West Coast premiership player Willie Rioli is back training with the AFL club after taking time off following his shock provisional suspension.

The 24-year-old is facing a four-year ban after allegedly tampering with his urine sample in August during a routine drug test.

Rioli has been spending time with family in Darwin and in the Tiwi Islands since news broke of his provisional ban last September on the eve of a semi-final against Geelong.

With Rioli expected to miss the entire 2020 season, a spot could open up for Jarrod Brander in the forward line.

Gaff has been impressed by the 20-year-old’s work on the training track and says Brander’s flexibility could also prove crucial.

The 195cm utility can also play on the wing or in defence.

“We’ve got a lot of good half-forwards like Jamie Cripps, (Jack) Petruccelle, and Liam Ryan,” Gaff said.


“Jarrod throws a different type of player into the mix. He’s taller, he’s aerobically very good, and he can provide the team with a lot.

“The great thing about him is he can play any position of the ground.”

Gaff is keen to play his part in the AFL’s bushfire appeal match, saying he’s available for selection if Victoria pick him against an All Stars side.

The 27-year-old has been shocked at the scale of devastation the fires have caused and says it would be an honour to play alongside some of the AFL’s best players to help raise money for the relief cause.

“Any time you can play against the best and with the best would be amazing,” Gaff said.