Former world No. 12 Feliciano Lopez says Novak Djokovic could have done better with his Adria Tour event but he doesn't deserve to all the blame and criticism. A total of four players who participated at the Adria Tour -- including world No.
1 Djokovic himself -- tested positive for the coronavirus. The Adria Tour events in Belgrade and Zadar featured packed crowds, while players shook hands and hugged. The Adria Tour organizers have since said several times they didn't breach any of the safety measures issued by the governments in Serbia and Croatia.
"What Djokovic has done does not help," Lopez told El Partidazo de Cope, as revealed on Sportskeeda. "I think he could do better, I am convinced. As the world is, you have to give a very different image than what has given.
"The country's politicians, the health authorities, who allow them to hold an event of 4,000 people without masks in the stands, also have a very large part of responsibility for what has happened."
Feliciano Lopez says Djokovic needs to be the one promoting tennis in a positive way
Players who participated at the Adria Tour played a football match together in Belgrade, before they gathered for a basketball match in Zadar.
Lopez, now ranked at No. 56 in the world, suggests Djokovic should be setting a better example as world No. 1 and one the greatest tennis players in the world. "Outside of what the tournament is, they have also made football matches or parties that are avoidable and could have been done differently.
I think in Serbia they have allowed them to do an event that did not give out the image (of tennis) that it should have," Lopez added. "Tennis is a serious sport like football or basketball. People have to set an example.
What happened in Belgrade with Djokovic did not bode well for the return to tennis. They needed to us comply with the strictest protocols, as it cannot be otherwise. The important thing is the safety of the people and that there are no contagions."
Lopez hopes what happened at the Adria Tour won't damage the image of tennis. "(I hope) people do not stay with this image of tennis because now when tennis returns to the United States, the protocol that we have to follow is very extreme. Many players (may) disagree and believe that they cannot subject us to such strict control," Feliciano Lopez said.