ELONI Michael Tui Vunakece stands out in many ways.
He stands at 1.88 metres tall and sports the blonde afro and is a workaholic on the field during play.
Vunakece, one of the fan favourites in the Battle of the Bati clash on Thursday night, is looking forward to learning from the experienced players in the Vodafone Fiji Bati team during the Rugby League World Cup.
The 24-year-old, who plays for the Wyong Roos in the NSW Cup competition and Olympic Toulouse XIII in the French rugby league competition, is hoping to land his dream of playing in the National Rugby League competition from the experience he will gain during the RLWC.
"I really worked hard for the last year and half just playing footy so I'm really happy to be selected in the Fiji Bati team," Vunakece, whose father is from Tavua, said.
"I'm looking forward to be around NRL players such as Petero Civoniceva and Ashton Simms and, hopefully, Jarryd Hayne if he comes to the table. It will be a good experience for me to learn from the best players in the game."
Vunakece hopes to make his presence felt in the Fiji Bati side and is ready to do his bit to ensure success at the RLWC.
For his infamous afro which is a result of a bet with fellow Fijian players in Australia, Vunakece intends to hang on to it as of now.
"There was a competition between a member Bati squad Junior Roqica and Ratu Taqive.
"We put the bet almost two years ago and the last man standing, which is me, wins the bet.
"I haven't received it yet," Vunakece said jokingly.
"If they are reading this, they can pay me when they are ready."