Tournament Director Opens Up on Novak Djokovic’s Participation at Australian Open 2022

Published 11/19/2021, 11:21 PM EST
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 28: Novak Djokovic of Serbia complains during his Men’s Singles Quarterfinal match against Milos Raonic of Canada on day nine of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 28, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)


20-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic has inarguably been the best tennis player of the 2021 season. However, he has also sparked the biggest question in the tennis world today: Will he play the Australian Open next year? On this, Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley shared his view.

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Notably, Djokovic has lifted a record nine of his 20 major titles in Melbourne Park. But because of the coronavirus scenario, the Happy Slam might induce restrictions for unvaccinated players. Hence, the Serbian World No.1 has decided to wait until the final update from Tennis Australia.

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Craig Tiley expects Novak Djokovic to play Australian Open 2022

On the Today Show, CEO of Tennis Australia Craig Tiley announced the start of the Australian Open 2022 preparations. He expressed excitement to see Rafael Nadal and Serena Williams but missed Novak Djokovic.

Therefore, the host asked Tiley whether the Serbian ace would come to Melbourne or not. “It’s a good question,” Tiley said. “We are expecting Novak to come, and obviously, there’s a lot of speculation around the vaccination.”

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 15: (L-R) Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic, Rafael Nadal of Spain, Serena Williams of the United States and Novak Djokovic of Serbia take part in the Rally for Relief Bushfire Appeal event at Rod Laver Arena on January 15, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Graham Denholm/Getty Images)

In continuation, the AO tournament director claimed that most of the tennis players, both on the men’s and the women’s side, are fully vaccinated. But since Djokovic has kept his vaccination status private, his participation remains under clouds. But Tiley hopes his most successful player will come.

“He has had great success here in Melbourne, and he has always said that the Australian Open is the event that puts the wind in his sails. So I hope we get to see Novak,” Tiley concluded.

Indeed, Novak’s decision for Australia will impact his entire 2022 season. And considering his hunger to get past Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the Most Grand Slams race, him participating is likely than the other alternative.

Djokovic enters semifinals in ATP Finals 2021

Currently, the 34-year-old is in Turin competing at the ATP Finals 2021. So far, he has been undefeated and will next play against Alexander Zverev for a place in the final.

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Tennis – ATP Finals – Pala Alpitour, Turin, Italy – November 19, 2021 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his group stage match against Britain’s Cameron Norrie REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

Here, Djokovic is looking forward to equalling Federer’s six-time ATP Finals winner record. Thus, it would be a blockbuster match between two friends and budding rivals on hard courts.

In time, the world will find out whether Djokovic levels Federer in this feat or not. Likewise, tennis fans hope for the Serbian ace to confirm his Australian Open 2022 participation soon.

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Do you think Djokovic would miss the Happy Slam next year?

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Purav Joshi

1357 articles

Purav Joshi is a Senior Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 1000 tennis articles.

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