Franklin commits to Sydney for 2023 season

·3-min read

Legendary Sydney forward Lance Franklin has ended speculation about his playing future after committing to the Swans for next season just days out from playing in the AFL grand final.

Franklin, out of contract at the end of the season after completing a monster nine-year deal he signed to switch from Hawthorn in 2014, has inked a one-year extension to stay in Sydney.

The Swans announced the deal via social media in a cryptic fashion, releasing a statement that Franklin had said "one more" in relation to his plans for 2023.

It means he will add to his amazing legacy, having already kicked 1047 goals to sit fifth on the all-time VFL/AFL goal-kicking list.

The 35-year-old has been the subject of much speculation about his future with Brisbane flagged as a possible 2023 destination if he decided to play on.

Franklin's signing is a massive boost for the Swans as they prepare to take on Geelong in the 2022 AFL decider at the MCG on Saturday.

He's no stranger to the game's biggest stage, the two-time premiership player preparing for his sixth grand final appearance in a career that so far tallies 340 games.

He could hardly have been more impressive in their thrilling one-point win against Collingwood in Saturday's preliminary final, kicking two goals to go with 13 disposals and seven marks.

The vintage display drew high praise from Sydney coach John Longmire.

"He was up and going the big 'Bud', he was charging around and I thought he gave us a lot of energy," Longmire said.

"He won some important contests, particularly in that first half he was able to win some 50-50 ball and I just thought some of the pressure stuff that he applied early on in the game was excellent as well."

It's already been a memorable year for Franklin, his 52-goal campaign helping him pass the 1000-career goals mark against Geelong in round two.

He trails only Tony Lockett (1360), Gordon Coventry (1299), Jason Dunstall (1254) and Doug Wade (1057) as one the game's greatest goalkickers.

Franklin has well and truly delivered on his long-term contract at the Swans, winning the club's goal-kicking award six times along with two Coleman Medals and four All-Australian selections.

He has been picked as an All-Australian eight times.

Franklin played 182 games for Hawthorn after making his AFL debut for the Hawks in 2005.

He was a member of Hawthorn's premiership-winning teams in 2008 and 2013.

Franklin has played 158 games for Sydney.

He's been in the game since being picked at No.5 in the 2004 AFL Draft and is an almost certain AFL Hall of Fame once his career is over.

Sydney's Franklin announcement appears to be an homage to basketball legend Michael Jordan, who ended a hiatus from the NBA in 1995 by faxing a media release that simply read: "I'm back."

The Swans statement reads: "The following statement was released today by Lance Franklin, via the Sydney Swans Football Club located in Sydney, NSW, Australia, in response to questions about his future career plans: 'One more.'"

Franklin is set to front the media at the SCG on Tuesday.