Djokovic is still banned from the US a week before the US Open

Djokovic is still banned from the US a week before the US Open

The US Open starts next week, but men’s betting favorite Novak Djokovic will likely be barred from competing, barring a last-minute pivot from the player or the US government.

On April 21, the Department of Homeland Security expanded the “Temporary Title 19 requirements” that require non-U.S. citizens entering the U.S. to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and provide proof of related vaccination upon request.

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“These requirements have been extended in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and several other federal agencies,” DHS wrote in announcing the extension. “According to the CDC, vaccines remain the most effective public health measure to protect people from serious illness or death from COVID-19, slow the transmission of COVID-19, and reduce the likelihood of new COVID-19 variants emerging. -19”.

Djokovic no longer seems likely to change course. “I’m not planning on getting vaccinated, so the only good news I can have is that they’ve removed the mandatory green vaccine card or whatever you call it to enter the United States or exemption,” Djokovic said last month after winning Wimbledon. , his 21st Grand Prix. Slam title. At the end of July, the Serbian tennis star published on his social media channels, “I am preparing as if I can compete, while waiting to know if there is any space for me to travel to the US. Fingers crossed!”

Djokovic fans have received a glimmer of hope that the three-time US Open champion can travel to New York, based on updated COVID-19 guidelines announced by the CDC on Aug. -19 quarantine requirements, eliminating any distinction in protocols between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.

“This guidance recognizes that the pandemic is not over, but it also helps us get to a point where COVID-19 no longer disrupts our daily lives,” Greta Massetti, an epidemiologist at the CDC, said in a statement.

The CDC said it will work to “align standalone guidance documents” in the coming weeks related to “health settings, congregate environments with increased risk of transmission, and travel.” But few expect the DHS regulations, which have kept Djokovic out of the US at all events this year, to change this week.

“Of course, we would like Novak if the federal guidelines that currently prohibit unvaccinated non-U.S. citizens from entering the country would change,” a USTA spokesperson said by email. Djokovic is believed to be the only player ranked in the ATP top 100 who would be barred from playing, based on the guidelines.

Current American players John Isner and Taylor Fritz questioned the decision to bar Djokovic from playing, with Isner calling it “crazy”. John McEnroe also supported Djokovic. “I think it’s bullshit,” McEnroe told Fox News this month. “It’s really unfortunate, but those are the rules that we really have now with the government. I don’t agree with that, but is life at the moment.” Two-time presidential candidate Steve Forbes echoed McEnroe, calling him “bureaucratic BS” on twitter.

Djokovic was at the center of the tennis world on and off the court in 2022. He was deported from Australia in January ahead of the Australian Open when his medical exemption visa was cancelled. Djokovic’s ability to enter France for the French Open was in doubt, but he was eventually allowed to compete at Roland Garros, where he lost to Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals. His seventh and final event so far this year was his Wimbledon title. The stakes are up for Djokovic as he competes with Nadal and Roger Federer for the men’s all-time record for Slams wins. Nadal is currently at the top with 22.

Djokovic took fifth place with $28.2 million in sportof the highest paid tennis players in the world. Although sponsors have started to turn away from Djokovic despite his chance to be the greatest player in the history of the sport. This year, UKG and Peugeot ended valuable “patch” sponsorships, which generate huge exposure for brands during key matches such as Grand Slam finals. His Peugeot deal began in 2014, with UKG signing Djokovic in 2019. Lacoste remains Djokovic’s most valuable endorsement partner in a pact worth up to $10 million a year, including bonuses for a big year on the court.

Djokovic lost to Daniil Medvedev in last year’s US Open final in an impressive comeback, ending his quest to become the first man to win the calendar’s grand slam since Rod Laver in 1969. It was his record sixth defeat in an Open final. . The Caesars bookmaker has Djokovic as a favorite this year with +150, followed by Medvedev with +250.

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