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Sore Davis still a chance for another Buddy showdown

Goodwin backs veteran, Tiger setback, Saint drops F-word Nat Edwards with the latest news

GREATER Western Sydney hasn't ruled co-captain Phil Davis out of another showdown with Swans superstar Lance Franklin on Saturday night and will give the key defender every chance to prove his fitness this week.

Davis rolled his left ankle when he landed awkwardly after a marking contest in the last quarter of last week's loss to Fremantle and was on crutches after the match. 

INJURY WRAP Giants sweat on key defender's ankle

The key defender would be a huge loss for the Giants ahead of the match at the SCG, with Davis a regular minder for Franklin in the crosstown clashes, and the pair's rivalry is now one of the best in the competition. 

While Franklin was carrying a groin complaint at the time, Davis kept him goalless from just eight possessions him in last year's elimination final at the SCG. 


GWS vice-captain Stephen Coniglio said on Tuesday that Davis was still a chance to get up for another shot at Franklin after scans ruled out any major structural damage to his ankle. 

"He's in good spirits and trying to get it right as quick as possible," he said. 

"He's one of our co-captains and (vital) in that backline with his communication and ability to stop the opposition's best forward. 

"We don't know much now, but probably closer to game day we can make a better call." 

The Giants have some options for the Franklin assignment should the skipper's ankle keep him sidelined, with athletic pair Adam Tomlinson and Nick Haynes, and emerging youngster Sam Taylor all in the team.

Dependable backman Aidan Corr could be recalled for the monster task after playing the past three games in the NEAFL after overcoming a groin injury. 

"Aidan has had a really good stint in the reserves so whether or not he gets the job I'm not 100 per cent sure," Coniglio said.

"After a slow pre-season I think 'Buddy' is getting back to some good form and has put in some great shifts against us at the SCG (over the years).

"He's a freak of an athlete and one of the better players to play the game.

"I'll leave that decision to (backline coach) 'Spike' (Mark) McVeigh and Leon (Cameron) to decide."

Davis and Franklin are long-time sparring partners. Picture: AFL Photos

If they are without their both co-captains, the Giants will find themselves in a unique position against the Swans on Saturday night.

Davis had some injury worries early in his time with the club but has rarely missed a game over the past three years, while Ward has played at least 20 games in each of his seven seasons at GWS before this year.

"I can’t remember playing a game without at least one of them in the team," Coniglio said.

"They've both been very durable and are really professional which is a credit to them."

Coniglio is the front-runner to lead the Giants out in the derby should Davis miss the clash, but he was coy when asked if he'd be the sole captain of the club for the first time in the regular season.

"The Swans have three captains so we might have to have three as well and split it down the middle," he said with a laugh.

"I'm not sure what the go is, we'll wait and see what Phil is doing first."