Britain’s Dan Evans has lashed out at Novak Djokovic, saying the World No.1 should “feel some responsibility” after Grigor Dimitrov and Borna Coric tested positive for coronavirus after playing at his Adria Tour event.
Pictures on the tournament’s social media site last week showed Dimitrov playing basketball with Djokovic, Alexander Zverev and Marin Cilic, while he also put his arm around Coric before their match for the second leg of the tournament in Zadar, