now has a regional co-ordinator’s job with the West Australian Cricket Association having managed to complete a sport development traineeship while playing hockey.
“I loved cricket and made the State shadow squad as an all-rounder but I was always a small kid and started to find it a bit hard – the fast bowlers got a bit intimidating,” he says. “If I’d grown a bit faster I think I would have done a whole lot better.”
Luckily for hockey he made the switch and is now the third generation Mitton to represent his country, making his debut in 2010 against Egypt at the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia. His first home appearance, against Argentina that year in Perth, was also memorable.
Sporting a pair of bright red boots, he trotted on the pitch as an early substitute and was presented with a gettable chance moments later. He spun, swung, and missed the ball completely. I was there, and I remind him of it. “I remember it so clearly. All my mates were watching on the hill, and whatever you were thinking at that moment, they were yelling,” he grins.
So why the attention-seeking boots? He’s really not that sort of bloke.
“I’d been selected for the 2010 Commonwealth Games and my Gran had difficulty picking me out on the television so I chose the brightest pair possible,” he says.
The good news is that Mitton has been firing on all cylinders. In Darwin last week he took his goal tally to 44 in 106 appearances as the Kookaburras walloped Pakistan in a four-Test series and he will be looking forward to a busy 12 months.
Next up should be the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh, Malaysia, the World League semi-finals in South Africa and Trans-Tasman action against New Zealand.
Then come the Commonwealth Games where Batch is surely not going to deny him a crack at a third gold, on the Gold Coast. And that, Mitton hopes, will be the start of something even better.