The West

No Brown deal, Eagles tell Saints
Mitch Brown. Pic: WA News

West Coast have erected a road block to stop key defender Mitch Brown moving to his club of choice, St Kilda.

While the Eagles understand Brown's desire to move back to Victoria and that he had nominated the Saints as his preferred home, he still has a year left on his contract and is a required player, list manager Craig Vozzo said last night.

Vozzo denied the dogged stance would hinder any deal to snare St Kilda's Jamie Cripps, who wants to move back home to WA.

Eagles midfielder Koby Stevens, who also wants to return to Vic- toria, could be used in trade deals with the Saints for Cripps or with Collingwood for Sharrod Wellingham, who wants to join West Coast, Vozzo said.

But it is possible that any deal involving Stevens, who attracted interest from several clubs on yesterday's opening day of the annual trade period, could be delayed by a bidding war for Gold Coast's Josh Caddy.

Geelong are understood to be leading the race for the 20-year-old Victorian Caddy, but St Kilda are also keen and flagged the possibility of using their compensation for Brendon Goddard going to Essendon as part of their bid.

While Caddy is certain to move, Brown's transfer does not seem as clear cut. Just last Friday night he was awarded the Chris Mainwaring Award as West Coast's best clubman.

"Mitch is contracted, very much required and part of our future," Vozzo said. "We're not going to trade him, full stop.

"Through his management on Saturday he indicated that he wanted to seek a trade for more opportunity, but we're not interested. When he gets back from his holiday, we'll have a chat to him and move forward from there. He'll be fine."

St Kilda's player list manager Ameet Bains said they remained hopeful a deal involving Brown and Cripps could be done.

The Saints also nabbed Claremont premiership forward Tom Lee, a former Adelaide draftee, by trading national draft pick 12 to GWS. They received picks 24 and 43 as well as Lee in the trade under concessions regarding former AFL-listed players.

While Fremantle are unlikely to play a big part in the trade period, football operations manager Chris Bond confirmed Dylan Roberton wanted to go home to Victoria.

Bond said the club had agreed to try and facilitate the move and had discussed a possible new home for the 21-year-old with several clubs.

"Dylan has requested to come home for personal reasons and we're happy to help him in regards to that," Bond said.

"We're really disappointed to lose him … but we understand the situation."

Beaten grand finalists Hawthorn snared the big-bodied key defender they have been lacking, recruiting dual All-Australian Brian Lake in a trade with the Western Bulldogs.

The Hawks gave up draft picks No.21 and 41 in return for Lake and pick No.27, while talented utility player Angus Monfries left Essendon to join Port Adelaide on a lucrative four-year deal in return for pick 48.

The West Australian

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