Travis Cloke has revealed that Richmond made a serious play for his services back in 2004.
Cloke was eligible to play for both the Tigers and Collingwood under father-son rules stemming from his old man David’s 219 games in yellow and black and 114 outings in black and white.
The powerful forward would end up choosing the Magpies, but not before some enticing overtures from Richmond and the late, great Danny Frawley who was coach at Punt Road at the time.
“I had the Tiges almost throw the kitchen sink at me to go there,” Cloke said on the TAB Inside 50 Podcast.
“Noel Judkins was the recruiter at the Pies at the time and this is when you could sign father-son mid-season and it’s all done.
“I was at Noel’s in June or July and negotiations and talks were going through.
“‘Spud’ was the coach of the Tigers at this time and lived around the corner. He came around to ‘Juddy’s’ as he did on a Wednesday night.
“We were sitting there, dad and I, and there was a contract sitting on the table.
“Spud walked in with a couple of drinks and said, ‘well, I guess I’m too late for that, let’s just sit down and have a drink’. That was kind of what happened there and that got the ball rolling of why I went to the Pies in the end.”
Shane Crawford backtracked on Cloke’s “kitchen sink” comments in a bid to unearth some more context from the 2007 Copeland Trophy winner.
“I was underage, they (the drinks) were for the adults in the room,” he laughed.
“People talk about paper bags, this wasn’t a paper bag, this was bricks and mortar. I guess you could put it that way.
“Outside of Melbourne as more of an investment opportunity. Little things like that.
“It was more the opportunity of this is our broader community of the business of our club. We can help you with investment opportunities and we can steer you in the right direction.
“I guess that’s why players do move from the clubs to big power clubs because they’re connection is so wide and broad. The people you meet through some of these football clubs are amazing businessmen and they can hopefully put you in good stead for your whole life.”
Ultimately, Cloke opted for the Magpies and explained the reasons why he came to that decision with brothers Jason and Cameron a major drawing card.
“The real reason why I went to the Pies was they were transitioning from Victoria Park to the Holden Centre at the time,” he said further.
“They had bottomed out a bit but were really climbing back up the ladder. So the opportunity for me to be a part of a successful club was an option, but also the idea of playing with both my brothers was a real selling point.”
Cloke would play 246 games and kick 441 goals for the Maggies, winning the 2010 premiership and two All-Australian blazers along the way. He also spent one season with the Western Bulldogs.