Djokovic opposes idea of compulsory coronavirus vaccination

World number one Novak Djokovic says he is opposed to vaccines and would not want to be forced to take one to be able to travel.

Novak Djokovic

World number one Novak Djokovic made a flying start to the 2020 season, winning the Australian Open in January for his 17th Grand Slam title and stretched his winning run to 18 matches before the coronavirus brought sports events across the world to a halt.   -  Getty Images

Novak Djokovic faces a dilemma if it becomes compulsory for players to get vaccinated before they can begin competing once the tennis season resumes following the hiatus created by the coronavirus pandemic, the world number one said on Sunday.

“Personally I am opposed to vaccination and I wouldn't want to be forced by someone to take a vaccine in order to be able to travel,” Djokovic said in a live Facebook chat with several fellow Serbian athletes.

RELATED| COVID-19: Djokovic, Federer, Nadal discuss relief fund

“But if it becomes compulsory, what will happen? I will have to make a decision. I have my own thoughts about the matter and whether those thoughts will change at some point, I don't know.

“Hypothetically, if the season was to resume in July, August or September, though unlikely, I understand that a vaccine will become a requirement straight after we are out of strict quarantine and there is no vaccine yet,” he added.

Last month, former world number one Amelie Mauresmo said the rest of the 2020 tennis season might be wiped out, saying that action should not resume before players can get vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.

RELATED| Amelie Mauresmo fears 2020 tennis season is over

Medical experts have said that vaccines against the respiratory virus would not be ready until next year, raising doubts whether any further tennis tournaments can be contested this year.

RELATED| How they aced it: Federer, Nadal, Serena, Djokovic

This year's Wimbledon championships have been cancelled for the first time since World War II while the French Open, originally due to be held from May 24-June 7, was rescheduled for September 20 - October 4, shortly after the end of the U.S. Open.

Djokovic made a flying start to the 2020 season, winning the Australian Open in January for his 17th Grand Slam title and stretched his winning run to 18 matches before the pandemic brought sports events across the world to a halt.

RELATED| Wimbledon cancelled due to coronavirus pandemic

So far the governing bodies of tennis have suspended all tournaments until July 13. In addition, the women's Rogers Cup in Montreal, which had been due to be held in August, will also not take place this year.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos