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'He showed his class' – Kiwis hooker Brandon Smith heralded for Tonga heroics

Kiwis hooker Brandon Smith's display against Mate Ma'a Tonga is being hailed by halfback Benji Marshall, with the rookie playing a starring role in last night's 34-14 victory at Mt Smart Stadium.

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The youngster shone in last night's 34-14 win. Source: 1 NEWS

In just his fourth Test for the Kiwis, Smith was a constant threat against Tonga, a nuisance at dummy half and proving too much for the opposition to handle, scoring the opening try as New Zealand ran away with a comfortable win.

What's more impressive is Smith's limited time in the number nine jersey for his club side the Melbourne Storm, stuck behind captain and namesake Cameron Smith, having to settle for an impact role off the bench.

Speaking to media today, Marshall outlined the 23-year old's performance as a reason for the Kiwis' emphatic win.

"He's a special player," Marshall said.

"Obviously he hasn't played a lot of hooker this year, with Cameron Smith still playing. What he's done is just bide his time there, hasn't complained and just done another job in a position that's a bit different for him.

"When you have that attitude and that combination of what you can do, he showed on the field how good he is as a hooker.

"I thought he was our best player to be honest with you."