Door Still Open, Magpies Tell Clarke
Byline: AHMER KHOKHAR
COLLINGWOOD chief executive Gary Pert has opened the door for Martin Clarke to return to the AFL next year.
Pert's admission will heighten anxiety among Down officials desperate to keep hold of the star of their run to the All-Ireland final. Manager James McCartan and midfielder Kalum King are urging the GAA top brass to do everything in their power to encourage Clarke to stay. Earlier this year the An Riocht man, who played 46 Premiership games before returning home last September, claimed he would never rule out a return to Australia, but Pert confirmed it is now up to the Down star to knock on the Magpies' door if he is serious about resuming his Australian Rules career. Clarke turned down a three-year contract offer from Collingwood to return home from Australia, but Magpies officials have never given up hope of luring him back to Melbourne. 'Marty's got a lot of friends at Collingwood and he is hugely respected by everyone connected with our club,' Pert said. …