Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Tennis-No vaccine, no French Open for Djokovic as rules tighten

WorldJan 17, 2022 11:40AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters. Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic walks in Melbourne Airport before boarding a flight, after the Federal Court upheld a government decision to cancel his visa to play in the Australian Open, in Melbourne, Australia, January 16, 2022. REUTERS/Loren Elli

By Julien Pretot and Shrivathsa Sridhar

PARIS (Reuters) -Novak Djokovic risks being frozen out of tennis as he chases a record 21st Grand Slam title, with rules on travellers who are unvaccinated against COVID-19 tightening in the third year of the pandemic and some tournaments reconsidering exemptions.

The Serbian, who has not been vaccinated, was deported from Australia on Sunday ahead of the Australian Open after losing a court case to have the cancellation of his visa overturned.

Under Australian law, Djokovic cannot get another visa for three years - denying him the chance to add to his nine titles at Melbourne Park - but the government has left the door open nL1N2TX010 for a possible return next year.

The world number one, however, faces more immediate hurdles in his bid to overtake Swiss Roger Federer and Spaniard Rafa Nadal, with whom he is tied on 20 major titles, as he could be barred from the French Open as things stand.

The French Sports Ministry said on Monday there would be no exemption from a new vaccine pass law approved on Sunday, which requires people to have vaccination certificates to enter public places such as restaurants, cafes and cinemas.

"This will apply to everyone who is a spectator or a professional sportsperson. And this until further notice," the ministry said.

"As far as Roland Garros is concerned, it's in May. The situation may change between now and then and we hope it'll be more favourable. So we'll see but clearly there's no exemption."

The ministry's stance was welcomed by Germany's world number three Alexander Zverev.

"At least it's clear what's going to happen," he told reporters after winning his opening match at Melbourne Park on Monday. "At least they're saying, 'OK, no unvaccinated players are allowed to play in the French Open.'

"We know that now in advance, and I can imagine there's not going to be any exemptions, and that's OK."

NEXT UP

The next tournament on Djokovic's calendar is likely to be the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships from Feb. 21-26.

A spokesperson for the event told Reuters that all players would need to provide negative PCR tests before being allowed into the United Arab Emirates.

"(Players) will then need to adhere to the testing protocols and processes stipulated by the ATP and the WTA," the spokesperson added.

Organisers of the Monte Carlo Masters, which Djokovic has won twice, are awaiting French government guidelines for the next edition in April, while Wimbledon organisers AELTC are also yet to finalise safety arrangements for the major.

However, England's Lawn Tennis Association said entry requirements for its events, some of which serve as Wimbledon warm-ups, would be determined by the government.

Currently, unvaccinated people can enter England but must isolate for 10 days.

A U.S. Open representative said last week that the year's final major would follow New York City Department of Health guidelines.

Djokovic could have trouble even getting into the United States, because foreign air travellers have had to be fully vaccinated since November and provide proof before boarding flights, with limited exceptions.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said there are no exceptions for vaccine requirements "for religious reasons or other moral convictions."

That rule could also impact Djokovic's participation in U.S. hardcourt tournaments at Indian Wells and Miami in March.

The Serbian, who is among three ATP players in the top 100 yet to be vaccinated, could also face issues ahead of the Italian Open in Rome in May due to tough anti-COVID restrictions in Italy.

Madrid Mayor Jose Luis Martinez-Almeida told La Sexta TV station on Monday that it would "be great" to have Djokovic play in the April 26-May 8 Madrid Open, which he has won three times, though the government would be the arbiter.

Spain requires visitors to prove they have been vaccinated, had a recent negative test, or have immunity based on recovery.

Tennis-No vaccine, no French Open for Djokovic as rules tighten
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email