Power crunch Crows in SA showdown - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Power crunch Crows in SA showdown

By Daniel Brettig 02/05/2009 11:42:23 PM Comments (0)

Port Adelaide re-discovered the magic to crunch Adelaide by 26 points in the South Australian AFL showdown at AAMI Stadium on Saturday night.

No-one had been entirely sure which Power side would turn up; the world-beaters who upset Hawthorn a fortnight ago or the non-competitive unit who surrendered to St Kilda at home last Friday night.

But apart from the first six minutes, in which the Crows notched the first two goals of the night, Port produced the ideal combination of skill, speed and grit, running away late to win 15.15 (105) to 12.7 (79).

The Power had many winners across the ground, Chad and Kane Cornes in everything, Steven Salopek consistently damaging with his disposal to pick apart Adelaide's zones and showdown medallist Dean Brogan a formidable enforcer in the ruck.

Pivotal in the early exchanges was former captain Warren Tredrea who enjoyed his best game opposed to longtime nemesis Ben Rutten.

Tredrea's three goals, numerous assists and tough-bodied work gave Port a cornerstone in attack around which numerous others, including Daniel Motlop, Brett Ebert, Danyle Pearce and Robbie Gray, flourished.

In contrast, Adelaide floundered in attack, despite the unstinting efforts of Bernie Vince, Nathan van Berlo and Nathan Bock, who again found himself up against a torrent of boos.

Jason Porplyzia kicked three goals for the Crows.

Porplyzia's one-handed mark set-up the first of two goals in six minutes, the sort of start that had caused the Power to wilt last week.

But with pride as well as points at stake, Port's players lifted for a 10-point, first-change lead.

Twenty-two points clear at the main break, Port dominated long stretches of the third but failed to build significantly on their lead due to a handful of missed shots.

While Adelaide were only 24 points back at the last change, Port's players had two extra days of rest ahead of this game and, against a team that has struggled to finish games off in 2009, this did appear to have some effect.

Power coach Mark Williams said the win was a perfect response to pressure the club has been under both on and off the field of play.

"You get the paper this morning, there's a lift-out and you see it's all about us, and you think 'gee, this club is needing some solidarity from the playing group all the way through to the administration'," he said.

"You can write as much as you like that it doesn't affect, but it affects. The players know exactly what we have to do and the coaching staff as well."

Crows coach Neil Craig lamented his side's worst display of the season so far.

"It's probably our worst performance for the year, what you saw tonight," he said.

"We're capable of playing really good football, but our capacity to complete it and stay with the task for long periods of time is a long way off the mark."

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