No fairytale for history-making AFL star

A fairy-tale win for Shaun Burgoyne in his 400th match was always going to be a tough ask for a rebuilding Hawthorn outfit, whose best efforts were not enough to match the flag-aspiring Port Adelaide in a brave loss on Saturday night.

The Hawks never seriously challenged their more fancied opponents but were gallant in defeat, refusing to relent despite an ugly halftime deficit and trimmed the margin back to a more respectable 34 points by the final siren.

Burgoyne was applauded for each of his 10 touches by a proud Hawthorn home crowd, who celebrated their three-time flag hero’s milestone with unquestionable gusto.

The Power were forced to fight for the four points, but return to the top four through a win which keeps their premiership hopes alive and well.

Ollie Wines continued his blistering season with 43 disposals (including 23 contested possessions), 13 clearances and seven tackles in a near-perfect performance, blemished only by his ball use which resulted in 11 clangers.

Karl Amon’s presence on the outside of the contest was corroborated by his 17 kicks and nine marks, while Darcy Byrne-Jones amassed 29 disposals at 86 per cent efficiency off half-back.

Port’s win was soured by a concerning injury to Kane Farrell at the nine-minute mark of the opening term, when he hyperextended his right knee in a Newcombe tackle and was helped off the field by trainers.

But the activation of medical substitute Martin Frederick would soon prove impactful, with the sixth gamer sidestepping his way around milestone man Shaun Burgoyne and kicking truly to put through a memorable first career goal.

Hawthorn’s spirited early efforts kept it within touch of the Power for most of the opening term, but Port’s class soon combined with a growing command at the coalface as Dixon and Marshall began to trouble Hawks defenders with four first-half goals between them.

Port’s lead quickly inflated to alarming lengths for a Hawthorn side desperate to cause an upset for its triple premiership legend, and a 42-point halftime difference threatened to rob the game of its atmosphere — its spectacle further tarnished by the swarm of seagulls that swirled around the unusually opened Marvel Stadium.

But the Hawks persisted and when Luke Breust wound back the clock with a snap on the run late in the third term, the home crowd rediscovered its voice, willing the Hawks back into the contest as the lead was slowly cut back to 29 points by the last break.

But the Power stayed switched on, and through an impressive Charlie Dixon bender at the final term’s 18-minute mark, had the game sealed.

Shaun Burgoyne is just the fifth VFL/AFL player and the first Indigenous player to reach 400 games. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

Shaun out-Burgoyned in game 400

‘Silk’ has weaved his way out of trouble with his trademark poise and class over his 20-year career, but ironically, he was on the receiving end of his own tricks in his 400th game when he was sidestepped by Martin Frederick.

Port’s 21-year-old medical sub made the evergreen, 38-year-old Burgoyne finally look as if his illustrious career was, in fact, nearing its end. More importantly, though, Frederick steadied well to kick an exciting goal — the first of his emerging career.

A rosy seven-point play

Connor Rozee had the Hawks fuming when he was paid a free kick in front of goal after he appeared to exaggerate a high tackle early in the second term.

Rozee’s kick was offline to the delight of Hawthorn fans, but a frustrated Tom Mitchell then knocked the livewire forward to the turf and gave up a down-field free kick to Charlie Dixon, who made no mistake from the goal line and extended the Power’s lead.

Rozee was jeered and booed by the Hawks crowd for the match’s remainder, finishing with a goal from 14 disposals.

Burgoyne’s last-gasp attempt

Burgoyne was swung forward by Alastair Clarkson late and was presented the opportunity to cap off celebrations with a quick snap on goal in the dying stages. But the ball kept right, sailing through for an anticlimactic minor score.

SCOREBOARD

Hawthorn: 1.4 1.5 4.8 7.11 (53)

Port Adelaide: 3.2 8.5 9.7 13.9 (87)

BEST

Hawthorn: Worpel, Mitchell, Hardwick, Bramble

Port Adelaide: Wines, Amon, Byrne-Jones, Dixon, Aliir, Jonas,

GOALS

Hawthorn: Bruest 2, O’Meara, Koschitzke, Worpel, Howe, O’Brien

Port Adelaide: Dixon 4, Marshall 2, Mayes 2, Bergman 2, Rozee, Frederick, Georgiades

VOTES

3 — Ollie Wines

2 — Karl Amon

1 — Darcy Byrne-Jones

INJURIES

Hawthorn: Nil

Port Adelaide: Kane Farrell (knee)

UMPIRES

Stephens, Brown, Findlay

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