A fourth AFL debut for season 2023 beckons for Fremantle after they named 21-year-old Tom Emmett for Sunday's clash against Port Adelaide at Optus Stadium.

After being picked as a mature-aged player with pick 41 at the 2022 national draft, Emmett's impending debut is remarkable.

Having been taken from SANFL club Sturt, Emmett joins Matthew Johnson, Karl Worner and Ethan Stanley as debutants during the 2023 season.

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Following Michael Walters' calf injury, Emmett was given the good news by coach Justin Longmuir in front of the team during their Friday meeting before being warmly congratulated by his teammates.

"The effort when you go out there to execute your role, hunt the ball, and hunt the man has been first class," exclaimed Longmuir on Friday.

"You've been playing some really consistent footy and literally banging the door down asking me when you're going to get a game! Your form has been that good, we couldn't look past you, mate."

With his first game set to be a stern test against second-placed Port Adelaide, Emmett will make his debut wearing the famous retro tri-panel anchor jumper the Dockers wore during the years 2001-05.

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Emmett's debut is a heartwarming story, having taken a longer-than-normal route to the AFL and overcoming his share of adversity. At 16, he was diagnosed with cancer before suffering a serious Achilles injury at 18 as he was garnering attention from recruiters.

Having overcome both, the journey has made Emmett thankful and proud to finally have the chance to live his AFL dream.

"It is quite emotional, I didn't play much junior footy at SANFL clubs I just played in year 12 at school," Emmett said as part of a club release on Friday.

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"I had illness and sickness when I was 16 and 17 and [so] to finally get this opportunity ... it's something you look to as a goal, but you never really know if you're going to achieve it. Looking back it's pretty emotional, pretty emotional for mum and dad as well.

"Being sick in hospital and spending extended periods of time in there with mum and dad and not being allowed to run or do activities like that [was hard]. To get this opportunity now is unbelievable," he said.

Regardless of the result on Sunday, Emmett's debut will provide Fremantle fans with something to celebrate.

Fremantle's meeting with Port Adelaide at Optus Stadium is scheduled for this Sunday at 2:40 PM (AWST).

Port Adelaide WON BY 16 POINTS
Optus Stadium