“Hopefully we can share the workload”: Lance Franklin.LANCE Franklin is hopeful his goalkicking radar that went awry in previous games against Hawthorn is on target for the AFL grand final but he still expects his teammates to share the scoring workload.
Franklin won the Coleman Medal in his first year with Sydney, but he was markedly less accurate against the Hawks than he was during the rest of the season.
He kicked a combined tally of 5.12 in two games against his former club, compared to 70.37 from his other 19 appearances.
Franklin has kicked 42 more goals than Sydney’s second best goalkicker, Kurt Tippett.
He has been mindful through the season of the need to kick bags of goals in big games.
“It’s something that I’ve been working on and hopefully on Saturday I’ll be able to convert,” Franklin said yesterday.
“But in saying that we’ve got other forwards in the team that are able to kick the goals on Saturday.
“Hopefully we can share the workload and it’s not just me kicking the goals, it’s all the other boys and midfielders.”
Franklin said he would be nervous but excited going into Saturday’s game, but that already facing Hawthorn twice this season had been helpful.
“It’s worked out that we play Hawthorn, my old club, but in saying that once we cross the line it’s just another game,” Franklin said.
“They are a quality outfit. All season they’ve played some really good football.”
He thought his direct opponent would probably be good friend Josh Gibson, who marked him in the two games earlier this season.
Franklin said the only pre-match banter with his former teammates was a few texts during the Brownlow Medal count.
He was booed by some Hawks fans when Sydney played them in Melbourne and does not anticipate a friendly atmosphere on Saturday.
“It’s going to be a hostile environment, something that a lot of these [Swans] boys have experienced already in 2012,” Franklin said. “There’s a lot of experience in the changing rooms . . . so we’ve got full confidence in ourselves that we can get the job done.”
He was optimistic Sydney’s defence could contain his old forward colleague Jarryd Roughead, whose six-goal preliminary final haul Franklin described as “unbelievable.”
“He’s going to be hard to stop on Saturday, but our back six has been very good this season,” Franklin said.
Through the media conference Franklin stressed the ‘we rather than me’ mantra that runs though the Swans.
He stayed true to message when asked a provocative question about whether his million-dollar salary had bought the Swans a grand final appearance.
“It’s a team sport, we’ve got nearly 50 guys on the list, 22 are going to be out there on Saturday,” Franklin said. “I’m just one of the boys playing a role for the footy club.”
Sydney’s only minor injury concern, forward Sam Reid, confirmed he was on track to recover from a jarred knee and be right for decider.
“It should be fine,” Reid said.