Storm winger Suliasi Vunivalu will load up on a favourite chicken teriyaki dish in a bid to regain weight after a fortnight of being restricted to squashed foods and sipping water through a straw.
Vunivalu will return from a fractured jaw in Sunday's clash against North Queensland a couple of weeks ahead of schedule after the club originally feared the 24-year-old wouldn't be sighted again until the finals.
The four-week lay-off post-surgery included being limited to soups and beef broth but the Fijian flyer has been given the all clear to increase his portions leading into the crunch stage of the season.
"I'm about two kilos away from my normal playing weight so I've been trying to eat heaps – stocking up on chicken teriyaki and a bit of mayo to get it back to normal," Vunivalu said on Thursday.
"I had a [burger] after the Manly game [in round 16] and the surgeon saw me and said I wasn't supposed to eat that.
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"I told him I took everything off and was licking the sauce.
"It was hard watching the boys have a good feed so after that I forced myself to start chewing with my front tooth.
"With all the injuries I've had – my shoulder and knee reconstructions – the jaw was the annoying one because you can't really eat anything."
While all eyes will be on champion teammate Cameron Smith and his future plans during the finals, Vunivalu is in the last two months of his own NRL journey before he departs for rugby union.
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Vunivalu remains committed to the code-switch with the Queensland Reds but was open to a possible return to rugby league in the future.
"We'll see later, if I want to come back I'll come back but right now I'm with the Storm," he said.
"We're focusing on finishing hard. It's a two-competition season. You have to finish hard and then in the finals you've got to be strong.
"I'm pretty much the same, nothing has changed for me. What I've done over the past couple of years has been working for me.
"[But] it's starting to hit me already, everything is going to go fast and I'll miss the club.
"I shed a tear when we won the premiership so I'll probably shed tears with the club, they've been really good to me from the start and believed in me."
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Vunivalu backed Fijian teammate Isaac Lumelume to replace him for next season after he filled in while he was sidelined.
"He's confident but a quiet guy," Vunivalu said. "He did his job and that's what Craig wants for you. It doesn't have to be fancy. It's good to have a back-up like that."
The Storm also remain active around a replacement for Josh Addo-Carr's likely departure this season.