Levan Maisashvili (Photo: Georgian Rugby – Twitter)
Georgia head coach Levan Maisashvili says his family was told that he had less than a 2% chance of survival after he was put into an induced coma during his battle with Covid-19 in a Johannesburg hospital.
The Lelos mentor was in a critical condition after contracting the virus following Georgia’s 40-9 defeat to the Springboks in Pretoria on 2 July.
The second Test, which was scheduled for at Ellis Park in Johannesburg on 9 July, was subsequently cancelled after Covid-19 outbreaks in both camps.
Maisashvili was placed on a ventilator Netcare Milpark Hospital, and despite his lungs being damaged, he managed to recover.
He returned to his home country in early September.
In an Interview with The Telegraph, the 45-year-old said he remembered little of his time in the intensive care unit, but his recovery after waking up was incredibly difficult.
“My doctors told me afterwards that my lungs were absolutely paralysed and infected with bacteria. All of my body was under pressure, but I remember nothing. It was much harder when I woke up,” he said.
“I’d had a tracheostomy. I had something in my nose. It was hell for me. The first time I stood up, I made one step forward and one step back. After that, I needed half an hour in my chair. I was like a fish on the land. It was so, so, so difficult. But everything is in the past.”
He added that he weighed 85kg before falling ill and weighed between 60 and 62kg when he woke up.
Maisashvili noted that he still felt a bit weak but hopes to return to the training ground and coach again.