The “Big O” became a familiar name for the Lions in 2019, after he played 21 Senior games in his second year in the AFL. The 204cm, 107kg giant showed his versatility this season, regularly interchanging ruck work with a key forward target.
McInerney’s ability to take a high contested mark, alongside his accurate set-shot kicking, often made things difficult for his opponents to handle. McInerney’s ruckwork was also invaluable for the Lions this season and ensured the workload of fellow Lion Stefan Martin was shared.
The softly spoken ruckman achieved a personal best in virtually every possible statistic in 2019 after a consistent year in the Lions Senior team.
Key personal highlights from McInerney in 2019 included 27 hit outs against the Swans in Round 7, 16 disposals against North Melbourne in Round 2, and a heroic performance against North again in Round 18. In the game, ‘The Big O’ had 12 disposals and two goals, including a high-pressure, match sealing goal late in the fourth quarter.
Just prior to the 2019 AFL Finals Series, McInerney spoke with lions.com.au about his journey to the AFL.
“There’s been a lot of work…I was very lucky that Brisbane threw me a chance to be picked up in the 2016 draft, and I haven’t looked back since”, McInerney said.
From delivering Christmas trees two years ago, “The Big O” has now played 37 games in his AFL career and is set to play his 50th during the 2020 season.
McInerney is contracted with the Lions until at least the end of 2021.