Novak Djokovic’s Australian Open involvement remains doubtful despite entry list inclusion
Novak Djokovic may not compete at the Australian Open despite being named on the entry list, as tournament director Craig Tiley has reminded people “everyone goes on the entry list, it’s not a commitment list.”
World number one Djokovic’s participation at the Australian Open has been doubtful for the past few months due to his consistent refusal to publicly declare his Covid-19 vaccination status.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion had been waiting for official rules to be announced but is still yet to reveal his decision, saying “you’ll know very soon.”
In order for players to compete at the ‘Happy Slam,’ they are required to be double-vaccinated. A move which has been labelled as “blackmail” by Novak’s father Srdjan.
Despite being named on both Serbia’s ATP Cup team and the Australian Open entry list, Djokovic may not get the chance to defend his ‘Happy Slam’ title or claim a record-extending tenth Australian Open.
Doubts were lessened with these announcements as people began to assume that the Serbian would definitely compete at Melbourne Park in January.
However, Tiley told Australian news network ABC “to be clear [and] upfront, no one can play the Australian Open unless they are vaccinated.
“The only condition at which, outside of being vaccinated, that you could compete is if you receive a medically approved exemption from Australian authorities.
“I’ve seen reports this morning. There have been no medical exemptions that have been granted at this point.
“Everyone goes on the entry list. It’s not a commitment list about exactly who’s in the draw,” Tiley reminded.
“That comes in several weeks’ time when the actual list and draw gets finalised for the Australian Open.
Tennis Australia also released a statement which outlined that all players will have to be double-vaccinated and “any suggestion that Tennis Australia is seeking ‘loopholes’ within this process is simply untrue.”
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