West Coast have named a trio of potential debutants for their clash against Melbourne in Alice Springs on Sunday.
Athletic first-year tall Bailey Williams, defender Francis Watson and big-bodied midfielder Matthew Allen are all on the Eagles’ extended bench, which will be trimmed on Friday afternoon.
Williams and in-form forward Jake Waterman, who had a career-best performance for West Coast’s WAFL side on Sunday, loom as the front-runners to replace superstar ruckman Nic Naitanui.
If young utility Oscar Allen pinch-hits in the ruck with Tom Hickey, it’s likely Waterman will get a recall after his six-goal heroics in last weekend’s big man over West Perth at Mineral Resources Park.
There is no return date in sight for Naitanui from a foot complaint, in just his second game back from a serious knee injury.
Speedster Jack Petruccelle looks set to replace injured goalsneak Jamie Cripps, who has been ruled out for 3-4 weeks with an abductor injury sustained in Friday night’s shock loss to Collingwood at Optus Stadium.
Petruccelle booted five goals, including three in the second quarter, in his return from a hamstring injury in the WAFL to show he was ready for an AFL recall.
Premiership defender Will Schofield was also among the six inclusions for the 26-man squad.
Corey Wagner, Oskar Baker, Josh Wagner and Tim Smith were the four ins for the Demons, with no confirmed outs at this stage.