Tennis ace's unforeseen remark about getting vaccinated

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Stefanos Tsitsipas says he will be vaccinated against the coronavirus if the ATP makes it mandatory, but is otherwise in no rush for the jab.  (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
Stefanos Tsitsipas says he will be vaccinated against the coronavirus if the ATP makes it mandatory, but is otherwise in no rush for the jab. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

Tennis superstar Stefanos Tsitsipas says he is in no rush to get vaccinated against the coronavirus, despite accepting he will likely be required to at some point by the ATP.

The world No.3 has not yet had his first dose of the vaccine, saying he still has some reservations.

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However, the 23-year-old said he would get vaccinated if they became mandatory for players on tour.

His comments come after he admitted to struggling in the tour's 'bubble' environments, following up a strong French Open result with a shock first round exit at Wimbledon.

Speaking ahead of the Masters 1000 tournament in Cincinnati, Tsitsipas said he accepted there was a likelihood vaccinations would become mandatory for pro players.

"No one has told me anything. No one has made it a mandatory thing to be vaccinated," he told reporters, when asked if he would seek a vaccine while competing in the US.

"At some point I will have to, I'm pretty sure about it, but so far it hasn't been mandatory to compete, so I haven't done it, no."

The COVID-19 vaccine has divided opinion within tennis.

Top ranked Novak Djokovic said in April he hoped the COVID-19 vaccine would not become mandatory for players to compete and has declined to answer questions regarding his own vaccination status.

However, the Serbian's fellow 20-time grand slam winners Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal feel athletes need to play their part to get life back to some form of normality.

Federer said in May that he received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, while Nadal said: "The only way out of this nightmare is vaccination. Our responsibility as human beings is to accept it.

"I know there is a percentage of people who will suffer from side effects, but the effects of the virus are worse."

Spectators will not be allowed to attend qualifying rounds at the US Open due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States Tennis Association (USTA) said last week.

The USTA previously said it would, however, allow full fan capacity for the main draw of the tournament starting on August 30.

De Minaur roars to ATP Masters 1000 win

Alex de Minaur has won his first match since missing the Olympics due to COVID-19, battling back from a set down at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Cincinnati.

The highest-ranked Australian male appeared destined for a fourth first-up loss in a row, when he dropped the first set to Filip Krajinovic without winning a game, but he displayed his trademark tenacity to prevail 0-6 6-4 6-4.

De Minaur had four-break point chances in the first set but failed to convert on any and Krajinovic made him pay.

The tide turned when de Minaur broke serve in the fifth game of the second set and he held strong to get back on level terms.

The 14th seed broke a further two times in the deciding set and closed out the encounter with his eighth ace of the match.

De Minaur's relief was evident as he roared in exultation after his first win since securing the Eastbourne title on grass in June in the lead-up to Wimbledon.

Next up for de Minaur - the only Australian in the main draw - will be French veteran Gael Monfils or Dusan Lajovic.

With AAP

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