Giants' enemy No.1 - Lance Franklin. Photo: Getty Images
Greater Western Sydney continued its war of words with cross-town rivals Sydney Swans, questioning Lance Franklin's commitment and saying the Swans had no claim to Canberra.
The Giants will play Franklin's new team, the Swans, under lights at Manuka Oval in the NAB Challenge on February 20.
North Melbourne will also hop back to Canberra with their roo tails between their legs for their first game at Manuka since abandoning the nation's capital for money at the end of 2006.
The Western Bulldogs and Port Adelaide will also play in the ACT as part of next year's AFL fixture released on Thursday.
Franklin's nickname might be ''Buddy'', but it's clear he has no friends at GWS after turning his back on the fledgling club to sign with Sydney on a nine-year, $10 million contract.
Giants chief executive David Matthews hoped Franklin showed more ''commitment'' to the pre-season NAB Challenge than he did to the failing International Rules series between Australia and Ireland, and played in the first meeting between the two Sydney clubs in Canberra.
Franklin was one of the AFL's poster boys for the hybrid International Rules, but played only in the first game, returning to Australia to be at former Hawthorn teammate Brent Guerra's wedding.
''You'd hope his commitment to the NAB cup is a bit stronger than his commitment to the International Rules, but we're hoping he plays,'' Matthews said. ''That would be great for the people of Canberra to see him roll out and play for the first time [with the Swans].
''He's a fantastic player and someone the Swans have invested significantly in so you'd imagine every opportunity they get to play him they will.''
From the moment Franklin put contract talks with the Hawks on hold, everyone assumed he was going to the Giants - including GWS.
But Franklin's management had already contacted the Swans.
The move fuelled the bad blood between the two clubs.
Matthews said bringing the rivalry to their ''home turf'' was fantastic.
''I'm sure there's some Swans fans down in Canberra, but from the point of view of an investment in Canberra or any sort of relationship with Canberra, we don't regard the Swans as have any relationship there at all,'' he said.
''I'm sure there's some fans down there, they're a 30-year-old club that played some games in Canberra … but we're the club for Canberra.''
The Giants and the ACT government were pleased with the fixtures. It will be the third year of a 10-year, $26 million deal to have the Giants play three home-and-away and one pre-season game in Canberra.
Despite being a Hawthorn supporter, ACT Sports Minister Andrew Barr had been looking forward to watching Franklin play at Manuka - he just thought he'd be wearing orange instead of red and white.
Barr called on the Swans to play Franklin in Canberra and help produce a full house.
He said there was a good mix of finals contenders and improving teams coming to the ACT.
''The Giants will probably have a little bit of extra support from the AFL fraternity here in Canberra who may not think that fondly of North Melbourne,'' Barr said.
Giants' 2014 games at Manuka Oval
■ NAB Challenge: Giants v Swans, February 20 7.10pm
■ Round four: Giants v Western Bulldogs, April 12 4.40pm
■ Round seven: Giants v Port Adelaide, May 3 2.10pm
■ Round 20: Giants v North Melbourne, August 9 1.45pm