NOVAK DJOKOVIC’s defense at the Australian Open was once again in doubt – after he was reported to have pulled out of the ATP Cup.
The world number 1 has been named to the Serbian team’s 2020 champions to compete in the men’s team competition in Sydney next week.
Serbia is in Group A alongside Norway, Chile and Spain at the ATP Cup, which is scheduled to take place from January 1-9 before the Australian Open kicks off on January 17.
But Serbian newspaper Blic reports Djokovic will not attend the tournament.
And the latest news has led to suggestions that he may not be traveling to Australia for the opening season.
Djokovic has yet to confirm whether he is fully vaccinated against coronavirus as question marks remain over his participation at Australian Open.
Australian Open head Craig Tiley said on Wednesday he was still unsure if Djokovic would play at the first Grand Slam of 2022.
He confirmed it all Australian Open players and staff will be vaccinated or medically exempted by an independent panel of experts.
But tell me later Serbia eliminated from Davis Cup, Djokovic – who is on the list to participate in Oz Open – said: “I understand you want some answers about where I started the season, how I started it.
“I’m really tired with this season and all of this year, so I just want to spend some quality time with my family, the rehab regimen, then see what the future brings.
“You’ll be notified. I know what you want. I won’t give you an answer tonight.
“I know what you want to ask me. But you will be informed. That’s all I can tell you.
“I can’t tell you any dates. Obviously, Australia is close by, so you’ll know very soon.”
Djokovic beat Daniil Medvedev in the final last year to claim his ninth crown in Melbourne.
And if he successfully defends his title, he will surpass Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal to win a record 21 Grand Slams.
https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/17144488/novak-djokovic-pulls-out-atp-cup-australian-open/ Novak Djokovic ‘withdraws from ATP Cup’ as he continues to have doubts about Covid vaccination and defends Australian Open