Novak Djokovic has formally withdrawn from the Indian Wells tournament, according to organisers, in an indication that the world number one’s application for a COVID-19 vaccine waiver to enter the United States might have failed.
The Serbian, one of the most high-profile athletes unvaccinated against the virus, applied to the US government last month for special permission to play in ATP Masters events at Indian Wells and Miami.
“World No. 1 Novak Djokovic has withdrawn from the 2023 BNP Paribas Open.,” organisers said in a statement late on Sunday.
The US currently bars unvaccinated foreigners from entry into the country, a policy that is expected to be lifted when the government ends its COVID-19 emergency declarations on May 11.
Djokovic has not competed at the back-to-back ATP Masters events in Indian Wells and Miami, two of the biggest tournaments on the ATP calendar and known as the “Sunshine Double”, since 2019.