The son of former Fiji starl Manoa Thomson, HayneÂ joined the Vodafone-sponsored side yesterday and is eager to get his first game for his new team.
Hayne remains one of the NRL’s and Australian rugby league’sÂ upcoming talents with a record of 17 tries in just 16 National Rugby League games in his debut year.
Recently missing out on the AustralianÂ team while a blow for Hayne, has seemingly only encouraged the 20-year-old to put in a big showing for Fiji and force the Kangaroo’s to take notice.
“It was disappointing to miss the Roos team, sure. But I’m glad that I can open another door with Fiji,” he said.
“It was always going to be the case – if I didn’t get selected for Australia then I would represent Fiji. It’s something I haven’t done before.
“Either way if it’s for Fiji or Australia, I’m going to be happy because I’m playing in the World Cup. I’m still going to have that passion and joy.
“It feels good to represent Fiji. I haven’t had much to do with them because of my NRL career. I can’t wait to put on the Fijian jersey.”
Haynes had to seek special dispensation from the RLIF to play for the Bati after having played for the Kangaroos last year.
International eligibility rules state a player can only switch allegiance once within a stipulated two-year period in the four years between World Cups.
Haynes joins Knights fullback Wes Naiqama and Broncos forward Ashton Sims as Fiji’s star players.
The trio, along with other NRL players, joined the rest of the squad made up of local players for a week-long camp full of “games and activities” on Moturiki Island.
Fiji faces France and Scotland in its pool matches and has already set its sights on winning a semi-final spot.
Haynes said with the right attitude, the team could go a long way to achieving its goal.
“The team generally wants to make the semi-finals and I think we can. If the boys knuckle down, I think we can,” he said.