Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic said he was not going to be vaccinated against coronavirus and is ready to miss tournaments that do not allow unvaccinated players.
“I have never opposed vaccination. I understand that everyone is making a huge effort to deal with the virus. Hope all this ends soon. Vaccination is the biggest effort that has ever been made. Probably more than half of the planet has already been vaccinated.
I respect this, but I have always supported the freedom of choice in what a person does with his body. For me, the question of vaccination is the decision of what is right and what is wrong for a particular person. I, as an elite athlete, have always been careful about everything that can get into my food, supplements, water, sports drinks – in general, everything that fuels my body. Based on the information that I have, I do not intend to be vaccinated today.
I am part of a big sport that is played around the world every week, and I understand the consequences of my decision very well. I was prepared for the fact that I would not be able to get to Australia. I understand that now I can’t get to most tournaments because I haven’t been vaccinated. This is the price I’m willing to pay. Am I seriously worried about this injection? Yes. Am I ready to skip Roland Garros? Yes, that’s the price I’m willing to pay. Am I ready to miss Wimbledon? Yes. Why? Because my principles and attitude towards my own body are much more important than any titles. I try to get along with my body as much as possible, ”Djokovic said in an interview with the BBC.
In January, Djokovic missed the Australian Open. The Serb was deported from Australia on 16 January. The tennis star was also banned from visiting the country for three years. On January 14, the Australian authorities canceled the Serbian athlete’s visa and decided to deport him.
Djokovic’s problems arose due to the fact that the Serbian visa does not include data on a medical exemption from vaccination against coronavirus. In addition, inconsistencies in the declared information with real data were found in the documents.