Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley might face the possibility of losing his job prematurely if the Power fail to reach the finals this year.

Caroline Wilson reports that the pressure on Port Adelaide’s coach Ken Hinkley is intensifying, especially with assistant coach Josh Carr waiting in the wings in case the team fails to make the finals in 2024.

Hinkley’s contract with the Power extends until the end of 2025, but Wilson recently mentioned a “handshake agreement” that would see Carr taking over from him starting in 2026.

However, following Port’s disappointing 42-point loss to Collingwood, where they squandered a lead of up to 31 points, Hinkley’s tenure could be cut short sooner than expected.

Wilson suggests that with Port Adelaide’s succession plan already in motion, the club may not hesitate to accelerate Carr’s appointment if Hinkley cannot guide the team into the finals this year.

Ken Hinkley himself has expressed confidence in Carr’s ability to succeed him by the end of 2025. Carr, a former premiership player for Port Adelaide in 2004, has been serving as an assistant coach since 2023.

While some may criticize the idea of pre-planning a club’s future, both Hinkley and club officials have endorsed Carr’s impending transition into the senior coaching role.

Despite rumors and discussions about Carr potentially replacing Hinkley, the current coach has publicly supported Carr’s advancement, emphasizing his coaching prowess and expressing his desire for Carr to succeed him at Port Adelaide.

Regarding the recent loss to Collingwood, Wilson emphasizes that any decisions regarding Hinkley’s future will be made only after the conclusion of the 2024 season. Until then, Port Adelaide will continue to assess their options.

The team’s next match against the St. Kilda Saints will take place at Adelaide Oval on Friday night.

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