New York: Frustrated Guido Pella lashed out Monday at the decision to bar him from the Western & Southern Open, saying there had been an “error” and he has tested negative for COVID-19 multiple times.
The Argentinian ranked 34th in the world and 93rd-ranked Bolivian Hugo Dellien were both withdrawn from the tournament — moved this year from Cincinnati to New York to keep the players in a coronavirus quarantine “bubble” — after their fitness trainer, Juan Manuel Galvan, had tested positive.
World No 1 Novak Djokovic, president of the ATP Players Council, was among the players to criticize the decision after neither Pella nor Dellien tested positive after Galvan’s result.
Pella said on Instagram that Galvan has now tested negative for the virus, just as he and Dellien have.
“We had no information from the tournament or the ATP,” he said. “I gave my fifth negative result of Covid-19, as did Hugo and Jose and nobody tells us anything.”
He said Galvan had tested negative on Sunday afternoon.
“It seems he never had the virus,” Pella said.
“Imagine my feelings. I don’t really know what’s going to happen now, who’s going to take over, who’s going to give us a solution,” added Pella, who said he was authorized to return to training on Monday for the US Open, which starts on 31 August.
“Here there was a very serious error on the part of someone and I hope that someone can give me the relevant explanations because what I have been through this week was very difficult,” Pella said in comments from his hotel room.
Tournament officials last week defended the exclusion of Pella and Dellien, saying that after consulting with US Open medical staff and the New York City Department of Health it was determined they had been in close enough contact with Galvan to put them at risk of contracting the virus.