You are currently viewing Wimbledon and French Open issued ‘devastating’ Novak Djokovic message amid vaccine debate

Wimbledon and French Open issued ‘devastating’ Novak Djokovic message amid vaccine debate

NOVAK DJOKOVIC reiterated his stance on mandated Covid vaccines during a recent interview, which has thrust his prospects of future tournament success into doubt.

 

Former world No 2 Alex Corretja claims that it would be ‘devastating’ for tennis if Novak Djokovic is absent from the French Open and Wimbledon this year. The Serb doubled down on his opposition to mandated vaccines during a recent interview, which looks to have put his Grand Slam prospects in jeopardy.

 

Djokovic was controversially deported from Australia last month for fears that his passage into the Aussie Open could stir up anti-vaccine sentiment in the country.

 

One of his ‘big three’ rivals, Rafael Nadal, lifted the trophy in his absence, taking the Spaniard clear on the all-time Grand Slam charts with 21 titles.

 

By Djokovic’s own admission, however, losing ground on the sport’s all-time greats is a price he is willing to pay when it comes to his stance on mandated vaccines.

 

That leaves his chances of competing at this year’s French Open and Wimbledon in doubt, as entry requirements are yet to be finalised in either case.
Corretja, who reached the final at Roland Garros in 1998 and 2001, discussed how damaging the 34-year-old’s absence could be.

 

“It will be shocking if he’s not going to be able to play in the next two years because of not getting the vaccination,” he told Eurosport.

 

“That would be devastating for our sport and therefore sport in general.

 

“I hope he’s going to be able to play as many tournaments as he can. And definitely he knows that he will need to respect the rules of every country.

 

“I know he knows that and he is willing to pay that price.

 

“If he says ‘I’m not vaccinated, can I play?’ and they say yes, he will go. And if they say ‘you need to get vaccinated’, he will stay at home.

 

“I think it’d be better if he can play as many tournaments as he can.

“This will be nicer and we will have the number one in the world playing the tournaments, which I think is the best thing for all of us.”

 

Djokovic won both the French Open and Wimbledon in 2021, a feat which would take him ahead of Nadal at the top if he repeated it this year.

 

And while the world No 1 has stood firm on his vaccine stance, he has by no means given up on his glittering tennis career.

“[I hope I] can play for many more years,” he told the BBC.

 

“The principles of decision making on my body are more important than any title or anything else. I’m trying to be in tune with my body as much as I possibly can.”

 

 

 

Leave a Reply