Novak Djokovic isn’t thrilled with the possibility of having to be vaccinated in order to continue his tennis campaign. The Serbian player and the world No.1 created a lot of reactions over the social networks, and it is safe to say that his stance on this matter caused a heated public debate.
Novak and other members of Serbia’s national tennis team had a live Facebook chat, in which they, among other things, spoke about COVID-19 pandemics. Djokovic stated that he doesn’t want to be vaccinated, and that he still doesn’t know what to do if the vaccination becomes mandatory.
“Personally, I am opposed to vaccination, and I wouldn’t want to be forced by someone to take a vaccine in order to be able to travel,” Djokovic said, and added. “But if it becomes compulsory, what will happen? I will have to make a decision. I have my own thoughts about the matter, and whether those thoughts will change at some point, I don’t know.”
'I am opposed to vaccination and I wouldn't want to be forced to take a vaccine'
Novak Djokovic's beliefs may halt his tennis career after the coronavirus crisis https://t.co/W1M5CdXtBI
— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) April 20, 2020
Djokovic’s statement only increased the tensions between the ones who support the vaccine and the ones who oppose the same. Even though the potential vaccine is not near ready, there is a massive gap between these two groups, which keeps getting wider and wider as time goes by.
According to the sources from health institutions with the current tempo of progress, the vaccine should be available next year. But the question stands, what will happen with tennis until then.
Many are suggesting that there won’t be any tennis. For example, Amelie Mauresmo stated that until the vaccine is found and all the people who attend tennis events aren’t vaccinated, there can’t be any competition.
“International circuit = players of all nationalities plus management, spectators and people from the 4 corners of the world who bring these events to life. No vaccine = no tennis,” she wrote on her Twitter account.
There hasn’t been a discussion about this within the tennis community, and Djokovic’s comments might be the trigger for something like that in the future. So far, none of the big names decided to reveal their point of view on this one.
The Serb started the season furiously, winning the Australian Open for the record eighth time, and also leading his Serbia to a trophy at the ATP Cup, where they defeated Spain led by Nadal in the finals.
At the time, it seemed that the Joker is unstoppable and that there are no opponents who might stop him shortly. However, it turned out that COVID-19 suspended his surge.
Numerous tournaments have been canceled. At first, it was the Indian Wells, after that one by one all the ATP 1000 Masters, and everything culminated with the first cancellation of Wimbledon since the WWII.
Roland Garros postponed its start for late September (even though many objected this decision, saying that the French organizers didn’t consult anyone about it), while for now, the only major Grand Slam who wasn’t moved or canceled is US Open.
Times are tough, not just for tennis. The arise of COVID-19 brought up many questions to the surface, some of them controversial. It is up to the main figures to reach an agreement and see what is best for each area, including tennis.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.