Newcastle Knights claimed victory over the West Tigers at Ausgrid Stadium.
New West Tigers coach Mick Potter had a first game to forget, as the Newcastle Knights stormed to a 42-10 win with a hat-trick of tries from NSW winger Akuila Uate.
A minute’s silence was observed by the 21,935 crowd at Ausgrid Stadium for former Tiger Mosese Fotuaika, who tragically passed away recently. The tribute seemed to motivate the Tigers early on in the match but it was the Knights who took the game in hand.
Led by former Broncos Dane Gagai and Darius Boyd, the Knights took control of the match early on and seemed to have the game all wrapped up by halftime.
Uate was the star of the night whose hat-trick included a kick-return that saw the Blues star break three tackles, run 50 metres and then receive a Gagai pass to go over the line in the right hand corner.
The winger has re-signed with the Knights on a four-year contract and quickly showed he was worth every cent, scoring twice in 9 minutes after half time.
Tim Moltzen stretched over the line to score right on the final siren to give the Tigers a late consolation in what was an overall lacklustre performance.
The Tigers will be trying to forget their start to the season, and have a lot of defensive training ahead of them after the Knights constantly exposed their weaknesses on the wings.