Dockers look to Walters
Dockers look to Walters

Fremantle and Hawthorn have wheeled out the heavy artillery for Sunday's showdown at Patersons Stadium as the battle for a top-two finish intensifies.

The fourth-placed Dockers, two wins behind Hawthorn, Sydney and Geelong, listed gun small forward Michael Walters and the versatile Tendai Mzungu on their extended interchange bench.

Walters hasn't played since injuring an ankle against the Hawks in round three, while Mzungu (hamstring) missed last week's loss to Geelong.

Alex Silvagni and Matt Taberner were also named in the 25-man squad. Luke McPharlin (calf) couldn't be considered.

Hawthorn made two telling inclusions, with Norm Smith medallist Brian Lake and their second-best player from last year's grand final, smart forward Jack Gunston, recalled.

Lake has served a four-match suspension and will be a big boost for the back line if selected, while Gunston's availability is timely, given the suspension of Coleman medallist Jarryd Roughead.

Gunston was expected to miss three weeks with a medial ligament injury, but has been selected after missing one game.

Ben Ross, Angus Litherland and Tim O'Brien were also added. Billy Hartung was dropped.

Hawthorn midfielder Isaac Smith said Gunston would be a major addition to the team if declared fit.

"It'd be great," Smith said.

"Obviously with Roughy going down it's a big loss. It's big shoes to fill for Gunner if he comes in, but everyone knows he's a pretty special talent and he's a great forward in the competition.

"They predicted it would be two or three weeks, but with the human body you are never quite sure. It's only been a week. He'll be fine."

The ladder-leading Hawks will guarantee themselves a double chance if they beat the Dockers.

Hawthorn have only a six-day break after the game against the Dockers, taking on nemesis Geelong before rounding out their home-and-away campaign against Collingwood.

Smith said it was important to give themselves the best possible chance during the finals by performing well now.

"Ideally you want to finish top four and give yourselves the second chance," he said.

"That's what most clubs are aiming to do.

"To finish top two would be ideal. If you finish top two then you probably secure all of your finals in Melbourne.

"Travelling to Patersons Stadium or up to ANZ (Stadium) or the SCG isn't ideal in the first week of the finals. But I'd play a final in a cow paddock in the middle of the desert."

The Hawks have controlled their recent contests against the Dockers, winning every game in the past four years by an average margin of 41 points.

They won by 58 points in round three at the MCG, but Smith said the Hawks were not getting ahead of themselves.

"We've been lucky against Freo and we tend to play them in Tasmania. I don't think too many people like to play us down there," he said.

The West Australian

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