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2022 In Between Grand Slam Thread

  • 30-12-2021 9:26pm
    Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    2022 WTA Tour

    2022 ATP Tour

    Qualies action should begin tomorrow (December 31st) so time to get the thread underway.

    Here's to hoping we'll see some great tennis/storylines this year.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Whatever about Djokovic and the other players who may or may not be vaxxed, with Omicron being so contagious and it producing positive cases in vaccinated people there is a much higher likelihood of disruption happening at the Australian Open this year in terms of cases amongst players.

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    Yeah, I fear for what this year's edition could be like. Could be walkovers all over the place.

    I saw this the other day:

    Let's hope it doesn't turn out to be realistic 😬

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Unvaccinated players will be playing at the AO it's confirmed

    Works be surprising if djokovic is not there in the end although you never with the Aussies, someone might have it in for him for having the temerity to comment on the organisation of quarantine etc last year

  • Registered Users Posts: 692 ✭✭✭ lostcat

    The Djokovic issue is getting farcical. The published exemptions are very strict, its hard to imagine any professional tennis player who played a full season last year actually qualifying under any of them.

    If Djokovic qualifies I really hope it isn't via a trick-of-the-loop, but the 'protracted' negotiations around it do look suspect. I presume they are giving him 'every chance'.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,935 ✭✭✭ Slashermcguirk

    Djokovic is confirmed for Australian Open, just saw it there now

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  • Registered Users Posts: 84 ✭✭ doxy79

    I'm annoyed. I've nothing against people choosing to not get a vaccine, everyone is entitled to decide for themselves.

    I'm more annoyed at the organisers for giving him a medical exemption. Djokovic is a guy that is clearly anti-vax, the medical angle is completely disingenuous. I've nothing against them letting him play, but drop the medical exemption bs. Just come out and say that vaccinations are no longer a requirement.

  • Registered Users Posts: 692 ✭✭✭ lostcat

    At least that's an end to it hopefully anyway. On with the tennis.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    I'm fully behind vaccines but in reality with the highly transmissible and dominant Omicron variant there is very difference in terms of transmission / infection between being vaccinated and unvaccinated.

    (Obviously there is a difference in severity where vaccines play a big part and the reason that we're not locked down right now even if Omicron appears also to be milder for unvaccinated people)

    If you look at the big US sports NBA, NFL etc they have changed their processes in recent weeks to reflect the effect of Omicron and now there is very little difference in terms of isolation and testing between unvaccinated and vaccinated players

    Also, I wouldn't call Djokovic "Anti-Vax" in fairness - that's understood to mean actively promoting the idea of not getting a vaccine which he clearly does not do - quite the contrary he has chosen not to even declare or even talk about his own status over the last year

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    Oh wow, genuinely surprised they caved to him. I expected better Australia!

  • Registered Users Posts: 692 ✭✭✭ lostcat

    without wanting to turn this into a vax thread, we need to be clear on the facts. Djokovic is on record as being opposed to vaccination in principle, a position he backed-up a couple of times, and this is several months ago and a long time before Omicron. He has in the past few months reverted to comments such as it being a 'personal preference' and stopped offering an opinion on vaccinations, which is a better look.

    There's no doubting his conviction on the matter - this is a guy who delayed career-prolonging surgery on his elbow for far too long as he is also against invasive procedures such as surgery (vaccines fall into a similar category, I presume) and believes in the bodies ability to heal itself.

    He is free to believe whatever he wants - his conviction has brought him a long way in his chosen field - but some of his ideas would be frankly dangerous if widely adapted. I cant see how he wouldn't be seen as anti-vax. a lot of professional sportspeople are

    anyway, topic for another thread, I will stick to tennis from now on.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,935 ✭✭✭ Slashermcguirk

    In fairness, nobody has a clue what the medical exemption is for. How are we to know if its legit or not? While I agree that people should get vaccinated, none of us know what the medical exemption is for. There could be countless other players in the field who are getting medical exemptions and we would never even know.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,211 ✭✭✭ jacool

    It doesn't matter whether or not people call Djokovic "anti-vax". What matters here is this farce of a statement by Craig Tiley, the tournament director.

