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Jillaroos squad member Shanice Parker

Shanice Parker isn't a household name in the women's rugby league fraternity yet, and no guarantee to crack into the Sydney Roosters final 17 each week.

But the 21-year-old will already take something away from the Tricolours regardless of whether she gets a game this year. She underwent a pre-season medical examination and ended up solving an ongoing breathing problem that is considered life-threatening.

NRLW players are assessed by their clubs upon signing contracts and examined for any injury or medical concerns ahead of the new season.

"Sometimes I feel tight in my chest and I just thought it was normal and that I was unfit," Parker tells

"Basically my whole life I've suffered from hay fever and I just dealt with it. But when I came here I told Tom about my symptoms, he got me into all these tests at the hospital," she said of a conversation with Roosters medicĀ  DrTom Longworth.

"I thought it would be nothing and that maybe I was overreacting but it turned out I have severe exercise-induced asthma."

Exercised-induced bronchoconstriction is the medical term, which is triggered by strenuous exercise and common among high performance athletes.

While the condition can worsen if not treated, so far it's made Parker unable to perform at the peak of her powers since she began to suffer symptoms.

NRL Holden Women's Premiership season launch 2019

"Physically I feel fine, that's why it was weird. But the way it was explained is I've got to use more energy than the normal girls to keep up with them at training," Parker said.

"Which is something I tend to do anyway but now it's like I'll get brand new lungs once the preventer and puffer begins to kick in.

"It's just good to get answers from all the questions I've asked over the years."

The Tricolours will find out their first-round opponents on Sunday night and Parker remained hopeful of selection in the first round.

"Even if I don't manage to get a game this year with the Roosters girls then I'm just thankful that the club has helped me in this way," she said.

"If I didn't know any different I would've just kept training the way I was and putting up with it all."

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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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