Matt Ikuvalu scored five tries as defending NRL premiers Sydney Roosters thrashed North Queensland Cowboys 42-16 on Thursday.
Ikuvalu had not featured since round two but was drafted into the Roosters line-up as a late replacement for Brett Morris, who suffered a groin injury in the warm-up.
The 26-year-old grasped his chance by putting in a sensational display as the Roosters ran riot in the second half in Townsville, with Ikuvalu becoming their first player to score five tries in a match since Brian Allsop against Parramatta Eels in 1955.
It was not plain sailing for the Roosters at first; Reece Robson ran in the opener for the Cowboys before Ikuvalu got his first try nine minutes later.
Sitili Tupouniua put the Roosters 12-6 up by the break, with Ikuvalu scoring twice in two minutes to complete his hat-trick shortly after the restart – the first being a phenomenal finish in the corner.
James Tedesco teed up Luke Keary for the first of a three-minute double, with Ikuvalu sliding in for another before latching onto a Keary kick for his fifth.
Coen Hess and Robson snatched consolations for the Cowboys, who were without Valentine Holmes for the second half, as the Roosters cruised up into third place.