Former Top-10 player Mardy Fish, who played just his eighth match of the season in Cincinnati, says he is unclear as to what his plans are after the U.S. Open. The 31-year-old, who lost to Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first round, has been struggling with heart-related anxiety issues since March 2012.
“I think there’s going to be some sort of assessment period, maybe after the U.S. Open, where I’ll kind of see how far -- feel how far away I am to where I want to be,” he told reporters in Cincinnati. “With all these problems that I had health-wise, I left the game in the Top 10 in the world, and that’s pretty hard to deal with. It was very, very hard to get there and to stay there for a while, and to make the World Tour Finals and to do all those cool things. So it’s been very hard and very challenging to know that I had really no control over it. And sort of here we sit 12 months out, 12 months away from playing really good tennis, some of the best tennis of my career, and doing well in most tournaments, and now I sit out in the first round in one of my favorite events, one of my best events, so that will challenge you mentally for sure.”
Fish, whose ranking has fallen to No. 129, said that while he has improved since the 2012 U.S. Open, when he pulled out prior to his fourth-round match against Roger Federer, that he still has a long way to go.
“It’s gotten miles and miles better than it was 12 months ago,” he said. “I’ll never forget it. I just can’t wait to sort of just forget, and five years down the road, whatever I’m doing at the time, I can’t even remember that. It’s never going to happen. I can’t ever forget what I went through.
“It’s been a very slow process. It’s very hard to come back.”