Valentine Holmes sends message to Latrell Mitchell ahead of huge State of Origin clash

The former Kangaroos teammates will go head-to-head in Origin.

Latrell Mitchell has been warned he will not have it easy in his return to the State of Origin arena after Valentine Holmes called out the Rabbitohs star. The Rabbitohs fullback was overlooked ahead of Game 1 as NSW went down to Queensland after being reduced to 12 men for most of the encounter.

Mitchell was suspended for four games and battling inconsistent form ahead of Michael Maguire's selection for the Game 1 Blues squad. He was not included in the squad. However, Mitchell's recent form has coincided with the Rabbitohs going on a destructive NRL run and the rampaging back has found himself back in the Blues side as the strike weapon.

 Valentine Holmes (pictured right) has warned Latrell Mitchell (pictured left) he will not have it easy in his return to the State of Origin arena. (Getty Images)
Valentine Holmes (pictured right) has warned Latrell Mitchell (pictured left) he will not have it easy in his return to the State of Origin arena. (Getty Images)

And while many can't wait to see what Mitchell does in the Origin arena, Holmes has warned his centre rival he won't have it easy. "I've played alongside him (for Australia) so I know he is pretty dangerous when he attacks the line," Holmes said on Wednesday.

"It is a while since he has played in the Origin arena so we will try and get to him in ways that slow him up a bit. I have just got be in his face and make my tackles," Holmes said of the match-up with Mitchell.

"In club footy when I play centre and he is fullback (for South Sydney) and he sweeps around the back you try and make decisions on him. It has not been centre-on-centre because he hasn't really played centre when I have played it."

Mitchell last played Origin back in 2021, which saw him destroy the Maroons in the Blues' last series win. Holmes admitted Mitchell will bring a different kind of aggressive approach to the Blues team and will probably look to make a statement.

"He is pretty aggressive so he will probably come out and look to jam Walshy (fullback Reece Walsh) and get into our back five early," Holmes added. "We have to be wary of that and make him work a bit more than he does at Souths."

Latrell Mitchell celebrates.
Latrell Mitchell (pictured) will return to the State of Origin arena for the first time since 2021.

Mitchell joining Maguire's Blues outfit raised concern over potential animosity between him and Spencer Leniu. Leniu was hit with an eight-game suspension for calling Ezra Mam a 'monkey' during the Roosters and Broncos clash in Round 1 this year.

Mitchell was vocal about the incident and backed Mam. With Mitchell back in the NSW team for Origin 2, it opened up the possibility of some animosity lingering between himself and Leniu - who made his NSW debut in Game 1. But Leniu revealed on Tuesday that he and Mitchell got on the front foot and buried the hatchet straight away.

"Me and Latrell are all good," Leniu told Channel 9. "He pulled me aside and spoke to me yesterday and that shows how good of a person he is. He pulled me aside and let me know to put our differences aside and rip in.

"He has my back and I have his and [we will] give it to some Queenslanders. It gave me a lot of confidence and relief that we're all good. As soon as I cross this white line, if you're beside me, I will protect you until we're finished. Latrell is gonna be beside me ... I will have his back."

with AAP