Novak Djokovic Officially Withdraws From Indian Wells

by Staff | March 5th, 2023, 11:14 pm

Novak Djokovic officially withdrew from Indian Wells Sunday.

The world No. 1 remains unable to get into the U.S. which still requires all foreigners to be vaccinated.

Djokovic is a 5-time Indian Wells champion but hasn’t played since 2019 and in the U.S. since the 2021 US Open. He’ll also likely miss the Miami Masters later this month.

Djokovic said he plans to return in Monte Carlos is he’s denied entry into the U.S.

The Indian Wells draw is scheduled for Monday. Play begins on Thursday in the men’s draw. Carlos Alcaraz is slated to be the top seed followed by Stefanos Tsitsipas. Though Alcaraz’s status is uncertain following a leg injury.

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20 Comments for Novak Djokovic Officially Withdraws From Indian Wells

chrisford1 Says:

Djokovic pays the price again for his eccentric medical beliefs. Opportunities to play, sponsorships lost. Association with odd cultlike “gurus”, both him and his wife, Dad’s unusual behavior, make the Djokovics fit more into “fringe” than normal. Rafa of course is eccentric in many ways, but he comes across as just born that way and still is a very likeable.
Hope Novak grows out of it. Otherwise, he may end up in some cave and never shave again, become an even more odd duck. Become some Serbian mystic that only drinks water from a sacred lake in Tibet, eating only raw organic cauliflower.

zed Says:

ChrisFord1, you really need to read about current events. I am stunned by how unaware you are of what is happening.

Novak is being proven right to have not trusted the bastards. Sudden deaths are dramatically rising in number all over the world, how can you not be aware of this?

Giles Says:

ROFL. Faker and his whole family are cranks! So pleased he’s not playing in the US. They don’t want their land polluted!
Piss off joker! Unwanted junk!

Tee Says:

Exactly as zed says. Novak is the sensible one. Why should he take a vaccine that has serious risks and zero benefit for a healthy young male? Novak is already proven right. It’s a shame that US officials won’t admit their mistake.

Tennisfansince76 Says:

@chrisford1 eccentric medical beliefs? You mean like not being willing to take experimental gene therapy that has no discernible upside and many possible side effects. Djokovic is the smart one here. He is the non sheep.

Wog Boy Says:

CF1, it’s sad to see who did you align yourself with, likes of Giles?!
Nole is already a winner, the only one who are losing for him not playing are fans, American fans.
The history will judge him more kindly than you are judging him.
I am supporting him 100% on this one, not playing in the country that is just about only one still pushing vaccine agenda.
His biggest victory was in Melbourne, he can retire now.

lylenubbins Says:

I also support Novak on the “vaccine.”

I’ll go one further as to his father. Serbia and Russia have been allies for centuries. There is nothing weird about him allowing himself to seen with Russians. In fact, just like Covid, the Ukraine narrative is going to be exposed as a bunch of establishment/lame stream media lies. Ukraine and the West intentionally provoked the conflict and are resisting all efforts to get a peace deal. The crude, media-induced bigotry against Russia and Russians is nauseating.

PK Says:

Could we perhaps focus on the tennis?

The mRNA vaccine, which has been proven to have saved millions of lives around the world, is decidedly NOT “an experimental gene therapy with no discernible upside.” Yes, there are side effects for a very small percentage of the population, but this is not unusual for any vaccine.

Djokovic has the right to refuse a vaccine, of course. But he’s been reduced to a political football being kicked around by both sides – see the constant and tiresome string of hateful messages on Tennis-X – which is a shame because he is a supremely gifted tennis player.

The Tennis-X readers know a lot about tennis and contribute valuable perspectives on the sport. But these same readers should also stay away from medical science comments that betray nothing more than a political agenda.

chrisford1 Says:

Tough love, my friends, tough love.

When you are the only person of thousands of active players, people on teams, ATP/WTA Tour officials that did not get vaccinated – you are an extreme outlier, a zealot. After all these people with access to good medical care and advice got vaccinated, Djokovic didn’t. Lone wolf.
Maybe a correct lone wolf, but a personal price to be paid for personal certitude if the tanks you step in front of don’t stop.

People still argue if Rachel Corrie, an American activist, was right or wrong to step in front of an Israeli bulldozer creeping towards her at 0.5 kph. A hero because she stood her ground and got crushed!

Djokovic’s personal price in his eccentric choices off the court are gossip…..even how it has emotionally affected him in the 2 years in Australia – still not known. Wait for his documentary..But the price on his records quest is more easily seen in missed Masters and Slam opportunities and weeks lost at #1. A high price.

skeezer Says:

PK totally agree. When the diatribe goes geopolitical I’m out. This was a tennis site at one time.
USA has its requirements to get in, other countries have other types of requirements to enter the country. You respect them if you want to visit, play or work in their respective countries. Otherwise, don’t go.

Van Persie Says:


Ok, so you have your opinion on Covid and on the vaccine… but why don’t you see the full half of the glass? In spite of his beliefs, Nole is Nr. 1 and won 2 slams even if he was not allowed to participate at several tournaments last year. He showed that he is still th ebest given the circumstances. He should be respected at least for that!

Did not want to talk politics, but maaan America is a desaster under Biden’s administration…

Trump did not push Europe into a war against Russia, Trump did not leave Afghanistan into a mess… . Hope that Europe will finally wake up. We do not gain anything with this war.

Wog Boy Says:

Agree, but you forgot second country that is equally responsible for what’s going on and is gaining from that misery, it’s European country, though I prefer to call it European spoiler.

Van Persie Says:


Well, now FBI is talking about Covid emerging from China… will USA impose Europe some sanctions against China too? Lol… then we will be all completley f%cked😉

Wog Boy Says:


Van Persie Says:

Bottom of line: I do not care if Nole is not allowed to play in the US! He does not need that BS.

Wog Boy Says:

Actually, I was all along for him not to play IW and Miami after AO. I am pretty sure he and his team were of the same opinion but he applied for exemption to please somebody else.
Hopefully it’ll stay the same for Miami even two Florida senators wrote to Biden to let him play Miami.

Felipenopollous Says:

I wish Djokovic had been allowed in the USA to play Indian Wells/Miami. It’s just seems lacking when a big tournament does not have the best player in contention. I am a Federer/ Nadal fan but I acknowledge greatness and I would love to see how far Djokovic can go. He is the good and whether you like him or not, he is undeniably awesome to watch.

Why can’t a negative Covid test prior to coming here not be enough? I know a lot of unvaccinated people in the USA flying all over the county and mingling in crowded public places.

Giles Says:

“Actually I was all along for him not to play IW and Miami ……”. ROFl. Grapes are sour.

tennismonger Says:

As the official ATP site puts it –

Carlos Alcaraz controls his own destiny in the battle for No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings over the course of the next two weeks. If the Spaniard wins the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, he will return to the top spot on 20 March.

That first sentence applies to Novax as well…

tennismonger Says:

(last sentence mine, or course)

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