Sam Querrey went to Russia to participate in an ATP 500 event and get some wins under his belt but left with a massive controversy that has landed him in trouble. The American player fled from St. Petersburg in a very bizarre series of events after he and his family tested positive for coronavirus.
Querrey faces a significant punishment after the ATP called it a ‘serious breach’. Depending on the ATP’s consideration of the magnitude of the offense, Querrey could be fined up to $100,000 and/or an ATP Tour suspension of up to three years.
Why Sam Querrey fled from Russia
Shortly before his opening match against Denis Shapovalov at the St. Petersburg Open, Querrey tested positive for the virus. His wife, Abby, and their eight-month-old son, Ford also tested positive. As a result, the authorities instructed the Querreys to quarantine in their five-star hotel for 14 days.
Things then took a turn for the worse as Querrey received a call from the Russian health authorities. He was informed that he and his family would be hospitalized if found to be symptomatic by the visiting doctor.
As they had ‘mild symptoms,’ the Querreys feared hospitalization. Sam and his wife did not want to be separated from their infant child in a foreign country and in a hospital.
Then, in a hasty decision, Querrey arranged for a private jet, and the family flew far away from the Russian border. They sat at the back of the jet and at a safe distance from the pilots, who flew them to an undisclosed European country that does not need a negative coronavirus test on arrival.
Querrey fleeing Russia and violating their health protocols has caused considerable consternation for the ATP, which called it a “serious breach” and said “we are taking this matter extremely seriously and an investigation is underway.”https://t.co/fB8Eon5whe
— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) October 14, 2020
How the ATP views this breach of protocols
The ATP soon learned of Querrey’s actions. They said they are “taking this matter extremely seriously and an investigation is underway.” In a letter to all players on the tour, the ATP also said that such actions can “jeopardize an event’s ability to operate and have repercussions on the rest of the Tour”.
In the current circumstances the world is facing, Querrey’s actions negatively affect the Tour’s future. It dents their chances to gain approval to hold events in other countries. That is precisely why Querrey faces the level of punishment mentioned earlier.
The towering 33-year-old player was to feature in some of the other events left on the 2020 calendar. This includes the Rolex Paris Masters that starts later this month.