Like so many things at the SUNS these days, the club win/loss record on the AFL’s longest and most taxing road trip is on the up and up. It went LLLLLLLWLL at Subiaco from 2011-17 and since 2018 it’s gone LLLLLWW at the new Perth Stadium.

So as the SUNS prepare for Sunday afternoon’s critical clash with the Fremantle Dockers they can take solace from the fact that the venue will not hold any great fears.

Of the players likely to play at Perth Stadium this week, only Sam Flanders has not won there. And he’s only played in the WA capital once.

So the familiarisation process for the world-acclaimed 61,000-seat venue on the edge of the city will focus on the SUNS’ first-time visitors to the WA capital. Joel Jeffrey, Bodhi Uwland, Sam Clohesy, Will Graham, Jake Rogers and Ned Moyle.

At the other end of the scale, David Swallow is set to play for the 13th time in his home town. After going 0-5 at Subiaco in the early years and losing his first five games at Perth Stadium the ex-skipper has enjoyed the wins over West Coast in 2022-23 as much as anyone.

The SUNS first game against the Dockers at Perth Stadium on Sunday will be extra special for the Perth-born 31-year-old, who grew up at Rossmoyne, 14km south of Perth and closer to Fremantle than the CBD, and played with WAFL club East Fremantle before being drafted.

Swallow is the only SUN to have played in each of the club’s seven games at Perth Stadium, while Touk Miller, Jarrod Witts, Alex Sexton, Nick Holman and Darcy Macpherson have played in six of the seven.

Wil Powell, originally from Scarborough via WAFL club Claremont, is the SUNS’ other Perth product heading ‘home’ this weekend as he returns from suspension.

Powell never played at Subiaco and has a 2-3 record at Perth Stadium.

Also looking forward to Sunday afternoon with an extra spring in his step will be Matt Rowell, who has picked up three Brownlow Medal votes in his each his last two visits to Perth.

He had a team-high 29 possessions (13 contested), one goal, 17 tackles, six clearances and three goal assists in a 70-point win over West Coast in Round 9 last year.

And in Round 1 2022 he had 33 possessions (22 contested), six tackles and eight clearances in one of the club’s great wins over West Coast, when they trailed at every change and kicked the last four goals in time-on of the fourth quarter to win by 27 points.

Rowell’s 33 possessions is a club best at Perth Stadium, ahead of Miller’s 31 possessions in 2021, while Ben King and ex-SUN Izak Rankine share the club’s single-game goals record at the ground at four.

The club records in all games against Fremantle belong to Harley Bennell, who had 37 possessions in a narrow home loss in 2012, and Tom Lynch, who kicked five in a 26-point win at Subiaco in 2016.

Historically, the best-performed Docker against the SUNS – easily - is dual Brownlow Medallist Nat Fyfe. He’s polled 11 Brownlow votes, almost twice as many as any other player, and has had four 30-possession games, twice as many as any other player. He averages 28.3 possessions a game against the SUNS – more than against any other club.

This makes for an interesting build-up after Fyfe came in for some heavy media criticism for his performance in their 67-point loss to the Western Bulldogs last weekend.

Coach Justin Longmuir was quick to defend the 32-year-old 231-gamer, saying: “I think ‘Fyfey’ is an easy one to talk about when we lose. Last time we played he was our highest-rated player on the ground. I think his form has been solid this year – he’s had some really big highs, and his lows haven’t been that low.”

With 33-year-old Docker Michael Walters set to miss this week through injury, Fyfe will be the home side’s oldest player.

Statistically, midfielder Caleb Serong will be dangerman No.1. He’s the second-highest possession winner in the League this year on averages at 31.5ppg, behind only the Western Bulldogs’ Adam Treloar (32.2ppg) and ahead of the SUNS Sam Flanders (31.4ppg).

Andrew Brayshaw (27.1ppg), Jordan Clark (26.4ppg), Luke Ryan (25.4) and Hayden Young (25.2ppg) are the Dockers’ other major ball-winners.

Serong sits fourth on the leaderboard for the AFL Coaches Association Player of the Year Award, having polled 59 votes to trail only Sydney’s Isaac Heeney (85), Collingwood’s Nick Daicos (74) and the Bulldogs’ Marcus Bontempelli (63).

Anderson and Rowell have 45 votes to sit 12th and share top spot in the SUNS vote.