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More than 85 percent of players are vaccinated ahead of the fast-approaching Australian Open
"It was interesting six weeks ago only 50 percent of the global playing group. Today more than 85 percent are," Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley said.
Published Nov 27, 2021
A full player field is expected for the Australian Open as vaccination rates for the tours move higher, says Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley.
The Australian Open and the warmup events leading up to it, marks the first time players will have been required to be vaccinated against COVID-19, which is a condition of entry into the state of Victoria. That appears to have had an effect on the amount of players vaccinated.
"It was interesting six weeks ago only 50 percent of the global playing group," Tiley told Australia radio. "Today more than 85 per cent are. We take a lot of credit for that because we put a vaccination requirement on it."
By the time Australian events start, that could reach "between 95 percent and 100 percent vaccinated," Tiley suggested .There are also few players who have asked to have the requirement waived, he added.
"There are one or two players that obviously have medical conditions—as there are in the community. There is a medical condition exemption, but it’s a very high bar to get across," Tiley said.
Most of the speculation has centered around No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who has not shared whether he is vaccinated. Tiley also has yet to confirm whether the eight-time champion would play the event.
"He has not shared his status with anyone," Tiley said. "He believes that what you say about your medical position is private and he believes people should have the right to choose."
There is also uncertainty about the ability to ensure travel between various states in Australia, and organizers have limited tournament locations. Warmup events have been scheduled in Adelaide, Sydney and the greater Melbourne area.