Tennis

New vaccine rules could allow Djokovic to play in French Open

France is easing its vaccination rules later this month, which could pave the way for Novak Djokovic to compete at this year's French Open.

People in France will no longer need proof of vaccination to enter sports stadiums after March 14

Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic, pictured at the Dubai Championships last month, could be allowed to compete at the French Open in May despite being unvaccinated against COVID-19 — unless the restrictions are tightened again. (Francois Nel/Getty Images)

France is easing its vaccination rules later this month, which could pave the way for Novak Djokovic to compete at this year's French Open.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced Thursday that people will no longer have to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 to access venues such as sports stadiums and restaurants from March 14. That means Djokovic, who is unvaccinated, could be allowed to compete at Roland Garros in May unless the restrictions are tightened again.

"The situation is improving thanks to our collective efforts," Castex said. "The conditions are met for a new phase of easing of measures. From Monday March 14, we will suspend the application of the vaccination pass wherever it applies."

Djokovic was deported from Australia in January after a legal battle over whether he should be allowed to enter the country, forcing him to miss the Australian Open. He told the BBC last month that he was willing to miss upcoming Grand Slam tournaments as well if they required him to get vaccinated.

Djokovic has won the French Open twice and has a total of 20 major titles, one short of the record held by Rafael Nadal after the Spaniard won the Australian Open.

The new French rules could also allow Djokovic to play in the Monte Carlo Masters clay-court tournament in April.

WATCH | Djokovic deported from Australia:

Novak Djokovic deported from Australia after losing final appeal

6 months ago
Duration 2:02
Top-ranked tennis player Novak Djokovic has been deported from Australia after losing his final appeal to not have his visa revoked, meaning he could not compete in the Australian Open. Djokovic’s lack of COVID-19 vaccination has galvanized tennis fans, Australians and become a rallying cry for anti-vaxxers.

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