Collingwood Notables Database
Gordon Richard James ('Nuts') Coventry
Australian Rules footballer, columnist, sports writer, maintenance worker
One of the greatest goal kickers in League football, Gordon Coventry held the record of most career goals – an incredible 1,299 – for six decades. The Coventry brothers, Gordon and Syd, were ‘brothers-in-arms’ as they played major roles in Collingwood’s most successful era. Although the brothers were born outside the suburb they are seen as Collingwood Football Club icons. They came from Diamond Creek but through their football skills and leadership on and off the field they won the hearts of Collingwood people, not just football followers. To Collingwood locals they were always hailed as true sons of Collingwood.
Gordon, nicknamed ‘Nuts’, was a champion centre half-forward with Diamond Creek and was invited to play with Collingwood. Coventry went on to rewrite the record books. He was the first man to kick 100 goals in a season (124 goals in 1929), was the first VFL player to notch 300 senior games and kicked a record 50 goals or more in 13 successive seasons.
Tall at 182cm and weighing more than 90kg he was strong and a superb mark. Coventry was the perfect full-forward for great Collingwood teams and used strength rather than speed to win the ball. He once kicked 17 goals in a match (against Fitzroy in 1930). Idolised by Magpie fans, Coventry topped the club’s goal kicking every year from 1922-37 and was leading League goal kicker every season from 1926-30 and in 1937 (level with J. Metherell). He represented Victoria 25 times and kicked 100 goals in those 25 games.
He played in five Collingwood premiership sides – 1927, 1928, 1929, 1930 and 1935. Coventry missed the 1936 grand final triumph because of an eight-match suspension after being found guilty of striking Richmond’s Joe Murdoch. He played in that match against Richmond with a crop of boils on his neck and retaliated when Murdoch struck him on the neck.
He won Collingwood’s best and fairest in 1933, then retired at the end of the 1937 season and coached in the amateurs.
|Birth Date||Birth Place|
|25 September 1901||Diamond Creek, Victoria|
|Spouse Name||Date of Marriage||Children|
|Christabel Violet Lawrey||28 February 1925||George (1925), Betty (1928), Margaret (1930), Graham (1945)|
|Death Date||Death Place||Cemetery|
|7 November 1968||Diamond Creek||Diamond Creek|
Roberts, A century of the best; Holmesby, The Encyclopedia of AFL Footballers; Sreemski, Kill for Collingwood; Collingwood Football Club Archives – Forever Collingwood.
Collingwood Football Club Archives –Forever Collingwood http://archivescollection.collingwoodfc.com.au