NRL Rd 19 - Roosters v Sharks
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 19: Sonny Bill Williams of the Roosters reacts during the round 19 NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the Cronulla Sharks at Sydney Cricket Ground on September 19, 2020 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Former rugby league and union phenom Sonny Bill Williams has secured a high-profile boxing bout with former AFL star Barry Hall for early 2022.

The fight between the two has been rumored since Hall took on fellow NRL great Paul Gallen in 2019.

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“It’s been spoken about, this fight, for a very long time. I fought Paul Gallen coming up on two years ago now and we were talking about that fight (with SBW) around that time," Hall told Fox Sports.

“I’m not 'Benjamin Button,' I can’t turn back the age clock. But I’ve still got the skills. I’m fit, I’ve got the boxing knowledge, I’ve got a good amateur pedigree. I can absolutely hang with these guys.

“I’m happy to fight him tomorrow.”

Williams spoke on his desire to reignite his dormant boxing career after calling time on his football career in March.

Shortly after retiring, he defeated Waikato Falefehi to win his first fight in six years and improve his professional record to 8-0. It was after this victory that SBW set his sights on Hall, officially making his intentions clear to the media.

“For me, I’m in it for the challenge", he told ABC Radio.

“When it comes to fighting Paul Gallen or Barry Hall, those guys are all part of the process but for me, it’s about the daily grind and being wholeheartedly in it.

“That stems from something more than say, ‘I’ve got my eyes on solely focused on Paul Gallen or Barry Hall."

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Williams clarified his intentions behind his second foray into boxing, making it clear that he's competing out of passion rather than financial gain.

“With anything in life, it needs to be bone-deep and the challenge to get me out of bed and be authentic about it.

“I’ve given by all to rugby and rugby league over the years and it would just be nice to see where I’m at after 24 months instead of a six-week camp or a 12-week camp.”

Hall played 289 AFL games between 1996 and 2011 for the St Kilda Saints, Sydney Swans and Western Bulldogs.

The fight is scheduled to take place sometime next February, with further details about the venue and broadcasting to come soon.

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