| 14.1°C Dublin

vax sake Novak Djokovic won’t get vaccinated to play in Wimbledon or French Open

Close

"Yes, that is the price that I'm willing to pay," the 34-year-old Serbian told the BBC

"Yes, that is the price that I'm willing to pay," the 34-year-old Serbian told the BBC

"Yes, that is the price that I'm willing to pay," the 34-year-old Serbian told the BBC

Novak Djokovic said he was not against vaccination but would skip Grand Slam tournaments if he was forced to take the jab against Covid-19.

Djokovic, who is unvaccinated, was deported from Australia after an 11-day rollercoaster experience involving two visa cancellations, two court challenges and five nights in two stints at an immigration detention hotel where asylum seekers are held.

"Yes, that is the price that I'm willing to pay," the 34-year-old Serbian told the BBC, adding that he was aware that he would not be able to travel to most tournaments in the world currently because of his unvaccinated status.

The 20-times major champion is set to return to competitive action at an ATP tournament in Dubai next week for the first time since he was deported ahead of the Australian Open, the year's first tennis Grand Slam.

Another win at Melbourne Park, where Djokovic has won nine titles, could have taken him to a men's record 21 major titles, but instead it was his long-time rival Rafa Nadal who nudged ahead by lifting the trophy last month.

Djokovic said he was ready to sacrifice his shot at the milestone over the "freedom of choice", but he was keeping an open mind about taking the jab in the future.

"I was never against vaccination," he said, adding that he took vaccines as a child. "But I've always supported the freedom to choose what you put in your body.

"I understand that globally, everyone is trying to put a big effort into handling this virus and seeing, hopefully, an end soon to this virus."

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Top Videos





Available now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or Google Podcasts.

Privacy