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Newcastle Knights coach Wayne Bennett has heaped praise on winger Akuila Uate after the Fijian flyer became the all-time leading try scorer in Club history with a hat-trick against the Wests Tigers at Hunter Stadium on Sunday.  

Uate was a standout for the Knights in their thrilling loss to the Tigers, with his three tries taking him past Club legend Timana Tahu's long standing Club record of 91 tries. 

Watching from the sideline coach Bennett couldn't have been prouder to see Uate notch up his 92nd try in just his seventh season of first-grade football.

The coach also said he had no doubts the 26-year-old winger would hold the try scoring record for some time to come.         

"Yeah it’s been a bit hard for him this year to get some tries, but it worked for him today," Bennett said.

"He is an exciting player and everybody loves to see him playing like today and getting those opportunities that he got, which haven’t been as forthcoming as we would have liked.

“But we got some for him today and he is only young too, so he is going to take some running down too." 

Bennett was also pleased with the performance of fullback Darius Boyd in his 200th NRL game.  

Boyd delivered a strong performance against the Tigers, a match that saw him become the fourth youngest player in Rugby League history to reach the 200-game milestone.

The star Queenslander, who made his top grade debut with the Brisbane Broncos in 2006, has joined the likes of Terry Lamb, Brett Finch and Craig Wing as the youngest players to achieve 200 games.

Former Roosters and Rabbitohs playmaker Wing is officially the youngest player to reach 200 matches (26 and 194 days in 2006), while Boyd comes in at fourth position behind Wing, Luke Patten and Finch.

Bennett admits his fullback played well, but wasn't alone in the standout stakes. 


"He had a great game, but he had a lot of other players out there that played really well with him," he says.


"He wasn’t just out there by himself."

Bennett also endorsed Boyd to play fullback for Queensland in Origin II in Sydney if Greg Inglis is unavailable due to an ankle injury.   

"Well he’d be my choice for the fullback for Queensland," he says.

"He is in the top four or five fullbacks in the game.

"A couple of them happen to be Queenslanders and he is in that mix."