Novak Djokovic’s pricey vaccination ‘invoice’ due date has arrived

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Novak Djokovic purchased the ticket and now could be taking the trip.

The 22-time grand slam champion on Monday had his No. 1 rating ripped from him by Carlos Alcaraz after the Spanish teenager placed on a masterclass in his Indian Wells closing thrashing of Daniil Medvedev.

The ATP 1000 victory is sufficient for Alcarez to take again the crown — and he has executed so with Djokovic watching helplessly on the opposite facet of the globe.

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Djokovic, barred from coming into the USA as a result of he hasn’t been vaccinated in opposition to Covid-19, sat out Indian Wells and can miss the Miami Open beginning this week.

The one excellent news for he Serb is that Alcaraz must efficiently defend his Miami title over the course of the subsequent two weeks to maintain the throne he now occupies.

Proper now, nevertheless, Djokovic is paying the heavy value for his highly-publicised refusal to get the jab.

Main tennis journalist Ben Rothenberg stated Djokovic was all the time going to pay a excessive value — on prime of being prevented from competing on the 2022 Australian Open and 2022 US Open.

The American reporter posted on Twitter: “It was 100 per cent Djokovic’s choice to not make himself in a position to play in America for the final yr’s (Indian Wells event) by staying unvaccinated.

“Djokovic stated in 2022 that stated lacking tournaments was “the worth I’m prepared to pay” for staying unvaccinated. That invoice has come due this month.”

Rothenberg additionally lamented the distinctive circumstances which have resulted in Djokovic and Alcaraz combating for the No. 1 rating regardless of not even competing in the identical tournaments.

“This factor the place Alcaraz and Djokovic commerce the #1 rating forwards and backwards whereas not on the similar tournaments is fairly anticlimactic, gotta say,” he wrote.

“Hopefully they face off lots in Europe.”

They’ll lastly be competing on the identical courts when the Monte Carlo Masters begins from April 9.

Djokovic famously stated final yr he understood the results of skipping grand slam tournaments at a time when his battle for historic grand slam supremacy with Rafael Nadal is burning scorching.

“Sure, that’s the value that I’m prepared to pay,” he informed the BBC.

“I used to be by no means in opposition to vaccination, however I’ve all the time supported the liberty to decide on what you place in your physique.

“I perceive the results of my choice. I’m unable to journey to most tournaments in the mean time.”

Because of his stance, Djokovic has been unable to probably compete in eight main tennis tournaments, one thing Tennis 365 just lately estimated to be value as much as $11 million in prize cash.

Alcaraz’s efficiency on Monday in wiping the ground with Medvedev has left tennis followers salivating on the eventual showdown between Djokovic and Alcaraz.

The 19-year-old demolished Medvedev 6-3 6-2 in simply 71 minutes.

The Russian was red-hot coming into the ultimate — his fourth ATP Tour closing in simply 5 weeks — however appeared out of his depth in opposition to the Spaniard

The tennis world was left in awe of Alcaraz.

“An absolute grasp class thus removed from Carlos Alcaraz,” Patrick McEnroe wrote on Twitter.

New York Instances tennis reporter Christopher Clarey wrote Alcaraz’s courtroom craft was in an “elite membership” after watching him toy with Medvedev in a single marathon rally.

American tennis commentator and coach Brad Gilbert wrote he was “so impressed” with Alcaraz’s potential to dominate in each aspect of the sport.

“His recreation is off the charts,” he stated.

After additionally claiming the Miami Open in 2022, Alcaraz turns into the youngest participant to win the Sunshine Double.

In keeping with tennis journalist Jose Morgado, Alcaraz can also be the second youngest winner at Indian Wells, behind solely Boris Becker.

Djokovic, in the meantime, had utilized for a waiver from the US authorities to enter the nation, significantly with restrictions set to finish in Could.

In keeping with experiences, his request centred on a declaration he has contracted the virus on two earlier events, submitting for a medical exemption on that foundation.

The one excellent news for Djokovic is that he’ll doubtless be free to play the 2023 US Open, starting August 28.

The US’ stance has been panned by pundits and tennis stars, together with US political comic Invoice Maher.

Maher stated on HBO’s ‘Actual Tim with Invoice Maher’: “Imminent hazard? Of a person enjoying tennis? Of a person who has had it twice?

“He’s standing alone. A sport the place you stand alone in the midst of a stadium, outdoors, in a rustic the place everybody has already had it. No imminent hazard? This nation is caught on silly, it simply is.”

Djokovic’s vaccination standing noticed him deported from Australia shortly earlier than the 2022 Australian Open. After profitable Wimbledon he additionally missed the US Open final yr due to the journey restriction.

He returned to Australia in January, profitable the 2023 Australian Open for a record-equalling twenty second Grand Slam singles title.

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