Novak Djokovic needs to man up and join much of the rest of the world in getting a COVID vaccine instead of possibly sitting out the Australian Open.
That’s the advice which former Aussie doubles great Todd Woodbridge has delivered to the world No. 1 and apparent anti-vaxxer on the Nine Network.
With the Australian government almost certain to lay down the law soon to Tennis Australia and require all players entering the island-continent to be double jabbed, the choice will be stark for the Serb.
“He’s obviously had COVID-19 and probably feels he’s got some special strength against it,” Woody said of the world No. 1 who would be chasing a 10th trophy in Melbourne.
“The the rest of the world is doing what we’re (Australia is) doing. At some point you probably think he’s going to have to get vaccinated.”
The whole-food, organic, close-to-nature Djokovic has repeatedly indicated that he’s uncomfortable with being told how to conduct his millionaire sportsman lifestyle.
In June, 2020, he staged an exho tour of his native Balkans that left himself, Alexander Zverev and Grigor Dimitrov with cases of the virus.
Woodbrige says it’s only a matter of time before government drops the hammer on unvaccinated tennis players.
“It’s going to be taken out of Tennis Australia’s hands, it will be what the government decides you’ve got to do to get into the country,” he said.
“If he wants to come and play in the Australian Open, it’s looking likely he will have to take that vaccination.”
The Aussie added: “Personally I think that’s a good thing. It’s been out there for a while that this (vaccination) is the most likely scenario if you want to come down to Australia.
“With so much on the line for Novak, you’ve got to think that he’s seriously going to think about it.
“He’s tied at 20 (Grand Slam titles) with (Federer) and (Nadal).
“Coming to the tournament that he’s won so much, you’ve got to think he’s seriously thinking about doing it. It would be a shock to me if he doesn’t come to Australia.”