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Power come to life late to defeat brave Demons

Highlights: Melbourne v Port Adelaide The Demons and Power clash in round 11
Aaron Young of the Power marks during the 2014 AFL Round 11 match between the Melbourne Demons and Port Adelaide Power at Traeger Park, Alice Springs on May 31, 2014. (Photo: Sean Garnsworthy/AFL Media)
Port's Aaron Young marks over Max Gawn in the Power's narrow win in Alice Springs
TRAVIS Boak added another chapter to his lore of leadership on Saturday, overcoming an ankle injury to lift Port Adelaide to a 20-point win over Melbourne in Alice Springs.

Boak was close to being substituted off after rolling his ankle in the first quarter, but returned and starred as the Power kicked the final four goals of the game to win 14.11 (95) to 11.9 (75).

Boak finished with 28 disposals and one goal, a fair effort given the 25-year-old's ankle was so swollen he is in doubt for next Saturday's clash with St Kilda.

"He had some help to get through the game," Port coach Ken Hinkley said, adding that Boak was very close to putting on the red vest when the game was 10 minutes old.

"I've just had a look and his ankle is quite big. He'll have a bit of a challenge to come up next week."

Chad Wingard (concussion) is also in some doubt for next weekend, having been accidentally knocked out by team-mate Jay Schulz in a third-quarter marking contest.

"Chad said he was fine, he was more angry about the way he'd been playing," Hinkley said.

"He looks pretty bright and fresh at the moment."

The Power raced to a 26-point lead before Melbourne had even scored in the inaugural regular-season match in Alice Springs, but from that point on were put under extreme pressure in a bruising encounter.

With 10 minutes remaining in the match, Paul Roos' men hit the front after Christian Salem kicked the opening goal of the final quarter.

Justin Westhoff kicked consecutive clutch goals in response, with Roos left ruing the four behinds his side registered in the fourth term prior to Salem's second goal.

"They had six scoring shots and we have five in the last quarter," Roos said.

"We kicked 1.4 and they kicked 4.2 - that's the difference.

"They're on top for a reason."

Hinkley refused to get carried away with his team's seventh consecutive win and 9-1 record.

"Obviously it has us on top of the ladder. It doesn't mean a lot right now," he said.

"We know we have to play better than that, but we certainly acknowledge the improvement of the Melbourne footy club."

In what was a physical and at times heated affair, opposing ruckmen Mark Jamar and Matthew Lobbe set the tone early.

The pair grappled off the ball often in the first quarter, replays showing Jamar throwing a haymaker that failed to connect.

Off-season recruits Dom Tyson and Bernie Vince were among Melbourne's best.

Max Gawn taps the ball away from Travis Boak in the Alice Springs sunshine as Jared Polec looks on. Picture: AFL Media

MELBOURNE         2.2     7.4     10.5     11.9 (75)
PORT ADELAIDE   5.4     8.4     10.9     14.11 (95)

Melbourne: Frawley 2, Bail 2, Pedersen 2, Tyson 2, Salem 2, Gawn,
Port Adelaide: Schulz 2, Gray 2, Westhoff 2, White, Neade, Mitchell, Young, Boak, Ebert, Polec, Wines
Melbourne: Tyson, M.Jones, N.Jones, Vince, Howe, Dunn, McDonald
Port Adelaide: Gray, Broadbent, Boak, Impey, Cornes, Westhoff
Melbourne: Nil
Port Adelaide: Wingard (concussion)
Melbourne: Jimmy Toumpas replaced Max Gawn in the third quarter
Port Adelaide: Andrew Moore replaced Chad Wingard in the third quarter
Reports: Nil
Umpires: Dalgleish, Schmitt, Foot
Official crowd: 5,655 at the Traeger Park