Newcastle and Manly have executed a swift post-NRL season player swap, with Akuila Uate leaving the Knights and Jamie Buhrer exiting the Sea Eagles.
Both clubs announced on Tuesday afternoon the movements of Buhrer and Uate, who each had a year remaining on their respective contracts.
Utility Buhrer moves to Newcastle on a two-year contract, former Kangaroos and NSW State of Origin winger Uate does likewise at Brookvale.
Sea Eagles coach Trent Barrett claimed the move was a win for both players.
“Jamie Buhrer has been a terrific player for Manly in his 128 first-grade games and this opportunity gives him a chance to extend this at a new club,” Barrett said.
“The chance for Manly to pick up a quality winger who is just 28 of the calibre of Akuila Uate is exciting for the club. Sometimes, players need a change of clubs and Akuila, at his best, is one of the most-exciting players in the game.”
Uate fell out of favour with Knights coach Nathan Brown in his first year at the club. His last top-grade game for the Knights was in round 12.
Uate, has played five Tests for Australia and five Origin matches for NSW, the last of those in 2012.
The 28-year-old took up a considerable chunk of the Knights’ salary cap, said to be around $500,000 a season, and would free up the club to chase other players.
Brown welcomed the acquisition of Buhrer, 26.
“Jamie is a natural footballer and a player that covers a number of positions,” the coach said.
“Importantly, Jamie is a mature player and will help with the growth of our younger players.
“Jamie is a good leader, trainer and talker, and will be an important addition to our squad.
“He knows what is required to win and what it takes to win a grand final; he really comes to Newcastle with great experience.”