    He said: "Everyone who is coming in is vaccinated and there will be a small percentage - a very small percentage - that will have a medical exemption. So, if any player, fan or workforce is on site here, you're either vaccinated or you have a medical exemption that's approved and you're on the Australian Immunisation Register. That provides us with safety and an extra level of comfort on site. If Novak shows up at the Australian Open, he'll either be vaccinated or he'll have a medical exemption. It's his choice on his medical condition, it's his choice to keep it personal and private like all of us would do with any condition we may or may not have. We are not going to force him or ask him to disclose that."

    Clearly the tournament are desperate to accommodate the most successful player in this Open, so that they will allow a player, who may or may not have a condition that exempts them, to play. Clearly they think he's such box office the tournament couldn't go on without him.

    Regarding the NFL and NBA - these players are US based and not travelling into other countries, that have specific rules in place around Covid19 and how that impact you coming into the country, so I don't think that's a fair comparison. Melbourne, where the Open is played, is the most "locked down" city on Earth and the decision just looks wrong on so many levels. Back down, climb down, let down.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Just in case you're not aware, Australia has abandoned its zero-covid policy - so any mention of Melbourne being the "most locked-down city" is completely redundant at this point

    Things change with Covid and Omicron has changed the game

    The state of Victoria recorded over 14,000 cases yesterday

    Omicron is rampant there and at this point and even if every player arriving to to play at the Australian Open was carrying Covid it would make precisely zero difference to the public health of the state

    What was important maybe a few or even two months ago is not at all now and the organisers well know this

    The biggest concern for them and the tournament will be so many players testing positive that the thing becomes a shambles and not vaccinations

    That's just a fact

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Djokovic is on record as being opposed to vaccination in principle, a position he backed-up a couple of times, and this is several months ago and a long time before Omicron. 

    that's actually not correct to say at all - as far back as last April (which is easily longer than "several months ago" !) Djokovic refused to be drawn on the vaccine issue as he was smart enough to see that it had become a politicised issue at that point and he was not seeking to be an "Anti-Vax" spokesman / totem pole type in any way, shape or form and very much wanted to stay out of it.

    “I don’t want to be involved in one team or another. If I say yes or not, I join a team so to speak, and there is a lot of conflict between both sides," Novak Djokovic said at the Serbian Open after being asked for his views on the coronavirus vaccination programme. He also said he would keep his vaccination plans to himself

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,211 ✭✭✭ jacool

    When you say "Australia has abandoned its zero-covid policy", you could follow up with the official reasoning behind why all the federal states have gone that way.

    Victoria’s premier, Daniel Andrews (where Melbourne is) "“Now we have the vaccine, and quite amazingly Victorians have gone and got the vaccine in record numbers, and really fast, we don’t need lockdowns anymore” That statement is not redundant.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    the redundant point was specifically about Melbourne being the "most locked down city" in the world

    that is redundant

    it's splitting hairs at this point

    they had 14,000 cases there yesterday - Omicron is ripping through the place, as pretty much everywhere

    I already said above that vaccines are all about reducing severity at this point in the Omicron world

    Djokovic or any other fit young tennis player having a vaccine or not makes not a blind bit of difference to anything in Melbourne as having a vaccine offers next to no protection from actually getting infected with or transmitting Omicron (and it's already ripping through the place with large case numbers) whereas even a couple of months ago it was a different conversation as it was true to say that vaccinated people would be reducing the spread of Covid

    For older and at-risk people of course it's vitally important on the severity impact, both for their health and in terms of the impact on the health system

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    These are the "acute major medical conditions" that may have help someone get an exemption.

    I wonder which one applies to Djokovic? 🤔

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Well any player who got an exemption - there are more than one, that is known, went through the same application process and two-step review and approval procedure (Australian Tennis ATAGI advisory group and then secondly to government level)

    Details of the applicant through the approval process were anonymised

    Players apply for exemptions anonymously using an application form, which is different to the application standard members of the public use.

    “Under an independent process, applications for a medical exemption were first reviewed by an expert panel made up of doctors from the fields of immunology, infectious disease and general practice,” they confirmed.

    “Applications that met the national guidelines set by the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) were then subjected to a second review conducted by a Government-appointed panel of medical experts, the Independent Medical Exemption Review Panel.

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,211 ✭✭✭ jacool

    The issue here is not with Djokovic, but with Australia Tennis itself.

    All Novak has done is applied "for exemptions anonymously using an application form, which is different to the application standard members of the public use." and they have bent over backwards to accommodate him.

