Novak Djokovic is hoping against the odds to slip into the US under some kind of a COVID vaxx exemption in hopes of playing the Masters 1000 pair next month at Indian Wells and Miami.
The unjabbed Serb who was kicked out of Australia in January, 2022, for trying to cross the border without being vaccinated, has filed papers to try to be let in before the US relaxes some unspecified health regulations, presumably on May 11.
The Serb’s camp said he is giving it a go; gluten-free Djokovic has said he will never submit to a COVID jab under any circumstances.
“”Novak has to obtain special permission as the U.S. is still denying entry to non-vaccinated persons, which is simply unbelievable as the whole world is open and sports events feature vaccinated and non-vaccinated athletes alike,” brother Djordje told Serbia’s Tanjug.
“Novak has submitted all the required documentation and a request, and the directors of the Indian Wells and Miami tournaments have publicly said Novak is needed at those tournaments and that they want him to come.
“There are only a few days to go before a decision is made and what remains for us to do is hope for a positive outcome.”
Indian Wells TD Tommy Haas has been particularly vocal in trying to slip world No. 1 Djokovic across the border through an exemption,
Should Djokovic be knocked back in his attempt to bend the rules, he will lose the No. 1 ranking he regained through his Australian Open title a fortnight ago.
Last month, Indian Wells tournament director Tommy Haas said it would be a “disgrace” if Djokovic was not allowed to compete at Indian Wells and other tournaments in the United States this year.
Djokovic missed last year’s Australian Open and was deported from the country due to his vaccine status. He regained entry into the tournament this year and won it to claim a record-tying 22nd Grand Slam title.
The 35-year-old has previously said he would miss Grand Slams rather than receive a COVID-19 vaccine.