The West Coast Eagles have begun the list build for its inaugural WAFL season by signing six local players who have been enticed back into WA’s highest level of football.
Joel Ashman, Liam Robilliard, Daniel Acres, Joel Kalajzic, Luke Salomone and Andrew Fisher have all played country or amateur football in recent years after spending time in the WAFL system, but have decided to be part of the Eagles’ inaugural WAFL campaign in 2019.
West Coast will field a team in the WAFL after its five-year partnership with East Perth was dissolved at the end of the 2018 season.
Ashman was a standout performer in the midfield for Scarborough in the A-Grade amateurs competition in 2018, winning the CJ Jamieson Medal as the league’s best and fairest player, as well as taking out the BJ Giles Medal as best afield in Scarborough’s grand final triumph over Fremantle CBC.
Robilliard, a premiership teammate of Ashman’s at the Sea Eagles, is a versatile midfielder capable of playing in several positions.
Acres, brother of St Kilda midfielder Blake, played in a premiership with Central Midlands Football League powerhouse Cervantes in 2018 and is a versatile defender.
Kalajzic is another defender, a neat left-footer who played at East Fremantle, and is looking for another opportunity.
Salomone, a former Perth Demon, is a versatile forward capable of pushing into the midfield.
Fisher recently represented Kingsley in the amateur league and has been a key player in the club’s rise back to A-Grade status in 2019. A prolific ball-winning midfielder, he won the fairest and best medal in the B-Grade competition this season.
“We’re delighted that we have started the ball rolling by signing six young men who are keen to rejuvenate their careers at a higher level,” West Coast Eagles general manager of football Craig Vozzo said.
“We have spoken to a number of other players who have been competing in other competitions around the state and we look forward to further announcements in coming weeks.
“We anticipate signing up to 15 players who will be a part of our WAFL squad, combining with West Coast-listed players not selected for senior football in 2019, to compete at WAFL level.
“Building this list is quite exciting and the players we have spoken to are excited about the prospect of testing themselves and being involved in a more professional environment.”
The West Coast Eagles are open to creating opportunities for players keen to be a part of the initiative.
The person responsible for pulling the squad together is Jordan Loxley, who can be contacted by emailing email@example.com.