Novak Djokovic – The Isolated One

Novak Djokovic’s position is one of loneliness – no pun intended.

This is not a new place for him. Over the years, Djokovic has felt that he is not as respected as his contemporaries Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, because the person will be different. No matter how much he wins, he is by no means a favorite.

Now he finds himself in solitude – real and supposedly – as he is once again detained in Australia after his visa was revoked, and once again awaiting Judgment Day.

While most people do not understand his tendency not to get vaccinated, others believe that this is hardly a good fight to fight.

There is a fine line between Djokovic being a person – who has a legal right to refuse vaccinations – and being a star whose actions are always under investigation and whose moves can set an example for others.

Regardless, most people feel for it on two grounds.

One, no one wants to see Nole go through what he is – apart from the vaccine trend – and many respect his personal preference.

Second, some feel that he is becoming his own worst enemy and that he is, on numerous occasions, harming his chances of achieving unparalleled greatness.

Djokovic is at the top of history to become the first man in tennis history to win a record 21 Grand Slams. So far he was catching Roger and Rafa. But from here, things get trickier, and this is where the true meaning of burning up of bad psychic imprints comes into play.

However, he has not changed his attitude towards vaccines and has participated in the crosshairs of the authorities, which people think he can easily avoid. Look at the big picture, Novak!

But if, as a person, he feels so strongly about his right to choose that he is even willing to give up opportunities to make his rivals better, for the legacy he has worked so hard for, is he stubborn or admirable?

The key issue in this new battle is whether Djokovic is anti-vaccine and whether he can promote that spirit in Australia, which already has the highest percentage of the fully vaccinated population. While many have made their decisions, Serbs have never supported or participated in any ‘anti-wax’ movements. He has a strong belief in controlling what he puts into his body and exercises his personal preference.

But what is the effect of his attitude? Well, his persecution has actually provoked more outrage among the real anti-waxers who are using this to signal what might happen to them next.

One would be really surprised that all the declared intentions to stop Djokovic have been ruthlessly thwarted and are inadvertently having an effect instead. Putting a rock on people who are suspicious of the vaccine is hardly a way to cope with the embarrassment.

Although he is facing a second battle in Australia, all eyes are not on what the verdict will be, but on what happens next. If he loses, he will have to pack his bags and will probably not be able to play in Melbourne for a few years and at another Grand Slam this year. Faced with that possibility, will he change his attitude?

If he wins the visa cancellation challenge at eleven o’clock, just two days before his first match at the Australian Open, will he stay and play or withdraw after scoring points?

The world’s number one has clearly become a witch hunter, avenging his personal preference not to vaccinate covid, hanging out to dry in public, pleasing the public by labeling fear. How he behaves after a verdict can define his legacy outside the court.

When this started many did not understand his attitude as to why he was going down this road, but now he is fighting a battle with which many will join. A fight against a system that is arbitrary and vindictive.

Even his staunchest opponents will not deny it – the decision against him is purely political at this stage. This is a battle for those who see the shore with their choices that the world does not understand and even before the question of the Novak vaccine was in the boat for a while. But the battle will ultimately be decisive as to whether they deserve those choices.

Not surprisingly, he now has more support than ever before. Perhaps, he will be respected and loved in the way he always longed for.

Shivani Gupta is a senior journalist and co-author of Sania Mirza’s autobiography ‘Ace against Odds’.

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