The West

Pavlich drives away with coveted prize
Pavlich drives away with coveted prize

Fremantle Matthew Pavlich didn't poll a vote in the last four rounds but has still driven away with WA football's richest player prize.

Pavlich, busily preparing for Saturday's elimination final against Geelong at the MCG, won his second The West Australian Footballer of the Year prize, collecting another McInerney Ford Falcon worth around $40,000 to add to his award collection.

The 30-year-old polled 26 votes to top the list of Fremantle and West Coast players.

He didn't get the nod of the football writers from The West Australian after the western derby in round 19. But he had enough of a lead to hold off Eagle Daniel Kerr (22 votes) with teammate Michael Barlow third with 18 votes.

Pavlich has had another outstanding season under new coach Ross Lyon and is expected to earn a seventh All-Australian blazer.

The South Australian also finished equal second in the Coleman Medal, kicking 62 goals, only three fewer than season's best Jack Riewoldt of Richmond.

Pavlich was to be presented with his new car at a special breakfast function in the city this morning. However, he had to leave the function before he could collect the key to complete training duties in preparation for the clash with the Cats.

The veteran was forced to miss the round 22 win over North Melbourne because of Achilles tendon and adductor muscle injuries.

But there were no doubts about his availability for the sudden-death battle.

He will have a full practice hit-out on Thursday before the team flies east.

"I was still a bit sore and I only trained lightly early in the week last week," Pavlich said.

"But I've pulled up pretty well and I'm certainly aiming to train later in the week, probably Thursday before we fly out.

"Speaking openly, but that's the first main training session I've had for a number of weeks, so I'm a lot better positioned than I have been in the previous few weeks."

Pavlich won his previous The West Australian Footballer of the Year prize in 2008.

Leaderboard — 26: Matthew Pavlich (F). 22: Daniel Kerr (WC). 18: Michael Barlow (F). 17: Dean Cox (WC). 15: Matt Priddis (WC). 13: Stephen Hill (F), Beau Waters (WC). 12: David Mundy (F). 11: Nat Fyfe (F), Andrew Gaff (WC), Scott Selwood (WC).

The West Australian

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