2 CFC Games Played
0 CFC Goals
Clem Splatt’s connections to football stem well beyond his two games for Collingwood in 1922.
Perhaps his debut may have come earlier if it wasn’t for a wood chopping accident which saw him slice the top of his finger open.
It was this family pastime that acquainted Splatt with a pair of footballers that went on to share one of Collingwood’s most famous names.
His father, Barl Splatt, was an axeman who competed with Harry Coventry – the father of Gordon and Syd Coventry.
A year before Gordon made a Collingwood debut that would start a 306-game career, the team photo of the 1919 Diamond Creek Football Club pictures him sitting side by side with his best friend Splatt, with Syd also seated not too far away.
After a season out of the game in 1923, Splatt returned to Melbourne in 1924 and joined a Hawthorn side that would enter the VFL in just a years’ time.
He was the first ever Hawthorn player to record a Brownlow vote and went on to poll three votes to finish fifth in the 1925 medal.
Despite the separation, his friendship with the Coventry’s remained. He played two games for Victoria with Gordon, lining up at centre half forward as Gordon played full forward against New South Wales.
Splatt suffered injuries in 1927, the same year his cousin Joe Poulter was a member of Collingwood’s premiership team.
He moved to Hastings and became a coach of the local team.
Football never left Splatt’s life. In 1962, he died at Punt Road Oval while watching Richmond take on Hawthorn.
While his two games for Collingwood were overshadowed by later achievements, his debut for the black and white with two of his best mates kick-started a successful career that would span four years, two clubs, 22 games and three Brownlow votes.
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