Novak Djokovic won’t play within the US Open, as anticipated, as a result of he’s not vaccinated towards COVID-19 and thus isn’t allowed to journey to the US.
Djokovic introduced his withdrawal from the 12 months’s final Grand Slam match on Twitter on Thursday, hours earlier than the draw for the occasion was revealed.
“Sadly, I will be unable to journey to NY this time for US Open,” Djokovic wrote, wishing luck to his fellow gamers, and mentioned he would “preserve in good condition and optimistic spirit and watch for a possibility to compete once more.”
Play is scheduled to start at Flushing Meadows on Monday.
Djokovic is a 35-year-old from Serbia who owns 21 main championships, one behind Rafael Nadal for the lads’s file. Three of Djokovic’s Slam trophies got here on the US Open, in 2011, 2015 and 2018.
He additionally was the runner-up there a half-dozen occasions, together with final season, when his pursuit of the primary calendar-year Grand Slam in males’s tennis since 1969 ended with a loss within the ultimate to Daniil Medvedev.
International residents who haven’t been vaccinated towards COVID-19 are at present unable to enter the US or Canada, and Djokovic has mentioned he gained’t get the pictures, even when that forestalls him from taking part in in sure tournaments.
“Novak is a good champion and it is extremely unlucky that he will likely be unable to compete on the 2022 US Open, as he’s unable to enter the nation as a result of federal authorities’s vaccination coverage for non-U.S.residents,” mentioned U.S. Open match director Stacey Allaster in a press release. “We stay up for welcoming Novak again on the 2023 US Open,” mentioned the The USA Tennis Affiliation (USTA) in a press release.
The USTA has mentioned all alongside it’ll observe authorities guidelines about vaccination standing for this 12 months’s Open. There is no such thing as a vaccine mandate on the match for gamers or their assist groups — which means that an unvaccinated American could be allowed to compete — and spectators won’t be required to put on masks.
Djokovic missed the Australian Open in January after a protracted authorized saga ended together with his deportation from that nation as a result of he isn’t vaccinated towards COVID-19. He additionally sat out 4 important tournaments in North America in 2022, together with in Montreal and Cincinnati lately.
He did play within the French Open, the place he misplaced within the quarterfinals to Nadal, and at Wimbledon, the place Djokovic gained the title.
After beating Nick Kyrgios within the Wimbledon ultimate on July 10, Djokovic mentioned he “would love” to take part within the final Grand Slam match of the 12 months at Flushing Meadows, however he additionally acknowledged, “I’m not planning to get vaccinated.”
About three weeks later, Djokovic posted on social media that he was holding out hope of getting the prospect to play within the US Open, writing: “I’m getting ready as if I will likely be allowed to compete, whereas I await to listen to if there’s any room for me to journey to US. Fingers crossed!”
Djokovic has spent extra weeks at No. 1 than anybody else within the historical past of the ATP rankings. He’s No. 6 this week, partially as a result of no rankings factors had been awarded at Wimbledon this 12 months.
Among the many different gamers who won’t be on the US Open for varied causes are No. 2-ranked Alexander Zverev, the 2020 runner-up in New York; 2016 champion Angelique Kerber; 2019 French Open finalist Marketa Vondrousova; Gael Monfils and Reilly Opelka.