All Australian Open players will need to be vaccinated to participate in the January tournament, his organization chief Craig Tiley said on Saturday, casting doubt on the participation of world number one Novak Djokovic, who declines to reveal. if it is inoculated.
Tiley indicated that tennis players have been informed that they must have the complete vaccination schedule to compete at Melbourne Park.
The Australian city of Melbourne, where the tournament is taking place, has spent 260 days in lockdown during the pandemic, and the Victoria state government has said it will not make concessions to unvaccinated players.
“There is a lot of speculation about vaccination and, to be clear, when the head of government (of Victoria) announced that everyone on the site … should be vaccinated, we let the players know,” Tiley told Channel 9 television. .
“All the players understand, our bosses must be vaccinated, all staff working at the Australian Open must be vaccinated,” he added. This includes Djokovic, a nine-time Australian tournament winner.
Tiley said the Serbian star “has said that he considers this to be a private matter.”
“We would love to see Novak here, he knows he will have to be vaccinated to play here.”
Djokovic said this month that he would await official confirmation of Tennis Australia’s requirements before deciding whether to participate.
The 2021 Australian Open required players to quarantine for two weeks in a hotel, while limiting the presence of the public and a quarantine was decreed in Melbourne in the middle of the tournament.
Organizers hope that 2022 will take place from January 17 with vaccinated players who will be able to enter Australia without the need for quarantine.
There will also be a presence of the public thanks to the fact that 90% of the population of Victoria is vaccinated, which allowed the lifting of sanitary restrictions, such as the limit on the capacity of the public at sporting events.
Although it is not known if Djokovic will be there, Tiley said Rafael Nadal will be looking to win his 21st Grand Slam, while Roger Federer was ruled out due to his knee problem.
There will also be number one female Ashleigh Barty, as well as current tournament champion Naomi Osaka.
He indicated that Serena Williams will also arrive in search of her 24th Grand Slam, hoping to match Margaret Court’s mark.