No sin bin in the Kaufusi family

Had there been a sin bin in the Kaufusi family backyard in Bundaberg it would rarely have been empty.

New Zealand-born brothers, Antonio, Felise and the youngest of the three, Patrick, used to get stuck into each other in the backyard well before the 'no punch' rule was introduced.

Their father, Taniela, would often have to intervene when tempers flared and emotions ran high.

"Mate, there were a few bloody noses and splits lips in the backyard and I would go running off to dad," laughed the youngest Kaufusi.

"We had all the cousins around for BBQs or we'd go to their house and there would always be a footy game.

"We had a pretty big backyard so there was always a game on.

"We would just play until someone got hurt and then we'd make sure whoever got hurt was ok and either keep playing or call the game off.

"There'd be times we'd get into it and we would have to be dragged apart.

"It got pretty fiery, a few times, fists flew.

Both Patrick and Felise wanted to be "Billy Slater" in the backyard games.

"Ever since he did that chip-and-chase try (2004) every kid playing in the backyard wants to be Billy Slater."

Sunday represents another chance for Kaufusi to continue to gain some big match experience.

He had been tearing it up for Easts in the Queensland Intrust Super Cup as arguably the competition's best forward before the Storm offered him a two-year deal.

"With the coaching staff and their culture and success and with Felise being down there, I could not pass it up," he said.

"I watch his (Felise's) videos and always try and learn from him and he will pull me up at training sometimes if he thinks I am doing something wrong or to help me out with something.

"He is always there to help me out, like our older brother, Antonio did for us."

A number good judges believe Patrick can emulate brother Felise who also came through the Queensland Cup pathway to be a regular NRL force.

Though Patrick debuted in the NRL in 2015, his opportunities have been scarce and he has played just 22 games at the top level since.

Speaking to QRL Media after his selection in the Queensland Residents side to play NSW in Sunday's Harvey Norman State of Origin curtain-raiser, Patrick said there were times when the backyard game would blow up.

Felise will play in the Origin game straight after, so it will be a massive day for the Kaufusi clan in Sydney.

Felise is two years older than Patrick. Antonio, who played for 144 NRL games for three different clubs and 84 games in the UK Super League, is 34.

"I'm following him around but I got the opportunity to sign with Melbourne recently and could not pass that up the coaching staff the club has there and with Felise being there as well," Patrick said.

"We grew up watching Origins and none of us thought we would ever play in one.

"I know last the first Origin he (Felise) was buzzing all week and so was our
family, we were all pretty proud of him and happy for him.

Are the two alike?

"I am pretty laidback and go with the flow and chill whereas he'll plan things and be on control more," Patrick revealed.

Kaufusi said playing on the big stage on Origin night was a massive step.

"I'm pretty stoked actually. I think I was playing the best football I have before going down to Melbourne and I am happy to get this opportunity to represent Queensland," he said.

"Hopefully I can give it a red hot crack this weekend."

Kaufusi knows he has a lot of very talented players around him.

"The standard of the Intrust Super Cup has shot through the roof with so many young boys coming through.

"There's a hell of a lot of good players who haven't made this Residents side.

"And when you look at the talented players who come through the system like Cameron Munster, and even my brother, Felise, it gives you hope that you can follow them.

"Those players have shown that you can make your dream become a reality."