Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Leonard Barry

Known as
Leo Barry

19 May 1977 (age 46)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 18y 107d
Last game: 32y 102d

Height and weight
Height: 184 cm
Weight: 89 kg

Senior clubs
Sydney; Australia

Jumper numbers
Sydney: 21

Leo Barry

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV

AFL: 10,657th player to appear, 350th most games played, 1,886th most goals kickedSydney: 1,267th player to appear, 17th most games played, 132nd most goals kicked

Please note this player profile has been sourced from Wikipedia. A biography of this player written especially for is in preparation.

Originally from Deniliquin, New South Wales, Leo Barry attended St Ignatius' College, Riverview before being drafted as a zone selection in the 1994 National Draft and making his debut in the final round of the 1995 season against Collingwood. For the next few seasons he played in the forward line without consistency, struggling to find a place in an already strong forward line. He did, however, display an ability to take spectacular jumping marks, earning him the nickname "Leaping Leo".

In 2001, Swans coach Rodney Eade moved him to the backline, where he prospered. Despite being short for a fullback at 184 cm, he has successfully played on much taller opponents, making use of his leaping skills and using his body well. Regularly playing on opponents 10–15 cm taller than he is, Barry rarely has multiple goals kicked upon him. Barry's unique defensive ability is observed in 2004 when Barry kept 196 cm St Kilda full forward Fraser Gehrig to two handballs for the whole game (for this effort, he received three Brownlow Medal votes). Despite being only 184 cm tall, Leo Barry is surprisingly strong which has become a useful necessity for him when facing taller opponents such as Fraser Gehrig, Anthony Rocca, Chris Tarrant, Quentin Lynch, Matthew Lloyd, Jonathan Brown and Matthew Richardson, amongst others.

Paul Roos rated him as one of the best defenders in the AFL, an assessment backed up by his inclusion in the All Australian Team in 2004 and 2005. Barry retired from football at the end of 2009 after 237 games with the Swans.

Barry will always be remembered as the player who "caught the cup" for the Swans. Not only did he ensure the victory for the Swans but Barry's backline heroics were instrumental to the Swans' success which culminated with one of Barry's trademark spectacular marks during the 2005 AFL Grand Final between Sydney and West Coast. After a kick from Dean Cox was sent into the forward line, Barry marked in a big pack within the dying seconds of the game to secure the Swans' long-awaited premiership. Commentator Stephen Quartermain described the mark, as:

"Cox throws it onto the left, one last roll of the dice for the Eagles! Leo Barry you star!..(siren in background)..The longest premiership drought in football history is over! For the first time in 72 years the Swans are the champions of the AFL!"



* Behinds calculated from the 1965 season on.
+ Score at the end of extra time.