Michael Mitchell taking a mark on Subiaco’s Greg Wilkinson June 1985
Full name Michael Charles Mitchell
Born 25 November 1961 at Carnarvon.
Height and weight Height: 172 cm Weight: 66 kg
Senior clubs Claremont , Richmond, Australia
State of origin WA
Claremont 1982 – 1986 88 Games 134 Goals
Richmond 1987- 1991 81 Games 103 goals
Australia International Rules 6 Games 0 goals.
Although diminutive in stature at just 172 cm and 66 kg, Michael Mitchell was probably renowned above all else for his spectacular aerial ability, a legacy of his prodigious leap and great timing. He also had blistering pace, particularly over the vital first five meters, and kicked many fine goals on the run.
Originally from Carnarvon, he made his WAFL debut with Claremont in 1982, and two years later shared the Sandover Medal with team mate Steve Malaxos and East Perth’s Peter Spencer. He made the first of an eventual eight interstate appearances for Western Australia in 1983, and was named an All Australian in 1985 and 1986.
In 1987, unsure of whether he would gain a spot on the West Coast Eagles inaugural VFL list, he signed instead with Richmond, and over the ensuing five years endeared himself to Tiger fans by his tenacious approach to the ball, coupled with spectacular leaps and runs – exemplified by him winning both the mark and goal of the year in 1990. But a series of head injuries took their toll, and Mitchell was eventually forced into retirement several years earlier than would otherwise have been the case.
Author – John Devaney with additional material from Adam Cardosi