Daniil Medvedev can’t help but carry a bad humour into the start of his clay season, after recovering from a mild case of COVID-19.
But in addition, the Russian ranked third will be forced to deal with his least favourite surface for the next month or so as the May 30 start of Roland Garros approaches.
Medvedev is making his late start after testing positive for the virus before the start of Monte Carlo a fortnight ago. Isolating at his base in the principality did not put him in the best of moods
“I felt some sickness symptoms, a strong cold, something like this. I had some nose and throat blocked a little bit, weakness for a few days but not more than that.
“Coming back was not easy (during the) first four, five days after laying 10 days in your bed at home also.”
The Russian said he had “one week and a half of practice. But I’m looking forward to playing here.”
Medvedev has played and lost twice at the Caja Magica, going out in the 2018 and 2019 first rounds.
Though he reached the 2019 Barcelona final and lost to Dominic Thiem, Medvedev would be happy to not have to bother with the spring dirt season.
“It’s just about play on clay, my shots, my movement, my physical appearance (tall, thin) doesn’t suit clay..
“During the first week on clay I hate everything around me.
“I just hate being on the court, and that’s very rare for me. But then I get used to and it starts to be better.
“The big thing that motivates me: I know that I’m capable of winning matches. Two years ago I beat some really good guys, I was really good shape.
“I just need to always find the confidence and the feeling which is tougher for me to find on clay than on hard courts.”