OFFICIAL: Novak Djokovic set for US Open return as United States ends Covid-19 vaccine mandate ends

Novak Djokovic during a match

Novak Djokovic will be able to play at all four Grand Slams in 2023 after it was confirmed that he will be able to compete at the US Open later this year following Covid-19 regulation changes by the United States government.

The world No 1 missed last year’s hard-court Grand Slam at Flushing Meadows due to his unvaccinated status as United States entry requirements stated that foreign travellers had to be inoculated against Covid-19 in order to enter the country.

Djokovic was also forced to skip this year’s Sunshine Double – the Indian Wells Open and Miami Open – in March as his application for special permission to enter the US was denied, but he will be allowed to compete on American soil again later this year after regulation changes.

The United States government announced on Monday that its Covid-19 vaccine mandate will come to an end on May 11.

“Today, we are announcing that the Administration will end the Covid-19 vaccine requirements for Federal employees, Federal contractors, and international air travelers at the end of the day on May 11, the same day that the Covid-19 public health emergency ends,” the White House said in a statement.

The announcement also means he will be able to play in the lead-up events to the US Open and he will no doubt sign up for the Cincinnati Masters, which runs from August 14-20, while he could also enter tournaments like the Atlanta Open and Washington Open.

Earlier this year Djokovic also made a return to the Australian Open after he also missed the tournament last year due as he was deported from the country due to his unvaccinated status. He went on to win a 10th title at Melbourne Park to move to 22 Grand Slams – tying Rafael Nadal for most Grand Slams won by a male player.

Djokovic’s US Open record

The 22-time Grand Slam winner’s last appearance at the US Open came in 2021 when he finished runner-up against Daniil Medvedev with the defeat ending his hopes of competing a Calendar Grand Slam as he also won the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon.

The previous year he exited the tournament in the fourth round as he was disqualified after he accidentally hit a line person in the throat with a ball.

The Serbian’s last title win in New York came in 2018 when he defeated Juan Martin del Potro in three sets in the final while previous two titles came in 2015 and 2011 when he beat Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, respectively, in the showpiece match.

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