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Voss: We’re not going to rely on one certain individual to get things done for us

Michael Voss press conference: 14 March 2019 - PTV Voss talks about how the team is looking ahead of round 1

PORT ADELAIDE senior assistant coach Michael Voss is confident his side has what it takes to beat Melbourne in Round 1 at the MCG, regardless of whether co-captain Ollie Wines is in the side.

Wines had surgery in January after dislocating his shoulder while water-skiing.

The Power’s new co-captain has been joining in on competitive drills in the last week or so and has been mentioned by coach Ken Hinkley as being a chance to return ahead of time and take on the Demons.

But Voss was not as confident during a press conference on Thursday, rating his charges as “slim”.

“I would have thought we’d still stick to the timeframe, I’ve heard nothing to the contrary,” Voss said.

“He does look good out there. He’s able to join in on some drills, which is good, and he’s obviously been running around for a few weeks so that’s not foreign.”

“It’s just a matter of when we introduce some contact and that’s probably the last progression before he plays.

“His range and contact are the two most important things. His range is improving and the contact part we’ll leave until really late.”

Wines finished joint runner up in Port Adelaide’s best and fairest in 2018 with newly installed co-captain Tom Jonas after an impressive campaign which saw him ink a new long-term deal to remain at Alberton.

The 24-year-old averaged 26 disposals, three marks and five tackles per game and will become more important in the centre square given the new AFL starting positions at centre bounces.

Along with Wines, Paddy Ryder is in some doubt to feature against Melbourne after he suffered a depressed cheekbone in an accidental head knock with teammate Robbie Gray last weekend.

The pair collided while attempting to gather a ball in the Power’s 21-point win over North Melbourne in the JLT Community Series game at Alberton.

Voss confirmed Ryder would be given right up until the last moment to ensure he had overcome the surgery he had to correct the injury.

“There are a few boxes he’ll have to tick to satisfy the doctors to ensure he’s OK,” he said of the big man’s chances of playing.

“The footy part is secondary because as you said, he can run, jump, still tackle.

“We have to be mindful that it’s a contact injury so we’ll obviously take precaution where it’s needed.”

But, regardless of whether Ryder or Wines are there, Voss is confident he has the cattle to get the points in Melbourne.

“Every team doesn’t want to be hinging on one player,” he said.

“(Ollie’s) an extremely important player to us. Ollie is our co-captain and he has an enormous presence and we’d love him in the game but we also have to be better than thinking that one person is going to get the job done for us.

“We’ve spoken all pre-season about connection as a football team, how we’re not going to rely on one certain individual to get things done for us and how we all have to be on the same page.

“And that message hasn’t changed. If anything, the belief has just grown.”