Port Adelaide is set to announce a two-year contract extension for coach Ken Hinkley as early as this week, but the drawn out contract saga has been labelled “shockingly disrespectful” by Fox Footy’s Gerard Whateley.
Power club president David Koch has always maintained Hinkley’s future would be determined in August – despite the coach getting the club to a record 13-straight wins mid-season.
The delay on making a contract call has seen plenty of speculation swirl about whether or not Hinkley’s future is in South Australia after almost 11 seasons at the helm and no grand final appearance to show for it.
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Speaking on his SEN breakfast show, Whateley was shocked by how late the Power had left the coaching call.
“You can’t live life on hold and that’s the risk, I think, in doing this,” he said.
“I haven’t understood this the whole year through … Ken Hinkley is coaching as well as he has ever done, this is a new beginning of things.
“I just don’t understand why they’ve been so reluctant to go, ‘we still believe in you, you’re our guy’.
“It’s almost like it’s been done to calm the lunatic fringe, (saying) ‘we know you’re going to be up in arms if we reappoint him, so we’ll give you this’.
“I think it’s shockingly disrespectful to Ken, to be honest.”
Port Adelaide Press Conference | 09:18
Hinkley had been arguably under the most pressure as coach entering this season after the club’s shock 2022 result where they missed finals off the back of a horror start to the year.
Rumours of a coach succession plan at the club grew when assistant Josh Carr pulled out of the race for the Richmond vacancy, leaving many to wonder if after Hinkley’s new two-year deal that Carr would step in.
But Fox Footy’s Jon Ralph said the club had been clear that wouldn’t be the case.
“It will be announced this week that two-year extension for Ken Hinkley,” he said On the Couch.
“The Power are very keen to stress there is no official succession plan, even though Josh Carr will be the new coach at some stage and even though Ken Hinkley said last night ‘I want him to be the coach at some stage’.”
Hinkley had been asked on Carr’s future at the club in the press conference following Port’s big win over GWS.
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“I think he’s going to be an outstanding coach and an outstanding coach in his own right,” he said of Carr.
“I think what he’s done now is made a decision to continue improving himself and better himself with an exciting future ahead.
“He’s been a really important part of what we’ve been able to do this year.
“100 per cent one day Josh Carr will be a coach.”
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