“This is the best win I’ve been involved with [at] Port Adelaide, including finals. Best win.”
Port Adelaide forwards Connor Rozee and Charlie Dixon have slotted three goals each in a 47-point thumping of Sydney which lifts the Power into the AFL’s top eight.
Port replace home-town rivals Adelaide in eighth spot after a vital 15.13 (103) to 7.14 (56) triumph on Saturday at Adelaide Oval.
The Power – level on wins with Adelaide and 0.3 per cent ahead – will keep the finals-bound ladder position should the Crows lose on Sunday to reigning premiers West Coast.
Port led Sydney by 15 points at halftime and booted three unanswered goals in less than four minutes early in the third term to effectively seal the win.
Rozee’s classy finishing was a highlight while Todd Marshall, Cam Sutcliffe and late inclusion Ollie Wines each kicked two goals.
Port’s defence, led by Darcy Byrne-Jones (28 disposals) and co-captain Tom Jonas (25 touches), was supreme while Paddy Ryder and Peter Ladhams ruled the rucks for a 49-24 hitout dominance.
Sydney’s Jake Lloyd was the standout for his side, earning 30 disposals including 10 rebounds from his defensive 50m area, and teammate Oliver Florent gathered 29 touches.
Daniel Menzel, Tom Papley and Isaac Heeney kicked two goals apiece. But the Swans remain anchored in 15th spot.
After Heeney marked 20 seconds into the game and converted, the Power took command.
But Port, despite enjoying ruck control and a favourable 9-1 free-kick count, led by just six points at quarter-time.
The Power outscored Sydney three goals to one in the second term for their 15-point halftime buffer.
The home side, before 29,568 spectators, produced a rapid three-goal burst early in the third quarter to create a 34-point break.
The depleted Swans didn’t throw in the towel but the nearest they came thereafter was 22 points late in the third term, before Port kicked clear in the last.