Blue rise under Voss no surprise to Hinkley

PORT Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley isn’t surprised by what his one-time assistant Michael Voss is delivering to rivals Carlton.

“There is a lot of Port Adelaide, particularly in the defensive efforts,” Hinkley said on Saturday.

“It is a contested brand of football, which is no surprise.”

Carlton, under new head coach Voss, sit in seventh spot with three wins and a loss ahead of hosting Port at the MCG on Saturday.

In contrast, Hinkley’s Power are the League’s only team without a win.

Voss served as an assistant to Hinkley for eight seasons before taking over the Blues.

Ken Hinkley and Michael Voss during a Port Adelaide match against Brisbane in 2016. Picture: AFL Photos

But he won’t fall into the trap of being overly reliant on his inside knowledge of Port.

“You’re probably a bit more aware of some of the things that work well for them and you’re aware clearly of the threats they have,” Voss said.

“They have always had a really good contested game and their defence has always really been spot on … so that’s the battle I’m expecting and we can expect as a team.”

Port regains All-Australians Robbie Gray and Aliir Aliir while recalling ex-Giant Jeremy Finlayson.

Aliir Aliir in action during the round one match between Brisbane and Port Adelaide at the Gabba on March 19, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

But they have lost Brownlow medallist Ollie Wines after a heart scare during last week’s loss to Melbourne, while ruckman Scott Lycett has been sent for shoulder surgery.


“It should not be season-ending,” Hinkley said of Lycett’s operation.

“But who knows … typically shoulder surgery is somewhere between 10 and 12 or maybe 14 weeks.

“Reality says it will be 15-17 weeks before we see Scott again.”

Lycett’s replacement will be Sam Hayes, who will make his AFL debut aged 22 on the MCG in what Hinkley said would be “the best experience he is ever going to get”.

Port Adelaide’s Sam Hayes and Adelaide’s Riley Thilthorpe compete in the ruck during the AAMI Community Series on March 5, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

“He is going to take a lot of work on in his first game,” Hinkley said.

“We are really confident that Sam has had a great preparation to become an AFL player and an AFL ruckman.”

Hayes debuts at a critical time for Port, touted pre-season as flag fancy after losing home preliminary finals in the past two seasons.

“You build belief on trust. Clearly our performances have not helped us,” Hinkley said.

“But the ability of the boys to keep turning up at training to keep working hard, and to continually push each other to improve, gives me confidence.

“We live and we own that 0-4. But we also are working really hard to turn that around quickly.”


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