Young West Coast big man Scott Lycett has declared himself ready to step into Nic Naitanui's role in the team as the Eagles continue to hedge their bets on the star ruckman's return date from significant groin surgery.
Naitanui walked with a fitness staff member and did some light mobility work before leaving an Eagles training session at McGillivray Oval early yesterday.
He looks some time away from resuming full training.
Lycett trained strongly and is poised to add to his three AFL games, after he made his debut in 2011 and played two games in 2012.
"I've come back pretty fit over the pre-season and give myself every chance," Lycett said.
"Hopefully I have caught the coach's eye. If I'm training well and everything else is going well, I'm pretty sure Woosha (coach John Worsfold) will give me a chance.
"It's pretty hard to get a gig when you have got two All-Australian ruckmen in front of you with Nic and Coxy (Dean Cox).
"In saying that, there wouldn't be two better blokes in the comp to learn off. If I do have a breakout year then that would be wonderful.
"If I don't, then I'm just going to have to be patient and hopefully my time will come."
West Coast's 2012 All-Australian skipper Darren Glass said the club would not put a date on Naitanui's return after groin surgery.
"I think he is progressing really well and is a chance for round one," Glass said.
He backed Lycett to fill the gap in the way that Josh Hill and Ashton Hams had covered for the loss of forwards Mark LeCras and Mark Nicoski last year.
"When Mark LeCras went down and Nicoski, it is hard to tell what opportunities will come up for players and how they respond," Glass said.
"I am confident that every player on our list can have an impact this year. We have got Scotty Lycett in terrific shape and training really well. We have got some depth through the ruck department with Callum Sinclair, so I am confident that we will be able to get a lot of contributors from a lot of different players."
Glass would not be drawn on the whether he would remain captain for 2013, saying he would go through the club's annual process.
"There is no time frame with that. Woosha has been away," he said. "I am happy with what the club decides.
"If they want me to continue, I am happy with that. If they think the time is right for someone else, then I am more than happy with that.
"More important than who is captain I think is the depth you have got with your senior players."
Glass said he was feeling great and well placed for another strong season.
"I have been training really well and feeling great," he said.
"We have got Scotty Lycett in terrific shape and training really well. We have got some depth ... "" *Darren Glass *