American Sam Querrey has ‘set the record straight’ about his breach of ATP rules by fleeing the St Petersburg Open in a private jet, revealing he had his family arrived in the UK without any checks or covid-19 tests in October.
Querrey and his wife Abby Dixon both received positive test results at the event and ignored rules to isolate in their hotel and then took the flight to London with their son Ford.
The player was subsequently given a suspended fine of £15,000 by the ATP for the breach.
Querrey said he had concerns about safety and the prospect of being separated from his seven-month old son, so they left their hotel without telling ATP Tour officials.
“I kinda had to make a decision between 10pm and 10am the next day,’ Querrey told Sports Illustrated.
“I had my wife there, and I had my baby there, and as a human decision, I was like, “Hey, I don’t feel comfortable with this”. So we made the decision to charter a plane and leave.
“I contacted a jet broker, and said, ‘Can I get a plane in, like, nine hours leaving from St Petersburg to London?’ And he came through and got one for me. We left the hotel early in the morning so we wouldn’t be seen, and went right to the private jet terminal in St Petersburg and flew to London.”
Querrey told the magazine the decision to leave was made days into their quarantine after he claimed an ATP official told him and his wife they could not stay at the hotel.
The charter flight is believed to have cost the player $40,000.
Querrey said he wore a mask during the flight and did not explore London, they arrived on October 13, going straight to a rented property where they all quarantined for 14 days.
‘I felt as a father and a husband there’s a human element to this, and I had to do what I feel like is right. I wasn’t willing to let our family go to a hospital for a minimum of two weeks where we were at,’ he said.
‘In my opinion, we didn’t really put anyone in danger. We kept to ourselves, we had two masks on, we did everything we possibly could in that journey to minimise exposure to anyone, and frankly, I think we did a great job.”
Talking to doctors [afterwards] they were like, “Look, you guys did a great job of doing that, and I can’t simply see how you would have passed it (the virus) along to anyone during that trip”.’