The South Sydney Rabbitohs have extended the contracts of two South Sydney juniors today, with Alex Johnston and Cameron McInnes both committing to the Club until at least the end of 2017.
Johnston, 20, has played 27 NRL games since making his debut on ANZAC day against the Broncos last season, scoring 28 tries at a rate of more than one try per game to start his first grade career.
A product of the La Perouse Panthers, Johnston has gone on to make his debut for the Australian Kangaroos in the ANZAC Test this year.
McInnes, 21, has played 12 NRL matches to date, all of which have been for the Rabbitohs, having made his first grade debut against the Dragons in round five, 2014.
McInnes, originally from the Botany Rams club, captained the Rabbitohs’ under 20s squad for two seasons, was named in the Holden Cup Team of the Year in 2013, and went on to captain the Junior Kangaroos against the Junior Kiwis in 2014.
Rabbitohs Head Coach Michael Maguire sees big futures ahead for both Johnston and McInnes.
“We’re absolutely delighted to be extending the contracts of both ‘AJ’ and ‘Cam’,” Coach Maguire said.
“It always something special when you see Souths juniors coming through the ranks, and I’m really looking forward to working with both of them on a long term basis.
“Both of them have worked very hard to achieve what they have so far, and we know they are capable of much more as their careers progress.
“Both are young leaders amongst the playing group, and have served great apprenticeships in recent seasons under senior players like Greg Inglis, Nathan Merritt and Issac Luke.
“They’re both ready to take on greater roles on field now and we couldn’t be happier to have them commit to the Club long term.”
Johnston is happy to know his future lies in the Rabbitohs jersey.
“I’m really happy to have my future for the next few years sorted out and I’m even happier that the future is with Souths,” Johnston said.
“I love playing with this team, they’re my best mates, and playing for Souths is what I’ve always wanted to do.
“The Club has looked after me and developed me through the grades, along with the guys at Souths Juniors, and I’m looking forward to working hard and repaying the faith they have shown in me over the years.”
McInnes said it has always been his dream to wear the red and green of the Rabbitohs.
“I could not be happier about re-signing with Souths. It’s a dream come true,” McInnes said.
“Growing up playing for the Botany Rams, all we ever wanted to do was play for Souths, and to be able to represent the Club, the Members and the fans every week is something very special.
“I’m really happy to have my future at the Club sorted out and I’m really looking forward to the hard work ahead to help the team achieve its goals.”
Name: Alex Johnston
Date of Birth: 14 January 1995
Place of Birth: Sydney, NSW
Junior Club: La Perouse Panthers
NRL Debut: Rabbitohs vs Broncos, Suncorp Stadium, 25 April 2014 (Rd 8)
NRL Games: 27 (all for the Rabbitohs)
NRL Points: 112 (28 tries)
Rep Honours: One Test for Australia (2015); One game for Indigenous All Stars (2015); Australian Kangaroos Four Nations squad (2014); Australian Schoolboys (2012); NSW under 18s; NSW under 16s
Name: Cameron McInnes
Date of Birth:1 February 1994
Place of Birth: Sydney, NSW
Junior Club: Botany Rams
NRL Debut: Rabbitohs vs Dragons, Sydney Cricket Ground, 5 April 2014 (Rd 5)
NRL Games: 12 (all for the Rabbitohs)
NRL Points: 4 (one try)
Rep Honours: Junior Kangaroos (2014); Holden Cup Team of the Year (2013)