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Will Mitchell face the Hawks?

April 20, 2017 4:25 PM

Last Time: West Coast R22 2016 The Eagles and Hawks clash in round 22
AFL 2016 Rd 20 - Melbourne v Hawthorn

It's a race against the clock to see whether Mitchell will be deemed fit enough to face his former teammates.

Before this year, no player had ever faced a team that they had previously played 300 games for.

West Coast recruit Drew Petrie was the first player in history to do that when he pulled on an Eagles jumper against his former side North Melbourne in round one this year.

West Coast fans will be hoping they get another taste of this rare history this weekend, if Sam Mitchell is deemed fit to take on Hawthorn on Sunday.

The four-time premiership Hawk is set to undergo a fitness test on Friday to confirm his availability.

For Hawks fans, it will be a bittersweet moment as they get to see their beloved son again run around the MCG, albeit in not quite the right colours.

“It will be really strange playing against ‘Mitch’,” Hawks vice-captain Isaac Smith told RSN radio station on Wednesday.

“He is a strong Hawthorn person and he’s had an amazing influence on the club.

“But I’m just glad he’s got an opportunity to play, when I was watching West Coast last week I thought he had snapped his leg in half, so it’s good that he is up and about”.

Hawk forward Jack Gunston told a press conference on Thursday, that although Mitchell’s intimate knowledge of the Hawthorn team could prove a disadvantage, he hoped the Brownlow Medallist would be fit to play.

“I’m sure he’s doing everything he can to play and I hope he does,” Gunston said.

“You want to play against the best players on the other team”.

And, would Gunston be willing to afford his former premiership teammate any special concessions if he were to play?

Not quite.

“No, now he is just like anyone else, he is a part of the opposition now,” Gunston said.

“We will treat him the same as any other West Coast player”.

Read: Won't take long to get confidence back, says Gunston