Topics:  afl, aussie rules, geelong cats, hawthorne hawks, lance franklin, nab cup

Franklin to play against Geelong after panel gives all clear

HAWTHORN star Lance Franklin is free to line up in the round one blockbuster against Geelong.

The key forward was yesterday cleared by the match review panel despite making high contact with Suns youngster Matt Shaw in Saturday's NAB Cup match on the Gold Coast.

Franklin caught Shaw across the neck and shoulder in a contest for the ball, conceding a free kick.

But the panel ruled Shaw had cut across Franklin's path to intercept the ball, adding the contact was made with an open hand.

"The panel said that Franklin had his hand open in a bid to gather the ball when contact was made and it was their view the action was not a striking action," the league said.

Hawks small forward Paul Puopolo has escaped with no more than bone bruising after injuring his left knee in the Suns match, but it was unclear yesterday whether he would be available for the Geelong match.

The panel also cleared Gold Coast player Andrew Boston for high contact against Brisbane's Claye Beams, and Carlton's Levi Casboult who collided heavily with GWS youngster Matt Buntine in Sunday's match at Blacktown.



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