Dimitrov tested positive for the virus after taking part in Novak Djokovic’s widely-criticised Adria Tour, which saw a number of players — including the world No. 1 himself — become infected as social distancing restrictions were not in place.
Dimitrov Comeback at UTT
Dimitrov who participated in the Ultimate Tennis Showdown in France this weekend said he’s still feeling the effects of his illness after testing positive more than a month ago.
“Clearly I’m not ready to compete at the highest level right now. The movement is getting better, everything else is kind of going in the right direction but it’s still not easy to recover.”
“The virus was hard on me so I stayed home for about a month.
“I was not breathing well, was not feeling well. (I was) tired, you know, all the symptoms, had no taste, no smell. Everything you could possibly think of so it was no fun. In a way I’m lucky to be on the court right now.”
“You don’t know. One day I feel really well and I have four hours to be out but then all of a sudden I need to completely shut down and take a nap, or just rest.”
Mental health during self isolation
Dimitrov said the mental battle to self-isolate for so long was just as challenging as the physical effects of coronavirus.
“Of course (there are mental struggles). I mean, you’re alone 20 days for about 24 hours … so of course a lot of things are going through your head,” the world No. 19 said.
“It doesn’t matter how mentally strong you are, I think as a person, an athlete or anything, it’s inevitable to get some bad thoughts in your head so I had to deal with that too. This thing is real. If we take the right precautions and everybody is safe, things will get better quicker. But it’s a strange time so you have to work not only on your physical but on your mental aspect as well.”
Players didn’t take the necessary precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19 during the Adria Tour, with the stadiums packed with fans over the government prescribed limit.
The aftermath saw several players testing positive to the virus and getting severe backlash on their participation and failure to maintain social distancing.