PARIS (Reuters) - Having tested positive, then negative, then positive and negative again for COVID-19 has put Benoit Paire on the edge, leaving the bewildered Frenchman wondering what might come next at the French Open.
Paire won his first-round match 7-5 6-4 6-4 against South Korea’s Kwon Soonwoo four days after retiring against Casper Ruud in Hamburg, where he tested positive for coronavirus.
After being forced to stay in his hotel room for 10 days in New York amid a battery of tests at the U.S. Open, Paire tested negative in Rome as well as upon his return in Paris, before recording a positive again in Germany.
“Positive in New York twice, then six times in New York negative. Then Paris negative. Then I went to Rome, negative three times,” Paire told reporters.
“I arrived in Hamburg, the first one was positive, the second one was positive, and the third one was negative, and one negative here in Paris.”
It is little wonder that Paire now does not have a clue what will happen when he takes his next nasal swab at Roland Garros.
“Honestly now, the importance of the test is not the thing I’m thinking. I’m just thinking, okay, if you can play you play,” he said.
“If not, you go home and you see your dog, your family, and you will be happy.”
Paire admitted the whole situation has drained him mentally.
“It was not easy, honestly, the situation after the 10 days in my room in New York, then have to stay again in my room.
“The only thing I wanted was to go home, so couldn’t because we had to come here for the test,” he explained.
“So honestly now what happens is that I’m tired. I’m tired physically. I’m tired mentally.”
Reporting by Julien Pretot; editing by Ian Chadband
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