Franklin fresh off the boot

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - SPORT -

A COU­PLE of weeks ago Lance Franklin said he felt like a 25-year-old and last night he played like one against Bris­bane in their JLT clash, boot­ing four goals to lead the Swans to an easy 55-point win.

The Cole­man medal­list hit the ground run­ning at the More­ton Bay Cen­tral Sports Com­plex, scor­ing the open­ing goal and giv­ing away the sec­ond to Tom Pap­ley.

He added another two to open the scor­ing in the sec­ond term and when he hit James Rose lace-out he had a hand in all but one of the Swans’ six goals first-half goals.

By the time he had his fourth, late in the third quar­ter, the Swans had the game com­pletely in their con­trol.

Buddy had plenty of score­board sup­port from his small for­wards led by Tom Pap­ley and Rose, who fin­ished with three each, and Sam Reid two.

Dane Rampe also led a miserly de­fence hold­ing Bris­bane to just five goals with the last three com­ing in junk time.

The only down­side for the Swans were an­kle in­juries to Aliir Aliir and Cal­lum Sin­clair.

Aliir made a bright start but didn’t re­turn af­ter quar­ter time while Sin­clair fell awk­wardly in a third quar­ter mark­ing con­test. If body lan­guage is any guide Sin­clair’s in­jury looks to be the more se­ri­ous of the two.

The Lions were without three key play­ers, best-and­fairest Dayne Zorko, 34-yearold re­cruit Luke Hodge and skip­per Dayne Beams, who was on com­pas­sion­ate leave af­ter the pass­ing of his fa­ther Philip. But their per­for­mance was dis­ap­point­ing with Ste­fan Martin clearly their best player dom­i­nat­ing in the ruck and around the ground.

Eric Hip­wood looked dan­ger­ous and fin­ished with two goals, as did Ben Keays. Allen Chris­tensen also did well in his re­turn from in­jury.

Af­ter their hor­ror 0-6 start last year it’s clear John Long­mire is mak­ing sure his team are up and run­ning from round one.

He put his strong­est pos­si­ble team on the park in last week­end’s prac­tice match against GWS and did the same against the Lions with Zak Jones, Heath Grundy, Jar­rad McVeigh and Dan Han­nebery the only play­ers miss­ing.

Grundy and Jones are ex­pected to play next week in the JLT match against the Gi­ants but Han­nebery and McVeigh are both in doubt for the round one clash against West Coast in three weeks time.

Sam Nai­smith was a late with­drawal and was re­placed by Darcy Cameron in the se­lected side.

Lance Franklin dom­i­nated against the Lions. Picture: Getty

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