Following the health and media disaster generated by the Adria Tour, many have asked for Novak Djokovic's head. The World number 1 could be removed from the position of president of the ATP Player Council, which also includes his eternal rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
The Serbian champion, who tested positive for Coronavirus together with his wife and other players, apologized through his social accounts, but the fury towards him shows no sign of abating. Paul Annacone, former Federer and Sampras' coach, urged board members to voice their views on the incident.
Many will wonder why Djokovic took a similar risk, although his exhibition had been authorized by local authorities.
Annacone on Novak Djokovic
Paul Annacone feels the player council, including Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, should hold the Serbian to account.
“There’s 10 people on the council; they should figure how they feel about it,” Annacone told Sports Illustrated. “You have 500 players around the world on razor’s edge, hoping they can play in eight weeks [at the US Open].
Every action has a consequence. I think there’s a lot of his peer group who are scratching their heads,” he added. “His [Novak Djokovic] passion to do something good clouded all the information, all the science.
It was a good cause, driven by the right reason, but the end result was pretty disastrous”. In a statement, Novak Djokovic said both he and his wife had tested positive for COVID-19, but their children's results came out negative.
"Everything we did in the past month, we did with a pure heart and sincere intentions," Djokovic said. "Our tournament meant to unite and share a message of solidarity and compassion throughout the region. We organized the tournament at the moment when the virus has weakened, believing that the conditions for hosting the Tour had been met," he added.
"Unfortunately, this virus is still present, and it is a new reality that we are still learning to cope and live with. I am hoping things will ease with time so we can all resume lives the way they were. He is the fourth player who competed in the charity event to test positive.
Viktor Troicki, Grigor Dimitrov and Borna Coric also tested positive. The Adria Tour finale was canceled on Sunday after Dimitrov announced he had the virus. I am extremely sorry for each individual case of infection. I hope that it will not complicate anyone's health situation and that everyone will be fine."