Excitement at Bennell return
PEEL Thunder will look to make it six straight wins when hosting the league-leading Subiaco at Rushton Park in a grand final rematch tomorrow.
The Thunder has been in great form recently, winning eight of its past nine games but will be up against a Lions side with 14 wins in a row.
Coach Cam Shepherd said the Thunder was playing well.
“The team has come together and we’re looking forward to the back half of the year,” he said.
He said the East Perth game was a solid performance against a good opposition.
Shepherd said Peel had a good second quarter, kicking four goals to two, in tough conditions.
“The boys dug pretty deep in the third quarter, with Matt Taberner kicking three goals,” he said.
He said it was a good team performance, setting up a solid lead at three-quarter time.
Peel, and indeed Fremantle, were buoyed to open the second half with the returning Harley Bennell playing his first game of 2017.
The third quarter came with a special moment as Bennell kicked his first goal and was swarmed by the entire team as they celebrated with him.
Bennell moved well after playing short bursts each quarter and put himself in a good position to continue his build back to AFL. It was his first game in 18 months and Shepherd said it was great to get him back on the park and running around.
Fremantle Dockers general manager of football Chris Bond was pleased Bennell got through the game unscathed.
“We managed his minutes pretty well but we also managed his distance and speed. It was important for Harley and it was great to see,” Bond said.
“He’s a classy player and has performed at the highest level consistently before, so we’re confident he’ll get back to playing good footy. The most important thing is he feels really well (about the game) and that’s what he has done.”
Harley Bennell kicks a goal for Peel Thunder against East Perth.