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Rankine ready for more midfield minutes in 2024

Jackson Clark -

Adelaide excitement machine Izak Rankine is expecting to spend more time in the midfield in 2024 after completing a solid pre-season over the summer.

The 23-year-old has shown he has a full bag of tricks around the goals, but he will look to utilise his talents further up the ground this upcoming season.

"I get to have a run around in the midfield, chase the ball around and get the ball moving, then get forward and kick a few goals," Rankine told Adelaide Crows' media team during the week.

"It puts the opposition team on their heels a bit, because they aren't sure where I'm going or structurally where to set up."

Rankine was originally drafted by the Gold Coast Suns with selection three in the 2018 AFL National Draft.

The silky-skilled forward spent four seasons at the Suns before deciding to seek a trade back home to South Australia at the end of the 2022 season.

He had an outstanding debut season for the Crows last year playing 20 games and kicking 36 goals, including a scintillating four-goal performance in the Showdown against Port Adelaide and a five-goal haul later in the season against North Melbourne.

It was announced back in November that the Kokatha and Ngarrindjeri man will change to the number 23 jumper next year, which was made famous by Crows champion Andrew McLeod.

He will be the fifth consecutive Indigenous player to don the number 23 jumper after McLeod, Jared Petrenko, Charlie Cameron and Shane McAdam.

Izak Rankine is hoping for more midfield minutes in 2024. (Image: News Corp)

"The No.23 is my favourite number, I was born on the 23rd and some greats have played in that number - like Bunji (Andrew McLeod) and Buddy Franklin, so when it opened up, I took it straight away," Rankine said.

"I know the history behind it with a lot of Indigenous players having been in the number and I want to do it proud."

Rankine's Crows finished in tenth position last year but with he said the group is 'hungry and excited' for the season ahead.

"The group has grown so much from playing in those close games and we've really worked on fixing a few things structurally," he said.

"I (personally) feel more comfortable and more mature.

"I want to be as consistent as I possibly can and I want to win, that's where my heart is at.

"I am excited for this year, to see what I can bring and where we are as a team is really exciting."


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