Magpies declare former Docker a done deal

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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Former Docker Clancee Pearce will play for the Magpies this year, says coach Matt Candy.
Camera IconFormer Docker Clancee Pearce will play for the Magpies this year, says coach Matt Candy. Credit: Lincoln Baker

Denmark-Walpole have confirmed former Fremantle Dockers defender Clancee Pearce will definitely play with the club in the 2018 Great Southern Football League season, contrary to speculation he was no longer moving to the region.

After the Albany Advertiser reported in November last year that Pearce, a veteran of 100 AFL games, was joining the Magpies and moving to Denmark for a sea change, speculation had grown that he was no longer coming.

However, Magpies coach Matt Candy has quashed those rumours, confirming Pearce had played in a scratch match on March 24 and was certain to pull on the black-and-white jumper this season.

The Magpies played the Manjimup Tigers in a practice match last month and Pearce was part of that team, moving freely according to Candy, in his first real hit-out since rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament during the 2017 WAFL pre-season.

“It was always going to happen,” Candy said.

“There was some family stuff, which halted him moving down but now that’s sorted, he is back in the movements of coming down to live.

“He may travel initially in the first few weeks but it’s happening.

“He played in the scratchy against Manji and moved all right and the main thing was him pulling up well with his knee, which he did.”

Candy said the 27-year-old showed plenty of leadership out on the ground and would be a massive boost to his young side this season.

The Magpies also gain Hayden Collard, having moved to town from Dowerin, while former skipper Lee Gropp will also return.

Candy confirmed key players Hendrix and Paris Ropiha were also confirmed starters for the Magpies in 2018 and did not rule out further recruiting, despite the new season being 16 days away.

“We haven’t lost too many and what we’ve gained is pretty handy,” he said.

“You could say we are still looking for a couple (of travelling players).”

Collard and Pearce will provide much-needed senior support for midfield gun Ryan Gaerth as the Magpies count down to their season-opening clash with Albany on April 22.

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