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Novak Djokovic speaks out on US Open exile: 'It is political, not medical'

Novak Djokovic says the reasons for him not being allowed to play at the US Open are 'political, not medical'
Novak Djokovic reacts at Wimbledon 2021

Novak Djokovic says the reasons currently preventing him from playing at the US Open as an unvaccinated player are political, not medical.

Djokovic has been unwavering in his conviction that he will not be vaccinated against Covid. As things stand, that would prevent him from being bale to play at the US Open this year.

When the US Open said they would not be seeking an exemption from the government for unvaccinated players, Tennys Sandgren the first player to publicly back Novak Djokovic.

He tweeted that it was 'shameful' that the US Open were not doing more to help him, and confusing since he himself will be allowed to play despite not being vaccinated.

That is support that Djokovic appreciates and he says he completely agrees with the American's wider points.

“I have been texting with Tennys Sandgren a few days ago," Djokovic told Tennis Majors. "I wanted to thank him for the public support he has given me in this situation.

"What he said makes total sense. If unvaccinated players are not allowed to compete at the US Open, then it should be the case for everyone.

"I don’t see the medical logic behind it, that Tennys can play because he is a citizen of the USA, and I cannot.

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"If I had a US passport or a green card, I would be able to play. Maybe there is a political logic behind it – not medical – but I would rather not get into that and you can understand why.”

Djokovic is understandably keen to avoid any kind of confusion this time around.

At the start of the year, mixed messages from various different levels of government saw him travel believing he had an exemption only to be later deported. It's not a position he will allow others to put him in again.

“No unvaccinated people can enter the USA as of this moment,” he said. “I did hear unofficially that some people got away with it, some people who are not ‘famous’, but I would never even try to go to the USA if it is not allowed.

"Some people think that I made that mistake in Australia, but it was the contrary in fact – I had the exemption etc, let’s not go over the same story again.

"Bottom line is: if I am told that I cannot go, I won’t go, I would never put myself in such a position. Even if I get in, they would see me on TV playing tennis and pick me up!"

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