Career: 2012 -
Debut : Round 15, 2012 vs Collingwood, aged 20 years, 108 days
Carlton Player No. 1138
Games : 17*
Goals : 1*
Guernsey No. 26
Height : 191 cm (6 ft. 3 in.)
Weight : 86 kg (13 stone, 8 lbs.)
DOB : 20 March, 1992
In the wake of the 2010 trade deal that saw ruckman Sam Jacobs cleared to Adelaide in return for National Draft selections 34 and 67, Carlton used the latter to recruit Dandenong Stingrays defender Andrew McInnes, who had caught the eye of scouts from a number of AFL clubs during the TAC Cup Under-18 championships. Quick and disciplined, McInnes is a versatile defender good enough in the air to play on tall forwards, and agile enough to cope with the smalls. He was a Victorian Country Under-18 representative in 2010, averaging 11 disposals at 91 per cent efficiency in his three carnival matches, and was named in the back pocket of the 2010 TAC Cup Team of the Year.
In 2011, Andrew played nine games for Carlton’s VFL affiliate the Northern Bullants – averaging 12 disposals and three tackles per game - before a mid-season shoulder injury halted his progress. Back to full fitness in 2012, he put together a string of consistent efforts for the Northern Blues to earn promotion to the seniors under novel circumstances.
Prior to Carlton’s Friday night blockbuster clash against top of the ladder Collingwood in round 15, senior coach Brett Ratten approached McInnes in the club gymnasium. "Ratts actually came up to me during weights," McInnes said later. ''He started bagging me about the weight I was lifting at the start, then he said: 'What are you doing Friday night?' I said: 'I've got no plans at this stage.' He said: 'Do you want to come for a run Friday night?" And so it was that Andrew ran out onto the cauldron of the MCG a few evenings later to experience a perfect debut, as the Blues sensationally demolished the flag favourites by 23 points in front of a crowd of 75,000. In guernsey 26 – a number worn with distinction by a long list of outstanding Blues including Jim Park, Ray Brew, Jim Clark, Graeme Anderson and David Rhys-Jones – Andrew showed plenty of poise in racking up 12 disposals, 4 marks and 5 tackles. He looked comfortable, and over the following seven weeks, played like he belonged.
Then in the very first minute of Carlton’s fateful game against the Gold Coast Suns at Carrara Stadium in late August, McInnes flew for a mark, and tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee on landing. "The scary part about it was there was really nothing in it," he said afterwards. "It was just the way I landed - my foot stayed where it was, and my knee went inwards." Initial consultations with the club’s medical staff recommended conventional reconstructive surgery, with an anticipated recovery time of nine to twelve months. If all goes to plan, “Macca” could return to the field for the Blues as early as May, 2013.
Heal fast Andy, and come back soon.
LinksArticles: Andrew McInnes joins the Blues
Blueseum: A summary of McInnes' career | McInnes' Blueseum Image Gallery
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