ATP

Djokovic in Indian Wells draw as tournament chiefs reveal ongoing talks

By Sports Desk March 09, 2022

Novak Djokovic is at the centre of another saga after being included in the draw for the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells.

The former world number one was handed a second-round clash against either David Goffin or Jordan Thompson.

All 32 seeds receive a first-round bye, so although the men's singles begins on Thursday at the California desert event, Djokovic is not due to be in action until the weekend.

However, it remains to be seen whether he is allowed into the United States, given he has declared he has not received any vaccination against the COVID-19 virus.

Tournament organisers admit they do not know whether Djokovic will play.

They said in a statement on the event's official Twitter feed: "Novak Djokovic is on the tournament entry list, and therefore is placed into the draw.

"We are currently in communication with his team; however, it has not been determined if he will participate in the event by getting CDC approval to enter the country.

"We will provide updates in the future as we learn more."

The CDC is America's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which lays down requirements for non-US international citizens travelling to the United States.

Within its rules, it is stated that all non-US citizens travelling to the US "must be fully vaccinated with the primary series of an accepted COVID-19 vaccine", adding that "only limited exceptions apply".

Djokovic tested positive for COVID-19 in December, and at one stage it appeared that recovering from that, and having post-virus antibodies, would be enough to allow him to travel to Melbourne and play in the Australian Open.

That proved not to be the case, with Djokovic twice detained after arriving in Australia before being deported.

He has since made his return to tennis at the Dubai Tennis Championships, where he surprisingly lost in the quarter-finals to Jiri Vesely.

The 34-year-old Serbian has been overtaken for the rankings top spot by Daniil Medvedev, the Russian who will be playing under a neutral flag while his country's military invasion of Ukraine continues. Medvedev will begin against Alexei Popyrin or a qualifier at Indian Wells.

Related items

  • Wimbledon: Raducanu's sudden rise 'difficult to navigate', says Murray Wimbledon: Raducanu's sudden rise 'difficult to navigate', says Murray

    Andy Murray sympathises with Emma Raducanu's struggles since winning the US Open last year, noting her sudden rise to stardom has been "extremely difficult to navigate."

    Murray also revealed he remains torn on whether he would remain in tennis after retiring, admitting an interest in coaching but saying he was not yet certain he would follow that path.

    The two British hopes will both feature on Centre Court when Wimbledon begins on Monday, with Raducanu facing Alison Van Uytvanck before Murray takes on Australia's James Duckworth.

    Raducanu has endured an injury-hit 2022 season, only lasting 36 minutes when making her first grass-court appearance of the year at Nottingham earlier this month, but has since declared herself "ready to go" ahead of the year's third grand slam.

    Recalling Raducanu's stunning triumph in New York last September, Murray said the way she was thrust into the public eye has complicated her 2022 campaign.

    "I never experienced what she experienced, your life changing overnight," he told the Telegraph.

    "It's impossible to know if everyone who is then involved with you is looking out for your best interests. You know that your family wants the best for you. The families are of course going to make mistakes, because it's new to everybody.

    "I would have worked with coaches when I was younger who were not necessarily the right people for me – and management companies, too.

    "You question; 'Do they want what’s best for you or do they want to make lots of money off you?'

    "It's extremely difficult to navigate."

    Murray and Raducanu are the only British players to win a grand slam singles title since Virginia Wade's Wimbledon triumph in 1977, with the Scot's last major win coming at the All England Club Wimbledon in 2016.

    Ahead of his tilt at a third triumph at SW19, the 35-year-old said his post-retirement plans remained uncertain.

    "I have interests and things outside of tennis and I know that when I finally finish, everything will be fine. The world won't end," he added.  

    "Whereas maybe when I was 25, and maybe at times even at the beginning of the [Amazon Prime] documentary in 2017 [about his injuries], I was still a bit like that.

    "I've always been interested in coaching. There's also a chance that I might not be involved in tennis anymore.

    "I feel right now that I would always have some involvement in tennis, but there are also times when I've been away from the sport and I've not watched any of the tournaments.

