Latrell Mitchell’s brother says Souths ban is ‘killing’ the Rabbitohs superstar as club fights to save its season

  • Souths have won just one match all season
  • Coach Jason Demetriou is fighting to save his job
  • Latrell had come under fire for lack of effort before the ban

It ‘kills’ suspended Latrell Mitchell to watch from the sidelines as South Sydney fight to save their season, says Rabbitohs prop and brother Shaq Mitchell.

Jason Demetriou’s future appeared to be in the balance ahead of the Rabbitohs’ final game, but Mitchell was powerless to help save his coach, having been suspended a week earlier for throwing his forearm at Warriors’ head half Shaun Johnson had stabbed.

Souths’ brave losing performance against Cronulla was enough to spare Demetriou the ax in the side’s last start.

But the coach may not be out of the woods yet, with tough clashes against Melbourne and Penrith in the next fortnight.

Superstar fullback Mitchell has been ruled out of both key matches as the 16th-placed Rabbitohs look to battle for their coach and their season.

“He’ll tell you himself: He hates watching,” older brother Shaq said of Mitchell.

“He loves to play the game, he loves to jump up with the boys.

“Right now it’s killing him, but it is what it is. He’s taken it on the chin and he’s getting us ready to take off and hopefully we’ll be flying when he comes back.”

Latrell Mitchell of the Rabbitohs watches during the round six NRL match between South Sydney Rabbitohs and Cronulla Sharks at Accor Stadium

Shaq Mitchell (left) with his brother Latrell (right) and Souths teammate Jack Wighton pictured with the Indigenous All Stars in 2023

Shaq Mitchell (left) with his brother Latrell (right) and Souths teammate Jack Wighton pictured with the Indigenous All Stars in 2023

Mitchell will be a crucial part of South's revival, if it comes, but is currently suspended

Mitchell will be a crucial part of South’s revival, if it comes, but is currently suspended

Mitchell said his brother ‘Mr Energy’ had been at Heffron Park since receiving his ban, and was particularly supportive of stand-in full-back Jye Gray.

Little Gray impressed during pre-season, making his NRL debut as Mitchell’s replacement in the defeat to the Sharks.

“He (Mitchell) is very enthusiastic, he brings the energy. When everything starts to die down, he brings it back up,” Shaq Mitchell said.

“He’s been involved in the game for a while now, helping Jye-Boy. I think it’s more of a matter of letting (Gray) play his game, just saying, ‘It’s okay to play your game, don’t be like me, we’re two completely different players.’

As the Rabbitohs look to revive their campaign, there has been speculation that Mitchell will return to the centres, where he played for the Sydney Roosters in their 2018 and 2019 premiership.

Such a shift could reinvigorate Mitchell after a mediocre start to the year and allow the highly-rated Gray to remain in the side for the long term.

Mitchell’s older brother did discuss the details of who should play fullback, but hoped there would be room for both men in the Rabbitohs’ squad once Latrell returned in Round 10.

“Certainly, (Gray) should fit there,” he said.

“It will be very dangerous to have them both on the same side. You have the power play (of Mitchell) and you also have the speedster (Gray).”

Shaq Mitchell said it felt ‘great’ to be nearing a contract extension with the Rabbitohs, who debuted him as a 26-year-old two seasons ago.

“I really don’t want to go anywhere,” he said.