PORT Adelaide has summoned Peter Ladhams to replace suspended ruckman Scott Lycett for Saturday night's high-stakes encounter with the Western Bulldogs.
Lycett's four-game ban for a sling tackle opened the selection door for Ladhams, who hasn't been sighted in AFL ranks since being dropped after round four.
Power coach Ken Hinkley says he considered a debut for 21-year-old ruckman Sam Hayes before opting for the more experienced Ladhams.
"It was a real tough call, both boys are in really good form," Hinkley told reporters on Friday.
"Pete has played some AFL football but we're really keen to give Sam an opportunity at the right time.
"But today was the right time to give Pete a go."
Hinkley refused to be drawn on the severity of Lycett's suspension for a dangerous tackle which concussed Adelaide's Ned McHenry.
"For me to decide what is fair and what is not fair, I don't want to buy into that conversation," he said.
"We're protecting the head and I think we should protect the head.
"Scott knew that he had done the wrong thing, he didn't challenge the charge ... the number of games is determined by the Tribunal and we respect that."
The third-placed Power will be without infuential midfielder Dan Houston (shoulder) with Riley Bonner replacing him for the Adelaide Oval match against the second-placed Dogs.
Port, with six wins and two losses, sits one victory behind the Bulldogs whose only loss has been against reigning premier Richmond.
While both are flag fancies, Hinkley cautioned against reading too much into the result.
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"It (the result) will say something but I'm not exactly sure how much," he said.
"It's round nine. And we make all these predictions and all these bold statements after every round - someone tomorrow is going to win and hopefully it's us.
"It's just too early to make too many big predictions about anyone in the competition."
The fixture pits two of the AFL's renowned midfields against each other, with both clubs boasting star-studded onball brigades.
"We are really comfortable and confident that our best is as good as they have got, we have got some great quality," Hinkley said.
"The Bulldogs will be looking at our midfield and having as many concerns as we have about theirs."