Port Adelaide managed to chase down a fast-starting Collingwood Magpies outfit and claim victory at the MCG on Sunday afternoon.
Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley has praised his side’s “enthusiasm” and an ever-reliable Robbie Gray after a final quarter comeback secured a one-point win over an embattled Collingwood.
The Magpies fought hard and had the better of the Power most of the day but wasted opportunities inside forward 50 meant they were never able to pull away on the scoreboard.
Hinkley said it was a “scrappy, hard fought” win after his side stormed home with four final quarter goals to overturn a 13-point margin to take the four points on Sunday.
He said the message at three quarter time was to play with a “bit more enthusiasm”, and it worked as the Power banged on four majors in a row to take the lead for the first time all day.
“Clearly we needed to kick a score,” Hinkley said.
“That was the message – ‘let’s just go after this a bit, let’s take some risks’.
“It wasn’t a great game, there was a clear style that Collingwood wanted to hold onto the ball on us and keep the ball off us.
“We stuck at it and we won, and that’s going to make up our season.
“Sometimes you’ve just got to put a season together and there will be some poor performances, not very often you get a poor performance and you get a win out of it.”
Hinkley said the Power had to rely on their quality players to get the result, praising the performance of Gray (three goals), who stood up with a crucial final quarter major when the game was on the line.
“He’s always been reliable for when we need him and pretty grateful he was out there today when you win a game like that,” he said.
Hinkley also commended the efforts of Collingwood after a tough week off the field, saying they played a better brand of footy for most of the game.
“They’ve had enough stuff thrown at them and to Bucks (Nathan Buckley) and their team, they’ve managed to stick at it,” he said.
“They played a pretty good brand of footy they wanted to play to challenge us and they managed to do it better than us for most parts of the game.”
Hinkley said his glass was half full despite the Power’s brand of footy being a fair way away from what they wanted.
“There’s no messing around, we didn’t play our best footy,” he said.
“We accept that and we take that on board, we’ll be better than that and we’ll keep building.
“If we don’t get better, we won’t contend when it comes to count.
“We’ve put ourselves in a good position to go at it but we’ve still got to improve. We’re 7-3 and in AFL football I know 7-3 is a pretty good result.”