|First contested||14 May 1995|
|Number of meetings||38|
|All-time series (Australian Football League only)||West Coast 21 wins
Fremantle 17 wins
|Largest victory||West Coast – 117 points (15 April 2000)
Fremantle – 75 points (1 August 2010)
The Western Derby // is the name given to the Australian rules football match between the Fremantle Dockers and the West Coast Eagles, who both participate in the Australian Football League (AFL). As both teams are based in Perth, the capital city of Western Australia, the term "derby" is used to describe the match. It has become one of the most important matches for football in Western Australia, with former South Fremantle and West Coast player, and current West Coast coach John Worsfold claiming that in the week before a derby that it is the main topic in Perth.
It's obviously different to the build-up of any normal game... We don't care what else is happening in the country, which is great."
In 2004, during the 175th-anniversary celebrations of the establishment of the Swan River Colony, the Western Derby was named as one of twelve "Heritage Icons", in recognition of "football's key social and historical importance to the State".
Referring to a melee during the Round 21, 2000 Derby, Channel Nine sports reporter Michael Thomson said the match had divided Western Australia and the "football landscape in WA has been changed forever."
There are two Western Derbies every year during the home and away season, always being held at Subiaco Oval. There has never been a Western Derby finals match.
West Coast were the dominant team during Fremantle's initial years, winning the first nine derbies, however since Fremantle won their first Western Derby in July 1999, it has been sixteen wins to twelve in Fremantle's favour. Fremantle are the current holders of the Western Derby Trophy, having beaten West Coast in the opening round of the 2013 AFL season.
The player adjudged best on ground in each derby match is awarded the Ross Glendinning Medal, named after West Coast Eagles' inaugural captain and former Fremantle Dockers Chairman of selectors Ross Glendinning.
Home and away season derby results
|I||R7||14 May 1995||1.1 3.5 5.7 9.12||66||4.3 10.7 17.12 23.13||151||West Coast||85||41,601|
|II||R22||3 September 1995||1.1 2.6 6.9 8.10||58||2.3 5.7 14.10 16.15||111||West Coast||53||39,486|
|III||R1||31 March 1996||0.3 2.5 3.8 6.9||45||3.5 5.6 8.9 9.13||67||West Coast||22||32,880|
|IV||R16||21 July 1996||1.0 2.2 2.6 7.6||48||2.3 6.4 8.7 12.10||82||West Coast||34||35,410|
|V||R3||13 April 1997||2.2 4.7 6.12 9.17||71||5.2 10.8 12.10 16.15||111||West Coast||40||39,586|
|VI||R18||3 August 1997||2.1 5.2 6.5 7.7||49||2.0 5.2 10.2 13.4||82||West Coast||33||39,711|
|VII||R3||12 April 1998||0.4 5.6 8.7 10.7||67||5.0 6.2 10.6 14.10||94||West Coast||27||34,557|
|VIII||R18||2 August 1998||5.2 6.4 7.9 8.12||60||3.3 7.4 10.5 15.9||99||West Coast||39||37,372|
|IX||R1||28 March 1999||2.2 6.7 8.11 13.20||98||8.3 12.5 15.9 15.12||102||West Coast||4||32,656|
|X||R16||18 July 1999||7.5 10.8 14.10 17.17||119||4.0 7.3 10.4 11.6||72||Fremantle||47||36,763|
|XI||R6||15 April 2000||3.0 4.3 6.5 9.7||61||5.3 11.4 19.9 28.10||178||West Coast||117||40,460|
|XII||R21||30 July 2000||1.3 4.4 9.8 15.11||101||5.2 9.6 12.8 15.10||100||Fremantle||1||37,573|
|XIII||R4||21 April 2001||1.3 5.6 10.8 13.10||88||3.4 7.9 9.14 16.16||112||West Coast||24||38,804|
|XIV||R19||12 August 2001||0.3 2.4 5.7 9.10||64||2.4 5.5 10.9 14.14||98||West Coast||34||41,285|
|XV||R1||31 March 2002||4.4 8.7 11.9 18.10||118||6.1 9.5 16.6 21.11||137||West Coast||19||39,467|
|XVI||R16||20 July 2002||3.1 5.5 10.7 15.10||100||5.0 6.1 7.3 11.4||70||Fremantle||30||41,779|
