Tennis

People Are Furious Over Novak Djokovic's Vaccine Exemption For Australian Open

People Are Furious Over Novak Djokovic's Vaccine Exemption For Australian Open

Novak Djokovic is among the finest tennis players that the world has ever seen, but he has seen his reputation off the court take a hammering over the last couple of years.

Long a bit of an odd character and someone who wasn't afraid to go against the grain, his mistrust of modern medicine has landed him in trouble during the coronavirus pandemic. Not only has he made some misguided comments and contracted the virus after an ill-advised party last year, but his stance on vaccination has also caused a huge amount of debate.

The Serbian has spoken openly in the past about his hesitancy to get any form of vaccination, a stance that has not changed during this pandemic. He is one of the few tennis stars that has not been vaccinated against covid-19, something that had caused him a huge amount of grief in recent weeks.

With the Australian Open getting underway in Melbourne this month, it had been decided that all players would have to be double-jabbed before taking part. This obviously posed a huge issue for Djokovic, who made it clear he would not accept a vaccine just to play in the event.

It appears that the issue has now been resolved. Taking to social media this morning, the 34-year old revealed that he would be playing in the Australian Open after receiving an 'exemption permission' to secure his place.

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Unsurprisingly, this news has not been well received.

Melbourne has been subjected to some of the harshest lockdowns in the world, while Australia as a whole has put a huge emphasis on vaccination for anybody that is hoping to enter the country.

Many view this news, that someone has been allowed to bypass these rules in order to play in a tennis tournament, as somewhat of a slap in the face.

The reaction to Djokovic's post was exactly what you would have expected.

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Djokovic will enter the Australian Open as the favourite to win the tournament for a tenth time, while victory would also make him the most successful male player in Grand Slam history with a 21st title.

Don't expect much fanfare from the Australian crowd should he manage to achieve that feat.

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Gary Connaughton

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