• Hawthorn have welcomed back star forward Cyril Rioli for their big clash with Port Adelaide. (AAP)Source: AAP
Cyril Rioli is rested and ready to return for Hawthorn in Thursday's clash with Port Adelaide.
Adam Santarossa

7 Jul 2016 - 12:54 PM  UPDATED 7 Jul 2016 - 3:34 PM

Cyril Rioli will make his long awaited return for Hawthorn’s blockbuster clash with Port Adelaide on Thursday at Adelaide Oval.

The inclusion of Rioli is the Hawks only change for the encounter, with Daniel Howe making way for the fleet footed midfielder.  

Howe has been named as an emergency, alongside Angus Litherland and Brendan Whitecross.

Rioli missed Hawthorn’s win over the Gold Coast a fortnight ago due to the death of his grandfather and with the Hawks having a bye last weekend, the 26 year-old has not had a game of footy for some time.

The Hawks side would have enjoyed the chance to freshen up however, with the finals looming on the horizon.

Alastair Clarkson’s men sit on top of the AFL Premiership ladder on 44 points, with six clubs in the chasing pack, just one win away.

Port Adelaide will be desperate for victory against the Hawks, with the Power sitting two wins outside the top eight, with their finals aspirations hanging in the balance.

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