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Iconic scenes as Buddy joins AFL’s most elite club


The SCG became a mosh pit, as Lance Franklin slotted his 1000th AFL goal in the Swans’ 107-77 win over Geelong, becoming the sixth player into four digits.

Lance Franklin became only the sixth man in the history of the VFL/AFL to kick 1000 goals, the first since the great Gary Ablett in 1996.

The scenes at the SCG that followed, or the feat itself, may never be witnessed ever again. Thousands stormed onto the turf for an enormous embrace of the larger-than-life Swan.

The 1000 club consists of:

  • Tony Lockett (St Kilda/Sydney) – 1,360 goals
  • Gordon Coventry (Collingwood) – 1,299 goals 
  • Jason Dunstall (Hawthorn) – 1,254 goals
  • Doug Wade (Geelong/North Melbourne) – 1,057 goals
  • Gary Ablett Sr (Hawthorn/Geelong) – 1,031 goals
  • Lance Franklin (Hawthorn/Sydney) – 1,000 goals

Franklin went into the game against Geelong on 996 career goals and achieved the historic milestone with in the fourth quarter at the SCG – incredibly needing just the four scoring shots in the process. He showed no signs of succumbing to the pressure.

The kick.

Even before the ball had left Franklin’s boot, fans started running onto the ground as wild scenes erupted as the stands emptied and fans poured onto the SCG. The official attendance was 36,578 and most jumped the fence.

It took Franklin more than 10 minutes to weave his way through the fans and return to the Swans change rooms as the game was stopped for 34 minutes, as fans slowly cleared back out.

“It was an amazing moment, it really was,” Franklin told Channel 7 afterwards.

“A lot of hard work to get there, been playing for 18 years.

“I wouldn’t be able to get there without having great teammates around me.

“I had the taste of Carlton Draught in my mouth from someone.”

The next day, Sydney Swans fan Alex Wheeler came forward and declared he was the fan who had caught the famous Sherrin.

Wheeler contacted the Swans and returned the ball to Franklin. In exchange, the delighted fan received a pair of boots, a Swans guernsey, another football all signed by Franklin, two five-year club memberships and a letter of appreciation signed by Swans coach John Longmire. 

Franklin said he was delighted the footy had been returned as he reflected on his historic achievement.

“It was perfect timing to get it done here at the SCG and then to have my family across from America, Adelaide, Perth – it was such a special moment.”

Joel Martelli
Joel Martelli
The only thing that Joel Martelli loves more than football (seriously, we wouldn't be surprised if he has a Wollongong Wolves tattoo) is writing about all things sports. With a Bachelor of Communications and Media Studies Degree specialising in Journalism, he spends his days uncovering breaking athlete news stories and diving deep into play-by-play strategies. We're glad that he's put his passion to the pages of Only Sports as one of our dedicated sports writers.

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