South Sydney Rabbitohs star Damien Cook fears that his teammate, Latrell Mitchell, could walk away from the NRL if he becomes tired of being in the spotlight.
The 22 year-old is already a two-time premiership winner and an Australian and New South Wales representative, and after a recent move from rivals Sydney Roosters to the Rabbitohs, the early focus of the 2020 season has been on how the young star would perform in his new role at fullback.
It hasn’t taken long for critics to question Mitchell’s position change after he underperformed in the opening two rounds of the season.
Mitchell only signed a one-year contract with the Rabbitohs, and Cook fears that it is possible he may not sign on for another should the criticism continue.
“I just hope the next time is comes to a new contract and, with Latrell remembering everyone hammering him, that he actually does decide to keep playing,” Cook told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“He might have had enough. It can happen to any player if they get hammered enough and they start to think, ‘I’m not putting up with this anymore’.
“The best thing for Latrell was to come to Souths and really enjoy his football. That’s what I saw in the pre-season, and I saw that smile on his face. I think we’ll see that smile on his face again.
“His first two games, he wasn’t 100%, but it’s also the first time he’s been in that position full-time, and he’s still learning the new combinations. When he’s on, he can’t be stopped.”