AFL ladder leaders Port Adelaide scores epic victory over Richmond

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Port Adelaide dynamo Robbie Gray booted three goals to help the Power claim a coveted big scalp with a 21-point win over defending premiers Richmond.

The ladder-leading Power prevailed 13.15 (93) to 11.6 (72) in a Saturday twilight epic at Adelaide Oval.

The Tigers could drop out of the top four at the end of round 11 as a result of the defeat.

They were playing 24 hours after the club issued a statement apologising for what it described as the “unacceptable” behaviour of two of their players, Nick Vlastuin and Jayden Short.

Vision had emerged of Vlastuin and Short grabbing at the genitals and backside of teammate Mabior Chol when the Tigers were singing the club song after recent matches.

Chol said he was not offended by the behaviour of his teammates but understood the behaviour was “not the sort of example” the players should be setting.

The 23-year-old kicked two goals against the Power, who trailed the Tigers at three-quarter time.

Gray was a stand-out with 22 disposals for the match, ex-captain Travis Boak gathered a match-high 31 touches and influential Peter Ladhams and Charlie Dixon kicked two goals apiece.

The Power’s blue-collar midfielders Ollie Wines (28 possessions) and Tom Rockliff (20 disposals) were solid and kicked a goal each, while Karl Amon and Zak Butters both collected 19 disposals and both booted a goal.

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Richmond struggled for clear winners, with Short, Kamdyn McIntosh and Vlastuin their major ball winners with 18 disposals each.

Megastar Dustin Martin (17 disposals, one goal) and Shai Bolton (16 possessions) were prominent in patches, while Jack Riewoldt booted three goals and Jake Aarts kicked two.

The Power stunned the Tigers early, booting four goals inside 14 minutes. Ladhams started the spree with a remarkable left-foot checkside from near a point post in the opening minute.

The Tigers then steadied with three consecutive goals to close the gap to seven points at quarter-time.

Both teams booted four goals in an exciting second stanza, which left the home side nine points up at half-time.

The Power rapidly built that lead in the third term with a Dixon snap from a tight angle and a Wines strike creating a 21-point buffer.

But just when the Tigers appeared on the ropes, they hit back with four consecutive goals.

Chol’s goals were followed by teammate Sidney Stack converting to give Richmond a one-point advantage at three-quarter-time.

But the Power then produced a defining burst to open the final quarter with three goals in just over four minutes to hold a 17-point break.

They held Richmond goal-less for the term to close out victory.

AAP/ABC

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