East Fremantle have suffered losses at both ends of the ground for tomorrow's season-defining clash with Swan Districts at Steel Blue Oval.
Reliable defender James Bayliss and livewire forward Max Duffy will miss the match after being injured in the Sharks' 73-point win against West Perth at Arena Joondalup last Sunday.
The Sharks can strengthen their spot in the top four and would all but extinguish Swans' finals hopes with a win.
Swans and East Fremantle have 40 premiership points, but Swans are 10 percentage points adrift of the fourth-placed Sharks.
Third team East Perth have an inferior percentage to Swans but have four more premiership points and will start favourites in their clash against South Fremantle at Fremantle Oval.
Bayliss and Duffy are unlikely to play again in 2013 even if East Fremantle can match their efforts from last year and qualify for the grand final.
Duffy has been troubled by hamstring injuries for most of the season which have ruled out any chance of him being called up by the Dockers for his debut.
The 21-year-old kicked 10 goals in the Sharks' first six games of 2013, but booted just six since.
He was forced from the ground early in the first half against the Falcons.
Bayliss hurt a knee in that match and could be nursing the injury for six to eight weeks.
Sharks football manager Darryn Fry said Bayliss would complete his rehabilitation but faced an uphill battle to play again this season.
The 23-year-old has not missed a match for East Fremantle in 2013, averaging 17 possessions and four marks in 18 games.
"It's a medial ligament and his leg's in a brace," Fry said. "If we happen to qualify and make it deep into the finals, he will try to give himself every chance. But I think he will struggle."
Fry said though Bayliss would be a loss, the club remained confident his replacement would make the most of his opportunity.
"Jamie has had his most consistent year and has been added to our leadership group," he said.
"His run and carry off half-back and his pace have been really handy for us, particularly in the back half of the year where we have been a bit more positive with our ball movement.
"Given the context of the game and the season, the on-field leadership and the run that we get from him out of defence is going to be sorely missed. But we have full faith that whoever comes in will get the job done."
Fry said Duffy's latest ham-string setback was likely to sideline him for some time.
"It's the opposite hamstring to the one he did against Subiaco," he said. "It's been an ongoing issue for Max with his ham-strings this year.
"I would think Fremantle will go back to the drawing board and work out what's gone wrong.
"Whether it's something in their rehab, or strength and conditioning … but I would say he would be pretty well wrapped up for the year."… the run that we get from (Bayliss) out of defence is going to be sorely missed." *Darryn Fry *