Port’s travel record a key to AFL finals

Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley says his much-travelled club’s record on the road is a key to their AFL finals ambitions.

The Power play Hawthorn in Launceston on Saturday, hoping to add Tasmania to a list of away wins this year at venues in Melbourne, Sydney and China.

“Winning on the road is really important to the success of teams,” Hinkley told reporters on Friday at Adelaide Airport.

“We like travelling, there’s no doubt about that.

“We like getting together as a group … and particularly last week when we were in China for the whole week, you get a bit tighter as a group.

“A lot of sides travel away in the off-season for camps and what-not to help bond a little bit and learn a little bit of each other personally, not just as a footballer … we have had those opportunities this year.”

Hinkley described Port, with three wins from five away games this season, as a “good, strong travelling team”.

“We make no secret of that around the club, that when you can win away from home, you mature as a football club and it gives you the best chance to be successful,” he said.

The Power, with six wins and three losses, travel to Tasmania with an unchanged side for the third consecutive week.

Port is also rested after its bye weekend following their game in China but Hinkley remained wary of the Hawks, who have slipped to 10th spot after three consecutive losses.

Hawthorn boast a stunning record in Launceston, where they have lost just once since 2012.

“They’re going to be a real challenge for every side,” Hinkley said of the Hawks.

“They have got a bit of a different side to what they have been over that period of time … they’re now, in (Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson) Clarko’s words trying to establish and rebuild their next opportunity.”

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