Novak Djokovic not regretting missing Grand Slams due to unvaccinated status, awaiting Australian Open fate


Former World No. 1 Novak Djokovic said he is still waiting for clarity over whether he would be able to take part in the Australian Open in 2023. Djokovic was deported earlier this year from Australia a day ahead of the start of his title defence in Melbourne for being unvaccinated against Covid-19.

Novak Djokovic was initially granted visa to enter Australia but it was revoked upon his arrival in Melbourne. The Serb spent a few days in a detention facility at a hotel despite having an exemption to strict Covid-19 regulations that were in place in Australia. Djokovic was involved in a legal battle at the end of which his visa was revoked.

“It’s really not in my hands right now,” Djokovic said. “So I’m hoping I will get some positive news,: Djokovic said on the eve of the Laver Cup in London. Notably, Djokovic was allowed to compete in London and he went to win the Wimbledon title in 2022, a month after losing the French Open quarter-final to Rafael Nadal.

Djokovic missed out on an opportunity to defend his title in Australian Open crown. The Serb was also denied entry to the US and therefore missed competing at the season’s final Grand Slam in New York.

However, Australia has since changed its border rules with incoming travelers no longer have to have provide proof of Covid-19 vaccination or even a negative Covid-19 test. However, according to Australian Border Force rules, a person, whose visa was revoked, may not be allowed to enter the country for 3 years.

However, the exclusion period can be considered as part of any new visa application and can be waived in certain circumstances.

NO REGRETS

Nonetheless, Djokovic said he does not regret missing Grand Slam tournaments, saying he knew the consequences when he decided not to take the vaccine against Covid-19.

Djokovic has been stressing that he wants to control what enters his body and would not get vaccinated against the virus.

“I don’t have any regrets. I mean, I do feel sad that I wasn’t able to play (at the U.S. Open), but that was a decision that I made and I knew what the consequences would be. So I accepted them and that’s it,” Djokovic added.

Djokovic will be in action over the weekend in Laver Cup, which will also be Roger Federer’s final competitive tournament. Djokovic will play for Team Europe alongside Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Stefanos Tsitsipas and others.

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