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Wests Tigers youngster Mitchell Moses is set to make his NRL debut this weekend.
Wests Tigers players have backed the NRL's hardline stance on anti-vilification, saying it's a good lesson for all young players to learn in today's game.

Promising Tigers playmaker Mitchell Moses was banned for two matches by the NRL on Monday for breaching the game's anti-vilification policy with a homophobic slur during last Saturday's Under-20s Origin match.

And while some have described it as a throwaway line, Moses' clubmates believe the incident is an opportunity to educate the game's next generation.

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"I think it was a throwaway line, [but] as a generation, we're more accepting of things like that than some of the actual older generation. I think it's a good chance to move forward and really grow as a game," utility Blake Austin said.

"I by no means condone what Mitchell said. I'm a firm believer that rugby league's for everyone and I'd like to see everyone that wants to enjoy rugby league, enjoy rugby league for what it is. I'd like to see it (vilification) eradicated from the game."

Lock Adam Blair, who has seen and heard plenty of things during his nine years in the NRL, says the game has moved on from an era where such words went unpunished.

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"It seems to have gone that way," he said.

"There's a lot of things that go on out on the field [but] I guess with all the technology these days, you can't get away with anything. You don't want to be throwing those words out anyway.

"Obviously there's no room in the game for that stuff and the NRL's made a massive stance on it. They've come out there and given him two weeks.

"I guess he'll learn a bit lesson from that and obviously everyone else out there is going to learn those things. It's the heat of the moment but there's no room for that."

Austin, who coaches an under-age team for his junior club in Doonside, said he'd be using the NRL's reaction as an example to his young chargers.

"I got 17-year-old kids that can say some pretty silly things at times and I'll let them know that it's not the right thing to say," he said.

"The day and age we're in, you just can't be putting anyone down. Obviously the NRL is taking a stance. I think it's where the game needs to go with the day and age we're in.

"I also think it's a great opportunity to educate our young players, whether we start rolling out programs through our rookies camps or things like that. I think it's a great opportunity to really educate them on what can and can't be said. I can't complain with the stance that the NRL's taken." 

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