Port Adelaide has bigger fish to fry this late in the season, but Ken Hinkley says there‘s no chance the Power will keep their foot heavy on the gas in the 50th Showdown against Adelaide as they gear up for a premiership tilt.
With three home-and-away rounds to play, Port is a game clear in fourth spot on the ladder following their 27-point win over Greater Western Sydney, while the 16th-placed Crows are still a chance to claim the wooden spoon after a 49-point battering by the Western Bulldogs.
But Hinkley knows only too well that ladder positions mean little when it comes to one of the most storied, and heated, rivalries in the competition.
“We understand the importance of showdowns in South Australia,” Hinkley said.
“It‘s great that we’re going to be back in Adelaide to play it.
“We’ll have real challenge on our hands.
“We know tough and hard showdowns are every time you play them and we look forward to the opportunity against our rival.
“We’ll be doing everything we absolutely can to make sure that we win.”
Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley says his side understands what the Showdown means. Picture: Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
The Power and Adelaide were hastily repositioned to Victoria after South Australia went into lockdown on July 20 but return after playing two matches away from home.
Port won its home Showdown in round eight by 49 points to take a 25-24 lead against their cross-town rivals.
While securing bragging rights twice in one season would be a bonus for the Power, strengthening its grip on a double chance is the focus.
The Crows can expect to be stretched by a tall Port Adelaide side after another successful deployment of Hinkley‘s big guy strategy.
Many weren’t sure if Charlie Dixon, Todd Marshall, Mitch Georgiades, Scott Lycett and Peter Ladhams could play in the same team, but they all played important roles against GWS.
“When they keep hitting the scoreboard it‘s hard to leave any of them out of the team,” Hinkley said.
“We had a lot of opportunities in our front half (against the Giants).
“I think all of those tall boys can play really well at ground level too … I‘ve always said that.
“Certainly, Todd and Mitch have got some real speed at ground level and Charlie has always been dangerous when the ball is on the floor.
“We know Pete‘s athletic traits are really special. When the ball’s on the floor sometimes he gets it a little bit too much for a big fella, but he’s kicked three (against the Giants), which was nice.”
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