Nathan Merritt will retire from the NRL at the end of the season.
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South Sydney Rabbitohs all-time leading tryscorer Nathan Merritt has called time on his 236-game NRL career.
Merritt broke Benny Wearing’s long-standing Rabbitohs all-time tryscoring record with his 145th try in round six against Penrith, but has played just two games since.
South Sydney coach Michael Maguire has preferred rookie Alex Johnson this season, who has scored 16 tries in 19 games.
“I absolutely love playing for South Sydney. It’s been a dream of mine since I was a little kid jumping the fence at Redfern Oval to watch guys like Mario Fenech and Craig Coleman run around,” Merritt said.
“But the time has come to call it a day and move on to the next stage of my career, setting up my Foundation and supporting the people in Redfern and the South Sydney community.
“I want to thank my wonderful wife Faith and my kids Jada, Jalen, Nakeeya, Anthony and Honey; my coaches and team mates right from my first game for the Alexandria Rovers to today at the Rabbitohs; all of the staff, sponsors and board members over the years from both the Rabbitohs and Souths Juniors; and the Members and fans of the Rabbitohs for the support they’ve given me throughout my career.
“I hope I’ve done you proud, and I will always consider myself to be a Rabbitoh.
“I’m still very much part of this year’s squad and we still have plenty of work to do this year, and I’m looking forward to being part of it, and I’m also looking forward to starting this next part of my career.”
Merritt spent all but two of his seasons with the Rabbitohs, playing with Cronulla in 2004 and 2005.