The West

Anderson inspired by Hawk buddy
East Perth defender Kyle Anderson. Picture: Michael Wilson / The West Australian.

East Perth full-back Kyle Anderson would like nothing better than to follow friend Ben Stratton's path to the AFL.

Anderson, a key to the Royals' chances against East Fremantle at Medibank Stadium today, has plenty in common with the Hawk.

Each started with Augusta Margaret River Hawks and graduated to the Royals with Stratton, 23, being drafted by Hawthorn in 2009.

Stratton played 23 games with the Royals in 2008 and 2009 before heading east where he won a Rising Star nomination in 2010.

He has cemented his spot in the Hawthorn side after overcoming a serious knee injury last year.

Anderson, who has notched 30 games with East Perth since his league debut in 2009, has also been hampered by injury.

A torn hamstring cost the 22-year-old any chance of lining up for WA against South Australia in this year's State game.

Anderson has beaten a number of high-profile WAFL opponents in 2012, most recently outpointing Fremantle and ex-Collingwood forward Jack Anthony when East Perth beat Subiaco by 40 points at Medibank Stadium last Saturday.

Full-back Anderson said he used Stratton as a role model.

"Stratts is a good bloke and is killing it now with Hawthorn," Anderson said.

"I played a fair bit of football with him down in Margaret River for the Hawks and definitely look up to him."

The Royals and the Sharks will be desperate to win today with the winner challenging Swan Districts for second spot on the ladder and a double chance in the finals.

East Fremantle regained West Coast wingman Bradd Dalziell and added midfielder Richard Hadley, ruckman Russell Gabriel and veteran utility Leith Teakle.

Swans square off against likely minor premiers Claremont at Steel Blue Oval today.

Claremont's chances soared yesterday with confirmation that Sandover medallist Luke Blackwell and classy forward Paul Medhurst will return.

The West Australian

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