The world number one tennis player Novak Djokovic is the subject of controversy ever since he organized the Adria Tour. His charitable event across Belgrade, Serbia, and Zadar, Croatia was intended for good causes, but eventually, it came out cursed. The tour saw numerous top athletes, including Nole himself, contracting the novel coronavirus disease. As a result, the entire tennis community has divided into two parts.
Fans and admirers are supporting Djokovic in these tough times. But a large section of the tennis fraternity is heavily criticizing the 33-year old Serb. Experts claim that Djokovic’s decision to organize a tennis tournament amid the pandemic would eventually cost him his legacy. At least, the former Wimbledon junior singles champion Noah Rubin believes so.
Speaking with a panel in the talk show “Match Points”, hosted by Tennis Majors’ Josh Cohen, Rubin said, “All my personal interactions with Novak have been actually really pleasant. I actually like him a lot, as personally, before all this situation. But the fact of the matter is, we all know very well that, when he was coming up… trying to make this up, he changed a lot in his PR game… started taking kids down. He switched that around quickly I think. He wasn’t most liked when he first entered kind of the top of the game. And then he switched that around.”
When it comes to credibility, how far the Adria Tour and the incidents happening around it will affect Djokovic’s image? Rubin seemed to have a theory regarding the topic. He continued, “I think it does take a few steps back for him. It’s giving people credibility to not like him. He has to understand just how much power he holds. For somebody with that much influence, it comes with a responsibility, and I don’t think he’s harnessed it properly yet.”
The organizers eventually abandoned the ill-fated Adria Tour after Djokovic tested positive for the virus. But he was not the only one to be infected. Apart from him, Grigor Dimitrov and Borna Coric too contracted the disease. Even Novak’s wife Jelena and coach Goran Ivanisevic was found COVID-19 positive.
Amid the rage of the tennis community around the world, Novak Djokovic and his wife have finally tested negative. And that will relieve him a lot. Fans want him to recover fast and return to action. But it’s still unclear when the Serb will come back to the tennis court. Whether he will participate in the US and French Open tournaments this summer, is yet to be announced.