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Good outweighs the bad for Baz

Swans Media - Tanya Paolucci  February 24, 2014 12:05 PM

SwansTV: Barry Hall HOF interview Barry Hall spoke to SwansTV backstage after being announced into the Sydney Swans Hall of Fame
Barry Hall on stage last Friday night

Barry Hall on stage last Friday night

One of the Sydney Swans newest Hall of Fame inductees, Barry Hall admitted he wasn’t sure about how the room would react when he received his honour at Friday night’s Sydney Swans Guernsey Presentation and Hall of Fame dinner.

The 2005 premiership captain, who experienced both highs and lows in his career at the Swans, said he hoped the ‘good would outweigh the bad’ when he accepted his award on Friday night.

But the three-time All Australian’s fears and uncertainties were quashed when he was met with rapturous applause and a standing ovation from the 700 guests in attendance.

Speaking to SwansTV backstage after accepting his Hall of Fame honour, an emotional Hall said he was humbled to be recognised as a great of the club.

“I’m surprised, grateful and I’m ecstatic,” Hall told SwansTV.

“It’s been a long since I’ve been at the club, so to be back and to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, and when you look at some of the names in there, it’s a big honour.

“I didn’t know how the reaction would be, but I’m glad it turned out the way that it did.

“You get humbled by it and you probably forget about some of the stuff you did, and when I watched some of the highlights, I got a bit emotional because it’s something you haven’t seen for a while.

“It’s been a good experience all round.”

Hall arrived at the Swans as an established forward at the end of 2002 following 88 games at St Kilda.

The big forward went on to become the Swans’ leading goal kicker for seven consecutive seasons between 2002 and 2008 and became co-captain of the club in 2006.

Reflecting on his career in Sydney, which saw him play 162 games and kick 467 goals, Hall said he believed the club helped him grow and develop both on and off the field.

“It’s a great footy club, including the people around it, the people that run it, the leadership group and the players, it’s a really good footy club to play at and you can get away from football if you want to,” he said.

“That’s one of the things that attracted me the most to the Sydney Swans, but I’ve said all along and I’ve said it to other players, that it’s the place to play AFL footy.

“Obviously the premiership was the big thing for me and being the captain of the club and making the leadership group, but there were other highlights.

“Highlights like just growing as a person, because you can have all those things on your resume, but if you grow as a person and if you’re a better person all round, then that’s a pretty good feat in itself.

“I feel like I walked away from the Swans as a better person than when I walked in, so I’m happy.”

Hall received his honour alongside former team mate and co-captain Craig Bolton, who was also inducted into the club’s Hall of Fame this year.

Bolton described Hall as a loyal team mate, an influential leader and said he was thrilled Hall’s achievements were being recognised by the club he called home for seven-and-a-half years.

“He was a great team mate and he’d do anything for you,” Bolton said.

“He was an instrumental leader and part of that successful period and part of what lives on today, it’s guys like him that made that happen.

“He’s more than a worthy recipient and I’m really rapt for him.”

After playing out his final two seasons at the Western Bulldogs following a couple of infamous on-field incidents, Hall said he held the Sydney Swans Football Club in the highest regard.

Hall added that he has kept an eye on the Swans’ performance over the years and was constantly impressed with the club’s ability to continually play at the highest level.

“They’ve done it since I’ve known about the Swans and they just keep surprising people with how they continually get success,” he said.

“I think that’s why they are such a great club, they keep finding players and they just keep buttering up and they make finals every year.

“They’ve got the respect of the competition and they are just a great footy club and they’ve worked hard for it.

“It hasn’t come easy and they deserve everything that they get.”