The pair, who were named as winners of the award by the AFL Commission last month following Jobe Watson’s 12-month suspension by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, were officially presented with their medals at a ceremony in Melbourne on Tuesday afternoon.
Both players were interviewed by legendary AFL commentator, Bruce McAvaney, who has hosted the Brownlow evening for the past few years.
“I don’t think there’ll be another Brownlow Medallist who gets to accept it in front of his family,” Mitchell said after being presented with his medal by former Hawk and 1999 Brownlow Medalist, Shane Crawford.
“I stand up here and get the glory, but without a supportive wife, I wouldn’t be up here.
“To be honest when I look back to two seasons that are a bit blurred are 2011 and 2012, we just started having children and we were looking after my wife’s mother.
“They were the most difficult years of my career and to have something to look back on from that time is special.”
While admitting that it was a strange situation, Richmond captain Trent Cotchin said it was an honour to receive the medal. However, said his current focus is on helping the Tigers enjoy a successful 2017 campaign.
“I’ll enjoy the moment. I’ve tried to be really humble in the whole thing, and obviously the decisions have been out of our hands so we just went with the flow,” he said.
“I’ve contacted Jobe, I thought that was the right thing to do, but I don’t need to comment any further on that.
“We (the Tigers) were disappointing last season and we know that.
“We had some exciting changes during the off-season … and you look at the Hawthorn’s of the world and that’s what I’m striving to do at Richmond.”