A local official has warned that non-vaccinated tennis stars are unlikely to get visas to play in next year’s first Grand Slam.
A local official warned on Tuesday that unvaccinated tennis stars are unlikely to get visas to play in the Australian Open, with defending champion Novak Djokovic expressing doubts about his participation in the upcoming tournament.
Victoria State Premier Dan Andrews said he was not exempt from Australia’s Kovid 19 vaccine rules for players taking part in the January Grand Slam.
“I don’t think an unsafe tennis player will get a visa to come to this country,” Andrews said.
“The virus doesn’t care what your tennis rankings are or how many Grand Slams you’ve won,” he added.
“And if they get a visa, they’ll probably have to quarantine for a few weeks, when no other player has to.”
Andrew’s comments came as Djokovic told a Serbian media outlet that he was not sure if he was planning to take part in the Australian Open.
“I don’t know if I’m going to Australia. I don’t know what’s going on,” Djokovic told the Serbian daily Blake in an interview published Tuesday.
The world’s number one has publicly opposed the vaccine in the past, refusing to say whether it has been vaccinated against the corona virus.
“It’s a private matter,” Djokovic told Blake. “A lot of people today give themselves the freedom to ask questions and let people decide (…) whatever you answer can be misinterpreted.
“Of course I want to take part. Australia is the Grand Slam where I’ve had the most success,” added the defending champion and nine-time winner in Melbourne.
Djokovic also said he plans to return to the Paris Masters from November 1-7 and then take part in the Davis Cup from November 25 to December 5.
He has won eight Australian Open titles and will be aiming for the 21st record-breaking victory in Melbourne, the capital of Victoria, after losing the US Open in September.
The Prime Minister of Victoria also indicated that anyone hoping to attend the Formula One Australian Grand Prix would have to be vaccinated.
“The Grand Prix is in April, I don’t think there will be a crowd for the Grand Prix consisting of people who haven’t been double-dosed,” Andrews said.