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Hawks can stop Swan forwards

GF: Shaun Burgoyne press conference Shaun Burgoyne spoke to the media ahead of Saturday's Grand Final against Sydney.
Brian Lake of the Hawks in action during the AFL 2014 Second Preliminary Final match between the Hawthorn Hawks and Port Adelaide Power at the MCG, Melbourne on September 20, 2014. (Photo: Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Brian Lake will have an important role on Saturday.

THE 'BUDDY factor' has made the Grand Final a promoter's dream but Lance Franklin's imposing form holds no fears for Hawthorn, according to Hawks utility Shaun Burgoyne.

After taking Sydney and the Swans by storm this season, former Hawks superstar Franklin looms large in the season finale at the MCG.

The Coleman medallist booted a bag of five goals and dominated the Swans' 71-point preliminary final shellacking of North Melbourne last Friday night.

The Hawks know better than anyone just how damaging Buddy can be – and he has arguably become a more complete player than during his nine seasons at Waverley after adding improved marking power to his game.

But Burgoyne dismissed suggestions his ex-premiership teammate had the reigning premiers running scared.

"I don't think we'll fear the factor – the Buddy factor," Burgoyne said.

"We well and truly know how great of a player he is seeing it first hand for a number of years at this club.

"We've got to have faith in our back six that we can do a job. Not only on Lance, but Kurt (Tippett) and Adam (Goodes) and the rest of their players who are quite capable of kicking a number of goals themselves.

"We can't be pigeonholed thinking it's all about Lance, because someone else will just jump up and bite us.

"But in saying that, we have a number of players here who are pretty good mates with him who have first hand knowledge of how he plays and how he goes about it."

Working out how to nullify Franklin and co. won't be the only pre-game headache for the Hawks this week.

Cyril Rioli, Brad Sewell and ruckman Ben McEvoy are all in contention to come into the side that escaped with a thrilling three-point preliminary final victory against Port Adelaide.

"I dare say match committee will go for – instead of the three hours they normally have – a five-hour meeting this week," Burgoyne said.

Sewell and McEvoy were pulled out of Box Hill's VFL Grand Final team that lost to Footscray on Sunday, while Rioli played three quarters in his first game for 12 weeks.

Burgoyne said Rioli was "feeling pretty good" after the match and was confident the livewire could be used as the sub or on the field if selected for the Grand Final.

"But he has to get through this week as well first and train with the team," Burgoyne said.

Vice-captain Jordan Lewis (corked thigh) was the Hawks' only injury concern from the preliminary final, although Burgoyne was confident the midfielder would be fit by Saturday.

"I'm pretty sure a corkie won't hold him back," he said.

The Grand Final will be Burgoyne's shot at a third premiership medallion and his 27th career final – placing him 10th on the all-time list.

The 268-game veteran played in 14 finals for his former club Port Adelaide – including the 2004 premiership.

But he also knows the agony of Grand Final defeat, having played for the Power in their record-breaking 119-point loss to Geelong in 2007, and in the Hawks' 10-point defeat to the Swans in 2012.

He said that heartbreak against the Swans wouldn't serve as extra motivation for the Hawks – as they attempt to win back-to-back flags for only the second time in club history.

"We won't really draw from 2012. We've added some new players since then and so have they," Burgoyne said.

"We've had a number of different motivating factors this year to get us up and to get us to where we are now.

"But to win the Grand Final you have to beat the best. We've already beaten Geelong and Port Adelaide, who were great challengers, and Sydney are going to be the same as well.

"So we won't need any more motivation but just to beat the best, I reckon."