Novak Djokovic will miss next week Miami Open when the Serbian refused an exemption that would allow him to enter the US even though he had not been vaccinated against Covid-19, said the director of the tournament James Blake on Friday.
“We tried to get Novak Djokovic to get an exemption, but it didn’t happen,” Blake told the Tennis Channel. “The truth is, we are one of the first sports in the world, we want to have the best players who can play, we do everything we can, we try to talk to the government, but not our hands.”
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and two US state senators were among those calling on the Biden administration to allow world number one Djokovic to enter. to America and compete in the tournament he won six times.
Djokovic35, is also missing the ongoing Masters tournament in Indian Wells, California due to his inability to secure exemption.
The US is preventing unvaccinated foreigners from entering the country, a policy that is expected to be lifted when the government ends its Covid-19 emergency on May 11.
Djokovic, who missed last year’s Australian Open after being deported from the country because of his vaccination status, said he would rather miss the Grand Slams than have Covid. He won his 22nd Grand Slam at the Australian Open in January.
He has not played in Indian Wells or the Miami Open – which includes the “Sunshine Double” – since 2019.
A representative for Djokovic said the player would not comment further on his absence from the Miami tournament, and that he planned to return to the tournament at the Monte Carlo Masters claycourt event starting on April 9. .
Djokovic will continue his preparations for the French Open in May by playing in the Srpska Open in Banja Luka, Bosnia.
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