Latrell Mitchell presented with brother Shaquai’s 150th jersey
At his best, Latrell is unstoppable on the pitch, but has also never been afraid to speak out about racism and injustice, which has often made him a target for rival fans and trolls.
Last month he was the subject of an alleged racist taunt at BlueBet Stadium, with the young fan in question since issuing a warning from NSW Police.
Shaquai, who is out with a foot injury, said he and Mitchell, or “Flip” as he grew up in Taree, were exposed to racism at a young age, with Shaquai often being forced to carry his birth certificate to every game to meet the parents of the to placate small children he would run over.
Matt Mitchell, who was on the bench for six first-grade games at Souths in the early 1990s, said after practice, “Being here at Redfern where my journey started and now for the lads… I never pressure them Putting it this way, I never wanted them to play rugby but seeing them play a single game was a massive accomplishment – [and for Latrell] Playing 150 is something special.”
Coach Jason Demetriou shared that herald few in the game had accomplished as much in so little time as Mitchell.
“Put aside all the rubbish that’s being said about him, he’s a two-time Premiership winner, an Elite Origin player, a World Cup winner, now he’s a South Sydney player and we love having him here to have,” said Demetriou.
Regarding the scenes leading up to the captain’s run ahead of the Good Friday clash against Canterbury, Demetriou said: “I asked the players at the beginning of the year what a pleasant season looked like for them. The easiest thing to say is “win”, which is the result of a long journey.
“But along the way there are really exciting things to do as a group, tribute jerseys, having someone like Shaq give his little brother is special and the boys thrive on that.
“A lot of our guys don’t mind shedding a tear. They are an emotional group. It’s modern man. They make me swell all the time. But it’s the beautiful moments and I love sharing them with the boys.”
Souths legend Bob McCarthy, who picked up the coffin at John Sattler’s funeral last Friday, was spotted sitting next to boxing king Johnny Lewis at practice.
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