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Djokovic to miss Indian Wells and Miami Open as Covid-19 cases surge

Novak Djokovic has been allowed back into Australia, but he now looks likely to miss two events in the United States.

Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his first round match against France's Constant Lestienne at the ATP Adelaide International tournament in Adelaide on January 3, 2023. (Photo by Brenton EDWARDS / AFP)

Novak Djokovic looks set to miss the Indian Wells Open and Miami Open after the United States extended the requirement for all non-American nationals entering the country to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19. The 21-time grand slam winner was forced to sit out both tournaments last year, as well as other events in America and Canada, due to not being vaccinated.

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Whereas many countries are relaxing vaccination requirements, meaning Djokovic is able to compete in this year’s Australian Open, US travel authorities are asking all non-US citizens for proof of being fully vaccinated against coronavirus before they travel to the country until at least 10 April. The United States is one of a number of countries to have tightened entry requirements amid rising concerns about the surge in infections in China, who recently terminated their zero-Covid policy and are due to lift border restrictions on 8 January.

That means that Djokovic, who is believed to be unvaccinated, will sit out the prestigious Indian Wells which will be held between 6 and 19 March, as well as the Miami Open between 20 March and 2 April.

Djokovic returns to Australia

Djokovic is currently competing in the Adelaide International, where he kicked off his season with a 6-3 6-2 win over Constant Lestienne on Tuesday, ahead of beginning his quest for a 10th Australian Open crown later this month.

The Serbian was deported from Australia this time last year after his visa was revoked due to his unvaccinated status and was initially banned from entering the country for three years, but the ban was waived in November.


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