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"If I would be the decision-maker, sure I want Novak Djokovic to play" - Daniil Medvedev on the Serb's chances to play at the US Open

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Daniil Medvedev [left] with Novak Djokovic at the 2021 Paris Masters
Daniil Medvedev [left] with Novak Djokovic at the 2021 Paris Masters

World No. 1 Daniil Medvedev has said he would like to see Novak Djokovic play at the US Open amid growing uncertainty regarding the Serb's presence at the year-ending Slam.

Djokovic's unvaccinated status means that he cannot compete in the US Open, as US laws currently bar entry to those who have not had the jab against COVID-19.

However, all hope is not lost for the 21-time Slam champion as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued new guidance last week, relaxing rules regarding social distancing and quarantine.

The travel advice - which bars entry to unvaccinated travelers - has not changed as of yet but could do so soon as they are under review.

Meanwhile, speaking to the press ahead of the Cincinnati Masters, Medvedev was asked if he would like to see Novak Djokovic in action at the US Open. The Russian answered in the affirmative but pointed out that his will counts for little.

“I cannot do anything. It is the government who sets the rules, so I do not know if it can actually change or not," Daniil Medvedev said. "If you ask me, if I would be the decision-maker, sure I want Novak to play. I like it when the tournament [has] the best players in the world.”
Defending US Open champion Daniil Medvedev wants to see Novak Djokovic in New York 🇺🇸#USOpen | @DaniilMedwed

Medvedev highlighted Djokovic's intense Grand Slam battle with Rafael Nadal as one of the reasons he would like to see the Serb in action at Flushing Meadows.

Djokovic currently has 21 Majors to his name, with the Mallorcan one ahead at 22.

“This competition against Rafa is super intense and super interesting,” said Medvedev. “So I would love to see him there in New York."

Having said that, the Russian stressed that players would give it their best shot at the Slam regardless of Djokovic's participation status.

“But, if for the government rules, he cannot be there, well, everybody is still going to try to do their best and try to win [the] US Open," he added.

What is the new CDC ruling & what does it mean for Novak Djokovic's US Open participation?

JUST IN - CDC adopts guidelines similar to those Florida was under fire for adopting (NPR) https://t.co/y39TP8cwbf

Last Friday, the CDC announced a relaxation of its COVID-19 rules. They deemed that unvaccinated individuals should no longer be treated any differently than vaccinated ones.

From Novak Djokovic's perspective, the more positive news was the fact that the CDC ruled that people exposed to the virus are no longer required to quarantine and that screening for unsymptomatic carriers is no longer necessary.

It is pertinent to note that these changes do not directly change the Serb's situation - he still cannot enter the United States of America as the new changes only apply to American citizens.

But what these changes have indicated is that the US Government and the CDC are willing to change some of their rules, which in turn offers a glimpse of hope to the 21-time Major champion.

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Edited by Nihal Taraporvala
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