Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley will experiment with his side’s tactics as they look to salvage something from the final weeks of a disappointing AFL season.
The gulf between the struggling Power and crosstown rivals Adelaide has arguably never been bigger as they head into Saturday’s Showdown at Adelaide Oval.
With stars Chad Wingard, Charlie Dixon and Hamish Hartlett sidelined by injury, the odds are stacked against the Power overcoming the third-placed Crows.
Hinkley believes it would be unwise to write off Port’s chances of stealing an upset win in what has historically been an unpredictable contest.
But he says he’ll take the opportunity to mix things up strategically after a demoralising 40-point home loss to Melbourne last week.
“We don’t necessarily throw something out but we won’t be frightened to try (new things),” Hinkley said on Friday.
“We’ll have a crack at some stuff at times.
“It may look a little bit different occasionally but it’s not all the time.
“We look for the opportunities to improve our football club.”
Port have recalled Jake Neade and Jimmy Toumpas, while veteran forward Jay Schulz has been named for what Hinkley admits could be the 31-year-old’s final game at Adelaide Oval before a post-season list review.
With 11th-placed Port set to miss the finals for a second straight year, Hinkley acknowledged the importance of bringing hope to supporters after another season in which the Power have badly underperformed.
“Right now, we don’t have a bigger picture,” he said.
“We have an immediate picture that we have to work with, and our picture is let’s see if we can improve as quick as we can.
“We use the next two opportunities to see if we can do that.”