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Franklin, Tippett to take on Hawks

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Adrian Warren

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Hawks fly north to battle Buddy's Swans

Rohan Connolly previews round eight of the AFL season, including Hawthorn's clash with Sydney on Friday night.

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Lance Franklin is expected to play against his former AFL club Hawthorn at ANZ Stadium on Friday night, when the Swans could finally unleash their much-vaunted quartet of top forwards.

Franklin, who moved to Sydney on a nine-year, $10 million contract after last season, missed last week's clash against the Brisbane Lions due to knee tendonitis.

But he came through training on Wednesday, as did fellow forward Kurt Tippett, who is expected to play his first senior game of the season.

Lance Franklin is ready to take on his old team.

Lance Franklin is ready to take on his old team. Photo: Getty Images

''They both trained really well, so we expect them to play at this stage,'' Sydney coach John Longmire told the Swans website.

Observers noted Franklin appeared to run and kick freely during training.

Franklin and Tippett, who was Sydney's leading goalkicker last season, have yet to play a game together.

It will be the first time this year they have both been available at the same time as fellow forwards Adam Goodes and Sam Reid, who have also missed games through injury.

''They obviously haven't played much footy together and, with the other players as well, but it's good to have them available,'' Longmire said.

Sydney and former Hawthorn midfielder Josh Kennedy wasn't expecting too much from the star-studded forward quartet.

''Those things take time, but I think their presence on the field will lift everyone else as well,'' he said.

Kennedy said Franklin hadn't spoken about the prospect of playing against his former club. ''I think it will be a pretty big deal for him. Obviously, the history he had there at Hawthorn is immense.

''We're not going to pretend that it wouldn't and it's just another game. But at least he'll know that he's got 21 other players behind him.''

Kennedy said he didn't expect too much from Tippett, who has played only a half of a reserves game this season due to knee and rib injuries. ''Hopefully [he will] take a few grabs, just be a real beacon for us up forward and, if anything, just take out one of their good-quality defenders.''

Franklin and Tippett apart, Sydney could also recall Lewis Roberts-Thomson, with first-choice ruckman Mike Pyke out with a hamstring strain.

AAP

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