John Isner says it is “complete lunacy” that Novak Djokovic is currently unable to compete at the US Open this year due to his vaccination status.
The 21-time Grand Slam champion has reaffirmed that he won’t be getting vaccinated in order to enter the US to play at Flushing Meadows, despite missing the defence of his Australian Open title, and the Indian Wells and Miami Open earlier this year because of his status.
The 35-year-old withdrew from next week’s Canadian Open in Montreal on Thursday because he is also not allowed to enter Canada.
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Djokovic’s coach Goran Ivanisevic believes there is “zero hope” President Joe Biden will “change the rules” around vaccination before the Grand Slam gets underway on August 29.
Isner cannot believe the 21-time Grand Slam winner will not be able to compete in New York.
After a user on Twitter asked whether any American tennis players are urging for Djokovic to be allowed to play at the US Open, Isner replied: “Yes. Complete lunacy he can’t compete as of now #science”.
Fellow American tennis player Tennis Sandgren reminded the user of a tweet he posted on June 16 when he wrote: “Pretty shameful that the USTA won’t fight for an exemption for Novak.
“No surprise the government hasn’t changed it’s (sic) archaic policy. I can play but he can’t? Ridiculous.”
Djokovic reached the US Open final in 2021 but finished as a runner-up to Russia’s Daniil Medvedev.
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He recently wrote on Instagram: “I am preparing as if I will be allowed to compete, while I await to hear if there is any room for me to travel to US. Fingers crossed!”
Andy Murray’s coach Ivan Lendl hopes that Djokovic’s likely absence from Grand Slams due to his vaccination status does not decide the debate about the greatest male tennis player of all time.
He said: “The only thing I regret a little bit is that the fight is somehow affected by politics at the moment because of the vaccination issue.
“I only hope that in 20 years we won’t look at it through that prism, that we won’t be sure who is the greatest because of politics.”