Wingman Jared Polec has been dumped from Port Adelaide’s AFL side for the second time this season.
Polec will miss Port’s game against Fremantle on Saturday in Perth, with coach Ken Hinkley saying the 23-year-old is struggling for confidence.
“We’re still working with him and helping him gain his best form. We have absolute confidence that he’s not far away,” Hinkley told reporters on Thursday.
“Everyone looks at Jared’s ball use and the way he’s playing and recognising his weapons, if they were at their absolute best, they would certainly be enough to keep him in the side.”
Port are ninth, one win outside the top eight, ahead of their away trip to meet a Dockers side which Hinkley still rates highly, despite only winning twice this season and being in 16th place.
“It doesn’t matter where they are on the ladder for me. I rate (Fremantle’s) Ross (Lyon) as a coach and the way they play,” Hinkley said.
“Their pressure is elite, always has been, and it’s coming back to that level now so that makes you really worried.
“Their numbers would suggest their pressure is right back up. And when Freo play to their best over the last few years, it has been when their pressure is elite.
“Their forwards are hunting again and they’re chasing and they’re tackling.”