Barry Hall won't lag in fitness: Eade - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Barry Hall won't lag in fitness: Eade

By Adam Cooper 17/11/2009 01:20:26 PM Comments (0)

Western Bulldogs coach Rodney Eade is confident recruit Barry Hall will quickly be up to speed on his fitness despite recently undergoing ankle surgery.

Hall, who joined the Bulldogs during the trade period after retiring from Sydney midway through the 2009 season, underwent an ankle arthroscopy last Thursday.

The 32-year-old will be a couple of weeks behind his new teammates in their pre-season training, as most players returned this week, while the older players will resume on Monday.

But Eade was confident the 250-game veteran, who could provide the focal point in attack the Bulldogs have craved in recent years, would not be too far behind in preparations for 2010.

"He can start cross-training next Friday so he'll be doing boxing, which obviously he is very good at, and (be) on the bike and swim," Eade said on Tuesday.

"He can start walking in a fortnight and then he can start running and jogging in three weeks, so he's not too far behind.

"He probably should have had an op when he finished his footy mid-year but he didn't, but it really hasn't put him behind.

"He's been able to run beforehand, so he's done a fair bit of fitness work and once he's on the scene we'll see how strong he looks.

"He's done a fair bit of weights as well, so he's not going to lose a lot in that period of time (recovering), he'll be fine."

Other Bulldogs players to have undergone recent surgery include skipper Brad Johnson, Liam Picken and Jarrod Harbrow, who all underwent shoulder operations, Brownlow medallist Adam Cooney, Dylan Addison and Ayce Cordy, who all had knee clean-outs, and midfielder Daniel Cross, who had an ankle reconstruction.

But all are either training or ready to resume, as only Sam Reid and Stephen Tiller, who underwent groin surgery, would be sidelined for next year's pre-season competition.

Among the new faces at Whitten Oval is former Carlton player Jake Edwards, who managed only five games in 2008 before he was de-listed, but could be drafted by the Bulldogs.

"We're looking for some taller forwards-slash-defenders," Eade said.

"He played his last 10 games this year at the Bullants (in the VFL) in defence and did very well, so he's in the mix, whether it's senior list or rookie list."

Edwards father, grandfather and great-grandfather all played for Footscray, but Eade said the family link was not the reason the Bulldogs invited him to train.

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