AS the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc with sports across the globe, one of the Tamworth Thunderbolts' key stars has decided to return home.
American import Quayshun Hawkins has made the trip back to his home in South Carolina after the Waratah League season was postponed due to the coronavirus.
"It was a no-brainer to return home," Hawkins told the Leader.
"Not knowing how long this will last for was a big factor in my decision.
"The way the virus is going, there is just no telling what will happen and that's why I decided to leave."
The Tamworth Basketball Association took to social media to announce the star signing's decision.
"Quay has been part of our basketball family over the past 18 months and given the uncertainty we are all facing, he has taken the opportunity to return home to the USA to be with his family," the announcement read.
"Whilst he is returning home at this time, he remains contracted to Tamworth basketball for the current season.
"Should the season resume in the near future, we will discuss the option of him returning, if he is in a position to do so.
"We would like to take this opportunity to thank Quayshun for his commitment to Tamworth basketball."
The Waratah League's reigning most valuable player said he was eager to return to Tamworth, should the chance arise.
"The Thunderbolts have been very supportive," Hawkins said.
"I technically wasn't supposed to leave until they cancelled the season, but I talked to the president and the board, and they understood and let me go home.
"I love being with my family and have nothing to complain about, especially dealing with this virus stuff going on."
The point guard said he would be doing whatever he could to stay match fit, should the season resume.
"I will continue doing a lot of cardio stuff and go to the local outside parks that have courts and goals, once I'm allowed to," he said.
"l'll come back if the season starts sooner rather than later, but I'm on contract to play with Seattle in September, so time will tell."