NRL 2020: Erin Molan denies mocking the name of Pacific Island player during radio broadcast

Australian TV personality Erin Molan denies she mocked the names of Pacific Islander NRL players on radio station 2GB's rugby league show.

During a discussion about pronouncing the names of NRL players on The Continuous Call  with Darryl Brohman and Mark Levy last Saturday, Molan said "hooka looka mooka hooka fooka".

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Molan said she was referring to an 'in-joke' between the commentary team, even though Brohman was left stunned and Levy quickly changed the topic. 

Nine Entertainment, which owns 2GB, backed Molan's story saying it was in reference to a chat Brohman had with father and son commentators, Ray and Chris Warren, back in April where they were debating how to pronounce the name of reserve Manly forward Haumole Olakau'atu.

"Erin was jokingly mocking the difficulty Chris and his father had, going back and forth figuring out how to pronounce a complex name," Nine told the Daily Mail in a statement.

"'The Big Marn' [Brohman] retelling the story in his very best Ray and Chris Warren voice."

Sam Thaiday, Erin Molan, and Johnathan Thurston.
Sam Thaiday, Erin Molan, and Johnathan Thurston. Photo credit: Getty

Olakau'atu made his NRL debut in late 2019 and has featured twice this season. 

"His name had about 30 letters in it and I had trouble pronouncing it so I asked Chris 'how do you pronounce this bloke's name?'" Brohman said during the April 5 broadcast. 

"He said 'well dad and I have been discussing this today... and dad thought his name was Chuka-lala-lulu.

"And 'I said, 'well, dad, I think it's Chuka-lala-lulu-lulu,' and he says, 'Chris, that's incorrect - it's Chukaka-lulalulalo'."

Just over 45 percent of NRL players have Pacific Island heritage.