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Powell-Pepper set to debut against Swans

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It is looking likely that Sam Powell-Pepper will make his debut against the Swans on Saturday - ${keywords}
It is looking likely that Sam Powell-Pepper will make his debut against the Swans on Saturday
He's a really special kid, super mature for his age and a guy that just goes about his business.
Port Adelaide skipper Travis Boak

PORT Adelaide skipper Travis Boak will play his 200th game as one of the club's most exciting talents plays his first.

Midfield bull Sam Powell-Pepper is set to make his AFL debut in Saturday's season opener against Sydney at the SCG.

The 19-year-old Western Australian sent social media into overdrive when he delivered a powerful fend off to Hawthorn triple-premiership player Shaun Burgoyne in the JLT Community Series.

Boak said Powell-Pepper displayed that brute strength on the training track in contested drills with Power defender Hamish Hartlett and vice-captain Ollie Wines last year.

"His first training session he put Hamish (Hartlett) straight on his arse, and not long after he dropped Ollie as well, so he certainly hasn't had any nerves," Boak said.

"He's a really special kid, super mature for his age and a guy that just goes about his business.

"He just wants to compete and he doesn't care who gets in the way."

The biggest selection headache for the Power will be deciding if experienced defender Matthew Broadbent comes straight into the side.

Broadbent missed the entire pre-season competition with a hamstring injury, but is available to face the Swans.

In his absence, Dan Houston staked his claims for a round one debut, while Riley Bonner is also in the mix.

"He's still got a bit of training to do, so whether he comes back this week or next week, I'm not too sure," Boak said.

"He's shown over the past couple of years he does provide us with a lot of run and leadership down there as well, being a veteran down there now and works well with Jasper, Hamish (Hartlett) and Tom Jonas.

"He'll be sorely missed if he doesn't play, but there's guys like Dan Houston that can come into the side and certainly fill that void if he does get the opportunity.

"We've seen Darcy Byrne-Jones over the last 12 months really fill a role as well if (Broadbent) doesn't play."

The Power are already without rebounding half-back Jasper Pittard (hamstring) for up to three weeks.

Boak, 28, will become the eighth Power player to reach the 200-game milestone.

He made his debut in the same game that former captain Warren Tredrea brought up his double century.

"It was incredible to put on the guernsey for my first game and it was Tredders' 200th game and I'll remember that forever," Boak said.

 

"It does sound a bit funny, 200 games and 10 or 11 years in the competition, but it's really special."