Australian Open | No vaccine, no visa?

(Paris) Three months before the Australian Open (January 17-30), Australian government authorities reiterated the urgent need for vaccination to participate, even if the WTA mentioned a scenario with the previous fourteen. Red streak casts doubt on n .’s postNS 1 World Cup Novak Djokovic.


Elodie SOINARD
France media agency

According to the ATP and WTA, in an interview with AFP, nearly two in three players and more than 60% of female players are vaccinated so far.

What is the position of the Australian authorities?

Relentless and steady. For a week now, from local authorities to the federal government, the message has been consistent: No vaccine, no visa.

“I don’t think an unvaccinated player will get a visa,” said Daniel Andrews, prime minister of Victoria, where Melbourne is located in mid-October – which has just emerged from more than 260 days of cumulative confinement, making it one of the oldest cities in the world.

“The virus does not care about your ranking or how many Grand Slams you have won. You should get vaccinated to protect yourself and others.”

A position endorsed by several federal ministers in the following days. “I don’t have a message for Novak (Djokovic), I have a message for anyone who wants to come to Australia: they should be doubly vaccinated,” said those at the Department of Immigration. “Our rules apply without exception. It doesn’t matter if you don’tNS 1 world or anyone else,” we insisted on health.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has since raised the possibility of granting exemptions, as has been the case for skilled workers since the start of the pandemic. But Daniel Andrews ignored that possibility.

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“I want to make it clear that the state of Victoria will not ask for an exemption for players who are not vaccinated. So it will not be granted. The issue has been resolved,” he said on Wednesday. “The issue of consistency, he explains, “I will not ask spectators and tournament staff to receive a vaccination when players are not vaccinated.”

Are other scenarios being considered?

The WTA, in particular with Tennis Australia, which is organizing the first major tournament of the season, has informed players of a more open health protocol under discussion, according to an email revealed by a specialist journalist on Sunday.

It is exposed to a two-tiered system: strict with the unvaccinated, flexible with others.

In short, for the unvaccinated, “a mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine” and “regular checks”, not to mention the issue of contact cases “not yet 100% off”.

On the other hand, for vaccinators “complete freedom of movement” provided that they provide two negative tests, one within 72 hours before departure and the other within 24 hours after arrival.

But the WTA then asked for discretion, the Australian Federation “still working with the government”.

In contact with Agence France-Presse, the latter said he was “optimistic about the possibility of organizing” the “championship” in conditions as close as possible to those that prevailed before the outbreak of the epidemic.

What do the players say?

The sound that finds the greatest resonance is the n . soundNS World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who took a public stand against vaccinations in the spring of 2020 and refused to share his vaccination status.

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“I don’t know if I will go to Australia,” the Melbourne record holder (9) told a Serbian newspaper. flash ten days ago. However, reaching the Australian Grand Slam is historic for Djokovic: overtaking him by 21NS Big Cup Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

“Personally, I am against vaccination, and I do not want to be forced to travel,” he said in April 2020. A year later, he was still demanding “freedom of choice.”

“It is a private matter. It seems unbelievable to me that society is judging you on the basis of a vaccine,” the Serb said.

hesitant time, nNS World 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas, who argued about his youth, or the Frenchman Gilles Simon, decided to communicate.

Since the US Open in early September, the former playerNS World 1 Victoria Azarenka considered it “strange that spectators and not players are vaccinated”, and therefore “it is inevitable that this will become mandatory”. Andy Murray, also formerNS Number 1 in the world, she considered it a “responsibility as players who travel the world”.

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