NOVAK DJOKOVIC is tipped to make an appearance at US tennis tournament Indian Wells next month, causing tennis fans to fume following the world No 1’s controversy in Australia.
Novak Djokovic has entered Indian Wells despite the tournament requiring all participants to be fully vaccinated against Covid. This comes after the tennis star stirred controversy after being deported from Australia just before playing in the Australian Open over concerns surrounding his vaccination status.
The 34-year-old, who has won Indian Wells five times, was deported from Australia earlier this year after two visa cancellations and two court challenges.
However, Indian Wells, which kicks off next month in California, states “valid proof of full vaccination [is] required for entry”.
Tournament organisers said in a statement valid proof of full vaccination would be required for entry into the venue.
Organisers have said: “The guidelines for the players are governed by the protocols established by … the WTA and ATP, as well as any restrictions established by the United States of America in regard to the vaccination status of international travellers entering the country.”
In order to enter the States travellers are also required to be fully vaccinated since November last year and provide proof before boarding flights, with limited exceptions.
The news about Mr Djokovic’s new plans sparked a heated debate on social media.
One user, Jason, took to Twitter to air his confusion: “But… the tournament requires proof of vaccination..”
Meanwhile Twitter user, Ivan, defended the tennis star: “I can see that the majority here abominates the very idea of Novak playing in any tournament
“Unbelievable…. What a toxic bunch.”
While another replied with a cheeky winky emoji: “It’s just an entry list it’s not a confirmation”
A fourth Twitter user, @ceejay12481, wrote: “Indian Wells clearly has learned NOTHING from Tennis Australia…”
In response, other users retorted: “No. Apparently YOU learned nothing from Australia.
“Novak is NOT tennis. The rules are the rules. If he chooses to not get vaccinated so be it.
“He will sit at home and tennis will, once again, go on.”
A fifth user, Bonnie, wrote: “Not surprised Indian Wells doing vaccinate mandate. Sigh about Djokovic again??
“Indian Wells better not accept any medical exemption they need to learn from Australian Open. More Djokovic drama coming i guess..”
Another wrote: “If Novak wants to play and knows he needs to get vaccinated, he will.
“Otherwise maybe it’s a year off tennis and fun with family. He really has the choice to decide.”
One last tennis fan commented: “Indian Wells are clearly morons then. History will decide who’s right.”