Swiss professional Belinda Bencic, after struggling in the 1st match of the tournament, wrapped up her second-round match at St. Petersburg in 2 sets. However, during the game, she was seen catching her breath at one stage. In the post-match press conference, she admitted that she was not 100% fit for the game.
The former World No. 4 was one of the tennis players who tested positive for Covid-19 after the Mubadala World Tennis Championships, last year in December. Though she recovered from it and even participated in the Australian Open, she seems to be struggling with the after-effects of the virus.
While talking to the press, she said, “I have been diagnosed with something in my lungs which is not normal. And still, I’m happy I can play but it’s going to take me a while to recover—they said about two, three months. I think it happens with a lot of athletes that your fitness, it’s not the same level.”
After her win over Kaja Juvan, she will now face the second seed, Anett Kontaveit, in the quarters. The Estonian player is currently ranked higher than Bencic, but Belinda’s ability to control the game from the baseline might prove effective against her.
Belinda Bencic has been facing the issue throughout 2022
After the Covid isolation and completing the recovery process, Belinda participated in all of the January events. She reached the quarter-finals of the Sydney International but fell to Paula Barbosa in 3 sets.
She also entered the Australian Open as the 22nd seed, but the American Amanda Anisimova handed her an early exit in the 2nd round.
“It’s also what happened, in Australia,” explained the gold medalist in the press conference. “I kind of expected I will maybe not have the best chance to win a lot of matches, but I’m trying my best to get back to shape.”
Bencic has dealt with injuries before in her career as well, and made remarkable comebacks. She even won WTA comeback player of the year in 2019. We hope that this is nothing more than a bump in the road for Bencic.