SYDNEY superstar Lance Franklin's new hamstring injury is "slightly worse" than the one he suffered in the middle of last year that kept him out for nine weeks.
Franklin suffered the injury at training on Wednesday and while scans revealed no tendon damage, Swans head of football Charlie Gardiner says the club is unable to put a timeline on his recovery.
With the season reduced to 17 games due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the best case scenario will see Franklin in the second half of the season.
"We can't say right here and now how long he'll be out, but it's a decent injury and he won't run for the next 3-4 weeks," Gardiner said.
"We think it's slightly worse than the injury he sustained last year mid-season, where he missed about nine weeks.
"That might be an indication but we just don't know until he gets into his rehabilitation."
Franklin had no prior injury history to his right hamstring before this latest blow.
The 33-year-old returned to training last week but felt sore towards the end of the session so his running loads were being managed.
The gun forward needs to kick 66 majors to reach the elusive 1000-goal club, but that looks extremely unlikely to happen in 2020 given the reduced fixture.
His multi-million dollar nine-year deal will take him through until the end of the 2022 season.
Franklin managed 27 goals last year with an injury to his left hamstring restricting him to just 10 games.
The Swans will head into round two against Essendon undermanned in the forward line with fellow veteran Sam Reid set to miss the clash with a strained calf.