These first months of 2022 have given several twists. Novak Djokovic's choice not to get vaccinated against the Coronavirus has turned the tables on the table, having prevented the Serbian from defending the title at the Australian Open.
The 34-year-old from Belgrade, who had to leave the country amid a thousand controversies, witnessed the triumph of his eternal rival Rafael Nadal at Melbourne Park from home. The Spaniard has thus overtaken Roger Federer and Djokovic in the all-time rankings of the Majors.
Nole made his seasonal debut on the hard courts in Dubai, but failed to go beyond the quarter-finals (defeated in two sets by Jiri Vesely). Strict US regulations also forced 'Djoker' to forgo the Masters 1000 in Indian Wells and Miami.
Novak's forced absence made it easier for Nadal, still unbeaten this year and capable of reaching the semifinal in Indian Wells. The Manacor veteran will now face his compatriot Carlos Alcaraz in the most anticipated match of the entire week.
Guest in the latest edition of the 'The Joe Pump Show' podcast, Patrick Mouratoglou recalled the 2019 Australian Open final between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.
Mouratoglou praises Djokovic
"I remember thinking to myself, but I don't remember who I was with, but I turned to this guy and said, 'Oh my God, Novak Djokovic is going to destroy Nadal.
You could feel it. And it is here. Only here. Nothing negative about Rafa who is an incredible champion too. But just to say that that day, what Novak brought to the court mentally was from another planet" - Patrick Mouratoglou said.
Nole will be having a tough time playing the tournaments held in the countries which have a compulsory vaccine mandate. But given the current trend of the virus, many nations are doing away with the restriction. At a recent press conference, the tournament director, Amelie Mauresmo revealed that given the current rules being followed in France, there should not be an issue about Djokovic’s participation.
The press conference by the organizers of the French Open was done in order to address the new developments in the 2022 edition. “As things stand, nothing stands in the way of Djokovic’s participation at Roland-Garros,” tournament director Amélie Mauresmo, a former coach of Andy Murray, said.
The president of the Federation, Gilles Moretton however issued a warning. Stating that the pandemic is not over yet, and the virus is also very much active. He stated “There is still a virus circulating and we must be careful.
If things were to happen again and the government took new measures, we would not be excluded from these measures,” he said.
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