Novak Djokovic fails in bid to play at US Open over Covid vaccine rules

Current rules require travellers to show proof of full vaccination to board flights to and enter the US

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Former world number one Novak Djokovic said he will not be able to travel to New York to compete at the US Open having refused to be vaccinated against Covid-19.

Current rules require travellers to show proof of full vaccination to board flights to and enter the US.

The Wimbledon champion, who was also banned from playing in the Australian Open due to his anti-vaccination stance, said after his SW19 success in July that he was waiting “hopefully for some good news from USA”.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic
Djokovic has refused to be vaccinated against Covid-19
Djokovic has refused to be vaccinated against Covid-19

That led to him remaining on the entry list for the tournament that begins on Monday despite not being in the country, but he has now withdrawn.

"Sadly, I will not be able to travel to NY this time for US Open," Djokovic wrote on Twitter.

"Good luck to my fellow players! I'll keep in good shape and positive spirit and wait for an opportunity to compete again."

The Serbian previously said he was prepared to miss Grand Slam tournaments that require participating players to be vaccinated against Covid.

The 35-year-old was also unable to defend his Australian Open crown earlier this year after being deported from the country over his vaccination status.

The Serbian’s omission hands Rafael Nadal an advantage as he aims to add to his 22 grand slam titles, while world number one and defending champion Daniil Medvedev also has a smoother path.

The draw for the final grand slam of the year takes place later on Thursday in New York.