NATHAN AUSTIN says he is “proud” that he has worked his way back to fitness after “one of the worst experiences” in contracting COVID-19.

The 27-year-old, who has also been hit by injury this season, was recently named as the cinch SPFL League Two Player of the Month for September after hitting four goals in two games.

A winner against Stranraer was preceded by a hat-trick at Albion Rovers, a game in which he revealed that he still wasn’t feeling at his best.

“Obviously, it’s been a bit difficult for me at the start, being injured and having COVID, so it’s been a bit tough,” he told Press Sport.

“Coming back into the team, managing to help and get goals, and obviously picking up this award, it just seems like it can only get better.

“My partner had it first and she was not too bad, then I got it. I don’t really get ill too often but that was one of the worst experiences I’ve had.

“I was five days properly near-enough bed-bound so to come back as quickly as what I did, to get back on to the football pitch, I’m quite proud of that.

“Obviously, I came back a little bit earlier because Alfie (Alfredo Agyeman) got injured against Elgin and, even at half-time, I said to the manager that I was struggling with the breathing situation.

“But the team needed me and I managed to stay on. I managed to get a wee bit of fitness before the Albion game but, even during the Albion game, I didn’t feel 100 per cent.”

Austin continued: “I had a sore head, the body aches and the sweats. I feel like I had every single symptom under the sun.

“At the end, to finish me off, I lost my smell and my taste. They’ve come back now and the breathing seems to be a little bit better. At the moment, you’ll know that a lot of people have got the cold and the flu so I picked that up as well. I’ve managed to get over that quite quickly so hopefully it’s over now, that’s in the past and I can just keep moving forward.

“I like to class myself as quite fit and quite able. I managed to not have COVID for so long so, when I got it, I thought I would maybe be OK, but that wasn’t the case. I was really struggling.

“It hits people differently; I was just the unlucky one that it hit me really hard.

“The first five days were really tough but after that, I managed to get better and break out of it.”