Novak Djokovic withdraws from Indian Wells after being denied COVID-19 vaccine waiver
Novak Djokovic dropped out of BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells on Sunday evening, tournament officials announced hours before the tournament draw.
World number one Novak Djokovic has withdrawn from the 2023 BNP Paribas Open. With his refusal, Nikoloz Basilashvili enters the field, ”the tournament organizers said in a statement.
Although a formal reason was not explained in this statement, Djokovic, who is not currently vaccinated against COVID-19, recently applied for a special permit from the United States government to compete in the upcoming ATP Masters tournaments in Indiana Wells and Miami. His decision to leave Indian Wells means the application has been rejected by the US government. according to the Associated Press.
Florida Republican Senator Rick Scott tweeted about it, saying Homeland Security has rejected Djokovic’s COVID-19.
🚨 BREAKING: We were told that @DHSgov just got rejected @JokerNolea request to waive the vaccine, making him ineligible to compete next week in the U.S. in California and @MiamiOpen. @JoeBiden should fix it NOW, grant a waiver and let him compete here in the states. https://t.co/TSD10yM8u6
— Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) March 3, 2023
Djokovic has not competed in the Indian Wells and Miami ATP tournaments since 2019 due to being unvaccinated against COVID-19. On May 11, the United States ends the COVID-19 emergency, which will allow foreign residents to enter the country even if they are not vaccinated against the virus.
Djokovic currently holds 22 Grand Slam titles and is close to winning the 2023 Australian Open where he defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.