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United by Purple

A Purple Haze win for Freo

Rd 3: Team Song Watch the players sing the song following the win over Gold Coast

Fremantle secured an ‘away game’ win at Optus Stadium on Saturday in front of 33,388 fans… the biggest attendance for a Gold Coast ‘home’ game.

Despite some inaccuracy early, the Freo Dockers – inspired by superstar Nat Fyfe's brilliance and Michael Walters' huge second half – were too good on their new home turf, running away with a 28-point triumph.

Gold Coast's first loss under new coach Stuart Dew came at a cost, with Irish star Pearce Hanley lasting less than a half in his early comeback from a dislocated shoulder.

But Fremantle could also be sweating on Match Review Officer Michael Christian's findings after Aaron Sandilands and Mitch Crowden's off-the-ball bumps.

Be there for Freo's next home game against the Western Bulldogs with a 3-game mebership package

Ross Lyon's men had to scrap on Saturday, especially after butchering numerous chances and leaving the door ajar for Gold Coast.

Scores were level at half-time and the Suns, inspired by courageous WA product Jack Martin, threatened another road win after starting fast in the third term.

But Fremantle's leaders lifted, with Fyfe, Walters (23 disposals, two goals) and Sandilands flexing their muscles as Freo ran out 13.18 (96) to 10.8 (68) winners.

Fyfe was superb from the outset – racking up 14 touches to quarter-time – and almost certainly pocketed three Brownlow votes for an imperious 38-disposal, 15-clearance and one-goal performance.

Cam McCarthy, in arguably his best game in purple, bobbed up with three majors after half-time to snuff out the Suns, while Lachie Neale (29 disposals) was typically prolific.

But the victory might have been soured by a high off-the-ball bump from Sandilands on Jarryd Lyons during the third quarter, while Crowden felled Aaron Hall a long way off the ball in the opening half.

Overall, it was another encouraging all-round display from Freo, which secured back-to-back wins at their new home after knocking off Essendon.

Fremantle's sheer weight of disposals (387-326), clearances (37-29), contested ball (154-136) and inside 50s (59-46) told most of the story.

However, the Freo Dockers would have been especially pleased they moved the ball with pace and precision against Dew's high-pressure outfit.

The Suns lacked the same urgency as their opening two victories, highlighted by co-captain Tom Lynch's disappointing work rate.

After bagging a career-best eight majors against Carlton, Lynch was held to just one goal by Alex Pearce, who claimed another scalp in his return from complications with a broken leg.

Pearce has had just two goals kicked on him by power forwards Charlie Dixon, Joe Daniher and Lynch so far this season.

Sam Day and Alex Sexton (three goals each) did their best to cover for Lynch but the Suns never looked likely.

Gold Coast:
The Suns lost Pearce Hanley just before half-time when he hurt the same shoulder he popped out during the JLT Community Series and the star Irishman appears set for another stint on the sidelines. Aaron Hall came to the bench in the opening term after copping an off-the-ball hit from Mitch Crowden and spent plenty of time forward after taking a breather on the pine. Kade Kolodjashnij went to the rooms during the third term but returned.

Fremantle: Michael Walters came to the bench in the dying stages after having his left hand trodden on. Luke Ryan landed heavily after a marking contest in the opening quarter and needed to recover on the interchange bench but returned before the first break. Hayden Ballantyne had his left hand stood on early in the second term and was clearly troubled by it but soldiered on.

The Suns are hanging around Perth for a week before they face West Coast back at Optus Stadium next Saturday, while Fremantle hits the road for a tough meeting with the Giants in Canberra.

GOLD COAST   2.1       6.4       9.7       10.8 (68)
FREMANTLE   4.5       5.10     10.13   13.18 (96)

Gold Coast:
Day 3, Sexton 3, Lyons 2, Lynch, Martin
Fremantle: McCarthy 3, Walters 2, Ballantyne 2, Mundy, Sheridan, Crowden, Fyfe, Sandilands, Matera

Gold Coast:
Martin, Lyons, Swallow, Sexton, Harbrow, Kolodjashnij
Fremantle: Fyfe, Walters, Neale, Pearce, Mundy, McCarthy

Gold Coast:
Hanley (shoulder)
Fremantle: TBC

Reports: Sandilands for rough conduct on Lyons in the third quarter.

Umpires: Hay, Williamson, McInerney.

Official crowd: 33,388 at Optus Stadium