Andrew Krakouer is expected to make his debut for West Perth within the first month of the WAFL season.
Premiership coach Bill Monaghan made the prediction on the 2010 Sandover medallist after re-confirming at this morning’s season launch that Krakouer would be playing for the Falcons this season.
The former Collingwood and Richmond forward had intended to pursue a job opportunity in the Pilbara rather than play WAFL this year, but has since reversed the decision.
Monaghan said Krakouer was a “little underdone” in terms of conditioning, but had already shown his class at training.
The boom recruit is completing the club’s fixed three training nights a week as well as four extra morning sessions to get up to speed.
“Probably the thing that’s really buoyed me with having Andrew is he’s been really keen to impart his knowledge on the other players,” Monaghan said.
“Straight away he’s been directing at training, he’s having input at meetings. He’s now just got to get through the last stages of his preparation. He’s behind where everyone else is.
“The best I can tell you in terms of when he will play, we’re expecting him to play in the next month at some stage when he crosses the last couple of bridges.”
West Perth start their premiership defence away against finals contender East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval this Saturday.
Monaghan said the club believed it had got its pre-season schedule right coming off the later finish to last year.
“We’re really confident,” he said. “We’ve got a really good conditioning program … our players have got through the pre-season pretty much unscathed.
“We’ve got a couple of injuries and a couple of surgeries that were a little bit late as a start than we would have liked, but we’re extremely confident that we’ve done the work.”
AFL aligned clubs Peel Thunder and East Perth will clash at Bendigo Bank Stadium on Saturday in the other match of the round.
Perth will host last year’s minor premiers Claremont at Lathlain Park, while Subiaco meets South Fremantle at Medibank Stadium to complete the opening weekend of WAFL football.