Second-generation Blue Abbie McKay has been rewarded for her career-best display against St Kilda on Saturday afternoon, receiving a Round 3 NAB AFL Women’s Rising Star nomination.

A standout in the midfield, McKay was instrumental in the Blues’ first win of the season, gathering 17 possessions and laying seven tackles.

Drafted from the Sandringham Dragons with pick No.16 in the 2018 NAB AFL Women’s Draft, she made history as the game’s first father-daughter recruit.


Wearing the No.5 made famous by her father Andrew, McKay made her debut in Round 4, 2019.

The 20-year-old missed out on selection during her second season at the Club yet her response since has been nothing short of outstanding. 

Mckay put together a standout pre-season, leading the way for the Game Changers over summer to not only earn her place in the starting midfield by Round 1, but back it up with consistent performances during the first three rounds of the 2021 AFLW season, averaging 14 disposals at 72 per cent efficiency.

Carlton AFLW Senior Coach Daniel Harford was delighted to see McKay receive recognition and reap the reward of her hard work and dedication over the last 12 months.

“Abbie has set the benchmark for us from a training perspective this year and it is very pleasing to see her hard work paying off on the field,” Harford said.

“She has worked on her craft over the break and broke into our midfield mix at the start of the season through pure desire and effort which really sets the tone for the whole playing group.

“We first recognised Abbie’s talent when she was recruited to the Blues three years ago and we’re thrilled to see that talent now shining through. We’re looking forward to seeing her continue to work hard and be a good player for this football club over a long period of time.” 

Two players are nominated for the AFLW Rising Star award following each round of the AFL Women’s season. AFLW players aged 21-or-under as of January 1 2021 are eligible for the award, provided they haven’t been previously nominated.

McKay will look to consolidate her Rising Star performance when the Game Changers return home to Ikon Park to face Richmond this Saturday, with the match to mark the Club’s fourth annual AFLW Carlton Respects Game.