Grit not polish wins it for Hawks: coach - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Grit not polish wins it for Hawks: coach

Steve Larkin 07/05/2011 11:23:27 AM Comments (0)

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson praised grit, not polish, for their comeback AFL victory against Port Adelaide.

Clarkson said the Hawks were below par, but he was satisfied with a the 32-point triumph in Adelaide on Friday night which came after Hawthorn kicked eight of the last nine goals.

"We were really pleased we were able to grind it out and get ourselves a victory," he said.

"We haven't won many times on the road at AAMI Stadium, it's a tough place to come and play footy - particularly at night, different type of surface and different kind of conditions.

"So we're really pleased with the victory.

"But we know that we are going to need to play much much better than what we did if we are going to challenge some of the really good sides in the competition."

Clarkson also knew what was coming from Port, a club challenged following lame consecutive losses.

The Hawk coach, an assistant to ex-Power coach Mark Williams, said the South Australians formed a proud club.

Clarkson wasn't surprised Port offered genuine effort and led until late in the third quarter, before fading in Hawthorn's 15.14 (104) to 10.12 (72) victory.

"Despite everything that has been said in the press, I have a very high regard for the Port Adelaide footy club, I have worked in that organisation, I know they are a very proud footy club," Clarkson said.

"And so what we saw, particularly early, didn't surprise me one little bit."

Clarkson was thankful his running brigade ultimately overpowered Port.

"Some of our runners started to get in the game, I reckon Port started to tire a little bit and we saw that in the last quarter," he said of a term in which the Hawks kicked a decisive five goals to one.

"We couldn't necessarily go to our players and say that at three-quarter time.

"But it looked like they tired a little bit in the last part of the game.

"And that allowed our ot some good runners ... (to have) really good last quarters."

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