The WAFL has announced a 30-man Kia Australia WA State squad to represent Western Australia against South Australia at Adelaide Oval on Saturday, May 15.
WA will introduce a huge number of debutants to state footy, with 22 players named in the squad who could don the black and gold colours for the first time.
Grand Finalists Claremont have the strongest representation with eight players joining the squad, including two-time Simpson Medallist Jye Bolton.
Tigers midfielder Jake Patmore may return to Adelaide Oval where he represented Port Adelaide, while Ben Edwards and Anthony Treacy are expected to bring speed to the youthful line up.
Premiers South Fremantle also feature strongly with six inclusions, with veteran Haiden Schloithe, Matt Parker and Cody Ninyette all benefitting from early season form.
Subiaco is the other key contributor with six players; Leigh Kitchin brings a wealth of state game experience, while Ben Sokol and 2019 Sandover Medallist Lachlan Delahunty provide further leadership in the squad.
Reigning Sandover Medallist Sam Fisher features, while Peel bolter Tyrone Thorne could find his way into a dynamic forward setup. Corey Gault and Zac Strom will be keen to show their ability in the ruck to AFL clubs prior to the Mid-Season Draft.
Tyler Keitel, Keegan Knott, Connor West and Noah Pegoraro will represent West Perth, with former Gold Coast youngster Josh Schoenfeld one of three East Fremantle players selected.
West Perth mentor Geoff Valentine has been named coach. Michael Broadbridge has withdrawn for personal reasons.
“I’m thrilled to be afforded this opportunity and can’t wait to work with such a hard-working and committed group of young men,” Valentine said.
“We feel we have a great balance of pace and experience throughout the squad, with a number of players in fantastic form over the first month of the WAFL season.
“There are some really proven players named and we are looking forward to the challenge of travelling over to Adelaide next week.”
The Kia Australia WAFL State game is a key event on the calendar each year in the lead up to the AFL Mid-Season Draft, with the 2019 fixture seeing five players selected including Simpson Medallist Josh Deluca, who was drafted to Carlton after a standout performance.
With this game being cancelled in 2020, WA will be looking to regain the Haydn Bunton Junior Cup after a narrow loss in 2019.
The squad will begin training on Sunday before departing for South Australia on Friday morning.
A start time is yet to be determined for the match, with the game set to be a curtain raiser to Port Adelaide & Western Bulldogs.
2021 Kia Australia WAFL State Squad
Claremont – Jye Bolton, Ben Edwards, Lachlan Martinis, Jake Patmore, Bailey Rogers, Anthony Treacy, Oliver Eastland, Callan England
East Fremantle –Cody Leggett, Josh Schoenfeld, Cam Eardley
Peel – Tyrone Thorne
South Fremantle – Cody Ninyette, Matt Parker, Chad Pearson, Blake Schlensog, Haiden Schloithe, Zac Strom
Subiaco – Greg Clark, Lachlan Delahunty, Leigh Kitchin, Harry Marsh, Ben Sokol, Kyle Stainsby,
Swan Districts – Sam Fisher, Corey Gault
West Perth – Tyler Keitel, Noah Pegoraro, Connor West, Keegan Knott
Field Umpire: Ben Laycock
Boundary Umpire: Jordan Russell
Goal Umpire: Christian Cutrona