Robbo: Is Buddy a ‘ceremonial’ skipper?
MALCOLM Blight might be more shocked than Lance Franklin.
The Sydney Swans megastar last night was named captain of the All-Australian team in what only could be described as a legacy and ceremonial appointment.
It is not a wrong appointment, far from it, but it is absolutely a clear direction that the best captain in the team is not the automatic All-Australian captain.
Last year, Richmond's Alex Rance was named skipper.
The year before that it was Geelong's Joel Selwood and the year before that Bulldog leader Bob Murphy.
Rance, who was not captain of Richmond last year, and Franklin, who is not even in the Swans leadership group this year, are the recipients of the trendsetters which are the AA selectors.
Blight, an AFL Hall of Fame legend, was way off the mark in his thinking.
He did not have Franklin in his AA team, so what he will make of Franklin being captain will form part of the discussion today.
And there will be widespread discussion.
Should Franklin be recognised last night for his previous eight All-Australians?
Shouldn't the 2018 team only be judged on what has been produced in 2018?
West Coast's Shannon Hurn is a first-time All Australian after having a career-best season.
Why should he be overlooked as skipper for what would be a lifetime highlight because the AA selectors want to reward Franklin for being a champ for a decade?
Again, it's not wrong, but it's certainly a surprise.
From my All-Australian team to the official team, there is four changes.
Tom Stewart was in for Tom Jonas, although it's understood the battle for that back pocket position raged for hours.
On a wing, Steele Sidebottom tipped out Jack Macrae.
Robbie Gray won a forward flank and knocked over Tom Hawkins, and Shaun Higgins replaced Elliot Yeo, who with Brisbane's Dayne Beams was incredibly stiff to miss the team.