Tennis

'It's a tough road back' - Grigor Dimitrov reveals struggle of coronavirus recovery

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Grigor Dimitrov

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ByCarrie Dunn
27/07/2020 at 09:02 | Updated 27/07/2020 at 10:11
@carriesparkle

As he returns to competition, former world number three Grigor Dimitrov has spoken of the problems he has faced since contracting coronavirus.

Dimitrov tested positive for Covid-19 after participating in the Adria Tour, the first man at the event to do so.

Tournament organiser Novak Djokovic, director Goran Ivanisevic, and Borna Coric also all tested positive afterwards.

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The Bulgarian returned to action at the weekend, playing in Patrick Mouratoglou's Ultimate Tennis Showdown. He did not enjoy much success - losing to Richard Gasquet and then Feliciano Lopez - but he was not too disappointed.

"I came in honestly with no expectations,” Dimitrov told Tennis Majors. “I haven’t practiced for that long. I’m just trying to focus on the format and enjoy it. Clearly I’m not ready to compete at the highest level right now. The movement is getting better; everything is kind of going in the right direction but it’s still not easy to recover. I’m far (from my best level) for sure. I haven’t played tennis in over a month. The virus was hard on me. I stayed home for about a month. It’s a tough road back.”

Dimitrov was so ill previously that he was unable to practise, and he reported breathing difficulties as well as fatigue.

"To be honest I’m lucky to be on the court right now," he admitted. "I don’t take each day for granted. I really appreciate being here. It’s so nice that during time off you can come out and play with your competitors.”

He added: "One day I feel really well and I have about four hours to be out [on court]. But then all of a sudden I need to completely shut down, take a nap or just rest. So I have to go through that process as much as possible. Hopefully I’m going to recover fully.”

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