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Chee Kam won't let fear hold him back in rematch with Eels

Michael Chee Kam would have every right to feel anxious before his return to the field against Parramatta on Saturday night - two months after suffering an on-field seizure that sent shockwaves through the rugby league community.

Chee Kam will return to Bankwest Stadium for a rematch with the Eels following an accidental head knock in the round 11 clash that has sidelined him for the past eight rounds.

Play was stopped for an extended period as Chee Kam was on the stadium turf convulsing. The 28-year-old was immediately taken to hospital for treatment.

However, in heart-warming news at the end of an underwhelming season for the joint-venture, Chee Kam received the all-clear a fortnight ago to play in the final game of the year.

He passed all NRL protocols, including regular club doctor reviews, Cognigram (neurocognitive testing) and return-to-play training protocols in addition to the required independent concussion and neurologist specialist reviews.

"In the six weeks after it happened, I had three visits with the neurologist, we did a lot of tests – MRIs and CT scans … everything came back normal," Chee Kam told

Wests Tigers v Eels - Round 20

"I did this 24-hour test where I wasn't allowed to eat or sleep, basically it's meant to put your brain under fatigue and stress, and then I had some more tests on my brain.

"That was a rough time, very hard. I was only allowed to drink some water in the morning before I went in.

"We did a few army camps in the pre-season with Madge [Michael Maguire] so I would think back to that and relate to it around mental toughness."

Wests Tigers medical staff were reluctant to let Chee Kam watch a replay of the incident the following day but the Samoan representative insisted.

Chee Kam collected the hip of Shaun Lane and he will again likely mark up on the towering Eels second-rower on Saturday.

"I thought there was more to it once I was getting told what happened, but it didn't look too bad, so that part was scary," he said.

"The doctors compared it to a car accident, the impact, his hip smacking me right on the sweet spot.

"I just felt for my mum and wife, they weren't at the ground so it would've been frightening.

"And I can't do boxing anymore because everyone knows I've got a weak jaw."

Chee Kam's cheeky humour aside, he insists he never once feared for his immediate playing future despite his wife Alex saying she would be content if called it quits over the incident.

2020 State of Origin 'Moments that Matter' preview

"It comes with the job and you can't live in fear," he said.

"I've always kept a positive mindset and even when I was out for those few weeks I'd think about being back in the changeroom with the boys running out.

"I'm so grateful to be back playing, especially the last game of the year in Rowdy [Chris Lawrence] and Benji's last game.

"Everyone just wants to finish on a positive note and get a smile back on everyone's faces."

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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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