 04:20:53 PM Comments (0)

Fremantle face a daunting assignment against competition leaders Geelong on Saturday but the Dockers have been boosted by the return of a host of AFL stars for the clash.

Defenders Luke McPharlin (bruised ribs) and Michael Johnson (ankle) have recovered from injury and will return barring any further setbacks.

Coach Mark Harvey has declared enigmatic goalsneak Jeff Farmer, who was stood down for the club's round-14 match against Essendon for disciplinary reasons, a certain starter at Geelong's Skilled Stadium.

Farmer, who will be fighting for his football survival in the final eight weeks of the season, booted five goals for South Fremantle in the WAFL before last weekend's bye to get himself back in Harvey's good books.

"He played really well and I was happy the way he went about it," Harvey said.

"It was a minor offence that Jeff actually got put back to the WAFL for so I wasn't going to go over the top with the penalty."

Harvey said tagger Ryan Crowley had recovered from a heavy knock to the rib cage and would line up on Cats ace Gary Ablett.

But Roger Hayden (hamstring), Ryley Dunn (hamstring) and Heath Black (WAFL) won't make the trip to Melbourne.

The retirement of Peter Bell has opened the door for injury-plagued midfielder Andrew Browne to salvage his career.

Browne, who is in the final year of his contract, has played just 22 games since making his AFL debut in 2002, with a series of crippling hamstring injuries hampering the 24-year-old's career.

"It's been a long story for Andrew and hopefully he can make the most of these last eight weeks," Harvey said.

Meanwhile, Harvey fired a warning shot towards Port Adelaide coach Mark Williams, who earlier this week expressed interest in luring Dockers tagger Josh Carr back to the Power.

"He's advertised a lot over the last couple of years about who he wants to come to Port Adelaide and Mark's got to understand that that doesn't work," a clearly displeased Harvey said.

"He's tried (Matthew) Pavlich, he's tried (Byron) Schammer and now he's trying Josh. The smarter clubs do it behind closed doors."

In the past two rounds, Geelong have dismantled West Coast by a whopping 135 points at Subiaco Oval before disposing of Adelaide by 68 at AAMI Stadium.

Harvey refused to concede it was a case of "Mission Impossible" to beat the Cats but did admit Mark Thompson's charges were in "awesome" touch.

"I haven't seen a side on the road do that twice in two weeks, so they've done a fair bit of carnage on the road," Harvey said.

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