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Novak Djokovic Set To Miss The French Open After Rule Change

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Novak Djokovic Set To Miss The French Open After Rule Change

Novak Djokovic has been dealt a new blow in his attempt to get to 21 Grand Slams, as the world number one men's tennis player is set to miss the French Open.

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Djokovic's long saga to play in the Australian Open came to an end at the weekend when his visa for Australia was cancelled for a second time in the space of a week.

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It means the Serbian has had to leave the country, and may not even be allowed back for three years, after deciding against getting the Covid vaccine, even though that was a requirement to play in the competition.

Djokovic would have been defending the Australian title he won last year and now it looks like he won't get the chance to defend the French title either.

France's parliament have now approved the introduction of vaccine certificates to enter public venues and the chances of an exemption for unvaccinated athletes look to have disappeared already.

Djokovic had his Australia visa cancelled. Image: PA Images
Djokovic had his Australia visa cancelled. Image: PA Images
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Roxana Maracineanu, France's minister delegate for sport, took to social media on Sunday and seemed to suggest that there won't be exemptions.

"The vaccination pass has been adopted," Maracineanu took to Twitter to say, "As soon as the law is confirmed, it will become mandatory to enter public buildings already subject to the health pass for all spectators, competitors, French or foreign professionals.

"Thank you to the sports movement for the work of conviction with the last rare unvaccinated [athletes].

"We will work together to preserve the competitions and to be the ambassadors of these measures at the international level."

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Djokovic won on the clay of Roland Garros last year. Image: PA Images
Djokovic won on the clay of Roland Garros last year. Image: PA Images

Djokovic is currently level on 20 Grand Slam wins with long time rivals Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, with all three having the most in the history of the men's game.

Federer isn't competing in Australia, and a long term injury means he may not make it back to any slams this year either, Nadal on the other hand is competing this week, after coming back from his own injury.

Last year Djokovic won the first three slams of the year and was on course to winning the Calendar Grand Slam, winning all four in the same year, and becoming the first man to do so since 1969.

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The 34-year-old fell at literally the final hurdle, losing in the final of the US Open to Daniil Medvedev in straight sets, with the Flushing Meadows crowd actually warming to the world number one for once.

However all that good will is likely to have disappeared for a majority of fans, outside his own from Serbia, since his refusal to get the vaccination.

Fortunately for him, he may not get the chance to play in front of any big crowds for much of the year, unless he changes his mind over the jabs.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Tennis, Australian Open, Novak Djokovic

Ryan Sidle
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