The Indian Wells Championship ended a few days ago. Novak Djokovic was not involved in this, because due to a lack of vaccination against COVID-19, he could not travel to the United States. The Serbian stopped and withdrew from the event late. His name was entered into the lottery. As we learned from the ATP statement, he was punished for this, but he has already successfully appealed.

Even Djokovic in Indian Wells had his opponent drawn, although the leader of the arrangement knew that he would not be able to make it to the United States and participate in the prestigious event. Two weeks ago, during a show in Dubai, he admitted that “it is likely that he will miss the Masters 1000 events in Indian Wells and Miami because the US authorities have requested full immunization of all visitors.”

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However, Djokovic retained his name in the Indian Wells tournament draw after he was automatically listed based on his rank, and the drawing ceremony was held with the Serbian second seed.

Only after the draw, a few hours before the start of the event, did Djokovic announce that he was withdrawing. “Even though I was on the list, I knew a trip to the US was an unlikely scenario. The organizers confirmed that the rules wouldn’t change, so I wouldn’t be able to show up. Good luck to those competing,” Djokovic wrote on Twitter.

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Serbian Grigor Dimitru took the place of the Serbian, and Joao Sousa entered the main class as the lucky loser in the qualifying round. “However, the Portuguese should not lose ground in qualifying, because he will not have to be in it if Djokovic withdraws on time,” British portal notes.

The situation is not clear

The ranking leader was penalized as a result of late retirement, and ATP officials published a letter confirming Djokovic’s penalty. “Every tennis player who withdraws after withdrawing the ATP Masters 1000 main tournament bracket will receive a point penalty and will be suspended from the next ATP Masters 1000 event. We are talking about the event in which the player scored the most points in the past 12 months” – the statement reads. In Djokovic’s case, the Indoor Masters 1000 will be at the Bercy Hall in Paris, which is traditionally played in the fall of each year. The Serbian won the previous edition of the event.

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According to journalist Ben Rottenberg, Djokovic has successfully appealed the ATP’s decision and will be able to appear in Paris in October. The reason for the 34-year-old’s appeal from Belgrade was not revealed. “Tennis players have the right to appeal the suspension ruling to the ATP Court, and this requires attaching medical certificates explaining the reason for the withdrawal,” the advertisement read only.

It is also unknown if Djokovic was fined for his late withdrawal from Indian Wells after winning the appeal. According to the regulations, players will be fined and suspended unless they immediately withdraw one week prior to the event or successfully appeal to the ATP court. Rottenberg admitted: “I don’t know why Djokovic successfully appealed.” The chaos in the Djokovic case continues. The Serb has not yet spoken about this, and there is no explanation for his current situation.

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Djokovic has been struggling to feature regularly in the major tournaments this season. All because of a lack of vaccinations. In January, the nine-time Australian Open champion was deported from Melbourne on the eve of the Grand Slam after Australian authorities twice revoked his visa. Since then, he has played in only one event, losing in the ATP 500 quarter-final in Dubai in February.