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Panthers' Merrin backs scrapping the slap

NZN 12/04/2017

Penrith lock Trent Merrin says while he would have loved to slap Michael Ennis in the face a few times, the game is all about self control.

Merrin told Sky Sports Radio it was a "good call" by the NRL, which moved to stamp out the slap by vowing to send any player who strikes and opponent with an open palm to the sin-bin for 10 minutes.

"The game does get frustrating, you do get caught up in the moment and silly things happen," Merrin said on Thursday morning.

"I would have love to Michael Ennis a few times in the face... it is just a bit of self control."

The issue came to the fore last month when Canterbury's David Klemmer slapped Manly halfback Daly Cherry-Evans, prompting the NRL to hand down the recommendation.

"If a kid was watching the game on TV and he saw one of his favourite players slapping someone you wouldn't want him replicating that on his local field on the weekend," Merrin said.

"So I think it is good for the game."

Merrin also squashed speculation that Panthers skipper Matt Moylan was uninterested in the captaincy, adding the team is "behind him".

"He is definitely a captain, he is young, he is from Penrith, he loves the community and he inspires the boys and that is all you need from a captain," Merrin said.

"We have got his full support and I love him as a captain; nothing is going to change that."

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