U.S. tennis legend John McEnroe has led calls for President Joe Biden to ease the “ridiculous” Covid ban on unvaccinated people entering the country to allow Novak Djokovic to compete at the U.S. open and aim for a record-equalling 22nd Grand Slam title. The Telegraph has the story.
A four-set victory over Nick Kyrgios sealed Djokovic’s seventh Wimbledon title to again move just one behind Rafael Nadal’s overall record of 22 Grand Slams but, after his infamous exile from Australia earlier this year, his fate again now rests on a country’s Covid laws.
Djokovic’s coach, Goran Ivanisevic, hailed Djokovic’s “heroic” ability to transform a “shit year” following the extraordinary low of being deported from Australia and McEnroe is now urging the American government to let him play the hard-court season and then next month’s U.S. Open.
“I’m not vaccinated and I’m not planning to get vaccinated so the only good news I can have is them removing the mandated green vaccine card to enter the United States,” said Djokovic.
“I’ll wait hopefully for some good news from the U.S. because I would really love to go there. That would be the next big tournament.
“If that doesn’t happen, then I have to see what the schedule looks like. I will not burden myself to have to go and play tournaments and get points. I don’t feel I’m in a rush really anywhere to end my career in a year’s time or two years’ time or whatever. I want to keep my body healthy… keep myself mentally sane and motivated to compete with the young guns.
“Everything that has followed Australia, particularly in the tournaments, has been a huge challenge and obstacle for me to overcome emotionally. I just needed time to weather the storm.”