Novak Djokovic’s father says his son will hardly play at the Australian Open if the rules on COVID-19 vaccinations are not relaxed.
- Novak Djokovic has not yet confirmed whether he will compete in the Australian Open
- His father has raised further doubts about his son’s participation in a Serbian TV interview
- Tournament organizers say all players must be vaccinated against COVID-19
Australian Open organizers confirmed earlier this month that all players must be vaccinated against COVID-19 if they want to compete at the tournament in January.
Novak Djokovic has so far refused to say whether he has been vaccinated.
His father, Srdjan, told Serbia’s TV Prva that Tennis Australia’s attitude towards players being vaccinated meant “blackmail”.
“As far as vaccines and non-vaccines are concerned, it is up to each of us personally whether we want to be vaccinated or not,” he was quoted as saying on the B92 news website.
“No one has the right to be part of our intimacy.
“Under these extortions and conditions, [Novak Djokovic] probably not [play]. I would not do that. And he is my son, so you decide. “
“We will see. We will have to wait and see,” Djokovic said at the ATP final in Turin.
“I have not spoken to them (the organizers of the Australian Open), to be honest,” he added.
“I was just waiting to hear what the news is going to be, and now that I know, we just have to wait and see.”
Djokovic has won nine men’s singles titles at Melbourne Park, including this year’s tournament.
He shares the record with 20 major singles titles for men with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Nadal has confirmed he will play at Melbourne Park in January, but Federer will miss the tournament as he recovers from another knee operation.
The Australian Open begins on 17 January.
Reuters / ABC