'Inspirational' Nat Fyfe beats out tagger

Ross Lyon may well be running out of superlatives to describe Fremantle Dockers captain Nat Fyfe. For now, simply "inspirational" will do the trick.

Fyfe was instrumental in the Dockers' stunning victory over the GWS Giants at Manuka Oval on Saturday but Fremantle coach Ross Lyon is adamant this is not a one-man band.

Fremantle's Nat Fyfe is an "inspiration" to his teammates. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

Fremantle's Nat Fyfe is an "inspiration" to his teammates. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

But one can't help but wonder if the western derby would have panned out differently had he been on deck last week.

"I thought we were very good last week bar our finishing and some early defending, so we don't want to make it about one player," Lyon said.

"There were certainly some great contributors outside of our midfield, Alex Pearce on [Jeremy] Cameron, Luke Ryan, [Adam] Cerra who is a young player. When you play well, it's not about one person, it's certainly a weight of numbers performance.

"I walked in the room and there was 22 excited players, I didn't see one player sitting there, I saw 22. That's the way Nat views it, but he is our captain and he is an inspiration. He was an inspiration with his contest."

Fyfe was expected to be held on a short leash by former teammate Matt de Boer for the majority of the contest but he only found himself under the eye of the tagger in the final term.

De Boer started on Bradley Hill and worked a shift on rising star Andy Brayshaw before turning his attention to Fyfe - the third Brownlow medal winner he has tagged in as many weeks.

While he did a number on Dustin Martin and Patrick Dangerfield, Fyfe proved a slightly different story - and Giants coach Leon Cameron says avoiding the match-up straight away was not a mistake.

"I thought de Boer did a really good job on Hill, you can't tag them all," Cameron said.

"What got us in the end was the run. Hill is a part of that. He's got a really big motor and he helps them connect. Our inside mids would be disappointed, because Fyfe, Mundy and Walters clearly won that battle.

"Sometimes you win some of those, sometimes you lose some of those, but I don't think that match-up was the difference."