Tuesday, December 06, 2022

“If he comes back to trouble them…”: Saints’ decision to sell home game raised question after upset

St Kilda’s decision to sell their Round 7 home game against Power came back on Saturday night as Port Adelaide stunned the former top-four side with a one-point victory.

It was a frantic final three minutes that saw Ken Hinckley’s side register their second consecutive win, pinpointing Jack Butters and Robbie Gray to win the match, which was ultimately a tough game to watch.

St Kilda kicked just one goal and 12 backwards after the main break in tough, greasy conditions at Cairns’ Cazalis Stadium, prompting power great Ken Korns to question what the club is doing in North Queensland in first place.

“what are they doing?” corns said The Round So Far from

“They’re not hitting four goals 18 (back) at Marvel?

“When you missed the final by one game last year, when you were leading 5-1 in this game and you haven’t won the Premiership in 56 years, why are you selling home games and going to Cairns of all places? Are you?

“It was Footy’s worst spectacle I think I’ve ever seen and he cost himself probably two wins that he wouldn’t lose at Marvel.”

It was the Saints’ second game at Cazalis Stadium, the first time in similar circumstances the previous year that Adelaide had bothered for ages to send St Kilda packing.

The 2022 defeat now leaves the Saints with a 5-2 record and will see them drop out of the top four.

While the club’s decision to sell the game in the year following the pandemic is commercially smart, Korns believes “no amount” is worth continuing to keep Saints fans hungry for success.

“If he comes back to haunt them at the end of the year when your fans are hungry for success, then no amount can amount to missing the big stage of the finals, which you can’t miss 5-1 should,” she continued.

“I think he needs to keep a really close eye on his strategy about going and playing in that part of Australia.”

The second question that the game will face is the decision to play the night in Cairns in April. Hot, humid weather is often a staple throughout this time of year, and the two teams scoring a combined 95 points is not a surprising result given the expected conditions.

Meanwhile, victory is especially important for the Powers, with Ken Hinckley refusing to give up hope for his side playing final foot in 2022.

They’ve now got a big game to play against the struggling Bulldogs in Round 8, while the Saints face their toughest test in splits when they take on Melbourne at the MCG.


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