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'She's done it all': New Crow inspired by sister

Crows rookie Kieran Strachan. Picture: afc.com.au - AFL,Adelaide Crows,Kieran Strachan,Draft
Crows rookie Kieran Strachan. Picture: afc.com.au

ADELAIDE rookie Kieran Strachan only needs to look as far as his sister to see what it takes to be an elite sportsperson.

World championship-winning netballer Rebecca Bulley (nee Strachan) has set the bar high for the 23-year-old ruckman, who was taken by the Crows with the seventh pick in last month's rookie draft.

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Strachan knows the city of Adelaide from Rebecca's time with the Adelaide Thunderbirds, including being a part of their championship-winning team in 2013.

Rebecca enjoyed a stellar netball career; the defender helped the Australian Diamonds win the 2015 world title before retiring at the end of this season with GWS.

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"She's done it all, so I try and draw as much information off her," Strachan said.

"She's done the path that I'm now taking, so to get as much information it's been really helpful.

"Something I would like to strive for is that highest level, which for me is playing an AFL game."

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Strachan is a late bloomer who hasn't come through the traditional pathways to the AFL.

He didn't play in the TAC Cup, earning his stripes in the country, winning back-to-back best and fairests with his hometown club, South Bendigo, in the Bendigo Football League.

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He was then appointed captain at the age of 21 before coming on to the radar of VFL club Essendon.

"I definitely thought (when I was 18 that AFL) had slipped me by," he said.

"I was developing my own game and didn't really know what that was.

"At the time, I probably thought I was back off the pace a bit, but I developed when I got to 18, 20, really quickly, especially at my local club.

"My development after 18 was quite significant from then on to now."

Strachan moved to Port Melbourne midway through this season for more opportunities but suffered a serious ankle injury in his second game.

He is 18 weeks post-surgery, has returned to running and will resume full training next year.

Strachan's immediate goal is to put on size – he currently weighs 95kg to go with his 202cm frame.

He will be given time to develop his craft under established star Sam Jacobs and provide competition to fellow ruckmen Reilly O'Brien and Paul Hunter.

"I'm developing that confidence to know I am able to step up to that level," Strachan said.

"At the same time, I know I've got a lot of development to go and a lot to learn.

"If I learn as much as I can off them and be ready to go when I am called upon, it's something I'll work towards, but I know where I'm sitting and just learning and developing as much as I can."