Abbie McKay well and truly showed Bluebaggers what she was capable of in 2021.
Drafted to Carlton ahead of the 2019 season, McKay found her consistency in her third year at the senior level, playing every game in 2021 and earning a NAB AFLW Rising Star nomination for her efforts.
Growing in both fitness and skill, McKay never looked back after being named in the Round 1 side to face Collingwood.
Forming a dynamic duo with first-year Blue Mimi Hill, McKay added further depth to the Blues’ already star-studded midfield.
The Blues arrived at RSEA Park in Round 3 determined to notch their first win of the season against the Saints.
Warming into the season with strong performances in Rounds 1 and 2, McKay proved Carlton’s most promising youngster against St Kilda, recording 17 disposals through the centre.
But what proved to be the difference for McKay was her elite pressure, recording seven tackles to spark the side into attack.
It wasn’t just Bluebaggers who noticed McKay for her strong performance, with the 20-year-old received the Rising Star nod for the show.
It was a desperate flurry for the Blues as the Giants looked dangerous in the final minutes of their last game of the season.
With the Giants piling on goals, the McKay tackle could not come at a more crucial time: her elite pressure quelled their attack before the Darcy Vescio mark saved the day and secured the win.