Hawthorn send Lance Franklin ultimatum over contract saga

Hawthorn send Lance Franklin ultimatum over contract saga

Hawthorn have told Lance Franklin to decide his future before the end of the season.

Earlier this year, the out-of-contract forward announced that he would be putting any discussions about his future on hold until after the 2013 season.

But the Hawks have demanded that Franklin make up his mind before the end of the season.

"You can't leave it until after the season, because from a recruiting point of view, it's just impractical," Hawthorn president Andrew Newbold told News Ltd.

"It can be towards the end of the season, but it won't be able to be after the season," he said.

"I think that maybe we have taken that for granted a bit, but that's certainly our position.

"If he is going to leave, he needs to be thinking about where he is going. He just can't leave that until after the season, there are practicalities attached to it."

The Hawks are no doubt hoping to avoid a distraction like the one that surrounded Travis Cloke's future last season. Gary Ablett and Tom Scully also had well-publicised contract sagas before they moved clubs.

Franklin is one of the biggest names in the game and will command a salary of well over $1 million a year.

Greater Western Sydney have publically expressed an interest in the restricted free agent, while Fremantle has ruled themselves out.

Newbold says he would hold discussions with Franklin's manager in the hope he will stay with the Hawks.

"We will be going to him some time during the year with another offer saying 'Mate, there it is, we need to know'," he said.

"We will talk to his manager about that, about what needs to be tweaked and what doesn't and whether we can and whether we can't."