Ever since his deportation from Australia earlier this year, Novak Djokovic has been a regular headline maker. However, despite being one of the biggest tennis stars, the Serbian has been making headlines not for his game, but for his vaccination status.
Following bans at the Australian Open, and the Sunshine Doubles, the 2022 Wimbledon champion will not be participating in the ATP Masters 1000 Canadian Open. The decision comes as a part of the Canadian government’s policy of only allowing vaccinated travelers in the country.
Novak Djokovic to miss the National Bank Open
Following the statements of Novak Djokovic, many prominent figures in tennis and the outside world have branded him as a major flag bearer of the no-vaccination movement. Following his deportation from Australia, the former World No.1 admitted that he would stick to his firm decision of not being vaccinated. Adding to it, he further admitted that he is ready to give up on tournaments for it.
Considering his firm decision as the deciding factor, the ATP Masters 1000 National Bank Open yesterday announced that Novak Djokovic will not participate in the tournament this year. The tournament director, Eugene Lapierre, announced the absence of the 21-time Grand Slam champion along with another prominent name.
“Either the Canadian government is going to change the rules regarding vaccination or he is going to roll up his sleeves and get the vaccine. But I don’t think any of those scenarios are realistic,” he said.
The ban from Canada comes only as the first step to his restrictions in the upcoming tournaments. Looking at the COVID guidelines for the USA, only vaccinated international travelers can enter the country. Having such guidelines in place, one can expect Djokovic’s absence from the entire North American swing, including the US Open.
Alexander Zverev will also miss the Rogers Cup
Apart from Novak Djokovic, another player whose name will be absent from this year’s draw is Alexander Zverev. The current World No.2 suffered a major ankle injury during his French Open semifinal clash against Rafael Nadal. Following the injury, the German underwent a surgery, and is currently in rehab.
Talking about the players participating in the Canadian Open, Lapierre said, “We will have a great tournament. All the best players will be there except for two and we know the reasons for their absence.”
Those players who will play the tournament would be the 5-time champion Rafael Nadal, the defending champion Daniil Medvedev, and others. The Rogers Cup is set to kick off from 5th August 2022.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Essentially Sports