Eagles to get ultimate test against Pies - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eagles to get ultimate test against Pies

Justin Chadwick 23/05/2011 12:57:33 PM Comments (0)

West Coast will put their remarkable improvement to the ultimate test when they take on defending AFL premiers Collingwood at the MCG on Sunday.

The sixth-placed Eagles, who collected the wooden spoon last season, announced themselves as a possible top-four contender with a thumping 123-point victory over the Western Bulldogs in Perth on Sunday.

West Coast have lost just three games this season - all tight affairs - and enter the match against Collingwood with a genuine belief they can win.

It is in stark contrast to the previous three years, in which the Magpies have posted wins of 83, 22 and 100 points over the Eagles.

Worsfold said Sunday's match would be the ultimate measuring stick for his team.

"It has to be I think," Worsfold said.

"You're playing the team in arguably the best form.

"Obviously Geelong are flying along at the moment as well, but Collingwood are the reigning premiers and playing irresistible footy."

Worsfold admitted he was surprised by the size of the 26.19 (175) to 8.4 (52) win against the Bulldogs.

"It's always surprising to beat a respected team like the Bulldogs by that much. It catches you off guard," Worsfold said.

"You don't expect that.

"Our aim has been to raise the bar and to maintain that and look for key areas to keep improving and we're aware that there are still areas that we have to get better at.

"We've lost three games against pretty good opposition this year that we were in the games.

"As we get better, hopefully when we are in those games we win more than we lose."

The Eagles' win was powered by a career-best 10-goal haul from forward Josh Kennedy, who was traded to West Coast at the end of 2007 as part of the deal that sent Chris Judd to Carlton.

The deal has been a win-win situation for both clubs, with Judd starring at the Blues and Kennedy establishing himself as West Coast's most potent power forward in years.

"That wasn't ideal losing ChrisJudd but he's such a huge commodity that there was always going to be a good trade in there and we were more than pleased with the outcome from that trade as we stated at that time," Worsfold said.

"The main guys we've had (up forward in recent years) are (Quinten) Lynch and Ash Hansen.

"Both those players have been really solid for us as key forwards but Josh has the potential now to hold that position down and probably kick more goals.

"It reinforces the faith and the ability that we all know that he does have and it's good reward, because he works as hard as anyone."

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