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Page last updated at 13:27 GMT, Thursday, 12 February 2009

Rooney relief after heart scare

Rooney began his career at Featherstone Rovers
Rooney began his career at Featherstone Rovers

Wakefield's Jamie Rooney has saluted the medical team who saved him after his heart stopped during knee surgery.

The stand-off was undergoing routine surgery for minor cartilage damage when he technically died for 30 seconds after being given an anaesthetic.

But doctors reacted quickly and Rooney, 28, told the Yorkshire Evening Post: "I feel incredibly lucky to be here.

"I was told that they couldn't get my heart going again for 30 seconds and they had a real job resuscitating me."

Rooney said the surgeon at the Manchester clinic told him he had never experienced a similar situation in his 22 years in the job and was mystified by what had caused his heart to stop.

"I have to have a lot of tests now, which means I'm not going to be able to play for six or seven weeks, " said Rooney.

Rooney's team-mate Adam Watene died in October 2008 after suffering a massive heart attack while training in a city centre gym.

"The club could have gone into last weekend's match at Wigan mourning two players, not one," said Rooney. "That would have been devastating."

Wakefield coach John Kear told BBC Radio Leeds: "I just couldn't believe it to tell you the truth. I just thought 'what else can happen to this club?'

"Thankfully he did come through and we're all very, very thankful indeed for that and we've just got to put that in the past and build once again."

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see also
Wigan 6-12 Wakefield
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby League

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