After GWS smashed the Swans both physically and on the scoreboard in the qualifying final last season, Sydney youngster Callum Mills is ready for revenge when the two sides meet again this weekend in the JLT Community Series.
The Swans were the 2016 minor premiers and hosted GWS in the first ever all-Sydney final, but the Giants dominated from the outset to defeat Sydney by 36 points and advance to the preliminary final.
Sydney midfielder Josh Kennedy was flattened by Steve Johnson during the match, while forward Kurt Tippett suffered a fractured jaw after colliding with Giants Callan Ward and Shane Mumford.
Mills, who was crowned as last season’s Rising Star award winner, is looking forward to facing GWS and admits there will be a bit of feeling between the two sides.
“Definitely, they’re a cross-town team and we go out there trying to beat them every single time,” he said.
“We’ve had some close encounters over the past year or two and it’s really exciting.
“We don’t like losing to them and they don’t like losing to us, so it’s important that we go out there and play good football for four quarters, that’s what every team is aiming to do.
“Last year’s final was hard to take, but we’ve moved on from that and learnt from it.
“They’re a great team and they’re premiership favourites for a reason, they’re going to put out a good team and hopefully we are as well, so we’re going to be as competitive as we can and hopefully get the win.”
Lance Franklin will make his first appearance of the year for the Swans this weekend, while other regulars Dane Rampe, Kieren Jack and Jake Lloyd are also expected to return.
Mills knows how important it is for Sydney’s stars to get back onto the field ahead of Round One, and Franklin’s presence this weekend will be sure to boost the quality of the Swans’ play.
“He’s really excited and pumped to get out there, he gets really itchy when he’s not playing games, so it’s great for ‘Bud’ to get out there and have a run around,” he said.
“You always want to practice with your best team and that’s what we try and do every week.
“We don’t try and fluff around with it, we just get on with the job and try and get the win, no matter what game it is.”