Following his fourth-round loss to Jannik Sinner at the French Open on Sunday, Alexander Zverev made some eyebrow-raising comments about his health, which look all the worse considering the changes the tournament put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
After falling to Sinner in four sets (3-6, 3-6, 6-4, 3-6), Zverev — the No. 6 seed in the French Open — revealed that he felt “completely sick” during the match.
“I can’t really breathe, as you can hear by my voice. I had fever as well,” Zverev said in a virtual press conference following his match, according to USA Today. “Yeah, I’m not in the best physical state, I would say. I think that had a little bit of an effect on the match today.”
According to the French Tennis Federation, Zverev was last tested for COVID-19 last Tuesday and those test results came back negative. Participants are supposed to report any symptoms of the coronavirus to tournament officials, and according to USA Today Zverev did not.
The German added that he had a 100.4-degree fever and began feeling symptoms on Friday — 48 hours before the match — and, according to Julien Pretot of Reuters, medical personnel let him use a nasal spray and a pill during the match against Sinner.
“To be honest, I warmed up today: I shouldn’t have played,” Zverev said. “I was hoping maybe for a three-set win or something like that, but I knew from the beginning that it wasn’t going to be easy.”
Its noteworthy that Zverev also participated in Novak Djokovic’s Adria Tour event in June. Djokovic and several other participants ended up testing positive for COVID-19 and the event was eventually shut down. Zverev said he tested negative for the coronavirus following the Adria Tour event.