Season By Season
A year of mixed results for Collingwood’s attacking lynchpin.
Cloke appeared destined to tear the competition apart when he kicked six goals in the second half to help Magpies knock off the Suns in the final practice match of the pre-season.
Things changed a week later when Fremantle’s miserly defence restricted Collingwood to just five goals in round one, rendering Cloke scoreless in the process.
It was only in round 11 when he really caught fire, for he kicked only 10 goals in his first nine games, including a haul of four against North Melbourne in round five.
But once Cloke found his momentum, he was nigh on impossible for opposition backlines to tie him down.
He kicked five against the Saints in round 11, six against the Bulldogs in round 13 and five against Hawthorn a week later.
He battled on gamely as his team slipped out of the eight late in the season, kicking three in consecutive weeks against Adelaide and Port Adelaide, but his campaign was brought to a halt when he injured his ankle against Brisbane in round 21.
Season By Season
Put in one of his most consistent seasons to date to end the year with his second All-Australian gong and the J.J. Joyce Trophy as third in the club’s best-and-fairest. With the contract distracts of 2012 well behind him, Cloke’s form inside 50 made him one of the most dangerous forwards in the competition. He started the year with four goals from seven scoring shots against North Melbourne and then kicked five in the loss to Hawthorn in wet conditions. It built up to his best performance of the season against the Tigers in round four when he kicked seven goals, took a season-high 14 marks, sent the ball inside 50 eight times and registered 20 possessions. Cloke caught fire in the second half, kicking five of his seven majors to turn a three-point half time Richmond lead into a 34-point Collingwood victory. He kicked five goals in another four games to finish only two goals short of tying for the Coleman Medal with Hawthorn’s Jarryd Roughead. It looked like he was set to overhaul Roughead and win the Medal outright when he had four goals to half time of Collingwood’s final home and away game against the Roos. Unfortunately he could only manage one more in the second half as the Magpies slumped to an 11-point loss. Cloke’s devastating form was reflected by the fact that he kicked a goal in all bar two games, took 10 or more marks in eight games and led the league for contested marks (58). He was named at centre half forward in the All-Australian team for the second time in three years and, at the age of 26, is at the peak of his powers.
Season by Season
The bullocking forward made headlines for much of the season with his contract negotiations playing out in public before they were put on hold mid-year. After much toing and froing, he signed a five-year extension in Grand Final week. His form was not near his 2011 best but he played every game, kicked 59 goals to lead the club, topped the competition for contested marks with 73 and placed ninth in the Copeland Trophy.
An unbelievable season from the 24-year-old. Took the competition by the scruff of the neck, and it showed when the end of season rewards were handed out. Named at centre half forward in the All-Australian team for the first time in his career. Kicked a career-high 69 goals to run second in the Coleman Medal.
To cap it off, he ran third in the Copeland Trophy. Cloke was able to elevate himself into the pantheon of the competition’s elite, goaling in 23 of 25 games. Kicked five or more goals in four matches (including bags of six in consecutive weeks), and his seven finals goals elevated him to 12th on the list of the most goals kicked by a Collingwood player in finals.
Was a colossus in the preliminary final, hauling in some breathtaking pack marks and kicking truly when it came to the crunch (having ridded himself of the inaccurate tag during the season). Began the Grand Final like a house on fire with three goals in the first half, before the supply dried up.
Stepped up following the retirement of Anthony Rocca to produce his best season since 2007. Went goalless on only four occasions, kicking 38.40 for the year and played some outstanding individual matches.
His most commanding performance came in round 20 against the lowly Essendon when he helped himself to 16 marks, 22 disposals and 5.5. Also bagged five in round eight against Fremantle at Subiaco Oval, and had single-figure possessions only twice. Missed two games through suspension but didn’t miss a beat upon return.
Had a fantastic opening to the finals, kicking three against Geelong in the preliminary finals romp. Unfortunately became better known for his inaccuracy than his form during the latter stages of the season, highlighted by his two ‘gettable’ misses in the first half of the drawn Grand Final.
Fortunately, neither came back to bite the side, due in part to his goal – the last of the match – from the top of the square with only three minutes remaining to put the Magpies back in front by a point. Didn’t register a major in the replay, but it mattered not as the Pies recorded their first premiership since 1990.
His preparation for the season was compromised when he was assaulted while at the Gold Coast on holiday. Bounced back to produce a solid season. His year peaked in round 14 against the Bombers when he had 19 disposals and kicked four goals. Began to take more of the ruck work, winning a career-high 38 hitouts.
Wasn’t as prolific in front of goal as he had been in previous years, kicking only 22.26. Tapered at the end of the year, and kicked only one goal in three finals.
Wasn’t quite as spectacular as he had been the previous year, but still turned out a consistent season at centre half forward. Kicked 40 goals in total, and polled Brownlow votes in four games. Twice managed a bag of five goals, again starred on Anzac Day and again dominated against Geelong (four goals, nine marks, two Brownlow votes).
Also appeared to enjoy the presence of Chris Dawes alongside him late in the year (kicking four and five goal hauls and receiving Brownlow votes in two of the four home and away games Dawes played). Finished sixth in the Copeland Trophy.
Became a Copeland Trophy winner before he had even turned 21. Started the season slowly but began to hit form on Anzac Day with 24 disposals, 13 marks and a Brownlow vote. It also marked the start of his dramas in front of goal (1.3 for the afternoon).
Began to pile on the goals and record some big numbers with his overhead marking, but still somehow stayed under the radar of the media spotlight. Kicked four goals against eventual premiers Geelong in the round 15 loss. He kicked four goals twice, and three goals on five occasions.
Announced his arrival in September, kicking three goals in the elimination final against Sydney, 1.3 (and 21 disposals) against West Coast before capping the year off with an outstanding three goals, 13 marks and 15 disposals in the epic preliminary final loss to Geelong. Kicked 39 goals for the season and received the Bob Rose Trophy as the Best Finals Player.
Didn’t suffer from second year blues, but still didn’t hit the heights of 2005. Kicked only six goals in 15 matches, but was trialled at centre half back with some promising results. Missed four weeks mid-year but a 22-disposal, two-goal game against Hawthorn in round 17 (earning him his first Brownlow vote) showed that his progress was well and truly on track. Injured a shoulder in round 21 and sat out the club’s only final.
Although still completing his VCE studies at Yarra Valley Grammar, early injury strife for Anthony Rocca meant that Cloke was elevated into the senior team on Anzac Day against Essendon. Made a very encouraging debut (16 disposals and one goal) and was one of the few reasons for optimism during a bleak winter.
Strung some solid performances together as the side won three games in succession mid-year. Received an AFL Rising Star nomination in round 10 after helping the side to a win over Hawthorn.
Began to taper later in the year but did nothing to diminish his fantastic debut season, which the club recognised when he was honoured with the Harry Collier Trophy as Best First Year Player.
Played for the Eastern Rangers in the TAC Cup U18 competition. Represented Vic Metro at the U18 National Championships. Announced that he would be joining Collingwood under the Father-Son rule (his father David had played 114 games for the club between 1983 and 1989) in August, joining his older brothers Jason (76 games) and Cameron (21 games).