    "That's when I'm just at home with the kids. It's pretty full-on, that side of things."

  • Wimbledon: 'There's still good tennis left in me' – Murray eyes success after Stuttgart run Wimbledon: 'There's still good tennis left in me' – Murray eyes success after Stuttgart run

    Andy Murray says recent form proves he can again compete at an elite level, declaring ahead of his Wimbledon opener on Monday: "There's still good tennis left in me."

    Murray will face Australia's James Duckworth on Centre Court when the year's third grand slam gets under way, looking to better last year's run to the third round.

    The last of Murray's three grand slam titles came at Wimbledon in 2016, but the 35-year-old impressed when beating Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nick Kyrgios at the Stuttgart Open earlier this month, eventually going down in three sets to last year's Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini after struggling with an injury.

    Speaking at a pre-Wimbledon news conference, Murray said those displays had given him hope of a strong showing in London.

    "I think I showed a couple of weeks ago that there's still good tennis left in me," he said. "I beat a guy [Tsitispas] in the top five in the world [at the time] and I was neck and neck, before the injury, with Berrettini, who's one of the best grass-court players in the world.

    "I've been doing pretty well in practices, so I know the tennis is in there. I just need to bring it out during the event now."

    Murray teamed up with coach Ivan Lendl for a third time in March, having won each of his three grand slam titles and two Olympic gold medals under the watch of the eight-time major winner.

    The Scot revealed several coaches rejected the chance to work with him after he endured a series of injury-plagued seasons, and he hailed the 62-year-old Lendl for continuing to believe in him.

    "Obviously having Ivan in my team helps," Murray said. "We've had a lot of success in the past, we know each other well, and he still believes in me. There's not loads of coaches and people out there that have done over this last period, but he has.

    "For the most part in my career, when I had conversations with potential coaches it came off most of the time. Whereas this time round, I got turned down by a lot of coaches, so that was obviously difficult to deal with.

    "I don't know how many you'd say were really top level, who would be able to help you win the major events.

    "So that's also why I'm grateful Ivan has come back to work with me and help me try and achieve what I want to achieve."

  • 'There's still good tennis left in me' – Murray eyes Wimbledon success after Stuttgart run 'There's still good tennis left in me' – Murray eyes Wimbledon success after Stuttgart run

    Andy Murray says recent form proves he can again compete at an elite level, declaring ahead of his Wimbledon opener on Monday: "There's still good tennis left in me."

    Murray will face Australia's James Duckworth on Centre Court when the year's third grand slam gets under way, looking to better last year's run to the third round.

    The last of Murray's three grand slam titles came at Wimbledon in 2016, but the 35-year-old impressed when beating Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nick Kyrgios at the Stuttgart Open earlier this month, eventually going down in three sets to last year's Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini after struggling with an injury.

    Speaking at a pre-Wimbledon news conference, Murray said those displays had given him hope of a strong showing in London.

    "I think I showed a couple of weeks ago that there's still good tennis left in me," he said. "I beat a guy [Tsitispas] in the top five in the world [at the time] and I was neck and neck, before the injury, with Berrettini, who's one of the best grass-court players in the world.

    "I've been doing pretty well in practices, so I know the tennis is in there. I just need to bring it out during the event now."

    Murray teamed up with coach Ivan Lendl for a third time in March, having won each of his three grand slam titles and two Olympic gold medals under the watch of the eight-time major winner.

    The Scot revealed several coaches rejected the chance to work with him after he endured a series of injury-plagued seasons, and he hailed the 62-year-old Lendl for continuing to believe in him.

    "Obviously having Ivan in my team helps," Murray said. "We've had a lot of success in the past, we know each other well, and he still believes in me. There's not loads of coaches and people out there that have done over this last period, but he has.

    "For the most part in my career, when I had conversations with potential coaches it came off most of the time. Whereas this time round, I got turned down by a lot of coaches, so that was obviously difficult to deal with.

    "I don't know how many you'd say were really top level, who would be able to help you win the major events.

    "So that's also why I'm grateful Ivan has come back to work with me and help me try and achieve what I want to achieve."

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.