Channel 7 AFL commentator Hamish McLachlan has spoken to some of the greats of Australian sport as part of new one-on-one video series called Let’s Talk.
McLachlan, who also happens to be the brother of AFL chief Gillon McLachlan, is a gun interviewer and previously did a series of compelling and emotional interviews for the AFL website called Last Time I Cried.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Hamish McLachlan launches new mental health initiative with Aussie sports stars.
Watch the latest sport on Channel 7 or stream for free on 7plus >>
In this new series, Let’s Talk, he has spoken to tennis legend Ash Barty, Australian swimming icon Ian Thorpe, former Collingwood superstar and coach Nathan Buckley, former North Melbourne player and coach Dani Laidley, Bec Daniher, the daughter of MND campaigner Neale, and the wife of the late Danny Frawley, Anita Frawley.
The series was launched at the Danny Frawley Centre – set up by Anita and her family after Danny’s death – which is based at St Kilda Football Club’s headquarters in Moorabbin.
The mild-mannered Barty – who recently gave birth to Hayden – was brutally honest in her one-on-one with McLachlan, and didn’t hold back.
Ash Barty has spoken candidly about her feelings going into the 2022 Australian Open. Credit: Getty Images
Leading into the Australian Open of 2022 – which Barty would go on to famously win before announcing her shock retirement from the sport – Japan’s Naomi Osaka was considered, in some circles, as a better top seed or favourite than Barty.
Barty has now revealed how that made her feel.
Casey Dellacqua left ‘devastated’ by family tragedy
‘Something wrong there’: Sunrise hosts react to Barty baby news
“There was plenty of noise (before the tournament),” Barty told McLachlan.
“(People were saying), ‘Is Ash the best player in the world?’. And that made me angry.
“That really pissed me off because I know I am the best player in the world.”
Barty had won Wimbledon in 2021 and the French Open in 2019.
She was ranked No.1 in the world in singles by the Women’s Tennis Association and held that title for 121 weeks.
She was still ranked No.1 when she announced her retirement two months after winning the Aus Open.
Buckley, who won the AFL’s highest individual accolade, the Brownlow Medal in 2003, opened up on the pressure he was under during his playing days and his relationship with his father.
Nathan Buckley and former wife Tania in 2019 at the AFL’s Brownlow Medal. Credit: Getty Images
“If I didn’t play good footy, I wasn’t worth a piece of sh**,” he said.
Buckley also spoke about his marriage breakdown with Tania in 2020.
Anita Frawley recalled the pain she felt when Danny – who had battled depression and was later diagnosed with severe chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) due to head knocks – died in a car accident.
“I just had this pain . . . is this heartbreak?” she said.
“So I was rushed to hospital and I remember going, ‘(My children) can’t lose their mum and dad on the same day’.”
Former AFL player Majak Daw was also interviewed for the series and speaks candidly about his suicide attempt in 2018 when he jumped from the Bolte Bridge.
The interviews were filmed at Melbourne’s Forum Theatre and can be watched in full on the AFL website in the coming weeks.
McLachlan told 7NEWS the aim of the series to make uncomfortable discussions “comfortable”.
Tennis champ Ash Barty welcomes ‘beautiful’ baby boy
Buckley’s selfless act after footy comeback ends in disaster
If you’d like to view this content, please adjust your Cookie Settings.