Hunters ‘engine room’ trio Sebastian Pandia (24), David Loko (23) and Essau Siune (24) have parted with their precious dreadlocks for that clean-cut look.
With their first Queensland Cup trial match against the Northern Pride on February 9, the Michael Marum coached-Hunters returned to camp last Friday at the Bomana Police College.
They say they were not forced to part company with their trademark hair-styles but made the adjustment for the good of the team.
They all laughed off the Samson comparisons – that the long hair was the secret of their success.
While Loko and Siune did not waste time to shear their locks without much fuss at the start of the training camp, Pandia marked the occasion with the killing of several pigs and chickens for a celebratory feast on New Year’s day.
“I feel I had to do the right thing as I’m taking on a new challenge in my rugby league career,” Pandia said.
The Western Highlander added that the intensity of the off-season training so far has pushed him to limits he has never been before and losing the extra locks has done him a whole lot of good.
Standing at 176cm and at 90kg, the man from Kogmu in Hagen Central is not the biggest back-rower but makes up for that with his tenacity and discipline.
Loko chimed in to say that while they are also representing the nation they are also mindful of the sponsors and the image they portray on and off the field.
The second-rower from Kagua, Southern Highlands, added that all eyes are on them to perform and if a clean-cut image is what is best for the team then they must comply.
Siune, from the Kundiawa, Chimbu, said to be good they must also look good.
They all gave the thumbs up for the new training methods in the gym they are undergoing with trainer Jason Tassell.
Pandia added that they are mainly used to the stop-watch and the whistle in training, and appreciate the Hunters coaching staff’s efforts to get them into shape for the step-up in competition that they are venturing into.