Lyon won t dwell on Freo past
Lyon won't dwell on Freo past

Defiant Fremantle coach Ross Lyon says his team's poor form after six-day breaks this season is not a concern as it heads into Saturday's cutthroat final-round match against Port Adelaide at Patersons Stadium.

As the Dockers waited anxiously on the fitness of captain Matthew Pavlich, who must train today to be available for selection, Lyon declared the past irrelevant. Fremantle have played six matches after short breaks this season and have won just once - against Richmond at the MCG in round 13.

The five losses they have suffered account for all but one of their 2014 defeats. The only time Fremantle have lost after a seven- day break or more this season was against Geelong at Simonds Stadium in round 20 when David Mundy narrowly missed the shot that would have given them victory after the siren.

The losses after the shorter breaks include the team's two worst efforts of the season- the round-three capitulation to Hawthorn and the round-18 boilover against St Kilda.

Fremantle's only home defeat this year, against North Melbourne in round six, also came after a six-day break.

Port Adelaide will come into Saturday's match off an eight-day break after walloping Carlton at home.

Fremantle will come off a six-day break after thrashing Brisbane at the Gabba on the longest road trip in the AFL.

Lyon was confident the Dockers would be ready come Saturday, was pleased with the early signs of how players were recov-ering and said previous results didn't matter.

"I have got a strong philosophy that the past is irrelevant. It is what you do today and tomorrow that counts. I wouldn't think it (the shorter break) is a concern," he said.

"We have a routine we go through. We are really confident in it. The aim is to recover them well and then have a good sharp session tomorrow and then get ready for the game. They (his players) are really bubbly and enthusiastic and why wouldn't you be?"

Pavlich, a late withdrawal from the team that played Brisbane because of tightness in a quad, trained lightly at Fremantle Oval yesterday and Lyon said his position in the team was dependent on him being able to train today.

"He has got to tick all of those KPIs. He is moving in the right direction but he has to train tomorrow and if he doesn't train tomorrow he won't play. If he does train he will play," Lyon said.

The Dockers coach said Michael Barlow (broken thumb) was unlikely to play against Port but Lee Spurr, who came off the ground against Brisbane with a tight quad would be fit.

Lyon was full of praise for Port's hard-running midfield, but also warned that Fremantle were "a pretty handy team" who would pose a big challenge for the visitors.

"They have got a few, they are at a high level aren't they? (Travis) Boak is a superstar, (Robbie) Gray has won the coaches' association award … they are high quality," Lyon said.

"They have got a great tagger in (Kane) Cornes, so he will go to one. You have got (Jared) Polec and (Matt) White on the outside and you have got (Brad) Ebert. You have got (Matthew) Lobbe in the ruck.

"That is their midfield without going into any detail. That is a significant challenge for ours.

"We feel that our best is good enough and we know that we are improving.

"I thought it was a significant performance in Brisbane against real adversity, losing quality players. It is a tough road trip."

The West Australian

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