Hull manager Phil Brown hailed striker Dean Windass after the veteran's superb hat-trick in the 4-0 victory over relegation rivals Southend.
Windass is in his second spell with the Tigers
Windass, 38, opened the scoring before the break, and added two more in the second half and also teed up the Tigers' other goal for Sam Ricketts.
Brown said: "He's made a fantastic return, and in truth he's the in-form striker in the division."
Windass has now scored seven goals since re-joining Hull in January.
Brown added: "He's an important member of the team and was a constant thorn in the side (of Southend). Technically, he's one of the better players in the division.
He's told me he could keep going until he's 45!"
"At times he opens his mouth and what comes out is challenging to himself.
"But he responds to it, and he gets a response from the other players, like Nicky Forster and Stuart Elliott.
"He's told me he could keep going until he's 45!"