To say the lead-up to Round 6 has been 'a week like no other' would barely begin to describe the cyclonic circumstances the Saints and the League have found themselves in.
With St Kilda relocating to Noosa for at least the next month and their Queensland-acclimatised opposition coming off its first win of the season, Saturday's storylines promise to deliver a cracking contest at Metricon Stadium.
Fremantle v St Kilda
Saturday 11 July
Metricon Stadium, 12:35pm
Watch the game live on Fox Footy, Kayo or with the official AFL Live Pass.
Make sure to follow all the latest game-day news and inside information across our social channels, and use #TogetherWeRise to show us how you're watching on from home!
Last time we met…
St Kilda 10.12 (72) def. Fremantle 10.9 (69)
Running back with the flight of the ball in the Dockers’ forward 50, Josh Battle’s courageous clunk in the dying seconds confirmed St Kilda as winners in the Round 21 thriller.
Back-to-back goals in the final term put the red, white and black up by just three points with under a minute on the clock, with the returning Jack Steven booting three match-winning goals in the stirring win.
Sainters were smiling from ear-to-ear as Jack Steven returned to the field for the first time in 15 weeks after taking time away from the game to focus on his mental health.
‘Stuv’ got the motor up and running to boot three critical majors – including one in the last three minutes – in what would ultimately be his final game in the red, white and black on the Saints’ home deck.
Tim Membrey and Dan Hannebery kicked two goals apiece in the opening term, but it was Josh Bruce who steered through the most important of the match with less than a minute on the clock.
Jacks Billings and Steele were dominant through the midfield alongside stand-in skipper Seb Ross, while Jake Carlisle, Josh Battle and Callum Wilkie were massive in the second half to mitigate the fast-finishing Dockers.
For the Dockers, it was the all-conquering Nat Fyfe who was best afield, chalking up his ninth three-vote Brownlow game for 2019 to take home Charlie for a second time.
The skipper amassed a whopping 35 disposals, 11 inside-50s, seven clearances and two goals, and was joined through the middle by Docker-turned-Saint Bradley Hill (27 disposals, one goal) and Andrew Brayshaw (10 tackles).
Moment of the match...
There were several memorable moments last time the two sides came to blows, but Josh Battle's mark gets the nod this week.
Hunter Clark was all sorts of smooth the last time he came up against Fremantle, amassing career-best figures (26 disposals, five inside-50s) to continue his sensational run of form.
From the archives...
Confusion, chaos and controversy reigned supreme in one of the most bizarre days in AFL history: Sirengate.
Round 5 recap…
The Saints made it two wins on the trot after ousting Carlton in Thursday night’s prime-time fixture by 18 points.
Brett Ratten’s men started the first half spectacularly, with skipper Jarryn Geary capitalising with multiple goals for just the second time in his career.
Jack Steele was the standout however, amassing 23 disposals and nine tackles while curbing the influence of Patrick Cripps, who had just five possessions at the main change.
Fremantle also had reason to smile after securing its first win of the season under new coach Justin Longmuir.
The Dockers overcame the winless Crows at Metricon Stadium by 20 points, but were pressed all day as the South Australians sliced the margin to a single point at three-quarter time.
Andrew Brayshaw was among the Dockers’ best in the absence of Nat Fyfe, while Michael Walters, Griffin Logue and Sean Darcy each made significant contributions to gift the Purple Army the four points.
The ins and outs...
Zak Jones has been named in place of Dan Hannebery after overcoming a hamstring issue during the week.
But in even bigger boom for the opposition, Fremantle is set to regain captain Nat Fyfe, who has come up fit and firing after sustaining a hamstring injury that was set to sideline him for several weeks.
Former Saint Blake Acres, Travis Colyer and Bailey Banfield will also join Fyfe as this week's newcomers.
Saturday afternoon’s match will also mark the first time Bradley Hill comes up against his old side.
The Dockers’ dangermen…
The return of Nat Fyfe from a minor hamstring injury has leapfrogged him into priority No. 1 for the Saints to get under control.
The dual-Brownlow medallist's supreme ascendancy through the middle could blow the game right open, but after Jack Steele's starring performance on Carlton's Patrick Cripps, the No. 9 could be deployed as a tagger for another week.
Michael Walters also threatens to unravel St Kilda’s hopes of a third straight win on Saturday afternoon, with the All-Australian boasting both the credentials and talent to flip the game on its head.
The acting Fremantle skipper was superb in his first game at the helm, booting two goals and clunking a fabulous final-quarter mark to get his side over the line.
Third-year Docker Andrew Brayshaw was a steadying force in what was a seesawing match against Adelaide and was vital in Fremantle’s maiden win.
Darcy Tucker has been strong throughout the season to lead his side for metres gained and tackles, while Luke Ryan tops the intercepts stat with 35.
Ryan was particularly impressive off half-back against the Saints in Round 3 2019, repelling the offensive with nine rebounds and 32 touches.
Matthew Taberner has gone better than a goal per game this season, but hasn’t had the regular support to back him up in the offensive end.
When the Saints and Dockers have met on a Saturday, the red, white and black have emerged victorious 10 out of 14 times.
On the injury front…
Saints and Dockers alike will be stranded on the sidelines after sustaining injuries in last week’s respective clashes.
Dan Hannebery nicked his hamstring in the second half against the Blues, but has travelled up north with the rest of St Kilda’s squad.
The Dockers were far from unscathed after their clash with the Crows, with Jesse Hogan (calf), Griffin Logue (toe) and Reece Conca (hamstring) all succumbing to injury throughout the match.
Sam Sturt will miss Saturday's match after rolling his ankle at training on Thursday night.