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Tennis star Novak Djokovic tests positive for coronavirus after participating in exhibition

Tennis star Novak Djokovic tests positive for coronavirus after participating in exhibition
Posted at 9:19 AM, Jun 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-23 09:51:51-04

BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Novak Djokovic has tested positive for the coronavirus after taking part in a tennis exhibition series he organized in Serbia and Croatia.

The top-ranked Serb is the fourth player to test positive for the virus after first playing in Belgrade and then again last weekend in Zadar, Croatia. His wife also tested positive.

The three other players to contract the virus are Viktor Troicki, Grigor Dimitrov, and Borna Coric, ESPN reports.

Djokovic has been criticized for organizing the tournament and bringing in players from other countries amid the coronavirus pandemic. There were no social distancing measures observed at the matches in either country.

Read Djokovic’s full statement below:

“The moment we arrived in Belgrade we went to be tested. My result is positive, just as Jelena’s, while the results of our children are negative.

Everything we did in the past month, we did with a pure heart and sincere intentions. Our tournament meant to unite and share a message of solidarity and compassion throughout the region.

The Tour has been designed to help both established and up and coming tennis players from South-Eastern Europe to gain access to some competitive tennis while the various tours are on hold due to the COVID-19 situation.

It was all born with a philanthropic idea, to direct all raised funds towards people in need and it warmed my heart to see how everybody strongly responded to this.

We organized the tournament at the moment when the virus has weakened, believing that the conditions for hosting the Tour had been met.

Unfortunately, this virus is still present, and it is a new reality that we are still learning to cope and live with.
I am hoping things will ease with time so we can all resume lives the way they were.

I am extremely sorry for each individual case of infection. I hope that it will not complicate anyone’s health situation and that everyone will be fine.

I will remain in self-isolation for the next 14 days, and repeat the test in five days.”