The West

Door opens for Mitchell at Port
Kane Mitchell. Pic: AFL Media

Sandover medallist Kane Mitchell has been given added incentive to perform well throughout the NAB Cup after Port Adelaide placed key defender Nick Salter on the long-term injury list.

Salter has struggled with injury for several years and has been sidelined with another foot stress fracture.

Mitchell is on Port Adelaide's rookie list so needed someone to suffer a long-term injury before he could be considered for an AFL debut.

He is competing with fellow rookie list member Darren Pfeiffer, who played 16 games last season, but Mitchell was one of Port Adelaide's best during the opening round of the NAB Cup.

The 23-year-old from Claremont forced his way into the AFL after years of strong WAFL performances and Port Adelaide recruiting manager Geoff Parker said he deserved his opportunity this year.

"He's still got some little things that he needs to work on in his game and I think everyone who watches footy would understand that," Parker said.

"But his willingness to keep running and running and running, and his enthusiasm (is great)

"Losing Danyle Pearce to Fremantle, we lost a little bit of that outside run and carry. Kane's certainly got that."

Port also recruited Lewis Stevenson from West Coast and South Fremantle key forward Mason Shaw.

Stevenson had plenty of the ball in his first NAB Cup hit-out while Shaw was rested.

He has made a good impression at Alberton because of his accuracy in front of goal.

"For whatever reason the goal kicking is something that's never really improved over the course of the 100-odd years the game has been going," Parker said.

"So, when you find someone who has got reasonably good accuracy, it's nice to have them on your team."

The West Australian

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