“It was just a big misunderstanding. I regret it now, it’s one of those things where if I had walked away, nothing would have happened. We all make mistakes and we’ve got to learn from then.
“Don’t put yourself in that situation. That’s the biggest learning.”
The season isn’t yet half over and already it has been a rollercoaster of highs and lows for Chee Kam. If the pre-season incident was the nadir, then the peak came in round five.
It’s one of those things where if I had walked away, nothing would have happened.
Michael Chee Kam
With the match on the line against the Broncos, the Samaon international beat five defenders to seal one of the biggest boilovers of the season. Plays such as this, coupled with the club’s belief his indiscretion was an aberration, prompted the Tigers to offer him a contract extension.
“I feel pretty bad I put the club and my family in a bad spot,” he said.
“I love this club and want to repay the faith, especially with them showing the faith in me for another two years.
“They knew my story and knew I was going to be all right. They know the kind of person I am, that it was out of character. I’ve got to move on from it now.
“That’s massive, to be able to do what I want to do for another two years in the NRL competition. It’s a dream of mine as a kid and to get to do it for another two years is pretty unreal.
“This is my fourth year at this club, it’s like home for me know. I’m really loving my time here and I want to be part of the future.
“I’m grateful, I want to play some good footy for them and the fans.”
The Tigers take on Canberra on Friday in what will be their first home clash at Bankwest Stadium. The joint-venture outfit could welcome back back-rower Chris Lawrence after he recovered from horrific facial injuries suffered in a head clash with a teammate in the pre-season. Coach Michael Maguire has named Lawrence in jersey 20 as part of his extended bench.
“He’s massive for the side – you really notice all the little things he does when he hasn’t been playing,” halfback Luke Brooks said.
“For me in defence, I defend next to him and in attack he runs a great line.
“Once he gets fully fit and is back in the side, he will be great for us.”
Winger David Nofoaluma said Lawrence’s return was an inspiration to the side.
“From what he got told from the doctors, it’s a credit for him to return,” Nofoaluma said.
“He’s that type of player, everyone knows he’s a tough nut. For him to come back from what happened to him, he’s an inspiration to a lot of people.”
Adrian Proszenko is the Chief Rugby League Reporter for the Sydney Morning Herald.