20-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic wasn't happy with the rules and restrictions to which the players were imposed at this year's Australian Open. Djokovic's close friend Viktor Troicki was on a plane where a passenger tested positive for COVID-19 and he was placed in a hard 14-day quarantine upon arrival to Melbourne.
Troicki wasn't the only player placed in quarantine as 70 other players were also unable to leave their room for 14 days. Djokovic picked up an abdominal strain injury in the Australian Open but still managed to win the tournament.
"It wasn't a good experience for us (players), for example, it was really tough for Viktor Troicki. We had that quarantine in which we were allowed to practice, but if a player isn't allowed to practice, then...
To put a professional sportsman in that type of quarantine in which he is not allowed to leave his room, then to expect from him to play at the expected level, really... Not to mention the higher chances of getting injured, including myself at this past Australian Open.
If nothing changes in 2022, I think a lot of players will really give it a good thought of what to do. In the end, the economic aspect is what decides in a lot of players," Djokovic told Serbian daily newspaper Blic.
Djokovic suggests players don't want to go through the same scenario
"The main problem is that if you are on the plane with an infected person, whether you are vaccinated or not, you are required to spend 14 days in quarantine upon arrival to Australia.
That happened to Viktor Troicki this past January. Not only him, 70 players ended up quarantine. I have spoken to many players and many have that as a bad memory. I wish we players could unite more, whether it's through the PTPA, ATP or WTA, only to be relevant in some type of decision-making. I feel that no one really cares about the players' opinion," Djokovic explained.