He was the shy kid who had never thought of playing rugby league. A couple of the other Fijian boys from Woy Woy Roosters had invited him to play touch at training. He showed up, without boots, played and signed his first contract with the club then and there.
Aku Uate, arguably the best winger the Newcastle Knights have ever sent onto the field, played 161 NRL games over nine seasons, a crowd favourite, and is still the Knights' leading try scorer.
Uate joins Barry Toohey in episode 19 of Toohey's News: The Podcast.
Have your say or suggest a guest for an upcoming episode by contributing a rating and review in your Apple Podcasts app, or get in touch via email at email@example.com.
Toohey will bring a new episode to all your favourite podcasting apps every week, complementing his premium and exclusive Knights reporting and analysis in the pages of the Newcastle Herald.
Episode 30 of Toohey's News will publish next week.