Serbian tennis superstar Novak Djokovic attended a basketball game in Belgrade and received a warm welcome from Red Star Belgrade fans. Djokovic was denied entry to the United States, so instead of flying to Indian Wells, Djokovic stayed in Belgrade.
On Thursday, Djokovic attended a EuroLeague match between Red Star Belgrade and Maccabi Tel Aviv. When Djokovic was introduced to the public, a round of applause followed. Djokovic got up from his seat to thank the crowd who gave him a warm welcome.
"Although he was automatically included in the @BNPPARIBASOPEN and @MiamiOpen draw he knew it would be unlikely that he would be able to travel. The CDC has confirmed that the regulations are not going to change so I will not be able to play in the United States.
Good luck to those who play in these big tournaments," Djokovic wrote on Twitter. Djokovic is keeping his word, as he recently made it clear that he is willing not to participate in tournaments that require players to be vaccinated.
"As an elite athlete, I want to triple check everything that goes into my body. If something changes by 0.5% in my body, I notice it. I'm just cautious before making any decisions, I take my time and keep my open mind."
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Former tennis player and analyst Alex Corretja believes replacing former coach Marian Vajda is a very important decision for Novak Djokovic. "Definitely, Novak will need to find someone that is going to be the extension of his hand because that was pretty much what Marian was doing," Corretja said.
"Marian knows exactly how to react and knows exactly how to deal with the key moments because he knows him very well. Maybe when a new one [coach] comes and goes like, 'no, don't do this' or 'don't do that' or 'just calm down' or whatever, it may be that it irritates Novak.
So, I think he really needs to know exactly what he wants for the next profile of coach to find someone that helps him," he continued. "Because otherwise, he is going to be comparing them with Marian all the time, and that can be a little bit tricky.
I think Novak has still got three, four more years to play at least so it will be very interesting to see who he picks because it is a very important decision." Novak Djokovic may be one of the best tennis players of all time.
However, off-late he has been in the news for things other than tennis. The Serb has been barred from entering several countries where there is a vaccine mandate, and recently this came into the news again.