|XVII||R5||27 April 2003||2.1 4.3 8.7 10.13||73||5.4 8.9 12.10 16.12||108||West Coast||35||41,654|
|XVII||R22||30 August 2003||4.2 6.6 12.10 14.12||96||4.2 7.4 9.9 11.16||82||Fremantle||14||43,027|
|XIX||R6||1 May 2004||4.1 7.3 11.8 12.11||83||3.2 7.5 9.5 11.7||73||Fremantle||10||42,135|
|XX||R21||22 August 2004||2.2 3.4 5.8 6.9||45||5.1 7.10 9.14 13.15||93||West Coast||48||41,907|
|XXI||R3||9 April 2005||2.4 7.6 9.7 12.8||80||2.4 3.9 7.14 12.16||88||West Coast||8||42,027|
|XXII||R20||12 August 2005||2.1 5.2 7.4 12.8||80||5.4 12.7 18.11 19.14||128||West Coast||48||40,720|
|XXIII||R6||6 May 2006||4.4 7.8 10.11 12.16||88||3.5 7.6 10.8 12.11||83||Fremantle||5||42,213|
|XXIV||R21||27 August 2006||4.1 8.5 14.8 18.10||118||4.3 4.8 4.11 8.13||61||Fremantle||57||43,527|
|XXV||R3||14 April 2007||1.2 4.4 8.4 11.4||70||4.1 6.6 9.11 14.17||101||West Coast||31||42,051|
|XXVI||R18||5 August 2007||5.3 9.4 13.7 19.10||124||2.4 6.7 11.8 14.13||97||Fremantle||27||43,096|
|XXVII||R3||5 April 2008||3.2 8.5 10.8 12.15||87||3.5 5.9 8.10 10.13||73||Fremantle||14||39,027|
|XXVIII||R18||3 August 2008||9.2 13.5 17.10 17.14||116||4.1 6.6 10.7 12.11||83||Fremantle||33||42,096|
|XXIX||R6||2 May 2009||3.2 4.2 8.7 13.9||87||4.6 6.13 8.13 9.20||74||Fremantle||13||41,654|
|XXX||R17||25 July 2009||3.4 6.8 7.9 10.11||71||1.4 5.9 6.14 8.18||66||Fremantle||5||39,536|
|XXXI||R6||2 May 2010||4.2 7.4 10.7 17.9||111||4.1 8.6 8.9 10.13||73||Fremantle||38||40,886|
|XXXII||R18||1 August 2010||7.6 13.8 18.12 24.16||160||0.3 4.4 9.5 13.7||85||Fremantle||75||40,451|
|XXXIII||R8||15 May 2011||2.1 3.4 6.5 9.9||63||4.1 9.5 10.9 14.12||96||West Coast||33||40,567|
|XXXIV||R18||24 July 2011||2.3 3.6 6.7 9.10||64||1.6 3.7 6.14 8.17||65||West Coast||1||41,055|
|XXXV||R9||27 May 2012||1.1 3.2 3.3 5.6||36||0.4 2.8 7.14 11.18||84||West Coast||48||40,905|
|XXXVI||R19||4 August 2012||4.2 7.6 15.9 17.11||113||1.5 1.10 5.11 6.12||48||Fremantle||65||39,694|
|XXXVII||R1||23 March 2013||2.0 5.4 11.10 16.12||108||3.5 6.7 7.10 11.14||80||Fremantle||28||39,629|
|XXXVIII||R16||14 July 2013||4.2 6.4 11.6 19.7||121||2.3 6.5 11.8 14.9||93||Fremantle||28||39,839|
Timeline of results
Derby XII Round 21, 2000
An infamous derby occurred in round 21, 2000. Both clubs were out of finals contention, the derby earlier in the year had recorded the biggest ever margin (Scott Cummings' 10 goals led West Coast to a 117 point win) and in the lead up both teams were talking down the importance of the game with the standard line of "it's only worth 4 points". However, Clive Waterhouse indicated that something different might happen by saying that "blood would be spilled".
Before the first bounce, West Coast, through Michael Gardiner, went on the attack, pushing and shoving first year player Matthew Pavlich. The umpires awarded a free kick to Pavlich before the ball was bounced. However West Coast settled and led by four goals at quarter time with goals to Phillip Read, Andrew Embley and three to Phil Matera. Fremantle's forward line was struggling, with only 4 goals to half time, including two to Waterhouse, and singles to midfielders Heath Black and Troy Cook, while two goals to Mitchell White, a fourth goal for Matera and one to Chad Morrison in the second quarter saw West Coast go to the half-time break a comfortable 32 points in front. During the break, a brawl broke out which cleared both team's benches and resulted in one of longest tribunal records in recent times.
In the third quarter, Phil Matera kicked his 5th goal, bringing the Eagles lead to 42 points, but Fremantle surged to cut the margin to 18 points at three quarter time with three goals to Clive Waterhouse and singles to Pavlich and Daniel Bandy.
