Australian Open head to Djokovic: no vaccine status, no play

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Teeley said there will be a lot of people at the tournament, which means that Rod Laver Arena will return to its seating capacity of around 15,000, like other major arenas.

The ball returned to the site of Novak Djokovic.

Australian Open chief Craig Tealey confirmed on November 20 that everyone attending the first tennis Grand Slam in 2022 will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, including all players.

This continues to cast doubt on the status of the defensive and nine-time champion Djokovic. Djokovic, who declined to say if he is vaccinated, will try to win a record 21st Grand Slam singles title.

The tournament is scheduled for January 17-30. The Victorian state government had previously stated that only vaccinated individuals would be admitted to the tournament site, with Teeley reiterating this on November 20.

“Everyone is there, the fans, all the staff, the players will have to be vaccinated,” Teeley said at the official opening of the tournament. “There was a lot of speculation about Novak’s position, he said that it’s a personal matter for everyone.

“We would love to see Novak here, but he knows he needs to be vaccinated to play. He always said that the Australian Open is an event that kicks the wind towards him. “

Teeley said the decree banning vaccinations and banning gaming was passed by the Victorian government in late October.

“It was very clear when the prime minister [Daniel Andrews] announced a few weeks ago that in order to participate in the Australian Open Tennis Championships, you need to be fully vaccinated to travel to Victoria, “Teeley said earlier in the morning television program. “We immediately informed that this is the only direction that you will choose to ensure the safety of everyone.”

Among the top male players, Tili, who is the tournament director, said Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev, who beat Djokovic in the US Open final, preventing the Serbian player from completing a Grand Slam tournament in a calendar year, are planning to come to Melbourne. in January.

Roger Federer, who continues to recover from right knee surgery, already said he won’t come… He, Nadal and Djokovic have equal 20 singles tournaments.

Top-rated Australia’s Ash Barty will make another attempt to win her home Major and reigning champion Naomi Osaka has also confirmed she will play, Teeley said.

He said he was “on the phone” with Serena Williams in the past few days, and Williams, who has 23 Grand Slam singles titles and needs another one to break Margaret Court’s all-time record, is training and plans to play …

Teeley, who said he was also in contact with Djokovic and his team, said it would be clear by mid-December who would be arriving. He said international players are currently in the process of obtaining a tourist visa with the Australian government and that admission to the Australian Open will close in December.

“I know that he wants to play, he made it clear, and he knows the conditions that he will have to go through in order to be eligible to play,” Tili said of Djokovic.

“The entry here will be determined roughly from early to mid-December before the entry deadline, so you will know when a player will enter the event. … … so in the next couple of weeks you will have a really good idea of ​​where everyone is, because at this point there is an official list of who will be here. “

Teeley said there will be a lot of people at the tournament, referring to the Rod Laver arena. will return to its capacity of about 15000like other major arenas.

The second week schedule for the January tournament has changed, with both women’s singles semifinals being played on Thursday night before Saturday night’s final.

The men’s singles semi-finals will be split into an afternoon and evening session on Friday, with the final taking place on Sunday evening, January 30th.

In addition, Victoria State Sports Minister Martin Pakula announced that Melbourne Park will host the Australian Open until 2044 under a new agreement with Tennis Australia. For several years, rumors circulated that Sydney and NSW wanted to lure the tournament out of Melbourne, but the November 20 announcement seemed to end any speculation about moving northeast to Australia’s largest city.



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