The dispute over Novak Djokovic’s status in Australia has been “damaging on all fronts”, the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) has said.
The governing body of men’s tennis applauded the court’s ruling quashing the cancellation of Djokovic’s visa ahead of the Australian Open but called for greater clarity over the rules.
Djokovic had been forced to stay in a Melbourne hotel after being blocked by border officials last week ahead of the competition due to him being unvaccinated.
The ATP said the situation highlighted the need for a clearer understanding and communication of the rules, before adding that it strongly recommends all players get vaccinated against COVID-19.
A statement said: “The ATP fully respects the sacrifices the people of Australia have made since the onset of COVID-19 and the stringent immigration policies that have been put in place.
“Complications in recent days related to player entry into Australia have however highlighted the need for clearer understanding, communication and application of the rules.
“In travelling to Melbourne, it’s clear Novak Djokovic believed he had been granted a necessary medical exemption in order to comply with entry regulations.
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“The series of events leading to Monday’s court hearing have been damaging on all fronts, including for Novak’s well-being and preparation for the Australian Open.”
The statement continued: “More broadly, ATP continues to strongly recommend vaccination for all players on the ATP Tour, which we believe is essential for our sport to navigate the pandemic.
“This is based on scientific evidence supporting the health benefits provided and to comply with global travel regulations, which we anticipate will become stricter over time.”
Source : Sky News