The last quarter saw Phil Matera carried from the ground on a stretcher after a hard collision with umpire Steven Handley, and a solid but legal shirtfront by Troy Cook also saw Mitchell White carried from the ground on a stretcher. A six goal to three final quarter, including another two to Waterhouse and singles to Koops, Shipp, and ironically Kickett and Dodd saw Fremantle hit the lead by two points. With only seconds to spare the Eagles pushed forward and a loose ball was unable to be gathered in by makeshift forward Darren Glass, resulting in a rushed behind and a one point victory for Fremantle, only their 2nd ever in a Western Derby.
The following suspensions and fines were handed out as a result of the brawl:
- Dale Kickett was suspended for a total of 9 matches for striking Phillip Read twice and striking Andrew Embley once.
- Michael Gardiner was suspended for 2 matches for striking Matthew Pavlich.
- Brad Dodd was suspended for 2 matches for attempting to strike Phillip Read, while Read was suspended for 2 matches for striking Dodd in retaliation.
- Seven players from Fremantle (Heath Black, Paul Hasleby, Shaun McManus, Clem Michael, Jason Norrish, Jess Sinclair and Andrew Shipp) and five players from West Coast (Ben Cousins, Andrew Embley, Kane Munro, Michael Gardiner and Phillip Read) were reported for melee involvement. Embley was found not guilty; the remaining players were fined between $2000 and $4000.
The following week both teams were well beaten, with Fremantle beaten by Brisbane by 107 points at the Gabba and Melbourne winning by 70 points over the Eagles at Subiaco.
Derby XXV Round 3, 2007
The round 3, 2007 match will be remembered as one of the most controversial and spiteful derbies ever played. Nearing three-quarter time, Fremantle's Des Headland was reported by umpire Stuart Wenn for striking and wrestling with West Coast's Adam Selwood, who made an inappropriate comment about a tattoo on Headland's arm which depicted the Fremantle player's six-year-old daughter.
The case was heard on 18 April, with Selwood cleared of using abusive language towards Headland. Headland was found guilty of both striking and wrestling with Selwood, but was not suspended because of "exceptional and compelling circumstances by way of provocation".
West Coast won this match by 31 points, and Michael Braun was awarded the Ross Glendinning Medal, ending his acceptance speech with "Let's have a fucking good year" which was broadcast to 550,000 viewers on live television and to the 42,551 in attendance. Braun was fined $500 by the Eagles, but the AFL intervened, severely reprimanded the Eagles and fined Braun an additional $5000.
In the lead up to Selwood's Mothers' Day round 7 match against Geelong, Selwood officially apologised to women, and claimed that he didn't mean what he had said to Headland four weeks earlier. Paradoxically, he also claimed that he was badly treated by the media because he was innocent of the charges in the Headland saga and he should have just been allowed to prove his innocence. West Coast would go on to lose its first game for season 2007 by 39 points against the eventual premiers Geelong.
Derby XXXIV Round 18, 2011
The closest finish to a derby occurred in Round 18, 2011 when Eagles midfielder Matt Rosa was penalised by umpire Dean Margetts in a deliberate out of bounds decision with West Coast leading by two points in the dying seconds. Having earnt a free kick from the decision, Hayden Ballantyne had a chance to win the game for Fremantle with a shot after the siren from 50m out on a tight angle and whilst his drop punt looked a goal for much of its journey, it hit the padding on the right hand goalpost amid a sea of hands from both sides, leaving the Eagles the winners by a single point, 8.17 (65) to Fremantle's 9.10 (64). Ballantyne prematurely celebrated, believing that the kick was a goal and had won the match.
This proved to be the catalyst for both sides as the season wound down. Fremantle slid down the ladder, losing the next six matches in succession to end a disappointing season, whilst West Coast went on to win their remaining regular season matches.
- Heritage Icons: The Western Derby – Constitutional Centre of Western Australia. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
- AFANA AFL News 6 August 2000
- Mark Fine (1 September 2011). The Book of Footy Lists. Slattery Media Group. p. 138. ISBN 978-1-921778-30-8. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- Burgan, M; A Night at the Tribunal; 19 April 2007
- Braun no help to the Eagles cause, Tony Jones, Ninemsn; 16 April 2007
- West Coast concede error over Braun fine, AAP, The Age; 21 April 2007
- "West Coast's Braun fined $5000 by AFL". The Sydney Morning Herald. 16 April 2007. Retrieved 21 August 2010.
- Hagdorn, K;'Slut' allegation AFL player says sorry to women; 13 May 2007; Retrieved on 22 June 2007
- Broughton 'thought it went through'
- Mark Duffield: Seasons turn on these moments
- Hayden Ballantyne miss hands one-point victory to West Coast
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Western Derby (AFL).|