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Matthew Hall
(? - living) Australia

Matthew Hall

Rules Football, amateur


Hall came out as gay in an interview with Blue magazine in Australia. He made headlines Down Under in 1998 when he sued after being barred from playing Aussie Rules football because he was HIV-positive. He was diagnosed in 1996. His claim for compensation was denied because he was an amateur. However, the team he sued was "ordered to immediately register him as a player and implement educational programs about HIV and AIDS in contact sports."

Hall played again in 2000, his first game since 1994. He was in the game only 10 minutes when he took himself out after he started bleeding from a scratched face. He also cracked a rib during the game. Despite it all, Hall said he was well treated by the other players. He wasn't treated any differently to his teammates by the opposition.

Hall's case raised awareness of athletes with HIV being allowed to play contact sports. As columnist Andrew Bolt wrote last year in the Herald-Sun: "The fact is that not a single athlete in any sport in the entire world is known to have contracted HIV - or any other blood-borne disease - through injuries on the sporting field. Not one. Just driving to the ground is far more dangerous. So is playing in a storm, being tackled, running around in the ... humidity or wearing a Carlton [Jersey] in front of Collingwood fans."


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