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TEAM: Swans unchanged, Kennedy to miss

Sydney Swans Media  August 10, 2017 6:25 PM

Team Selection: Rd 21, 2017 Coach John Longmire joins SwansTV host Luke McManus in announcing the final team set to tackle Fremantle at the SCG this Saturday afternoon.
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Sydney Swans captain Josh Kennedy during a training session at the SCG.

The Sydney Swans remain unchanged ahead of Saturday’s clash with Fremantle, meaning skipper Josh Kennedy will spend another week on the sidelines.

In what was D-Day for the injured midfielder, Kennedy was restricted to running laps on Thursday as the playing group was put through full-ground drills in preparation for the Round 21 fixture at the SCG.

He failed to join the session and will, as a result, miss a third game of season 2017 and only his sixth since becoming a Swan.

Speaking for Centrum Team Selection, coach John Longmire said while Kennedy shows no signs of discomfort he’d rather err on the side of caution.

“Obviously, a player we would have liked to have come back into the side is Josh Kennedy, but he just didn’t quite get up,” Longmire said.

“We expect him to play next week. He ran almost at full pace but didn’t quite get there. We didn’t want to keep pushing him.

“He didn’t feel it, it felt really good, but we sat down with the medical staff and Josh himself and thought whilst we’re desperate to get him back into the team as quick as we can, the risk was too great.”

Kennedy dominated in the Swans’ last clash against Fremantle, collecting a career-high 45 disposals in the 90-point triumph at Subiaco.

His absence will mean a heavier reliance on cohorts Luke Parker and Dan Hannebery, the pair shouldering the bulk of the contested and clearance work in the win against Geelong.

They’ll again be called upon to lead the charge against Fremantle’s ball-winners in Nat Fyfe and Lachie Neale.

“It was really important to share the load, across all of our players, we’ve bought on some young midfielders this year, and over the last few years, and they’re getting more exposure (to senior football),” Longmire added.

“They’ll get a big challenge this week as Fremantle’s midfield is experienced, full of quality and really hard, a good mix of inside and outside players, so we’ll have a real challenge ahead of us but we’re looking forward to it.”

Sydney and Fremantle have squared off on seven occasions since 2013, the ledger squared at three wins and three losses apiece, with a draw thrown in.

The SCG though hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the Docker given their last win coming in Round 17, 2011.

Click here to view the full team.

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