Port Looks To Power On To Finals

Image courtesy of adelaidenow.com.au/Simon Cross
Justin Westhoff's return boosts Port Adelaide's forward line. Image courtesy of adelaidenow.com.au/Simon Cross
Last Five Matches

Round 1, 2012 – Port Adelaide 89 d St Kilda 84 at AAMI Stadium
Round 16, 2011 – St Kilda 109 d Port Adelaide 53 at AAMI Stadium
Round 19, 2010 – St Kilda 151 d Port Adelaide 57 at Etihad Stadium
Round 5, 2010 – Port Adelaide 54 d St Kilda 44 at AAMI Stadium
Round 5, 2009 – St Kilda 102 d Port Adelaide 36 at AAMI Stadium


Form

     Rd 12       Rd 13       Rd 14       Rd 15       Rd 16   
St Kilda    B  W  L  L  L
Port Adelaide    W  W  W  L  L

At the moment there only appears to be one spot in the top eight up for grabs, and it is Port Adelaide’s to lose. After consecutive wins over Sydney and Collingwood, Power has lost back-to-back contests to Essendon and Hawthorn. Just two goals down at half-time, Port couldn’t stop Jarryd Roughead and Jack Gunston blowing the margin out to 45 points at the final siren.

St Kilda’s recent dominance over Carlton counted for little as it’s season collapsed further in to the abyss with a 36-point loss , which was their seventh in eight games. The Saints were only 11 points down at the last change but the Blues ran away with the match down the stretch. It’s a tough run home for Scott Watters’ side playing five finals bound teams, as well as the in-form Lions at the ‘Gabba.

Forward Justin Westhoff makes a welcome return for Port while Kane Cornes is out due to suspension. St Kilda backman Jarryn Geary will be missing with a leg injury.


Key Men

(Saints) Tom Lee – One of the few positives of the last fortnight for St Kilda has been the emergence of young forward Tom Lee . Back home in WA against Fremantle he booted three goals, then repeated that effort against Carlton last weekend. He’s strong, mobile and has shown glimpses of the form that made him just about the best forward in the WAFL last year. It’s early days, but the Saints may have found someone to step in to the shoes of Nick Riewoldt when he calls it quits in the future.

(Power) Travis Boak – Power skipper Travis Boak has shown at times this season why there was plenty of interest in his services when he was coming off contract last season. He had a season high 34 touches against Hawthorn last week and in four of his past six games he has had 28 possessions or more.


Prediction

St Kilda really only has a couple of genuine chances left to add to its three wins this season, and this match is one of them. Port Adelaide has lost eight straight matches at Etihad Stadium, but rarely has the opposition been at a lower ebb than the Saints are right now. Port’s only wins away from Adelaide have been against Melbourne, Gold Coast and GWS, but they shouldn’t have too many problems against a side which has seriously struggled to keep the scoreboard ticking over this year. Port Adelaide by 18 points .

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