Novak Djokovic prepares to make final call on Miami Open offer
The clock is ticking on Novak Djokovc’s hopes of getting an exemption for the Miami Open and he is set to make a final call on whether he will attempt to take an alternative route into America.
World No 1 Djokovic has been banned from entering America after he confirmed he was not vaccinated against Covid-19.
That decision forced him to miss all events in America last year, including the US Open, and his misery has continued into 2023.
Even though there are several unvaccinated players competing at the Indian Wells Masters this week, Djokovic is a notable absentee from the entry list as he was not allowed to enter America.
It is possible to enter America without being vaccinated against Covid by flying into the Bahamas and taking a boat from the Caribbean island, with Florida Governor and rumoured Presidential hopeful Ron DeSantis suggesting he would open the door to Djokovic to take that route.
“I would run a boat from the Bahamas here for him. I would do that a hundred percent,” DeSantis said at a press conference in Tampa.
“I think his people are looking at it. I think it’d be a great moment, but you know, nevertheless.
“The only thing keeping Novak Djokovic from participating in the Miami Open tennis tournament is President Biden’s misguided and unscientific COVID-19 vaccination requirement for foreign travelers.
“Mr. President – lift your restrictions and let him compete.”
DeSantis is one of many American politicians who have suggested Djokovic should be allowed to play in Miami, yet US President Biden has shown no inclination to support his efforts to get an exception.
Now it seems that Djokovic is ready to give up on his hopes of getting into Miami, as he is ready to turn down Governor DeSantis’ offer to get him into the country via the back door route.
This is likely to be the final time Djokovic misses a tournament due to his vaccine status, with America due to loosen their entry requirements in May.
Yet that is unlikely to stop the increasingly vocal tide of negative comments flowing in the direction of President Biden and his vaccine requirements, which are amongst the most strict in the world.
Djokovic’s next tournament is likely to be the Monte Carlo Masters in the second week of April, with his hope of finishing the year as world No 1 only partially damaged by his exile from Indian Wells and Miami.
The Serbian has no points to defend for a large chunk of the second half of 2023, with his Wimbledon win last summer failing to deliver the 2,000 points he was due after he ATP stripped the tournament of points following their decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players in response to the war in Ukraine.
He also has no points to defend from the two Masters series events leading into the US Open, where could pick up another 2,000 points with a win.
If Djokovic continues to show the form he displayed by winning the Australian Open in January, he is the red-hot favourite to resume his role as the game’s dominant player.
Yet that will not dampen his frustration at missing the Miami Open later this month.
READ MORE: Novak Djokovic visits sponsors who have always brought him luck
Carlos Alcaraz will bring the best out of Jannik Sinner, Taylor Fritz, Daniil Medvedev
The likes of Jannik Sinner, Taylor Fritz, Daniil Medvedev will need to lift their game to compete with Carlos Alcaraz.
Is there any way that Carlos Alcaraz can improve?
Carlos Alcaraz was dominant at Indian Wells.
Roger Federer gets another net worth bump as On stocks soar
Roger Federer can’t stop winning.
Andrey Rublev is not caught up with being Russian No 1
Andrey Rublev doesn’t need to be the top Russian.
Roger Federer welcomes world No 1 Iga Swiatek and Ben Shelton to the On team
Roger Federer is thrilled to welcome two generational talents to On apparel.
Monica Seles sees herself in Naomi Osaka
Monica Seles is hopeful that Naomi Osaka will return to tennis after the birth of her first child.
Martina Navratilova opens up on cancer battle in emotional interview
Tennis legend Martina Navratilova has opened up on her cancer battle.
Miami Open draw: Andy Murray on collision course with Carlos Alcaraz
Andy Murray is lined up with a Round of 32 meeting against world No 1 Carlos Alcaraz.
Naomi Osaka sets out to become a mental health champion
Naomi Osaka is out to hit a winner for mental health.
What titles has Daniil Medvedev won?
Daniil Medvedev is a feared opponent on hard courts all over the world.