Novak Djokovic likely to miss US Open 2022 for Covid-19 vaccine status


A petition is circulating to allow Novak Djokovic to play at the US Open but barring a sudden change in Covid-19 protocols in the United States and Canada, the Serbian is likely to miss the entire North American hardcourt swing.

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Djokovic has refused to take the Covid-19 vaccine but the 21-time Grand Slam winner is on the entry list for the ATP 1000 events in Montreal and Cincinnati that serve as a tune-up for the Aug-29-Sept. 11 US Open in New York.

In the case of the US Open, which does not have a vaccine mandate, organizers have previously said that according to the Grand Slam rule book, all eligible players are entered into the main draw based on their ranking 42 days before the first Monday of the event. .

US Open organizers also said that while they do not have vaccination mandates for players, they will respect the US government’s position on unvaccinated non-US citizens traveling to the country.

Former world number one Djokovic, whose website shows no upcoming events, said last week that he was preparing for the US Open as if he would be allowed to compete in the year’s final Grand Slam despite not being vaccinated.

Djokovic’s camp and organizers of the three North American hardcourt events did not immediately respond when asked by Reuters for comment on Tuesday.

The hashtag #LetNovakPlay was doing the rounds on social media as some of Djokovic’s supporters backed one of Spaniard Rafa Nadal’s record 22 Grand Slam titles after winning Wimbledon last month.

“Tennis isn’t interesting or authentic when the best aren’t allowed to compete,” wrote one Twitter user, while another felt it was less impressive for Djokovic to win a tournament he wasn’t able to play: “Every tournament will have a * after the winner’s name where Novak isn’t allowed to play. !”

Another post with the same hashtag brought up US President Joe Biden, who was fully vaccinated and boosted twice but tested positive on Saturday, just three days after coming out of isolation after first testing positive on July 21.

“Quadruple-vaxed Biden tests positive for Covid again. But Djokovic won’t be able to play in the US Open after recovering from Covid without the vaccine. It is obviously a very big risk to the US healthcare system,” the tweet read.

United States Tennis Association to work with US government An online petition calling on the United States Tennis Association to allow participation in the Open approached its goal of 50,000 signatures on Tuesday.

The focus on Djokovic’s status ahead of a Grand Slam is not new as he was unable to defend his Australian Open crown this year after being deported from the country in January due to his vaccination status.

Djokovic had previously said he was willing to miss a Grand Slam tournament rather than take the Covid-19 vaccine.

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