Sharks will now lurk at ATOM Stadium

Shayne Hope
East Fremantle’s Rory O’Brien, left, and Andrew Stephen, with Darren Wilson from naming rights sponsor ATOM. Picture: Ben Crabtree/WA News

East Fremantle have secured a major financial boost after striking a naming rights agreement for their home ground with leading industrial hardware and safety equipment supplier ATOM.

The Sharks, who moved to East Fremantle Oval as 'Old Easts' in 1953, will play at the rebranded ATOM Stadium from now until the end of 2016.

It is the first naming rights agreement in the history of the ground, affectionately known as 'Shark Park', and sees East Fremantle follow the lead of rival clubs by striking such a deal.

The historic Moss St venue's first match under the ATOM Stadium moniker will be Saturday's derby against South Fremantle.

The rivals will compete for the Uittenbroek-Ciccotosto Cup. The trophy is named in honour of club stalwarts Bob Uittenbroek (East) and Brian Ciccotosto (South).

The naming rights deal will see ATOM join Bendigo Bank and Titan Ford as major partners.

It will not affect East Fremantle's intentions to explore the possibility of a move back to their original home ground at Fremantle Oval when the Dockers move to their new headquarters at Cockburn in 2017.

East Fremantle chief executive Adam Kelly said the agreement with ATOM was a coup for the club's development pathways.

"We are delighted to announce the partnership with ATOM and the renaming of East Fremantle Oval to ATOM Stadium," Kelly said.

"This is a significant community contribution that ATOM is making and we appreciate the faith and value that ATOM have placed in the East Fremantle Football Club brand.

"An integral extension of the partnership with ATOM is their commitment to regional WA and the club's Mid West Academy, which will be rebranded the ATOM East Fremantle Mid West Academy.

"Partnerships such as this one signify an organisation's intent and commitment to support community and we congratulate ATOM for investing in their community."

East Fremantle are fourth and can secure their finals place by beating Souths on Saturday.

A win would also keep alive their hopes of snatching second spot and earning a double chance for the finals.

The Sharks will be out to end a streak that has seen the away team triumph in each of the past seven derbies, dating back to their home win in round seven, 2012.

The teams have split the two previous derbies this season, with South Fremantle winning by 17 points on Anzac Day and East returning fire with a 15-point victory on WA Day.

"An integral extension of the partnership with ATOM is their commitment to regional WA …" " East Fremantle chief executive *Adam Kelly *