Port stun Hawks with 92-84 comeback win - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Port stun Hawks with 92-84 comeback win

By Steve Larkin 31/07/2010 07:57:01 PM Comments (0)

Hawthorn coach Alistair Clarkson scrapped the top four from his wish-list after suffering a shock eight-point AFL loss to Port Adelaide.

While his Hawks remain feared as a premiership smokey, Clarkson concedes they face a genuine scrap just to make the finals after a sapping defeat at AAMI Stadium on Saturday.

Hawthorn blew a golden chance to press their top four claims when steamrolled in the final quarter as Port prevailed 13.14 (92) to 12.12 (84).

A late Power surge delivered caretaker coach Matthew Primus consecutive wins and further shortened his odds of claiming Port's head coaching gig next season.

Port kicked six of the last eight goals of the game, erasing an 11-point deficit at three quarter time to post a tenacious triumph.

Clarkson declared the crucial top four berth "miles away" from Hawthorn after their collapse, which will have ramifications for Cyril Rioli and some of his teammates.

Rioli traded blows with Port's Nick Salter in an ugly third term wrestle which provoked a melee certain to cost both clubs some serious cash.

But it was the loss of ground in the finals race which more perturbed Clarkson.

The Hawks remain two wins outside the top four and are no certainties to qualify for the major round with fixtures against Sydney, Melbourne, Fremantle and Collingwood to come.

"We need to win as many games as we can to get there and today is a hiccup," Clarkson said.

"But really our focus is all about just trying to win from week to week and we'll add them up at the end - and if it's good enough, we'll get there.

"If it's not, we'll try our best to go as deep into September as we can but we are not even in yet, or consolidated our position in the eight.

"So top four is miles away from our point of view."

Hawthorn led Port at every change in a gruelling encounter - by five points at quarter time; six at halftime; 11 at the last break.

But the Power, inspired by Jay Schulz's game turning four goal heroics, stormed home for their seventh win of the season.

Despite the defeat, Clarkson maintained his list was better than Port's.

"Right now, I feel like we have got a better playing list than Port Adelaide," Clarkson said.

"I don't mean to be disrespectful to Port by saying that, but our list is matured and they have gone through a rebuild."

Primus has two wins from three matches since taking over from Mark Williams, and the former Power skipper has not hidden his desire to be appointed coach for next season and beyond.

"Wins help," Primus said.

"But there is going to be huge process - wins and losses that I have over the next month will be a little bit of it.

"But the process of what kind of person you are and all that stuff will stand for a lot more."

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