FREMANTLE coach Ross Lyon admits young gun Nat Fyfe needs to play smarter in order to avoid getting into trouble on the football field.

Fyfe is set to miss games against the Brisbane Lions and Port Adelaide after failing in his bid to overturn a two-match ban for striking Hawthorn's Jordan Lewis.

Fremantle confirmed on Wednesday morning that they had sought an extension until 6pm (AEST) from the AFL while they considered whether they would appeal the Tribunal's decision.

The 22-year-old has now been suspended for six games within the past two years, and Lyon said Fyfe needed to come up with better ways to deal with opposition niggling.

"Lewis himself in his early days frequented the Tribunal. It's just that competitive spirit," Lyon said on Wednesday

"It's about harnessing it in the right way.

"In the heat of the moment, it doesn't take much to go wrong to find yourself in trouble.

"I've got no real concerns there. Nathan's an incredibly intelligent guy, focused firmly on team success and I'm sure he'll get the balance right.

"I think what gets lost with Nathan is he's 22. But he's a real emerging leader of this football club.

"He's a really big influencer on and off the field, and he's a pleasure to coach."

The Dockers will also be without Michael Barlow for Sunday's clash with the Lions at the Gabba after the star midfielder broke his left thumb last week.

Goalsneak Hayden Ballantyne is set to return after missing a week with a hamstring injury, while Anthony Morabito, Nick Suban, Matt de Boer and Garrick Ibbotson are others in line for a recall.

Defender Luke McPharlin (calf) is still at least three weeks away from resuming, meaning he'll miss the first week of the finals.

The Dockers sit fourth on the table, but could slip to fifth if they lose to the Lions.