June 24, 2024

Harley Reid’s outstanding performance in the western derby has garnered even more praise considering he delivered the match-winning effort despite feeling physically fatigued.

Reid, who has been making waves in his AFL debut season, will be given a well-deserved break as West Coast Eagles take on the Gold Coast Suns this Sunday.

West Coast boss Don Pyke says Eagles 'not sitting on our hands' as Harley  Reid contract embargo ends | The West Australian

The top draft pick from last year’s draft impressed with three goals, 19 possessions, and seven clearances in West Coast’s surprising 37-point victory over Fremantle last week. His pivotal two-goal contribution in the first quarter helped shift momentum in West Coast’s favor.

Just a week earlier, Reid showcased his skills with 27 disposals, seven clearances, and a goal in a convincing 39-point win against Richmond.

Surprisingly, these stellar performances occurred despite internal assessments indicating that Reid’s body was indicating signs of needing rest.

“Although he was eager to play against Gold Coast, he understood the circumstances,” explained West Coast coach Adam Simpson on Friday. “His body was showing some signs of fatigue according to our metrics over the past couple of weeks. We made a decision with his long-term welfare in mind.”

Reid will use this time off to visit his family in Tongala, Victoria.

West Coast will also miss suspended defender Tom Barrass in the upcoming match, depriving the team of two key players. However, there’s good news as premiership forward Liam Ryan returns to the lineup after recovering from a hamstring injury sustained in round three last year against Fremantle.

Ryan will fill in for injured forward Noah Long, who is sidelined with a hip injury. Additionally, West Coast Eagles will see the return of defender Harry Edwards and midfielder Luke Edwards.

Simpson expressed understanding of Ryan’s nerves ahead of his return, emphasizing the need to manage his minutes during the game.

The Eagles contested Barrass’s one-match ban for a sling tackle at the AFL Tribunal, hoping his clean record would lead to a reduced penalty or fine. However, unlike a similar case involving Brisbane’s Charlie Cameron, the Tribunal did not find any exceptional circumstances to justify a reduced suspension.

Reflecting on the tackle incident, Simpson emphasized the importance of avoiding such actions in the future and urged his players to exercise caution.

In their lineup adjustments, Gold Coast Suns included veteran forward Sam Day and defender Rory Atkins, replacing Ethan Read (managed) and Bodhi Uwland (dropped) in the 23-man squad.

Harley Reid in action for West Coast

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