In the off-season, footy clubs put up videos of their players doing their boxing training: combinations of punches, footwork, sparring. Some footy players have reputations for being adequate boxers, the retired-Shane Tuck of Richmond, being one. Barry Hall thought he was both a boxer and a footy player until the moment arrived for him to fight after his footy career was over. Indeed, he could hit when a player (not a boxer) was on the field. His hit on Staker was as inglorious as Tyson’s bite of Holyfield’s ear. Boxing training complements the skills of a footy player: endurance, reactions, speed. The videos of these players doing their boxing training with their guards down and hands falling by their sides suggests that much can be learned from boxing, even in an imprecise manner. The footy players appear full of confidence and to be enjoying themselves – it seems to be a recreational, relaxing moment of their training – no matter how hard they are doing it.
The rest of the article, published on The Footy Almanac, can be found here.