It’s been on the rumour mill for weeks, but now it’s been confirmed that former AFL star Barry Hall and recently-retired NRL hardman Paul Gallen are set to face off inside the ring.
To be held on November 15 at the Margaret Court Arena in Melbourne, the fight will serve as Hall’s professional debut.
The fight, while big in its own right, will actually be on the undercard of Andrew Moloney and Elton Dharry, who are set to fight it out for the Interim WBA Super Flyweight Championship.
While this fight will be Hall’s debut, Gallen has never lost since his first fight back in 2014. Since then, he has gone undefeated in nine professional bouts, all the while juggling his NRL career.
Gallen retired at the end of the 2019 NRL season, having played 349 NRL games. At 38, he is four years younger than Hall, however, what he has in fitness and fight experience might be overshadowed by the fact Hall will have an advantage in height.
Hall retired from the AFL at the end of 2011 after playing with St Kilda, Sydney and the Western Bulldogs. While he has never fought professionally, he contested 15 fights as a junior and had a controversial reputation in the AFL, with a seven-week suspension for striking Brent Staker still popping up in highlight reels today.
The NRL star though, who spent much of his career in the representative limelight where he captained New South Wales and played for Australia, was holding no punches when talking to the media.
“AFL vs NRL, so it’s not going to get much bigger,” said Gallen.
“I’m getting in there and I’m going to beat him. I’m not going to let him just stand there and punch me. It’s a fight, and as (promoter Danny Green) said at the start, I’m here to win. I’ll be training to win.
“Come November 15, I’ll be getting in that ring ready.”