Exclusive - I feared for my life, says covid-hit Hull FC owner Adam Pearson

HULL FC owner Adam Pearson has revealed he feared “not getting out again” during his 10 nights in hospital battling coronavirus and worrying issues developed even when he eventually did.

Adam Pearson: 10 nights in hospital. Picture: RLPhotos

Speaking for the first time publicly about his ordeal in November, the 57-year-old told The Yorkshire Post that, at one point, he did fear the worst.

After being taken hold of by the virus, Pearson was absent for Hull’s Super League play-offs run, missing their famous win at Warrington Wolves as well as the semi-final defeat against Wigan Warriors which saw them fall just short of the Grand Final.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

As a type-one diabetic, he always knew he might be more at risk if he did contract Covid-19 and, having also developed pneumonia, the Yorkshireman conceded he was worried at times during his hospitalisation about his chances of survival.

He said: “It was a scary time. I didn’t enjoy it in hospital at all.

“You could feel the strain the staff were under. I think they were tired and you did wonder if you would ever actually get out again.

“I was in for about 11 days and it felt like an eternity. You felt like you were in a different world.

“Obviously everyone around you has got coronavirus and it is very hot in Harrogate Hospital where I was. It was difficult to breathe.

Hull FC's Josh Jones: Breathing difficulties.

“I was hooked up on an oxygen mask and was struggling for air but once they put me on a cocktail of drugs and, once they put me on one particular one, I got dramatically better after that. From there you’re just trying to fight to get your stats up enough to get home.

“It’s a real relief when you finally get out.”

However, once Pearson did get back to his home in Linton, near Wetherby, he faced a different challenge.

“The worst bit for me was post-hospital; the two weeks after coming out of hospital were mentally very difficult,” he explained.

“I don’t know if it was the steroids and the mix of steroids and coronavirus drugs I’d been given – and the experience of being in hospital – but it was an incredibly difficult time mentally.

“And I consider myself to be someone of a positive mentality.

“It was like a black cloud descended for two weeks.

“Then it suddenly cleared so that all I’ve probably got left now are bad lungs which I’ve probably had for 30 years. The pneumonia has left them pretty clogged up.”

Although plenty of Super League players have contracted Covid-19, it is understood none so far has been hospitalised by the virus.

Hull second-row Josh Jones, who has since joined Huddersfield Giants, did suffer badly with his breathing after testing positive shortly after the competition resumed last August and did not play again last season.

Pearson’s time in hospital was during the second English national lockdown and the country is currently in its third following the original in March last year.

The new Super League campaign is due to start next month and – like last season – will continue behind closed doors with Hull opening against Huddersfield Giants at Emerald Headingley on March 28.

However, Leeds Rhinos, Huddersfield and Wigan Warriors have all had to close down their training facilities since the turn of the year because of further outbreaks of the pandemic in their ranks.

Nevertheless, for all Harrogate-born Pearson was badly affected by Covid-19, he still believes it is time to try and get the country moving back towards normality as best it can.

The former Hull City owner, Leeds United commercial director and Derby County executive chairman, who celebrates the tenth anniversary of taking over Hull FC in July, said: “I’d taken Covid seriously.

“I’d been of the view – and am still of the view – that the country does need to manage its way through it and that if people are sensible and take the amount of risk appropriate to their own health state and age, that I still think that we need to get back to work now.

“And I think that, once we’ve gotten past the 65-year-old bracket as far as vaccinations are concerned and are eating into the 50s, that we need to get on with life.

“We need to get some form of crowds back, hospitality back open and allow people to manage the risk from their own point of view.

“I, for instance, wouldn’t choose to go to a bar or restaurant yet because it did have an impact on me. It did change my view. It was a scary time.”

Support The Yorkshire Post and become a subscriber today. Your subscription will help us to continue to bring quality news to the people of Yorkshire. In return, you’ll see fewer ads on site, get free access to our app and receive exclusive membiers-only offers. Click HERE to subscribe.