Ea­ger to hunt for Giant tri­umph

Sunday Territorian - - SPORT - By BEN GUTHRIE

JOSH Hunt would not have joined Greater Western Syd­ney if he be­lieved he couldn’t con­trib­ute sig­nif­i­cantly to their on-field for­tunes.

In Septem­ber, aged 31 and with 198 games un­der his belt, Hunt was told by Gee­long, a club he started at in 2001, his ser­vices were no longer re­quired.

It was dif­fi­cult to stom­ach at the time but he moved on, re­al­is­ing he still had the de­sire to con­tinue his ca­reer else­where.

A trade was struck be­tween Gee­long and GWS and Hunt be­came a Giant.

‘‘That was the big thing for me. If I was play­ing bad footy, or if my body was fail­ing me, then the de­ci­sion would be easy ( to re­tire),’’ Hunt said.

‘‘The fact is that I still felt like I still had a bit to give in footy and the peo­ple that I’d spo­ken to said the same thing. I’m not a per­son who wants to walk away from some­thing with ‘what ifs’. I’ll play un­til the game’s done with me or I be­come a li­a­bil­ity and I’m done with footy.’’

In Hunt and for­mer Pie Heath Shaw, the Giants saw the chance to bol­ster their leaky de­fence with some much-needed ex­pe­ri­ence. The Giants knew the back­line was an area that needed ad­dress­ing af­ter con­ced­ing the most points of any AFL team in 2013.

Hunt and Shaw will play in­te­gral roles as on-field mar­shals in the back­line next sea­son. How­ever, their worth will not just be limited to on-field causes.

Shaw and fel­low mar­quee re­cruit Shane Mum­ford have joined de­fender Stephen Gilham in the lead­er­ship group.

Al­though not in­cluded in the group, Hunt will give ad­vice if asked.

‘‘I’m not go­ing to go jam­ming it down peo­ple’s throats,’’ Hunt said. ‘‘But any­time they want a ques­tion or some­one wants some ad­vice on some stuff then we’re al­ways open and giv­ing them the feed­back that they want.’’

Pic­ture: JUSTIN SANSON

St Marys mid­fielder Justin Wil­son, one of the Saints best play­ers yes­ter­day, sends his side for­ward against Night­cliff

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