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Nikola Pilic indicates that Novak Djokovic might “boycott” Wimbledon, calls Boris Johnson “Crazy”

As per Novak Djokovic's ex-coach Nikola Pilic, the Serb, alongside other players might boycott this year's Wimbledon.

Novak Djokovic and Nikola Pilic

According to Nikola Pilic, Novak Djokovic may boycott Wimbledon this summer due to “crazy” Boris Johnson’s decision to prevent Russian and Belarusian players from competing. Following Vladimir Putin’s continuing assault on Ukraine, the decision affects world No. 2 Daniil Medvedev alongside other Russian and Belarusian players.

Six-time Wimbledon winner Novak Djokovic has spoken out against the ban, stating that the invasion isn’t the athletes’ fault. Speaking at last week’s Serbian Open, he said, “Ordinary people always suffer – we’ve had lots of wars in the Balkans. That being said, I cannot support the Wimbledon decision. It’s not the athletes’ fault. When politics interfere with sport, it usually doesn’t turn out well.”

“Boris Johnson is crazy”- Nikola Pilic

Nikola Pilic

Following the SW19 decision, Novak Djokovic’s old coach Nikola Pilic lambasted British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, echoing Djokovic’s criticisms. In an interview with UBITennis.net, he said, “Boris Johnson is crazy! Rublev and Medvedev have nothing to do with Putin, they just want to play tennis just like everyone else.”

Pilic believes Djokovic and a number of other players would likely skip the competition this summer, just as he and his teammates did in 1973 after the Yugoslav tennis federation accused him of refusing to perform in the Davis Cup. He added, “Politics has gone too far into sport and I think this situation could be very similar to that of ’73. In the sense, someone might say, ‘if these tennis players don’t play, we don’t play either!’ and, at that point, I’d be curious to see what Wimbledon’s reaction would be.”

Novak Djokovic, his former apprentice, is no stranger to controversy, having been forced to withdraw from this year’s Australian Open due to his refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Following his strong vaccine stance, ex-coach Pilic praised the world No. 1’s character adding, “Novak is a formidable player. Right now I can’t say if he’s number one, three, eleven or seventeen, but he’s definitely a special player.”

“As for the vaccine, he has a very strong character. If he wants to do something, it is difficult to move him from his position. He always said he didn’t want to get vaccinated, this is his character and his idea. For me, however, it is a pity, no one could have known that Covid would arrive. In any case, what happened in Australia is something I don’t want to see with any player anymore. It is not possible for a tennis player who has won the Australian Open nine times not to play,” the former tennis legend added.

Also Read: Russian chess legend criticizes Novak Djokovic for ‘inappropriate’ Wimbledon comment, reminds him of Serbian history