It's the win Adelaide had to have.

Coach Matthew Nicks finally tasted victory after 13 straight defeats and said the 35-point win over Hawthorn would help sell his message to the players that the Crows were on the right track.

Adelaide's aggressive list cull at the end of last season signalled a new, longer-term vision for the club after two woeful years in the wake of its disappointing Grand Final loss in 2017. 

That's brought with it significant on-field pain and plenty of stress off it for Nicks and co. but the coach is confident the tide is turning.

12:56 Mins
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Matthew Nicks Post-Match: R15

Matthew Nicks speaks to media following the round 15 win against Hawthorn.

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"I hope what it does is just reaffirm with our players what it's going to take and gives them some confidence," he said.

"I know what we need to do to win games of footy. I feel like I've been in the game long enough to understand the game well. 

"Our players have been working so hard on a particular system and game plan and we've been able to implement it now for two weeks.

"We didn't get a result (against Geelong), so it's hard as a coach to convince your players that that's what's going to get it done longer term, so today was just confirming that for our players."

Nicks knew what he was getting into when he accepted the role, but said he had questioned himself and the direction he was going as the losses piled up. 

The Crows have played a competition-high nine debutants this season, as well as introducing Ben Keays, Ben Crocker and Billy Frampton from other clubs.

"It's human to question yourself … but I've stuck strong and we've stuck strong as a football department … in what we believe in," Nicks said. 

"We've had close to 10, 11, 12 players who haven't played for the club before who've played this year, so it's going to take time for us to connect that and longer than a normal season, because of where we're at in society (COVID-19).

"When those doubts creep in here and there, we've all stuck strong and looked at it medium-to-longer term." 

The Crows had strong contributions from the Crouch brothers, Matt and Brad, Reilly O'Brien, Rory Laird and Brodie Smith, but also fresher faces such as Tyson Stengle, Keays and Shane McAdam.

08:06 Mins
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Highlights: R15 v Hawthorn

Check out all the highlights from our round 15 clash against the Hawks.

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