After being deported from Australia, a day before the start of 2022 Australian Open due to his vaccination status, 20-time Major champions Novak Djokovic is now prepared to miss the upcoming French Open and Wimbledon if he’s not allowed to participate due to vaccination rules.
In an interview with BBC, the Serbian tennis star maintained that he is not “anti-vax” but is careful about what he ingests.
“That is the price that I am willing to pay.”
“Because the principles of decision-making on my body are more important than any title or anything else,” he said.
“I understand the consequences of my decision,” Djokovic said. “I understand that not being vaccinated today, you know, I am unable to travel to most of the tournaments at the moment.”
The 34-year-old Serb said he is not opposed to vaccinations but believes in “the freedom to choose what you put into your body. And, for me, that is essential.”
“I am trying to be in tune with my body as much as I possibly can,” he said, adding that he has always been careful about everything he ingests. “Based on all the information that I got, I decided not to take the vaccine, as of today.”
Djokovic has won the French Open twice, including in 2021, and has six Wimbledon titles, including the last three.
Djokovic, however, distanced himself from anti-vaccination campaigners. Some claimed him as their hero when he was deported from Australia in January. That followed his losing bid to stay in the country to defend his Australian Open title despite not being vaccinated against Covid-19.
“I was never against vaccination,” Djokovic said, adding “everyone has the right to choose, to act, or say what ever they feel is appropriate for them.”