Thorp provides info for Storm

WESTERN Storm has used its would-have-been coach Mitch Thorp for information about its round 1 Foxtel Cup opponent, reigning cup champion West Adelaide.

Mitch Thorp and Mitch Hills

Mitch Thorp and Mitch Hills

The Storm left Launceston for South Australia yesterday, where it will tonight take on the Bloods at the Adelaide Oval.

Storm coach Mitch Hills said it would be a good learning experience for his young team and coaching body.

The Prospect-based team will almost be at full strength with only ruckman Cody Thorp out suspended.

``It is a really exciting opportunity and all the boys are really keen to get over there and give it our best shot,'' Hills said.

``Mitch Thorp obviously left South Launceston last year and he's over in Adelaide [playing with Glenelg], but he has been able to do a little bit of scouting for us and we have got a couple of other guys over there.

``We have seen a bit of footage and have been tracking their [West Adelaide] progress over the first four weeks.

``It is a bit of different class in terms of the State League competition and a bit of David versus Goliath match I'd say.''

Hills said his in-form midfielders would be able to learn from West Adelaide's experienced onballers in former Hawthorn player Travis Tuck and the Bloods captain Chris Schmidt, who once ran around with Brisbane.

West Adelaide played on Sunday and the Storm has had a 10-day break, which along with predicted wet weather Hills said would aid his side's chances.

West Adelaide coach Mark Mickan pointed out Storm skipper Jay Blackberry, forward Alex Russell ruckman Bart McCulloch and the Hanson brothers Matt and Will as dangerous players for his boys to be wary of.

Mickan said his side's short turnaround and need to back up again on Sunday in the SANFL would impact on selection.

``We are going to approach it [the game] with a great deal of respect for the opposition,'' Mickan said.

``We are quietly confident but not over the top confident because we are against a team, while we have done our homework, that we haven't played before and we know we are going to have to produce our very best footy.

``We've had to manage our selection a little bit.''

West Adelaide are winless in the SANFL this year from four matches and sit at the bottom of the ladder, while the Storm is equal second in the TSL with a 2-1 win-loss record.

All Foxtel Cup matches consist of four 18-minute quarters, plus time-on from the last three minutes.

The competition pits the best teams from each state league competition against each other in a knockout format, with the winner pocketing $100,000 in prizemoney.

 The game will be broadcast on Fox Footy from 8.30pm.

FACT FILE

WHAT: Foxtel Cup. West Adelaide v Western Storm.

WHEN: Today, from 8.30pm (Tastime).

WHERE: Adelaide Oval.

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