Tuesday, 11 March 2008
Federer had glandular fever
In an interview with the New York Times yesterday Federer revealed that he contracted Mononucleosis or glandular fever at the turn of the year, the same illness which forced Mario Antic out for 6 months last year.
This is apparently why he felt sluggish and entered the Australian Open with little preparation. The symptons include muscle fatigue and a lack of energy - it can't have been much fun playing 2 weeks of tennis in the extreme heat in Australia while fighting the virus.
Key quotes from the NYT article:
Federer said he was unable to practice for about 10 days in February and received medical clearance to begin training five days before the tournament in Dubai began March 3.
“They weren’t sure I was over it, but now I’m creating antibodies, and this really shows you are over it,” he said. “But I lost a lot of fitness. I was feeling so great in December up until the moment I got sick, so this has been my problem the last couple weeks: really getting back on track. I haven’t practiced and couldn’t really work out the way I wanted to, because you have to be very careful with mono.”
Federer said he had a fever in December before traveling to Australia but sought no medical treatment. After his health problems in Australia, he took a long-planned two-week break from tennis, which included attending the Super Bowl. But he said he soon fell ill with flulike symptoms again and returned to Switzerland for tests.
“I had felt great the day before and then awful the next day,” he said. “And this is really when I said: O.K., something is wrong. I have to totally check things out here.”
“I finally have the green light and finally I can give 100 percent in practice again, because it wasn’t fun sort of being there sort of halfway,” he said. “I didn’t enjoy that too much. But again, it was interesting, and you’ve got to go through those moments, as well. I know that. Through a career, a long career maybe as No. 1, you have to go through injuries and sicknesses.”