IF his family, tuning in nearly 12,000 miles away in Wellington, manage to grab a second beer when watching him tonight, then that represents real progress for Hull FC winger Bureta Faraimo.
Since joining the East Yorkshire club this term, the Kiwi has, for one reason or another, often struggled to complete a game.
Of his nine appearances so far, Faraimo has failed to reach the end in three of them.
He was concussed after just two minutes of Hull’s televised game against Wigan Warriors back in Australia and then sent off in the ninth minute of the Good Friday derby at Hull KR following a dangerous tackle.
In between, the 27-year-old was concussed again having been on the end of a swinging arm from Warrington Wolves’ Dec Patton in the 48th minute of a third broadcast fixture.
There has been a running joke from Hull coach Lee Radford that Faraimo has to stay on the field whatever the issue as, each time he has departed, his right edge has disintegrated for a spell.
“I get messages from my family back at home,” he said, ahead of tonight’s televised clash with Leeds Rhinos. They watch my game on TV and they haven’t even finished their beer yet and I’ve got sent off!
“It has been frustrating. That’s all it is. I was frustrated sitting out all those games… concussions, the red card, (suspension)…
“It’s halfway through the season now and I still feel like I haven’t shown what I really can do especially from a fan’s point of view. I’ve just been sort of waiting.”
Tonight would certainly be a good time to show it.
It’s halfway through the season now and I still feel like I haven’t shown what I really can do especially from a fan’s point of view. I’ve just been sort of waiting.Hull FC winger Bureta Faraimo
There is no doubting Faraimo’s talent – Radford appreciates his strength out of back field, he finishes well and, following a move from New Zealand Warriors, has many similar attributes to Mahe Fonua, the fans’ hero he has replaced in 2018.
The USA international just needs a sustained run of games as the stop-start nature of the opening to his Hull career has been irritating for all concerned.
Faraimo missed the narrow 20-16 defeat at champions Leeds on March 8 due to the concussion against Warrington and was banned for the loss at St Helens although he still feels he should not have been sent-off for a high tackle on Hull KR’s Chris Atkin.
“He came around late, I sort of read it and I went in,” explained Faraimo, who scored his third try of the season in last Thursday’s 39-20 win at Widnes Vikings.
“I was maybe a split-second too late but I didn’t think it was late, or that it was a high or a shoulder charge. I was confused. I still am confused about that. But at the same time I’ve done my time and I don’t really care about that now.”
Hull, who sit sixth just behind champions Leeds, know they have to start delivering consistently themselves after a inconsistent start.
That said, they were unlucky to lose at Headingley last month and, with their first-choice back-row of Mark Minichiello, Sika Manu and Dean Hadley returning after missing the Widnes win due to injury, they will be well set to challenge this evening.
Rhinos, meanwhile, were pipped 9-8 by Wigan last week and Faraimo admitted: “I am looking forward to it. It will be good to get a game against Leeds.
“We just lost out last time but we had a few injuries then and have a few boys back now so that will be good.
“I’m a big fan of Ryan Hall’s and it will be good to test myself against him. I’ve seen him play for England and was pretty gutted I didn’t face him the last time.”
Faraimo, who made only sporadic appearances for Parramatta Eels between 2014 and 2016 and didn’t play in the NRL for the Warriors, is desperate to make his mark in Super League.
He is enjoying life in Hull and would certainly like to extend his two-year deal. The New Zealander said; “I love it here and the way I feel now yes I do. Depending if I show that on the field and Hull FC are happy to let me stay then yes.
“My family loves it here and that makes my job easier. For me, it’s laid-back yet busy at the same time. I have a few kids (four)that keep me on my toes.
“I’ve just put two of them into rugby so they play for Cottingham. When I’m finished here I go back home and straight to that.
“I’ve been doing a little bit of travelling but not far. I went to see that... Bridlington? It’s pretty cool, man. We just jump in the car on our days off and have a little cruise.”
Leeds forward Jamie Jones-Buchanan, 36, is set to make his 400th appearance for Rhinos tonight.