Rugby player who trains at local college recovering from Covid-19

A RUGBY league player who trains at a local school has revealed he developed coronavirus after initially turning up for a session.

James Cunningham, who plays for Super League side Toronto Wolfpack who train at Hopwood Hall College, was sent home after feeling unwell.

James Cunningham

He was immediately ordered to self-isolate at his Hull home, where things took a turn for the worse.

Now he admits he is petrified of the long -asting effects of Covid-19 – he has still no sense of smell or taste after more than two weeks.

Cunningham says his fight started with him feeling ‘under the weather’ when he turned up for training.

“I went in training on the Monday and I was feeling a little bit under the weather,” he revealed.

“The symptoms weren’t very severe at first, it was a mild fever and a bit of a tickle in the throat.

“I didn’t actually get tested for it but during the self-isolation, the first two or three days my symptoms just got a lot worse. I was exhausted, my fever got really bad, I got like a really aggressive cough afterwards as well.

“I’m an athlete and I was really struggling. I’m supposed to be a fit guy, and I was really struggling, couldn’t get out of bed.

“I feel like vulnerable people would really struggle with this virus.

“For someone who’s supposed to be in good health, and so fit and healthy, it affected me so much.

“I live alone luckily, so I didn’t have anyone I could pass it on to. It’s been hard work, living alone and not leaving the house for two weeks.

“Luckily, I had friends who could drop things off and I was quite vigilant in the way I didn’t leave the house.”

After getting over the worst, Cunningham is worried coronavirus has had a much bigger effect on his long-term health.

The thought of resuming training has not even entered the 25-year-old’s head – just making sure he is fully recovered and doesn’t pass it on are his priorities.

He added: “I don’t know if I’ve been left with bad lungs or a chest infection as I’m really struggling with my chest. I’m constantly coughing up phlegm.

“Now I’ve got a really bad chesty cough and sometimes when I’m breathing I can hear all the mucus vibrating on my chest. Other than that, the fever and all the aches and pains have gone.

“I get really short of breath just walking up the stairs and I have coughing fits every now and then too.

“I’d had surgery on my hamstring, so I wasn’t able to do any conditioning or running anyway, so it’s given me a bit of extra time to recover but at the minute, I don’t feel like I can return to training because of how my chest feels.

“I was inside for the 14 days but I still had some symptoms – I was still a little bit feverish.

“So I got in touch with the physios and the doctor at Toronto and made the decision myself that I was going to stay indoors for an extra few days just to make sure.

“I’ve been out for a couple of walks now but I’m still trying to avoid people.

“I’m really anxious about not passing it on if I still have it. I’m not going near anyone. I’m walking safe distances from people and doing everything I can.”

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