Port relevant again after downing Swans

By Steve Larkin,

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14 Have your say

    After years of neglect, coach Ken Hinkley says Port Adelaide are relevant again after downing reigning premiers Sydney in the upset of the AFL season.

    But Hinkley says the resurgent Power remain “miles away” from their ultimate ambition despite Saturday’s stunning 18-point victory against the Swans.

    Port, inspired by emerging star Chad Wingard, kicked five goals to two in the last quarter for a stirring 10.12 (72) to 8.6 (54) comeback triumph at a sodden AAMI Stadium.

    Wingard booted two goals in the last term and three for the match in a win which lifted the Power into the top eight.

    Port ruined the AFL comeback of Sydney’s prized recruit Kurt Tippett, who potted two goals, including one in the first minute of his debut for the Swans.

    Sydney also lost Adam Goodes to a right knee injury which forced the megastar to be substituted at three quarter-time.

    The Power haven’t played finals since 2007 and, in the past three years, have received millions of dollars in AFL hand-outs to stay afloat.

    But Hinkley, in his first year as head coach, has steered Port to seven wins from 12 games and given the club what it craves: respect.

    “We are becoming a little bit more relevant, there is no doubt about that,” Hinkley said.

    But the rookie coach said Port remained far from producing the consistent excellence of clubs like Sydney.

    “We are miles away from there … (but) we have taken some ground,” he said.

    “We have beaten a genuine top-four side today … it’s a great confidence builder. We know how to do it, now we have got to be able to do it week-in, week-out.”

    In wet and windy conditions, Port slipped behind early as Tippett took centre stage on return from an 11-match ban for his illegal 2009 contract with his former club Adelaide.

    Tippett took a mark just 11 seconds into his debut for Sydney and converted a 45 metre set shot, then added another as the Swans crafted a 4.1 to 1.2 advantage at quarter-time.

    The boom recruit finished with 2.2 and only six disposals, but impressed his new coach John Longmire.

    “For a bloke who has missed 12 weeks of footy, I thought he was pretty good,” Longmire said.

    But after Tippett’s early influence, Port, with two quarters of waterlogged work, battled back to trail by four points at three quarter-time.

    Wingard’s heroics then punctuated a tense finale in which the lead changed five times before Port sealed the win.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (14)

    • June 23rd 2013 @ 9:23am
      big dallo said | June 23rd 2013 @ 9:23am | ! Report

      very poor effort by the swans. they will be better for the loss.

      • Roar Guru

        June 23rd 2013 @ 1:26pm
        Andy_Roo said | June 23rd 2013 @ 1:26pm | ! Report


        They will be better for the loss, no doubt, but I wouldn’t say it was a very poor effort by the Swans. The wet conditions didn’t help and the Swans seem to play better when they build momentum week after week. Coming of the bye meant they lost the momentum they had built over the previous three weeks against Collingwood, Essendon and Adelaide.

        • Roar Rookie

          June 24th 2013 @ 8:25am
          Kevin Martin said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:25am | ! Report

          I agree, Swans weren’t poor … if people say that its downplaying both teams efforts in trying conditions! .. both teams were hard at it – Port’s pressure was telling and their improved fitness. Port shut down Hannebury with Kane Cornes-The writer has overlooked this key match up.

          Goodes injury and the bye momentum loss was a factor I think.

    • June 23rd 2013 @ 10:13am
      Anthony said | June 23rd 2013 @ 10:13am | ! Report

      The real sleeping giant is awake!

    • June 23rd 2013 @ 12:58pm
      big dallo said | June 23rd 2013 @ 12:58pm | ! Report

      sorry anthony but they will be asleep for some years yet. dont get too excited.

      • Roar Rookie

        June 24th 2013 @ 8:26am
        Kevin Martin said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:26am | ! Report

        why not? – 3 YEARS of shite football … we WILL get excited … thanks.

        A few years before we can be consistent against top sides – I accept that

    • June 23rd 2013 @ 5:22pm
      Strummer Jones said | June 23rd 2013 @ 5:22pm | ! Report

      Not looking too much into this game. The conditions were extremely poor and clearly Footy Park has poor wet weather drainage at the ground. Skill levels were absolutely shocking given the conditions. Exactly the same thing happened to the Swans 2-3 years ago when hot favourite to beat Adelaide in Adelaide…………and then it rained.

      • Roar Rookie

        June 24th 2013 @ 8:28am
        Kevin Martin said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:28am | ! Report

        Footy park was renowned for good drainage for many years but recently – yea its not good is it?

      • June 24th 2013 @ 12:15pm
        Brendon said | June 24th 2013 @ 12:15pm | ! Report

        Footy park is fine, it had been raining solid for 3 days and barely got over about 10 degrees, good drainage can only do so much.

        Port out pressured the Swans, just like they did to Adelaide, just like they did to West Coast, Sydney were out coached and out played by a team that wanted it more. I’m not saying that would happen every week but on Saturday it did. Simple

    • June 24th 2013 @ 8:09am
      Franko said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:09am | ! Report

      The swans are the kings of choking other teams, the kings of stoppages, the kings of the hard contest.

      They were beaten at their own game by a team that simply wanted it more.

      • Roar Rookie

        June 24th 2013 @ 8:28am
        Kevin Martin said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:28am | ! Report

        agreed there Franko … if people downplay the efforts – discredit both teams, IMO.

    • Roar Rookie

      June 24th 2013 @ 8:33am
      Kevin Martin said | June 24th 2013 @ 8:33am | ! Report

      I’m thinking I’ve read this article before … it was on afl.com.au with headline … Upset of the year: Port’s powerful statement

      I read the writer’s name – it was the same – Steve Larkin … doh!

      Good work Steve – you missed the Cornes/Hannebury match up but was tops otherwise!

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