Dockers claim fixture list is unfair - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dockers claim fixture list is unfair

By Justin Chadwick 05/05/2010 06:29:49 PM Comments (0)

Fremantle coach Mark Harvey has slammed the AFL's fixturing ahead of a horror three-game stretch for the high-flying club.

The Dockers, nursing several injured players after last Sunday's bruising western derby win, tackle Brisbane at the Gabba on Saturday before returning to Perth for a Friday night blockbuster against Collingwood, with both matches to be played off six-day breaks.

Fremantle then travel to Sydney for a clash with the Swans on Saturday night, making it three games and four long plane trips over the space of 14 days.

"I think it should be mandatory in the draw that if you're the travelling team you should get at least a seven-day break going into that game," Harvey said on Wednesday.

"If you want equality - the most uneven part of the game is perhaps the draw, that's how I see it.

"We'd love to play 12 games at Subiaco and four games at the WACA.

"A lot of Victorian teams do that (in regards to their games being spread between Etihad Stadium and the MCG)."

Harvey revealed he had even invited AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou over to Perth to experience the Dockers' harsh travel schedule, only for the offer to be turned down.

"It's not until you've been over here for a period of time you see what the club and the team goes through," Harvey said.

Fremantle have not won at the Gabba in eight attempts but Harvey paid little attention to that record.

"You'd like to back in what we've done over the last six weeks to make sure you can arrest that situation," he said.

"We don't necessarily look at what's happened in the past but go into the game knowing we are playing quite well and we give ourselves a big chance to break that."

Harvey said Rhys Palmer (head), Chris Mayne (shin), Hayden Ballantyne (ankle), Luke McPharlin (ankle) and Stephen Hill (ankle) were all likely to take on the Lions but had to pass fitness tests at training.

Defender Alex Silvagni (ankle) is in most doubt, with the Dockers set to take a squad of 24 or 25 players to Brisbane as cover for some of their doubtful starters.

Long-kicking defender Nick Suban is a strong chance to return after missing three weeks with an ankle injury, while midfielder Byron Schammer is also pressing for a recall after some strong WAFL form.

Fremantle sit fourth on the table following their stunning 5-1 start to the season but Harvey said it was too early to get carried away, especially with the gruelling three-game stretch against Brisbane, Collingwood and Sydney to come.

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