Clay Smith is known in football circles as a premiership-playing small forward who has enjoyed the adoration that comes from six years of AFL success.
But from next season, Clay Smith won’t be Clay Smith anymore.
Instead, Clay Smith will be Clay O’donohue-Smith, after marrying his wife Sarah O’donohue in October and making the very deliberate and considered decision to take his wife’s name.
“It’s not official yet, but it will be,” Smith, who has played professional 55 games so far, explained on the Western Bulldogs’ website.
Smith said the decision was born from a stark realisation: His wife is one of two girls, and so, her marrying meant their name was erased forever.
“It’s more something I’ve taken on for Sarah’s side of the family. There were two girls and no more O’donohue’s. It meant a lot to her and her family.
“I don’t know if I’ll change it for footy but legally we’ll both have hyphenated names and so will the kids.”
Posting on Instagram after the duo tied the knot earlier this year, O’donohue-Smith said his wedding was the “perfect day with [his] perfect person”.
“Pretty stoked with the last three weeks with this one @sarah_odonohue, been amazing getting married sharing it with friends and family, than going on a honeymoon through Mexico and America, drinking, eating, exploring and meeting some pretty cool people along the way.”
In a world where it’s still national news for a man to do what women do, across the world, everyday, it’s warming to see men in the most masculine fields bucking trends, and in doing so bucking convention and the patriarchy.
Listen: Are you still a feminist if you take your partner’s name?