‘Time for players to talk about mandatory vaccines’

New York, Sep 02 (AP): After reaching the US Open final last year with no fans, Victoria Azarenka appreciates playing in front of people again.
Especially because of what they had to do to be in the stands.
Spectators must show proof of at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to attend matches. Players are not required to get a shot and only about half on the men’s and women’s tours have.
“I want to start this conversation between our players, because to me that’s a bit bizarre that fans have to be vaccinated and players are not,” Azarenka said.
“So I think that in my opinion, it’s inevitable that it will be mandated at some point, like other leagues are doing.
“I don’t see the point of stalling it really, because I think we all want to be safe, we all want to continue doing our jobs, and I know there is a lot of discussions about it.”
After her 6-3 7-6 (1) victory over Jasmine Paolini, the three-time US Open runner-up said during her interview on the court that it was “cool” there were so many vaccinated people there to watch her.
Novak Djokovic said before the tournament he hopes the decision to get a vaccination remains a personal one. Azarenka thinks it’s time for the players and tours to talk about taking it beyond that.
“I hope that as an association we make the best decision for our business, for our health, for the tournaments, for public,” she said.
“And I think that we need to start this conversation, because as I said, in my opinion it’s just inevitable.”

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