Djokovic calls sudden press conference as Indian Wells update expected

Novak Djokovic jokes about his age at the Australian Open

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Novak Djokovic is reportedly set to call a press conference with an update on his status for the Indian Wells Masters expected.

According to Serbian outlet Sportal, the 35-year-old may have an announcement to make in the coming days.

Djokovic told the publication: “I know everything but I can’t tell you anything, sorry. I decided to have a press conference. I will answer all questions there. I have already arranged with my PR team, the invitation will arrive in a few days.”

The Serbian was unable to feature in the North American hard-court events of Miami and Indian Wells last March due to the US’ covid vaccine mandate. With the ruling still in place until at least until May 11, and the world no. 1 still un-jabbed, it is unlikely he will feature in the Masters 1000 tournaments this year.

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The Serbian is preparing for the Dubai Open, the event where he made his first appearance of the 2022 season after being deported from Australia on the eve of the Australian Open. Earlier this month, Djokovic’s brother Djordje was seeking “special permission” in a last-ditch attempt for him to compete in two American events.

Indian Wells is the first Masters 1000 taking place between March 6 and 19 which is followed by the Miami Open. Djordje Djokovic hopes that the tennis star can obtain ‘special permission’ to compete despite the requirements.

“Unfortunately, it is something that is not in our hands,” he told Serbian news agency Tanjung. “Novak has to obtain special permission as the US is still denying entry to non-vaccinated persons, which is simply unbelievable as the whole world is open and sports events feature vaccinated and unvaccinated athletes alike.

“Novak has submitted all the required documentation and a request, and the directors of the Indian Wells and Miami tournaments have publicly said Novak is needed at those tournaments and that they want him to come. There are only a few days to go before a decision is made and what remains for us to do is hope for a positive outcome.”

Djokovic has been very successful over the ‘Sunshine Double’, winning Indian Wells five times and Miami Open six times – the latter being the joint most in history alongside Andre Agassi. Indian Wells tournament director Tommy Haas said it would be “a disgrace” if the tennis legend is prevented from travelling to the US once again.

“It would be nice to see if we could maybe lift those a little earlier and have him come to play Indian Wells and Miami,” he told Tennis365. “I think he wants to play, so we should give him the chance. Hopefully we can have him there. I mean, it would be a disgrace in my eyes if he wasn’t coming to these events, or not allowed to come.”

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