Sydney's lengthening stretch of ominous form left another stunned victim in its wake on Saturday night, with the resurgent 2016 grand finalists obliterating Gold Coast by 67 points at the SCG.

Speedster Gary Rohan enjoyed a career-high five goals and Lance Franklin provided three, but it was the evenness of effort and contribution across the ground that stood out in Sydney’s eighth win from its past nine matches. 

The thumping 17.16 (118) to 7.9 (51) result boosted the Swans' percentage by more than five points and sent them up to sixth on the ladder.

"I thought we got off to a slow start, got beaten around the contest, and obviously didn’t play the footy we wanted to play," Sydney coach John Longmire said.

"Credit to Gold Coast they started really well, but we cranked it up a fair bit after quarter-time which was good.

"I just gave them a reminder to be on edge all the time, it’s about making sure you go hard all the time.

"It’s not easy to play four quarters of really hard, strong football every week, I acknowledge that, but we’ve got to make sure we continue to do it."

The SUNS were without Gary Ablett, who was withdrawn two days earlier with a hamstring problem, adding to the absence of the injured Pearce Hanley. But Sydney, too, were forced into a major adjustment when skipper Josh Kennedy was ruled out shortly before the bounce with tightness in his quadriceps, replaced in the starting line-up by Dan Robinson, with Dan Hannebery elevated to captain.

In the opening quarter it seemed the Swans would find it challenging to adapt to the loss of their clearance king. But after absorbing a bright start by the SUNS, which saw the visitors to a deserved 32-27 quarter-time lead, Sydney got the juggernaut in motion and completely reversed the complexion of the game.

The Swans kicked six goals to none in the second term to forge ahead to a lead of 10.5 (65) to 5.6 (36) at half-time. A further four third-quarter goals - while keeping Gold Coast scoreless for the term - catapulted Sydney to an unassailable 94-36 lead, before it finished off with another three majors to two.

The win protected Sydney’s unbeaten history against the SUNS and put the competition’s best-performing side in recent weeks back into the top eight after its wretched 0-6 start to the season.

Luke Parker and Jake Lloyd, with 29 possessions each, were unyielding in midfield, while the defensive work of Dane Rampe and Heath Grundy provided a strong foundation. Stand-in skipper Hannebery made 10 tackles in a sign of his improving form.

Gold Coast was simply out-muscled after quarter-time. David Swallow had 21 first-half touches but just one in the third term, before finishing with 29. Tom Lynch kicked three goals in the first quarter but only one further. Jarryd Lyons had 26 touches and seven tackles.

The loss could have serious ramifications for the SUNS’ finals hopes.

"Obviously, really pleased with the first quarter," Gold Coast coach Rodney Eade said.

"I think the first five minutes of the second quarter we had momentum, had a couple of shots, making the play. Out of the six goals they got in that second quarter, four were from pressure turnovers - so we tried to do too much with the ball.

"The third quarter was disappointing. Their pressure lifted. I think the thing is, they’re a very good side. They’re a hardened finals team, bigger bodies."

SYDNEY              4.3    10.5    14.10    17.16    (118)
GOLD COAST     5.2     5.6       5.6        7.9       (51)  

Rohan 5, Franklin 3, Hewett 2, Towers 2, Jones 2, Reid, Papley, Melican
Gold Coast: Lynch 3, Martin, Swallow, Ah Chee, Wright 

Rohan, Rampe, Parker, Franklin, Lloyd, Grundy, Jack
Gold Coast: Swallow, Miller, Lyons, Sexton, Witts 

Jones (corked thigh)
Gold Coast: Nil 

Reports: Nil 

Umpires: Margetts, O'Gorman, Nicholls

Official crowd: 32,987 at the SCG