One of the greatest AFL players of all time, Lance Franklin has called time on his illustrious career, effective immediately.
The Sydney Swans superstar informed teammates of his decision on Monday.
It comes after Buddy injured his calf in the Swans’ win over Essendon on Saturday which saw him subbed out of the game.
The 36-year-old will bow out as one of the legends of the game after 354 matches in the AFL.
Franklin made his debut for Hawthorn in 2005 after being selected at number five in the national draft.
He won a premiership with the Hawks in 2008 where he also won the Coleman Medal after kicking 113 goals that season.
In late 2013, Franklin signed with the Sydney Swans on a massive nine-year deal worth a reported $10 million.
He would later play in three losing Grand Finals with the Swans in 2014, 2016 and 2022.
Franklin cracked 1000 goals last year, sparking frantic scenes at the Sydney Cricket Ground which saw thousands of fans pour onto the field.
Season 2022 was set to be Franklin’s last before he announced he would go around one more time this year.
Buddy will finish his career as the game’s fourth-highest goal scorer of all time.
Sydney Swans CEO Tom Harley said Franklin will go down as an all-time great.
“Lance is an icon of the AFL and will go down as one of the greatest players to ever play this game,” Harley said.
“Lance has that rare ability to transcend footy and has brought so much joy to fans for more than a decade now.
“He is a champion and will leave a lasting legacy, not only at the Sydney Swans, but within the AFL and broader community.
Sydney Swans coach John Longmire says Franklin has been a privilege to coach.
“Lance Franklin has been a wonderful player with this football club and in my opinion is the greatest forward of his generation.,” Longmire said.
“He is an absolute freak of nature and we have been lucky enough to have front row seats to one of the best ever to play.
“He is a massive competitor and a wonderful teammate. Lance is also an extremely private and humble champion, which makes him even more endearing to those who know him.”
More to come.