KEN Hinkley discussed everything from December’s pre-season camp, who has come back in good shape from the Christmas break, and the State of Origin match.
Here are the best bits from Hinkley’s chat with the SEN SA’s Breakfast program on Tuesday morning.
Hinkley on the hype of pre-season:
“We all know and we all understand - and I’m not delusional - the pressure of pre-season is pretty low.
“It starts to build from now. You have to make the most of that first six weeks after Christmas.
“To our boys’ credit, we came back yesterday to train. We did tests and they were fantastic. We are in a healthy position, but that doesn’t guarantee you anything.
Hinkley on his side’s running capabilities:
“We have always been a pretty strong running group.
“Blokes like Karl Amon and Travis Boak, they can just run. It’s a natural part of their game, but they also work very hard to maintain it.
“Karl was up the front. He has been pretty much the front-runner for a couple of years now.
“As a whole group, they are quite impressive.
Hinkley on the last two pre-season camps:
“Our last two camps to northern Queensland have both been sensational.
“They have been done so well by Vossy (Michael Voss) and Mackers (Ian McKeown). They have done a great job of creating the camp and creating the environment of the camp.
“We absolutely go up there to train. We train very hard. But the balance between connection and fun and training is really important to us.
“We understand the need to bring the connection part together, and it’s worked really well for us.
Hinkley on the mental health shift:
“You acknowledge what some teams are doing - not just in our sport.
“I think the modern players of today need to share more and need to connect more as teammates and as people.
“We’d like to think that we are better now in society and better in the football club about looking after each other.
Hinkley on the change over the last few years:
“We have brought some new people into our footy club over the last 18-24 months.
“We have brought in some more younger players this year, who have some front-end football about them. The ones we have drafted this year have the ability forward of the footy.
“We see the improvements and hopefully the continuation of the likes of Butters, Rozee and Duursma.
“But also, my job is to make sure we can get the best out of our older boys, and they are capable of leading them really well and strongly still.
Hinkley on the high-end talent on the Power list:
“It’s interesting - even last year with the three boys, we didn’t expect come Christmas that they would play 60 games of football between them.
“You don’t get to see much of them before Christmas, it’s now we will get to see and experience what they can do.
“Yesterday in the running stuff we saw them run unbelievably well, so that’s a great start for them.
“We know that Bergman and Georgiades can certainly play a little bit at the top end, and Williams is a little bit more of a wild card.
“You draft first-rounders knowing that they play in their first year. So, I expect all three at some stage to play.
Hinkley on the State of Origin match:
“I was lucky, I got to play State of Origin football.
“Any time you get the opportunity to be a part of it - and let’s not forget the cause, we understand why we are doing it. It’s been a terrible summer with the bushfires.
“To be a part of what’s going to be the best 50 players of the game, because they will all put their hand up.
“It will be a great contest and a great game to watch.