Round 22 – Port Adelaide v Carlton: A Powerful 19 straight floors hapless Carlton


I took no satisfaction in the fact that when I read Carlton co-captain Patrick Cripps was a withdrawal from the team ahead of the game against ‘my mob’ Port Adelaide, that it would be a cakewalk to the top-four (or two?)-bound Power.


I had enjoyed a ‘bush footy free’ weekend as the pre-finals bye in the Central Queensland AFL Capricornia competition took hold.


For the record, the Boyne Island-Tannum Sands Saints will take on Rockhampton Brothers Kangaroos in an elimination final at BITS Oval on Sunday, August 22.


In the other AFL Cap final, Yeppoon Swans, eyeing off a seventh straight premiership, take on Glenmore Bulls for a spot in the grand final at Yeppoon’s Swan Park.


Back to the AFL, I will always use the games of Greater Western Sydney against Geelong Cats at the Cattery and North Melbourne’s inspiring win in the wet west against West Coast some weeks earlier, as ‘template games’ where the overwhelming underdog overcomes Goliath.


That tone of a season-defining and sickly loss at home had that sense after the speedy and promising Josh Honey (two goals) snapped truly that gave Carlton a 23-point lead early in the second quarter.



Yes Carlton were depleted and Port Adelaide Power were a Trent McKenzie (hamstring) off a full strength team but no-one could guess what was to come after the Blues skipped to that 23-point lead at Adelaide Oval.


After Hawthorn had upset the Western Bulldogs earlier in the day, it was like that message was sent to the Power players and that a top four spot could be locked in and even a top-two position up for grabs in the final home and away game.


That incentive had hit the spot.


Port Adelaide kicked the next 19 goals to give Carlton the blues and more than likely coach David Teague the coaches’ exit door sadly.


The Power romped to a 95-win, 21.14 (140) to 5.15 (45), with Charlie Dixon (four goals) after an absorbing battle against Jacob Weitering, Robbie Gray with three, Mitch Georgiades, Todd Marshall, Orazio Fantasia and the classy Miles Bergman, all with two goals each.


Marshall’s brilliant left foot snap from deep in the forward pocket at the northern end of Adelaide Oval started the first of 19 majors in succession.


Carlton simply had no answers in club stalwart Marc Murphy’s 300th and final game for the club in a nightmare finish for him and most likely coach Teague.


Fantasia, Gray, Connor Rozee, Zak Butters and Xavier Duursma are all hitting form at the right time as the Power prepare in a top-two defining clash against the Western Bulldogs this weekend.


Aliir Aliir was again brilliant as the intercepting defender he is making his own and 2020 All Australian Darcy Byrne-Jones is hitting his straps after an indifferent year thus far while Travis Boak and Ollie Wines, along with Karl Amon and Willem Drew all had plenty of the ball in midfield.


The only blight to a superb twilight Saturday was a knee injury to ruckman Scott Lycett and Port coach Ken Hinkley took no chances.


“He was a bit sore and we were very mindful of that,” Hinkley said.


“At three-quarter time, we had that conversation. He said it wasn’t perfect, but that it would be best if he didn’t have to (play on). We took that out of his hands, to be fair to him.


“It wasn’t worth the risk and we didn’t want to make him any sorer. We need to see how he pulls up tomorrow before we make any decisions around next week. When you’re in that position, we didn’t abuse the sub rule because he was certainly sore enough.


“It was just the right thing to do at that time for us.”


The Power mentor said it’s a take it as it comes approach as Port negotiates in what will be a stern test against a Bulldogs side that has struggled of late but banked enough wins to be in the top-two running as well.


“Whether it’s top-two, top-one … at the end of round 23, I’ll look at the ladder and decide how we’ve gone through the year and recognise what the next challenge looks like,” Hinkley said.



PORT ADELAIDE    2.2     8.6     12.11     21.14 (140)
                2.6     5.9      5.12        5.15 (45) 


Port Adelaide: 
Dixon 4, Gray 3, Marshall 2, Georgiades 2, Fantasia 2, Bergman 2, Boak, Lycett, Rozee, Ladhams, Mayes, Houston
Honey 2, McGovern, Kennedy, Casboult 


Port Adelaide: 
Boak, Aliir, Amon, Wines, Bergman, Byrne-Jones, Rozee
Carlton: Walsh, Kennedy, Murphy, Dow 


Port Adelaide: 
Lycett (knee)
Carlton: Cripps (quad) replaced in selected side by Durdin


Port Adelaide: 
Mayes (replaced Lycett)
Carlton: Petrevski-Seton (unused)


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About Nicholas Kossatch

Tall and intelligent and athletically built who calls a spade a spade. Love sports writing and sending letters and texts to the editor about AFL and the Port Adelaide Power - win, lose or draw. I do not sit on the fence. Soon to be 40! I play basketball and over 35's supers football. Have played amateur footy and a bit of cricket and basketball when living in Adelaide. Do some writing for the Murray Pioneer,

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