Port has the power

SIX rounds into the season and Port Power has proved its 2013 resurgence in the AFL was no fluke.

Among those playing a key role in the rise to top spot is Echuca's Ollie Wines

Club's fightback from mediocrity an inspiration

There's still a long way to go, but Power's fans have every right to believe their club will be a major player in September.

In terms of fightbacks from the abyss, Port's is one of the finest in football history.

From 2010 until late in 2012, Port had wallowed in mediocrity.

Matthew Primus had kicked off his stint as caretaker coach in 2010 by winning five of the last seven games.

In 2011, Port just won three games.

The following season and the heat was well and truly on.

A 34-point loss to Greater Western Sydney at Blacktown in round 19 of the 2012 season was the catalyst for change at Alberton Oval.

The defeat would lead Primus to stand aside two days later.

Amid all the drama about whether Primus would stay or go was the amazing feat by then Giants coach Kevin Sheedy to notch another victory in his 1000th game as a player-coach in the big league.

By the start of 2013, Ken Hinkley was Port's new coach.

There were subtle changes to game plan, playing list, but most importantly the attitude.

Port regained that winning feeling and has not looked back.

Among those playing a key role in the rise to top of the ladder is Echuca's Ollie Wines.

Captain of the Bendigo Pioneers in the 2012 TAC Cup season, Wines was Port's No.1 pick in that year's national draft.

The debut by Wines in round one of 2013 was top-shelf.

Playing in an onball role, Wines racked up 24 possessions, which included 16 contested.

Wines kicked a goal in Port's 79-point victory.

His play earned the round one nomination for the AFL Rising Star and monthly award in the now Bendigo Bank-backed Bendigo Advertiser Sports Star of the Year award.

Wines went on to play every match for Port last season and was third for the Rising Star award.

At this stage there's no sign of second-year blues for Wines.

Unless you have Fox Footy you may not see Port or the other interstate clubs as often as the likes of Geelong, Hawthorn, Collingwood or Essendon.

Port Power's quick movement from defence to attack, desperation to win the contest and support each other are traits achieved through skill and sheer hard work.

For fans of clubs wallowing on the bottom rungs of the AFL ladder, Port Power has shown the winds of change can blow mighty strong and achieve a lot in a short amount of time. 

The feelgood story for a lot of 2013 when it reached the top eight and eliminated Collingwood in the finals, Port is back on top and shows no sign of stopping just yet.

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