“Not Sure About the ATP Cup”: Novak Djokovic Expresses Concerns Over Australian Summer 2021




World No. 1 Novak Djokovic steamrolled past Diego Schwartzman in his first group stage match at the ATP Finals 2020. With the tour finals being the last tournament of the year, the focus has shifted towards the 2021 season. With the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic striking the world, Djokovic might be forced to skip some of the premier tournaments in the season-opening Australian summer.

Diego Schwartzman and Novak Djokovic at ATP Finals 2020
Novak Djokovic with Diego Schwartzman after winning their group stage match. Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

With Tennis Australia looking to host all its tournaments in Melbourne, Djokovic might skip them and directly play the Australian Open. Given the 14-day quarantine, players will have to leave earlier than they would want to. And this doubt could push many to skip the ATP Cup if it happens.

“From what I have heard and what I know of the latest news from Tennis Australia is that the Australian Open and the rest of the tournaments will be held in Victoria state, mostly Melbourne and around Melbourne,” Djokovic said.

Novak Djokovic on the quarantine rules in Australia

Djokovic has had a long tussle with quarantines around the world. He had called for shortening and relaxing of quarantine rules, but it looks like there will a 14-day quarantine. The Serb said:

“I have not noticed much of a doubt whether the tournaments will happen or not. There is going to be a quarantine of 14 days. But obviously, we still don’t know whether we choose where we do quarantine.”

Novak Djokovic at ATP Finals 2020
Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning his group stage match against Diego Schwartzman. Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

Djokovic skeptical about ATP Cup

Most likely Djokovic will defend his Australian Open title, but there are serious doubts about other tournaments. Especially the ATP Cup, where Djokovic’s Serbia are the defending champions. Djokovic said:

“It is challenging, I must say… I hope that it will happen. I want to play the Australian Open. I’m not sure about the ATP Cup and the tournaments before because obviously you have to leave quite in advance, actually, I think two and a half or three weeks prior to the first match.”

Djokovic is the defending champion at the Australian Open and ATP Cup. He is obviously in a dilemma right now. If ATP Cup does happen and he chooses to play it, then he will approximately have to leave three weeks prior to the first match. This could mean he will have to reach Australia in mid-December and serve out his quarantine.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic reacts during a match. REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

The Serbian now has a lot to ponder on as well as complete the 2020 season on a high with a good showing at the ATP Finals.

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