Richmond's Supplementary Selection Period signing Mykelti Lefau won't be taking his chance at the highest level for granted.

The New Zealand-born 26-year-old, who was elevated on Monday from the Tigers' VFL program, said he was "speechless and full of excitement, knowing what's to come".

"Every time there’s an opportunity for me to crack in, I’ll be there," Lefau said.

"I bring a lot of fight, thats me. Contest-to-contest sort of guy.

"I'll put my body on the line for the boys.

"Hopefully (I'll bring) some excitement, and something different and fresh to the fans."


Lefau, who shared an emotional phone call with his parents on Monday as he told them the good news, said his mission had always been to "prove people right". 

"All the support from my friends and family and everyone at the club... I'm happy to return that," he said.

"They're the ones who kept me on track and showed their belief for me.

"I have so much love for them and they have so much love for me."


A ruptured ACL sustained in the VFL in 2022 was no roadblock for the former rugby player, who never lost hope on his AFL dream.

"I know so many athletes that have come back from ACLs better and stronger," he said.

"I knew it was just the beginning and I had so much support here."

Joining James Trezise and Tylar Young as recent VFL Tigers elevated to the Club's AFL list, Lefau said the opportunity to dedicate all his time to football throughout the pre-season had paid dividends.

"Having all that time to do extra craft, that's helped me improve me so much," he said.

"And learning the game plans and being with the boys every day, getting those connections going."

Lefau, whose father is Samoan, hopes to encourage aspiring New Zealand and Pacific Islander footballers to follow in his footsteps.

"I want to try and be that guy that opens the pathway for them," he said.

"There's so much untapped talent there... And they just need someone to believe in them to do it.

"I didn't know what football was when I was younger, but just playing with mates at school, that's what got it going and developed my hunger for the sport."