    Tournament director Craig Tiley confirmed a number of players had been granted exemptions, without naming Djokovic, while explaining the process involved. "There are two medical panels that assess any application, and they assess it in a blind way. They don't know who the applicant is. Against the ATAGI [Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation] guidelines, an exemption gets granted or not. The reason for granting that exemption remains private, between the panel and the applicant." He said on Tuesday there had to have been a "genuine reason" to grant an exemption.

    Yet to find out if any were not granted but AT are being asked.

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  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    they have bent over backwards to accommodate him.

    the application process was anonymised - did you actually miss reading that bit or just choose to ignore it!?

    the two-part review process did not have access to the name of any of the multiple exemption applicants they were processing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 692 ✭✭✭ lostcat

    If I have a different understanding of what 'anti vax' means that you, fair enough. Djokovic is anti taking a vaccine, which I put in the 'anti vax' category. He doesn't have to be vigorously agitating on social media for me to assign him to that category. If you feel that doesn't count, ok, lets move on.

    Last April falls within my definition of 'several months ago'. I may have lost a year to covid however, as his first publicly stated aversion to vaccines was in fact in April 2020 in facebook broadcast

    He has been pretty much 'live and let live' in his comments since then while, clearly, not having gotten a vaccine in the meantime.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    "Several" is not really 8 or more in most people's book I would have thought. That's verging beyond "several"! "Several" is more than a few but 8 or 9 (months), that is stretching it!

    my point is that ever since getting a vaccine or not became a really contentious issue, which was obviously earlier last year when actual vaccines became actually available so there was an actual real as opposed to hypothetical choice to get one or not, more than "several" months ago now!, that Djokovic has sought to actively stay out of the debate which he actively did by refusing to be drawn on it.

    As he expressed himself he did this to avoid becoming a totem pole Anti-Vax figure.

    I don’t want to be involved in one team or another. If I say yes or not, I join a team so to speak, and there is a lot of conflict between both sides

    And he pretty much had to do this at press conferences at every single tournament where he was asked about it.

    He did pretty much all that he could do as such a public figure to keep it personal and avoid becoming a symbol for the hardcore "Anti-Vax" loonies.

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    What's quite striking is the fact he chose to reveal publicly he's been granted an exemption. He could've stuck with the "personal choice", "medical privacy" etc. lines he's been peddling so far. But no, declares he's unvaccinated, has been given a medical exemption and is on his way to Australia. In some ways, you can almost admire that level of brass neck.

    Seriously, just look at this brazen c*nt with his bags packed and everything 😂

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    As if every journalist in the world of Tennis and in all of Australia wouldn't be seeking to find that out if it was not revealed and wouldn't rest until some "source" confirmed it.

    Never mind the fact that it's been a story in the media for weeks that Djokovic was making / had made an exemption application ever since the AO organisers confirmed an exemption process in Mid -December.

    Complete non-point tbh

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,211 ✭✭✭ jacool

    Djokovic expressed his opposition to the Covid-19 vaccine in April 2020 when it was suggested they might be obligatory so tournament play could resume.

    "Personally I am not pro-vaccines," said Djokovic.

  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    There's been lots of stories/rumours doing the rounds about him for weeks, none of which he's explicitly commented on. He could just as easily have said nothing and some would've assumed he got vaccinated on the sly and didn't want to admit he caved.

    Since he's so forthright, I assume he'll also be revealing details about why he needed the exemption? Every journalist in the world of tennis and Australia will also be curious to know this, and this story will also be in the media for many weeks to come. Or maybe he won't because he knows his exemption is a crock of shit and we all know money has been exchanged somewhere along the way. Surely only the truly deranged Djokovic fans will be defending him here.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Yes everyone knows this but everyone also knows that once it became an actual big contentious and divisive issue in early 2021 when actual real vaccines started to become available and the issue became heavily politicised he actively sought to avoid becoming an "Anti-Vax" political figure because he recognised that his notoriety and fame would be abused by the "Anti-Vax" loopers to try to promote their "cause" if he didn't.

    And he was very effective in doing that.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    we all know money has been exchanged somewhere along the way

    Oh dear.

    Speaking of deranged - the deranged conspiracy theories make an appearance.

    Sad stuff.

    There is another forum for you on that though!

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  • Registered Users, Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,672 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yerwanthere123

    Do you genuinely believe that Djokovic cannot medically be vaccinated against covid-19? Do you genuinely believe that he hasn't used his power/influence in some way to avoid getting vaccinated? Put aside your devout Djokovic fanaticism for a second. You can't be this naïve surely? 😐️