Tomer Hemed scored a hat-trick as Brighton breezed past Fulham to move into the Championship automatic promotion places ahead of Burnley.

The 28-year-old converted from the penalty spot at the Amex Stadium before doubling the hosts’ lead by heading in Anthony Knockaert’s cross.

Defender Bruno slammed home before Israeli striker Hemed tapped in and Knockaert fired past Marcus Bettinelli.

Brighton moved into second in the table, one point behind Middlesbrough.

Chris Hughton’s side are now one point above Burnley, who travel to Birmingham City on Saturday.

He will have been pleased with the way his side dominated after making a slow start against a team that had won their previous three matches.

Once Hemed scored from the spot in the 29th minute, then doubled Brighton’s lead five minutes later, Brighton took complete control.

They entertain QPR on Tuesday, while Fulham – for whom this was their worst defeat of the season – travel to play-off outsiders Ipswich Town.