Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin was born on the 30th January 1987 in Perth, Western Australia. Playing for Dowerin JFC (WA) in his younger years, Lance won a sports scholarship at Wesley College in Perth and went on to briefly play for the Perth Football Club and represented WA in the AFL National Under 18 Championships.
In 2005, Lance was selected by Hawthorn in the 2004 AFL draft. Debuting in Round 1, he showed strong presence up forward and played 20 out of 22 games, kicking 27 goals. In 2006 despite injury woes resulting in missed games, Lance wasted no time in getting back to form and by late in the season predictions of being the next big name forward in the AFL emerged.