Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
David E Clarke Snr

Known as
David Clarke

31 December 1952 (age 71)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 18y 93d
Last game: 29y 261d

Height and weight
Height: 184 cm
Weight: 82 kg

Senior clubs
Geelong; Carlton

Jumper numbers
Geelong: 14
Carlton: 26

Recruited from
Geelong (1982)

Family links
Tim Clarke (Son)David Clarke Jnr (Son)

David Clarke

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
GeelongV/AFL1971-1974, 1976-19812022981.4847%19.272.545.3853
V/AFL1971-1974, 1976-19822113191.5148%18.812.545.2653
Total1971-1974, 1976-19822113191.5148%18.812.545.2653

AFL: 8,316th player to appear, 546th most games played, 178th most goals kickedGeelong: 721st player to appear, 40th most games played, 15th most goals kickedCarlton: 901st player to appear, 797th most games played, 302nd most goals kicked

Recruited locally by the Cats from Geelong College, David Clarke made his debut in the opening round of the 1971 season, and went on to become one of the most exciting as well as arguably the most consistent of the club's stars throughout the 1970s. Perhaps best remembered as a half-forward flanker, Clarke was equally effective in the centre, on the ball, or even at centre half back.

A combination of a great spring, strong hands and tremendous anticipation made him one of the finest marks in the game, while his silky ball skills made him a real fan favourite. He won the first of his three club best and fairest trophies in his debut season while still aged only nineteen, making him the youngest ever recipient of the award. He was also dangerous near goal, and his 40 majors in 1979 topped the Cats' list.

Selected to represent either the VFL or Victoria's state of origin team a total of 14 times, Clarke was awarded an All Australian blazer after the 1972 Perth carnival. The consistently high quality of the service he gave Geelong is emphasised by his unprecedented feat in finishing in the top two places in the best and fairest voting on no fewer than seven occasions during his ten seasons with the club. After 202 games with the Cats, David Clarke transferred to Carlton in 1982 where he added 9 games in what proved to be the final season of his league career.

Author - John Devaney


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