Daniil Medvedev echoes Novak Djokovic with controversial vaccine stance

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Seen on the left, tennis star Daniil Medvedev alongside a photo of rival Novak Djokovic.
Daniil Medvedev agrees with Novak Djokovic's stance that players should not be forced to disclose their vaccination status. Pic: Getty

US Open champion Daniil Medvedev has thrown his support behind Novak Djokovic after weighing in on the controversial Australian Open vaccine debate.

Djokovic's participation in the first grand slam of the new year has been under a huge cloud, with the World No.1 refusing to commit to the Melbourne Park tournament or confirm whether he's vaccinated.

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The situation has dominated discussions around the world, with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews seemingly at odds with one another about whether unvaccinated players will be able to participate.

The PM last week said unvaccinated players would be free to contest the Open if they completed two weeks in quarantine and completed their required Covid-19 testing.

But the Victorian Premier slammed that door shut, insisting - just like unvaccinated fans - that unjabbed players would not be allowed into Melbourne Park.

Medvedev - who finished runner-up Djokovic at this year's Australian Open - has also refused to confirm whether or not he's double vaccinated.

The Russian said, much like his Serbian rival, that it is each individual's right to keep certain things private if they choose to do so.

"I always said it, that I really like Novak's answer about this. No matter if it's about vaccine, leg injury, head injury ... I want to keep my medical private for a reason," Medvedev said on Sunday.

"I feel like tennis is such a brutal sport where you're always one on one against your opponent, and any information you give him can go against you.

"If you're playing Australia, it's obvious you're vaccinated. So that's why I said I'm willing to play Australia.

"But I won't say if you'll see me there, but we're going to see in January."

Djokovic has revealed that he's awaiting a final announcement on travel and entry requirements before committing to another title defence at Melbourne Park.

Pictured left, Novak Djokovic alongside a photo of Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.
Novak Djokovic's participation in the 2022 Australian Open is under a cloud after Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said unvaccinated players would not be allowed to enter the state. Pic: Getty

Novak Djokovic still yet to commit to Aus Open

However, the Serb - who could win a record-breaking 21st men's grand slam major with a 10th Australian Open title - said it wasn't just him weighing-up his participation.

"Well, I'm going to decide on whether I go to Australia or not after I see the official statement from Tennis Australia," Djokovic said, ahead of his Paris Masters campaign.

"Right now, we don't have any official announcement or statement. So until that's out, I won't be talking about this anymore, because I don't want to be part of the stories about the assumptions and what-ifs.

"When official condition requirements to travel to Australia and play in Australia are out, then obviously I'll see what I personally do with that, and also the bigger group of the players, you know, because the situation is obviously different in Australia than most parts of the world."

Djokovic has committed to playing the Paris Masters, which will be his first tournament back since losing the US Open final.

While the hope of a historic golden slam dissipated after his loss to Daniil Medvedev, he is still trying to cap off a remarkable year and remain World No.1.

However, Medvedev is pushing the 20-time grand slam champ right till the finish line.

"The year-end No.1 is on the line between Medvedev and myself, and I'm in a pretty good position in terms of the ranking points and the race," Djokovic added.

"So that's obviously the goal for the end of the season, other than trying to do well in the Davis Cup with the national team.

"So hopefully I can have a strong finish of the season and clinch that year-end No.1"

with AAP

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