Sam Mitchell of the West Coast Eagles.
Sam Mitchell of the West Coast Eagles. JULIAN SMITH

Sam Mitchell disappointed to miss out on playing old team

INJURED West Coast midfielder Sam Mitchell has detailed his despair at failing to prove his fitness for Sunday's game against Hawthorn.

The clash was to be the veteran's homecoming against the club he won four flags with, but he ruled himself out following an ankle injury sustained last Thursday against Sydney.

Having been unable to train this week, Mitchell was in a race against the clock to be fit and ultimately came up short.

"No one is more upset than me," Mitchell told AFL 360.

"I was a bit scratchy for a couple of days and then for a couple of days I was pretty hopeful. There was a bit of upside. I was able to run on an Alter-G machine quite comfortably.

"But once I got out on to the ground today ... Normally you get to that point where you think 'yeah I can convince the Doc here, I can word him up and try', but I couldn't even get close enough to look him in the eye and tell him I could contribute.

"I had to pull the pin myself."

The 2012 Brownlow Medallist confirmed the primary roadblock was functional rather than excruciating pain.

"There was a bit of both (of pain and discomfort)," he said.

"I just couldn't function. If it was just pain it would have been okay.


Sam Mitchell of the West Coast Eagles leaves the field injured during the Round 4 AFL match between the West Coast Eagles and the Sydney Swans at the Domain Stadium in Perth, Thursday, April 13, 2017.(AAP Image/Tony McDonough) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY
Sam Mitchell of the West Coast Eagles leaves the field injured last week. TONY MCDONOUGH

"There was some other stuff where I just couldn't get up and going. I couldn't run, not that I run too fast. I couldn't even run at half of my speed so you can imagine how slow that was. I would have missed for a while had I played this week.

"It wasn't going to be worth it unfortunately."

Mitchell played 307 games at the Hawks and conceded he has been a source of information this week for his teammates.

Equally, he's allowed the scouting staff at West Coast to do their job.

"In the position they are in right it is quite hard to prepare for them this game," he said.

"On an individual basis, (I help) players that know they may have an individual match-up, strengths and weaknesses and what they like and don't like that much ... Being able to help on that individual basis.

"From a big-picture point of view, it hasn't been overboard to be honest. It hasn't been like I've been taking the meetings or anything."

Mitchell won't travel with the team. Instead he will continue his rehabilitation from Perth and said he was no certainty for round six's derby against Fremantle.