Daniil Medvedev will be allowed to defend his title at the US Open later this year as the organisers have allowed the participation of Russian and Belarusian players at the Flushing Meadows, but Novak Djokovic, the runner-up from the 2021 final, is all set to face yet another Grand Slam lock-out.
According to a report in New York Times, Djokovic will be unable to enter the United States as the Serb is considered as an 'unvaccinated foreigner'. While he did play in the U.S earlier this year after the Australian Open episode where he played in Indian Wells and Miami Open, but before the start of the US Open 2022, the rules are likely to change and hence Djokovic will be requiring a special exemption. He had sought the same at the Australian Open earlier this year, but failed to do so after being denied by the government.
Lew Sherr, the new chief executive of the United States Tennis Association (U.S.T.A) has already clarified that he would be seeking any exemption for 'unvaccinated foreigners' to compete at the Grand Slam event this year.
"We are going to follow the government and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (C.D.C) directives," Sherr was quoted by New York Times.
This means Djokovic won't be able to defend the 1200 points he gained from reaching the US Open final last year. And it also implies that Wimbledon will be his final Grand Slam event this year, also where he won't be able to defend the points he gained after clinching the elusive title last year.
Irrespective of the points, Djokovic will hence be raring to make the most of the impending grass-court major, which begins from June 27 onwards, to reduce the gap between Rafael Nadal and him in the all-time Grand Slam list and steer one clear of 20-time Slam winner Roger Federer.