Fabio Fognini tested positive for COVID-19 and will not be able to step on the court against Spaniard Roberto Carballes Baena in the second round of the Sardinia Open, an ATP 250 tournament taking place in Cagliari, as reported by Italian media.
The Italian world number 16 was the first seed of the tournament, but due to the unfortunate test, he will be replaced by the lucky loser Danilo Petrovic. Playing on home soil, Fabio Fognini announced his withdrawal hours after he lost a wildly disputed doubles match against the couple formed by Lorenzo Sonego and Andrea Vavassori.
Fognini’s partner was Lorenzo Musetti. The encounter ended 6/7, 7/6, 15/13 for Sonego/Vavassori. It’s now a concern whether Musetti is infected or not, after teaming up with Fabio, fortunately, for just one match.
By being forced to withdraw, Fognini failed to get back on winning ways since his last performances were disappointing. After the tennis season reopened, the Italian lost in the first round at Kitzbuhel (thrashed by world number 184, Marc-Andrea Huesler) and Rome (edged in two tight sets by Ugo Humbert).
Then, he managed to get in the second round of Hamburg, bowing down to Casper Ruud, just four days before losing in the first round of Roland Garros against Mikhail Kukushkin.
Fognini was Sardegna’s emergency solution
After Diego Schwartzman announced his withdrawal from Sardinia Open, just before playing the French Open semifinal against Rafael Nadal, the tournament’s officials resorted to the emergency substitution, Fabio Fognini.
As reported by Tennis Tonic, Fabio was able to take part in the event because of a rare clause that allows players that didn’t submit the entry before the required deadline. This rule applies only for ATP250 tournaments and if the following conditions are met:
Two (2) of the tournament’s top four (4) seeds withdraw; and
- ii. One (1) of the withdrawals involves the first or second seeded player; and
- iii. The substitute player (1) will become one of the tournament’s top two (2) seeds.
Fabio achieved the highest ranking in his career (world number 7) in that same year, 2015. Now, we await more information regarding his health status.