Djokovic included on Australian Open entry list as exemption 'loopholes' denied

Novak Djokovic has been included on the entry list for next month’s Australian Open despite ongoing uncertainty about his vaccination status.

The world No.1 hasn’t revealed publicly if he is vaccinated against coronavirus which is a requirement to play in Melbourne.

The latest on Djokovic’s attendance has also seen tournament organisers Tennis Australia deny reports they could seek to apply for an exemption on medical grounds to allow Djokovic to play if he is unvaccinated.

In a statement released by Tennis Australia they said: ‘All players, participants and staff at the Australian Open have to be vaccinated.

‘Any suggestion that Tennis Australia is seeking ‘loopholes’ within this process is simply untrue.

‘Adjudicating on medical exemptions is the domain of independent medical experts. We are not in a position to influence this process and nor would we.

‘Any application for a medical exemption must follow strict government guidelines based on Atagi (Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation) clinical advice.

‘This is the same process that applies to any person wanting to enter Australia.’

The first Grand Slam of the year gets underway on January 17 and Djokovic has already been confirmed in Serbia’s team for the ATP Cup taking place on January 1 in Sydney, which further suggests he is expected to defend his title at the Australian Open.

The big news from the women’s Australian Open entry list saw Serena Williams not included after revealing she is not physically ready to compete.

‘While this is never an easy decision to make, I am not where I need to be physically to compete,’ said the 40-year-old.

‘I will miss seeing the fans, but am excited to return and compete at my highest level.’

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