Royals premiership credentials building; Crowden
East Perth midfielder Mitch Crowden believes the strength of the club’s midfield is in depth, rather than big names.
After being delisted by Fremantle over the summer, the South Australian product chose to stay in the state and sign with the Royals, forming a star-studded engine room alongside Hamish Brayshaw and Angus Schumacher.
All three are expected to figure strongly in voting for the Sandover Medal, but Crowden told Sports Breakfast individual glory and honours was not the focus.
“We went through a little bit of a down spell, losing three games in a row, and it probably didn’t fit quite as we wanted, but since then, we’ve built each week,” Crowden said.
“It’s not just us three in that midfield, there’s a number of boys that can go through and I’d be comfortable lining up with about six players in the team.
“There’s Christian Ameduri that’s playing majority forward right now, but I’d be very comfortable with him as my right hand man for the whole game.”
East Perth’s all-state midfield was broken up when they lost Scott Jones to a broken leg earlier in the season, but Crowden said the way reserves ruckman Jedd Edwards had stepped up was admirable.
“Jonesy going down wasn’t ideal, we don’t like any of our best players going down, but we know it also gives someone else an opportunity,” he said.
“I said to Jedd as soon as he came in, Sam Jacobs went down one year and Reilly O’Brien came in and Reilly O’Brien never looked back.”
“Without giving these boys in the reserves an opportunity, you never really see what they’re capable of, and I think Jedd’s proven over a number of weeks against a number of high-calibre opponents that he can hold his own.”
Ross McQueen’s side went a game clear atop the WAFL ladder over the weekend, overcoming a slow start to extend their winning streak to eight games by defeating Peel Thunder.
Crowden, back in the familiar territory of his former club’s alignment partner at Lane Group Stadium, said it was great to see his team’s scoring potency on full display.
“I think they jumped us early, we didn’t really have any answer,” Crowden said.
“We were making too many mistakes and we were lucky they kicked a number of points, or we would’ve been coming from a bit more down.
The 24 year old believes the Royals are building something special.
"Playing for a premiership is what I'm here for. I want to lift that cup up," he said.
" My talk to the playing group is that we are top of the ladder, we shouldn't accept anything less now (than a premiership).
" Heading up to clubrooms after a game at the moment and seeing the smiles on some of the supporters faces who haven't seen success and done it tough in the last decade with no finals and the alignment with West Coast which people didn't like, the belief I'm starting to see really puts a smile on your face."
The Royals face co-tenants Subiaco at Leederville Oval on Saturday, the match scheduled to commence at 2:40 PM.
IMAGE: Code Sports.