All-Australian nod puts Buddy on cusp of history

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Lance Franklin could beryllium connected the verge of becoming the archetypal antheral ever to clinch a ninth All-Australian blazer, aft the superstar Sydney guardant was named successful the 2021 squad of 40.

Franklin is 1 of six men who person achieved All-Australian honours connected 8 occasions successful the carnival era, on with Gary Ablett senior, Gary Ablett junior, Robert Harvey, Mark Ricciuto and Patrick Dangerfield.

Western Bulldogs guns Marcus Bontempelli and Jack Macrae, Melbourne's Max Gawn and Christian Petracca, Geelong spearhead Tom Hawkins, West Coast ruckman Nic Naitanui and St Kilda skipper Jack Steele are each vying for back-to-back selections successful the All Australian squad of 22, acceptable to beryllium revealed connected Thursday.

Melbourne (seven players) and Brisbane (five) person earned the astir squad nominations successful the league, portion Richmond, Collingwood and North Melbourne are the lone clubs with zero.

Superstar Sydney guardant Lance Franklin launches for goal. (Getty)

Franklin is joined successful the 40-man squad by Swans teammates Luke Parker, Callum Mills and Tom Papley, successful an denotation of Sydney's meteoric emergence backmost up the ladder successful 2021.

Franklin has earned All-Australian squad enactment for the archetypal clip since 2018, the twelvemonth successful which helium was named skipper of the 22-man team.

While a torrid tally of injuries meant the four-time Coleman medallist played conscionable 10 games successful 2019 and zero successful 2020, he's made an emphatic comeback this season.

The 34-year-old is sitting equal-fourth connected the goal-scoring leaderboard with 48 majors astatine the completion of the regular season.

Franklin booted six goals successful Sydney's 87-point annihilation of the Gold Coast Suns astatine Docklands Stadium connected Saturday, taking his vocation tally to 992 majors.

The erstwhile Hawk is striving to go conscionable the sixth antheral successful VFL-AFL past to person kicked 1000 goals, on with Tony Lockett, Gordon Conventry, Jason Dunstall, Doug Wade and Gary Ablett senior.

The All-Australian enactment sheet consists of Gillon McLachlan (non-voting chairman), Andrew Dillon, Chris Johnson, Glen Jakovich, Warren Tredrea, Cameron Ling, Jude Bolton, Matthew Richardson, Nick Riewoldt and Kevin Bartlett.

Gun Western Bulldogs midfielder Marcus Bontempelli. (Getty)

All-Australian squad of 40:

Aliir Aliir, Karl Amon, Marcus Bontempelli, Charlie Cameron, Bailey Dale, Sean Darcy, Lance Franklin, Bayley Fritsch, Max Gawn, Toby Greene, Tom Hawkins, Jacob Hopper, Rory Laird, Jake Lever, Jarryd Lyons, Jack Macrae, Hugh McCluggage, Harry McKay, Steven May, Zach Merrett, Touk Miller, Callum Mills, Tom Mitchell, David Mundy, Nic Naitanui, Clayton Oliver, Tom Papley, Darcy Parish, Luke Parker, Christian Petracca, Daniel Rich, Christian Salem, Paul Seedsman, Jack Steele, Tom Stewart, Jake Stringer, Sam Walsh, Jacob Weitering, Ollie Wines, Dayne Zorko

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