World No. 1 Novak Djokovic has doubled down on his stance against a coronavirus vaccination, but admits he is open…
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic has doubled down on his stance against a coronavirus vaccination, but admits he is open to changing his mind.
Djokovic caused a stir earlier this week when he declared he was against receiving a coronavirus vaccination should one become mandatory to return to the tour and travel once the pandemic concludes.
An advocate of natural healing, Djokovic said he “wouldn’t be forced by someone” to take it in a Facebook live chat with fellow Serbian athletes on Sunday.
Aware of the backlash during the last few days, Djokovic reiterated that he doesn’t want a COVID-19 vaccination – however, he said his mind was open to change.
“Personally I am opposed to the vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be able to travel,” Djokovic said in a statement.
“But if it becomes compulsory, I will have to make a decision whether to do it or not. This is my current feeling, and I don’t know if it will change, but it really influences my profession.”
Djokovic also revealed that various other tennis players and athletes had asked him for his opinion on any potential coronavirus vaccination and how the tour would get up and running again.
“I am no expert, but I do want to have an option to choose what’s best for my body,” he said. “I am keeping an open mind, and I’ll continue to research this topic because it is important and it will affect all of us.”
It’s unknown how long it will take for a coronavirus vaccination to be developed, but experts have stated it could take up to a year.
Former WTA No. 1 Amelie Mauresmo has expressed her view that a normal tennis calendar shouldn’t resume without a vaccination.
Former U.S. Open champion Andy Roddick echoed those sentiments in an interview with the Tennis Channel.
“The bottom line is … what is safest to bring tennis to the forefront on a global stage,” Roddick said in response to Djokovic’s comments.
“And that is going to be with testing, that’s going to be with vaccination that’s going to let us get back to what we know as normal.”