Dockers have only 24 fit players: Harvey - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dockers have only 24 fit players: Harvey

By Justin Chadwick 28/08/2008 06:59:02 PM Comments (0)

Fremantle's season was done and dusted months ago but Dockers coach Mark Harvey says his charges will go out with all guns blazing to spoil Collingwood's chances of a top four AFL finish.

The Pies must beat Fremantle at Subiaco Oval on Friday night and rely on Port Adelaide to upset North Melbourne to snare fourth and the all-important double finals chance.

But Collingwood's chances of making a big impact in September has suffered a major blow following a spate of injuries.

The Pies, who have won their past three games since losing Alan Didak, Heath Shaw and Rhys Shaw to a club-imposed suspension, have been forced to make four changes to the side that beat Sydney last week, with skipper Scott Burns (calf) the biggest casualty.

Alan Toovey (foot), defender Shane Wakelin (groin) and Sharrod Wellingham (groin) have also been forced out through injury, with defender Nathan Brown, Rhys Shaw, Danny Stanley and Simon Prestigiacomo the players to come in.

Dashing forward Dale Thomas is still out with a knee injury.

Magpies midfielder Tarkyn Lockyer believed Rhys Shaw deserved his recall after serving a two-match suspension for excessive drinking while injured.

"He's paid his penance and done what was expected, which was to train hard, get back and earn the respect back from the group," Lockyer said.

"We welcome him back in now and he's got another role to play for us."

Prestigiacomo, who has not played since round 19 last season, has endured an awful injury run but Lockyer praised the defender's perseverance.

"For him to come back and work his way through those setbacks is fantastic," Lockyer said.

"The one thing you know you are going to get from Presti is an honest contest which is what we want."

If the Pies thought they had been hit hard by injuries, they should spare a thought for Fremantle.

With 13 players on the injury list, five players already retired and Dean Solomon suspended, Harvey was left with just 24 fit bodies to choose his side from.

Harvey has brought in youngster Clayton Hinkley and injury-prone midfielder Andrew Browne, while tagger Steven Dodd and Brett Peake have been dropped.

Harvey said despite Fremantle's lowly position on the ladder and with seemingly nothing to play for, his team would give it their all against the Pies.

"We haven't got a lot to play for, we haven't for a number of weeks, but we've still been managing to play quite good football," Harvey said.

"Under no circumstances during this year have we lost the spring in our step ... they've been resilient.

"It's six months before you get to play again, so it's all of those reasons (why we will give it our all in the final game)."

Lockyer agreed the Dockers would be no pushovers, especially as the game marked Mark Johnson's AFL farewell.

Dockers pair Jeff Farmer and Josh Carr may also be playing their final game for the club.

"I think they've got a hell of a lot to play for," Lockyer said.

"They've got a few guys who have announced that they're going to be playing their last game for the club and Mark Harvey has come out and said that they want to really challenge teams in the eight and cause a bit of chaos towards the end of the year."

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