Bolton welcomes return of Barry Hall - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bolton welcomes return of Barry Hall

By Adrian Warren 26/07/2008 07:48:02 AM Comments (0)

The return of fiery forward Barry Hall is a "big win" for Sydney even before they step on the SCG against their AFL bogey side Adelaide on Saturday.

The Crows have crashed to ninth following five straight losses and another defeat could spell the end of their top-eight ambitions.

Fourth-placed Sydney will be looking to build on the momentum generated by last week's victory over Carlton.

Both sides welcome back a strike forward, with Hall returning for Sydney and Jason Porplyzia for Adelaide.

"It's great for us to have him back. It's going to be a big win for us," said Sydney co-captain Craig Bolton, referring to Hall's recall.

Hall had been stood down by the club for two games for attempting to strike Collingwood defender Shane Wakelin.

"We're not too concerned he's not getting the ball and kicking the goals, as long as he's doing his role," Bolton added.

"He has responded really well to the situation. He has taken responsibility for the incident that happened and he's looking forward to getting back and playing good football."

The Crows dropped Graham Johncock, while Sydney lost fullback Leo Barry and full-forward Michael O'Loughlin to injury.

Bolton said Barry's absence wouldn't stretch the Swans' defence as they had rotated a lot of players through the backline this year.

Adelaide have won eight of their past nine encounters against Sydney, who haven't beaten them in four years.

That unflattering statistic hasn't been a focus for the Swans this week, according to Bolton.

"We haven't discussed it too much, we've looked at the last couple of times we've played them," the Swans defender said.

"I think it's fraught with danger when you go back and look at these records too far back.

"Our personnel has changed a lot this year, so we will just want to turn things around and make sure we get a win.

"After a couple of bad losses, and bounce back last week and claw over the line, it's really important to capitalise on that, it's a big test for us this week."

"You know they are going to bounce back at some stage, so from our point of view we want to make sure it's not this week."

Adelaide's Kris Massie believes Sydney's style could help play the Crows back into form.

"(Playing Sydney) is perfect for us because we got found out on the weekend and we're not hiding away from that," Massie said referring to last weekend's loss to Port Adelaide.

"So to be able to front up against a side where that's their strength, their in-and-under contested ball, it's a perfect opportunity for us to rectify that."

Bolton said Hall was used to always being niggled by opponents.

"You expect it to a certain degree. I don't know how much Adelaide will go out of their way to upset him, but that's something he's going to be really wary of and conscious of," Bolton said.

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