Latrell Mitchell

Mitchell ruled out of Origin

Mitchell will be replaced by 18th man Stephen Crichton and did not travel with the team to Adelaide today while Matt Burton will join the squad as the new 18th Man.

Tom Trbojevic looked strong in his last outing with Manly  to ease any doubts over his fitness while Stephen Crichton joins the camp as 18th Man in place of Campbell Graham. Tevita Pangai Junior has been named to start for his Origin debut but could be a late swap with Junior Paulo, with the veteran prop named on the bench. 

‘Finally taken some ownership’: Latrell tipped to star in grudge match of the year

Rothfield has been a vocal critic of Mitchell’s aggressive approach, which many experts believe cost Souths the 2021 premiership, but he believes the Rabbitohs No.1 has matured.

“He will be fine,” Rothfield said.

“I really like the interviews he did last week, particularly the one with Jess Yates.

Bunny booster: Latrell's return to lift Rabbitohs

The 2021 grand finalists went down 11-4 in Brisbane last Friday night and will be aiming to hose down talk about the impact of former captain and playmaker Adam Reynolds departure for the Broncos by overcoming the Storm at AAMI Park.

The Rabbitohs will be boosted by the return of Mitchell from a six-match suspension for a tackle that left his former Sydney Roosters team-mate Joey Manu with a fractured cheekbone and he is expected to provide added attacking spark.

‘Could have had a sook’: The untold Latrell story... and why it should have NRL rivals worried

Mitchell’s six-game ban for a high tackle on former teammate Joey Manu saw him miss playing in his third grand final, but his attitude and leadership since that incident has the potential to drive the Rabbitohs to go one better in 2022.

Mitchell was in arguably the form of his career when his season was cut short by the tackle on Manu and he won’t feature in the NRL again until Round 3 of 2022 against the same opposition.

Latrell Mitchell’s brother loses almost 30kgs in pursuit of dream NRL debut at Rabbitohs

Shaquai Mitchell, 25, is now tipping the scales at below 120kgs just a few years removed from reportedly ballooning to 167kgs as he fought depression and anxiety.

Shaquai and Latrell were SG Ball teammates at the Roosters in 2014 when they won that competition together.

NRL slammed for banning Latrell Mitchell from All Stars game while letting him play Charity Shield

Latrell still has NRL two games to serve on a six-match ban for a grade two reckless high tackle after breaking the cheekbone of his former teammate Joseph Manu in Round 24 last year.

Under NRL rules, suspended players only miss trials if found guilty of a grade three offence or higher, which means the Souths star can play in the Charity Shield in Mudgee on February 26.

However, the NRL are not allowing Mitchell to play for the Indigenous All Stars against the Maori All Stars on February 12.

Latrell hints at shock positional change

The 24-year-old had to watch on from the sideline as the Rabbitohs made a run for the grand final after copping a six-week suspension for a high shot on Roosters centre Joey Manu.

Four-game rookie Blake Taaffe pulled on Mitchell’s No.1 jersey in the star fullback’s absence and didn’t look out of place.

‘When it benefits them’: Rabbitohs take aim at NRL over Latrell approach, claim star is exploited

The Sydney Morning Herald reports South Sydney have been “privately seething” about the NRL’s approach to Mitchell for months but it all came to a head when next season’s draw was announced.

The Rabbitohs will take on rivals, the Roosters in Round 3 — the week Mitchell returns from his suspension for a high shot on Joey Manu.

How Souths are using suspended Latrell Mitchell as secret weapon to shut down Tom Trbojevic

Now South Sydney has its own plan of attack to stop Tom Trbojevic, even if five-eighth Cody Walker thinks it is not that black and white.

“I don’t think you can stop him,” he told reporters on Tuesday afternoon.

“You’ve just got to limit that possession game.”

Walker runs rings around Red V as Rabbitohs romp to victory

The Dragons had four players serving their one-game bans for a previous COVID breach and their makeshift centre pairing of Junior Amone and Corey Norman was targeted ruthlessly while Mitchell simply bullied the defence to the tune of two tries and 15 busts with Walker adding a try and four try assists of his own.

Broncos-bound halfback Adam Reynolds was also impressive with a try, two assists and seven goals while the Dragons were simply lacking in direction and experience.

Souths coach Wayne Bennett wasn't overly impressed with his team's performance.