Djokovic: “I’d love to play the US Open, but I’m not planning to get vaccinated”

After winning his seventh Wimbledon title, the Serb said he hoped the rules would change to allow him to play in New York but that he will not go against his principles

Novak Djokovic Wimbledon 2022 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning the men’s singles final against Australia’s Nick Kyrgios || AI / Reuters / Panoramic

Novak Djokovic says he would love to play the US Open but admits he has no plans to get vaccinated against Covid-19 and knows it means he could miss the final Grand Slam event of the year.

The Serb, who won his seventh Wimbledon title with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (3) win over Australian Nick Kyrgios on Sunday, is currently banned from entering the United States because of his decision.

“I am on vacation,” he said, of his immediate plans. “Whether or not I’m playing any tournament soon, I’ll definitely be resting for the next couple weeks because it has been quite an exhausting and demanding period for me the last few months. A lot of tennis, which I was very happy about. I got what I wanted here.

“Then I’ll wait hopefully for some good news from USA because I would really love to go there.”

Novak Djokovic, isolated, Wimbledon 2022
Novak Djokovic poses with the trophy after winning the men’s singles final of Wimbledon 2022 | ¬© AI / Reuters / Panoramic

“I don’t think an exemption is realistically possible”

Unvaccinated people are not allowed into the United States at present and Djokovic said he would not be changing his mind.

“I’m not vaccinated and I’m not planning to get vaccinated so the only good news I can have is them removing the mandated green vaccine card or whatever you call it to enter United States, or (an) exemption,” he said.

“I don’t know. I don’t think exemption is realistically possible. If that is a possibility, I don’t know what exemption would be about. I don’t know. I don’t have much answers there. I think it’s just whether or not they remove this in time for me to get to USA.”

Djokovic said his immediate schedule is up in the air but added that team competitions could be part of his plans.

“Could be Laver Cup, Davis Cup is coming as well,” he said. “I love playing for my country. Going to try to be part of that. Next thing you know the season is over, right? Those are the big, let’s say, tournaments that I have right now in my mind.”

Djokovic: “I don’t think I’ll chase points”

With Wimbledon not offering ranking points this year after the ATP and WTA removed them because of the decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players, Djokovic will fall to No 7 in the rankings.

But he said he would not add more events at the end of the year in a quest to try to secure a place in the ATP Finals.

“To be honest, I doubt that I’ll go and chase points,” he said. “As I understand from my agent today, winning a Grand Slam would qualify you for World Tour Finals unless you’re out of top 20, which I don’t know. With accumulated points so far, I guess I’ll make top 20.

“I guess I have a good chance to be already in the Finals. I will not burden myself to really have to go and play tournaments and get points.”

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