Novak Djokovic hits out at 'political' decision behind US Open ban


Novak Djokovic has joked he would be picked up by the US authorities if he attempted to play at the US Open and hit out at the ‘political logic’ behind his ban. The Serbian had his visa revoked in Australia earlier this year because he is unvaccinated. The world No 3 will not try to enter the States later this year as he is standing firm on his stance.

“No unvaccinated people can enter the USA as of this moment,” Djokovic told Tennis Majors. “I did hear unofficially that some people got away with it, some people who are not ‘famous’, but I would never even try to go to the USA if it is not allowed.

“Some people think that I made that mistake in Australia, but it was the contrary in fact – I had the exemption etc, let’s not go over the same story again.

“Bottom line is: if I am told that I cannot go, I won’t go, I would never put myself in such a position. Even if I get in, they would see me on TV playing tennis and pick me up!”

Djokovic has been allowed to compete at Wimbledon over the next fortnight as the UK does not have as strict entry requirements.

However, there will be unvaccinated players at Flushing Meadows later this year because American citizens that have not had the jab can still compete.

World No 225 Tennys Sandgren will be granted access and Djokovic has been messaging the American star.

“On a more serious note, I have been texting with Tennys Sandgren a few days ago. I wanted to thank him for the public support he has given me in this situation,” Djokovic added.

“What he said makes total sense – if unvaccinated players are not allowed to compete at the US Open, then it should be the case for everyone.

“I don’t see the medical logic behind it, that Tennys can play because he is a citizen of the USA, and I cannot. If I had a US passport or a green card, I would be able to play.

“Maybe there is a political logic behind it – not medical – but I would rather not get into that and you can understand why.”

Sandgren shared his support to Djokovic on social media earlier this year when he claimed he would have pulled out of the Australian Open in support of the 20-time Grand Slam winner.

“You know when an ‘icon of free choice’ isn’t welcome in a western country, things have gone bat**** crazy,” Sandgren tweeted.

“I wish I was there just so I could pull out. I guess solidarity is only cool when it comes with a check. If you think the sport tennis matters more than this issue – you are a f****** moron.”



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