In scathing tweets, Novak Djokovic's wife takes on journalist after Wimbledon

In scathing tweets, Novak Djokovic’s wife takes on journalist after Wimbledon

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Novak Djokovic can count on his wife Jelena to defend him. This Sunday, July 10, the 36-year-old woman was quick to challenge Ben Rothenberg, an American journalist. The latter came to prominence after posting the following message on Twitter following Novak Djokovic’s win over Nick Kyrgios in the Wimbledon final: “Barring a quick change in US immigration law, Wimbledon will be the last Grand Slam tournament of the year for Djokovic. The United States requires foreigners to be vaccinated to enter its territory and Djokovic has firmly stated that he is not ready to be vaccinated, thus becoming an anti-vax poster boy.

These words did not please Jelena Djokovic at all and she quickly made it known. In a scathing response, the tennis player’s wife strongly criticized Ben Rotherberg’s remarks: “Excuse me. Just want to make sure it’s noted that YOU tagged it as an anti-vax headliner for some reason. He simply answered what his choice is for his body.“The journalist then justified himself and replied: “I understand that’s his choice, but I’m also saying that his decision to be so strongly against vaccines limits his ability to compete in tournaments. It made him, unwittingly or not, a huge icon of the anti-vax movement. I saw it very clearly in Australia.

Jelena Djokovic then went one better: “You create a very critical narrative that matches your program. He simply chooses what is best for his body. If he doesn’t play because he made that choice, that’s fine with him.Ben Rothenberg retorts:I can accept being judged. I believe that all citizens, and especially public figures, had a duty to act responsibly when it came to public health and messaging during the pandemic. As someone who has followed Novak as the influential champion he is, he has disappointed me deeply on many occasions.“In an ironic tone, Jelena Djokovic ended the debate:”Thank you for sharing your beliefs. I hope you won’t be judged for them. Or that you won’t become a poster child for hate and bullying. We never know. You are also an influential personality, please don’t continually disappoint. Unless that’s your job.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Novak Djokovic has always shown his wish not to be vaccinated against the disease. Last January, the Serb was unable to participate in the Australian Open after being excluded from Australian territory due to his vaccination status. If the ex-world number 1 was able to participate in Roland-Garros and Wimbledon thereafter, the “Djoker” may well miss the next US Open, scheduled from August 29 to September 11. For the time being, the legislation in force in the United States prohibits Novak Djokovic from going to American soil without being vaccinated.

Benoit Lesueur

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