Rafa Nadal shares his disappointment over Novak Djokovic’s absence from the US Open calling it ‘very sad news’ as the Serb misses out on the Grand Slam due to not being vaccinated against Covid-19
- Rafael Nadal says it’s ‘very sad news’ Novak Djokovic will miss the US Open
- Djokovic will miss second Grand Slam of the year due to vaccination refusal
- Nadal will be looking to win a record-breaking 23rd Slam at Flushing Meadows
- World No 1 Daniil Medvedev also disappointed to not see the Serb in New York
Rafael Nadal has said that the absence of Novak Djokovic from this year’s US Open is ‘very sad news’ for the tournament.
The 35-year-old will once again be sitting out a major Grand Slam because of his ongoing refusal to be be vaccinated against Covid-19.
Djokovic has already missed this year’s Australian Open due to his stance and has now withdrawn from the US event after giving up hope that the American Government would relax restrictions to allow him to play.
Novak Djokovic will once again miss the US Open due to his refusal to get vaccinated for Covid
Rafa Nadal says its ‘very sad news’ that he won’t be facing his rival at Flushing Meadows
With Djokovic out the way, the path is clear for Nadal to add another major slam to his glittering collection. A 23rd Grand Slam championship would move him two clear of the Serbian in the all-time record list.
However, the Spanish star says that he rather see the best players at Flushing Meadows and is sad to see his rival absent from the tournament.
‘From my personal perspective, it’s very sad news. It’s always a shame when the best players of the world are not able to play a tournament because of injuries or because of different reasons.
The pair last met at a majors in the quarter-finals of this year’s French Open, which Nadal won
‘In this case, not having one of the best players of history in the draw of a Grand Slam is always an important miss. It’s tough for the fans, tough for the tournament. In my opinion, tough for the players, too, because we want to have the best field possible.
‘But, on the other hand, I repeat what I said plenty of times: the sport in some ways is bigger than any player.
‘I missed a lot of important events in my tennis career because of injuries. Last year I was not here. Two years ago I was not here. The tournament continues. The world of tennis keeps going.’
World number one Daniil Medvedev is also disappointed not to see Djokovic in New York
Medvedev shocked the sport with his straight sets win over Djokovic at last year’s US Open
World number one Daniil Medvedev has also spoken out on his disappointment on not seeing the Wimbledon champion in New York.
The Russian’s straight sets win over Djokovic in last year’s US Open final was one the biggest tennis upsets in recent memory and the 26-year-old thinks it’s a shame he won’t be able to face him again in 2022.
‘I wish he would play here,’ Medvedev said.
‘The rivalry against Rafa (Nadal) is really I feel heating up in a way. 22, 21 (Grand Slams), a joke of a number.
‘It’s a pity he is not here. It would be a great story I think for tennis. Not only tennis-wise, but it’s not us tennis players, it’s American government rules. Completely understandable also.’