Tight results to start WAFL finals

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• Bulldog Brandon Donaldson get his kick away in the WAFL qualifying final at Fremantle Oval. Photos by Les Everett

The funny thing about the finals matches played in the WAFL over the weekend was the winners dominated play but just fell over the line.

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• Another mark by Hayden Busher.

At Fremantle Oval the Tigers will rue their unproductive start… they got the first goal but missed a couple of chances before South Fremantle broke away. The Bulldogs got out to a  39-point lead early in the third quarter. Claremont kicked seven of the last nine goals and, while they didn’t really look like getting there, they nearly did. The Bulldogs defence was superb against an undermanned and at times insipid group of Tigers forwards. Blayne Wilson has never played better and Chad Pearson looks like a real prospect. Brock Higgins was strong in the ruck, Dylan Main did some good things, Haiden Schloithe was very effective early and Joshua Collard kicked a couple of nice goals. Hayden Busher kicked Claremont’s first goal and then did some great work in defence taking intercept marks and providing dash. Bailey Rogers put in another powerful display while Kane Mitchell and Jye Bolton kept running and getting the ball though Mitchell wasted it a bit.

South Fremantle 11.5 (71) Claremont 9.10 (64)

The weather at Joondalup on Sunday was horrible until the last quarter. West Coast dominated in most aspects of the game…especially missed shots for goal. Incredibly West Perth hit the front with a few minutes to go and missed a chance to seal it. Brady Grey found himself in hectares of soggy space with less than minute left and slotted the winner. Hamish Brayshaw was the best of the Eagles and big man Keegan Brooksby worked hard in the wet. Tyler Keitel, Rudy Riddoch and Blake Wilhelm were good for the Falcons who were lucky to get as close as they did and unlucky to lose. The game was the last for West Perth great Andrew Strijk.

West Coast 5.15 (45) West Perth 6.6 (42)

Sunday: First semi-final: Claremont vs West Coast (Claremont Oval).

Second semi-final: Subiaco vs South Fremantle (Leederville Oval)

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Impressive South Fremantle defender Chad Pearson.

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