Tennis News Wire -
Mardy Fish has finally broken his silence over the mystery illness that has kept him off the ATP World Tour for nearly two months and prevented him from contesting the current French Open. The 30 year-old American revealed he recently underwent a medical procedure to combat a heart condition doctors described as a form of arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat).
Fish has been affected with the ailment since February when he made the long trip to play the Dubai Duty Free Championships and returned to play the back to back United States Masters series events in California’s Indian Wells and Miami in Florida.
The Beverley Hills-based player, currently ranked no.10 on the ATP World Tour rankings, went through a phase of waking in the middle of the night and after losing to Argentina’s Juan Monaco at Miami’s Sony Ericsson Open, he awoke around 3:30 a.m. with his heart pounding at approximately three times that expected from a trained athlete like Fish at rest (170-180 beats per minute).
As the second day of play at Roland Garros progressed, Fish said: “I want to stress that I'm good now. I'm fine. They've fixed the problem. I don't want people to think I missed the French Open because I didn't want to go because I was just tired. That's just not the case."
Fish’s condition has explained as simply ‘fatigue’ for several weeks but he told tennis writer Doug Robson of USA Today: “My racing heart beat continued for more than half and hour and I was completely panicking. I thought I was going to die. It felt like my heart was going to jump out of my chest.”
He alerted his physical trainer Christian LoCascio and the pair decided to make the emergency call 911. When paramedics arrived Fish was wheeled out of his hotel on a gurney and taken to hospital.
Fish dared to play the U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championships in Houston during early April but experienced more heart palpitations. "After that we really realized it was an issue instead of thinking it was a one-off," Fish said, revealing doctors then advised him to undergo a two-hour electrophysiology procedure last week.
"They feel like it was very successful, and that it's totally behind me now," said Fish, who been told to initially take things easy in order to combat the risks of post-operative blood clot risks. However he hopes to resume training soon and hasn’t given up hope of playing the AEGON Championships at London’s Queen’s Club starting in a fortnight.