PORT Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley has lauded the "pretty special" efforts of fill-in ruckman Jackson Trengove after he claimed the prized scalp of North Melbourne big man Todd Goldstein on Saturday night.
In the absence of first-choice ruck duo Matthew Lobbe (knee injury) and Paddy Ryder (season-long suspension), the usual defender has been a big-hearted performer this season.
The 25-year-old was pivotal in Port's first-quarter blitz against North, being a key factor in a clearance count of 11-3, including 7-0 at centre bounces.
By the first break, when Port had established a 34-point break, Trengove had nine possessions (five contested), four clearances (including two centre clearances) and a score assist, while Goldstein had just three touches and one clearance.
Trengove finished with 22 possessions (11 contested), seven clearances (four from the centre), four marks, six tackles and 15 hit-outs; Goldstein had 12 touches (10 of them handballs), five clearances, two marks, four tackles and 30 hit-outs.
"He's been pretty special, hasn't he, all year 'Jacko'," Hinkley said post-match.
"We couldn't have asked any more of him."
The Power coach was also excited that Lobbe would return in the SANFL on Sunday, and said it could pose a selection dilemma when he is eventually elevated to AFL level.
"I reckon (Trengove will) want to stay in the ruck," Hinkley said.
"We had a talk this week about potentially using him as a tall back because we knew how tall (the Kangaroos) were going to be and maybe 'Westy' (Justin Westhoff) having to ruck for us. But he said, 'No, leave me in the ruck.'
"I like that when a player says, 'No, put me back in the ruck, I'll get it done.' So he got it done."
Power midfielder Robbie Gray, who was close to best-afield against North, was also full of praise for Trengove.
"I was really proud of the way the midfield went about it, particularly Jacko, who had a massive job," Gray told AFL.com.au.
"He nullified Goldstein's hits a bit, he got some clearances himself and competed really hard and helped us mids out a lot.
"He was thrown in the deep end a bit by having to ruck for the majority of the year, but he's really embraced it and done a great job.
"You always know what you're going to get with Jacko – he's competitive, he's agile on the ground, and his follow-up work, his efforts around the ground, his tackling and his hunting of the footy is just awesome.
"We love playing in the midfield with him."