As we discussed yesterday, the Adria Tour was an absolute disaster. Novak Djokovic – the #1 men’s tennis player in the world and president of the ATP’s Player Council – organized an exhibition tour to play on three weekends in Belgrade, Serbia, Zadar, Croatia and Montenegro (the last country opted out a few weeks ago). Belgrade was two weekends ago, and that days-long adventure featured packed, maskless crowds, zero social distancing, no masks or gloves for staff, lots of hugging, sweating, dancing, drinking and basically a lot of “wtf are you doing, we’re in the middle of a g–damn pandemic.” It was the same this past weekend in Zadar. Only just before the final match on Sunday, Grigor Dimitrov – who left Zadar the day before because he was feeling unwell – announced that he tested positive for the coronavirus.
In the 24 hours that followed Dimitrov’s announcement, so much happened. All of the players of the Adria Tour – except for Djokovic – stayed in Croatia to get tested. Borna Coric tested positive, as did another Serbian player, while others (like Andrey Rublev, Marin Cilic) did not, but they all made a promise to go into isolation for 14 days, and they apologized for their behavior. Djokovic flew home to Serbia without being tested in Croatia because he said he wasn’t feeling symptoms (nevermind the fact that he seemed to be feeling ill during his matches on Saturday and Sunday). Well, guess what? Djokovic has tested positive for the virus. He released a statement:
I… would have more sympathy for Novak if he had organized any part of the tour with an eye towards sending the right message in a pandemic, or taken even baseline precautions for not only his own safety, but the safety of people working around the tour. Even though he clearly felt ill this past weekend, he still refused to be tested in Croatia and waited until he FLEW HOME to get a test. This whole thing is such a catastrophe for not just tennis, but all sports.
Again, this was one week ago:
— THE JOKER(S) 🃏🇷🇸 (@NBASerbians) June 15, 2020
And now… add Novak and Jelena Djokovic to this list. And there are hundreds of people in Zadar currently getting tested and going into 14-day lockdowns.
People who got the virus because of the adria tour so far. have a funny feeling the number is probably gonna go up 😬😬 pic.twitter.com/k2kePg83Yb
— roger hand-washerer (@SharadaFedfan) June 22, 2020
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Getty.