Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley has ruled out a link to North Melbourne and reaffirmed his commitment to Alberton as he heats up the competition for Alastair Clarkson.
Hinkley Clarkson will be among the Kangaroos’ targets if he misses out, despite being under contract to 2023, with Essendon also making a bid for the four-time premiership boss.
Speaking on SEN a week after he and the club announced they would be ending the final year of his contract, Hinkley has ruled himself out of the North open despite the club offering him a long-term offer.
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“I can only answer the way I have always answered. “I’m committed to Port Adelaide and I look forward to seeing out my contract at Port Adelaide as Port Adelaide is for me,” Hinkley said. SEN SA breakfast.
“You try to shorten the question sometimes and people criticize you when they try to shorten it – because you’ve answered it so many times – it’s been clear to me from the club and myself up until now – so what can be done? We say?”
It comes after Clarkson spoke for the first time about his move to Adelaide on personal matters amid attempts by two clubs to secure his services.
Hinkley confirmed he received a message from Clarkson after the super coach turned down his interest in the Port Adelaide job, saying, “It’s disrespectful to Kenny (Hinkley)” and texting Hinkley to give him a heads up on his move to South Australia. It can fuel speculation.
“Obviously Clarko was good because he knows what’s going on, he understands the grassroots landscape and I think he’s an incredibly successful coach, but he’s also incredibly respectful, maybe he understood what was going to happen when he landed in Adelaide,” Hinkley said.
“He found me wanting to tell me that this would happen – and it did!”
Pressure has mounted on the coaching fraternity in recent weeks, particularly with the spotlight surrounding Clarkson’s looming decision.
Hinckley confirmed the pressure was “real”, but explained it was part of the job of coaching at a high level.
“We all know that when we took on the job, we thought it was going to be nice and smooth, maybe we’d be a bit cynical, but we’re not,” he said.
“We expect it’s part of your job. We’ll do what we can and do as football to make sure we can keep that pressure, in 2022 it’s not always going to plan as points and points.