Novak Djokovic Covid US Open ban, Indian Wells, Miami Open

The Covid mandate that threatens to deny the unvaccinated Novak Djokovic another shot at Grand Slam glory has been torn to pieces.

It would be “a shame” to see Novak Djokovic continue to be denied entry to the United States, according to Indian Wells tournament director Tommy Haas, who has vowed to stand up for the Serbian States side.

Djokovic will miss Indian Wells and the Miami Open – two of the biggest events on tour behind the Grand Slams – after the US confirmed its entry requirements for non-US officials to be vaccinated against Covid.

The 21-time Slam winner has refused to be vaccinated and was being held at an immigration hotel in Melbourne before his Australian visa was known to be annulled on the eve of last year’s Australian Open.

Relaxed entry visa requirements meant he was able to enter Australia to attend this year’s event.

And Haas – who tipped Djokovic to be back at the top of the world rankings by the end of the year – said he wanted to see the mandates lifted.

“If Djokovic stays healthy I don’t see how he won’t be number 1,” he said.

“The only problem, of course, is that he still can’t come to the United States. If he doesn’t play Indian Wells and Miami in March… I think they should rescind those mandates by mid-April.

“It would be nice to see if maybe we can pick those up a bit sooner and get him to play at Indian Wells and Miami.

“I think he wants to play so we should give him a chance hopefully we’ll have him with us. It would be a shame, I think, in my opinion, if he didn’t come or wasn’t allowed to come to these events.

“If he plays against everyone, he’s the favorite to be number 1 at the end of the year.”

Haas, who plays in the Australian Open legends’ doubles after reaching three singles semifinals at Melbourne Park, said his tournament organizers would exhaust all avenues to bring Djokovic to Indian Wells.

“We will certainly try everything we can do on our side,” he said.

Originally released as unvaccinated, Novak Djokovic’s US ban was branded a ‘shame’. Novak Djokovic Covid US Open ban, Indian Wells, Miami Open

Ryan Sederquist

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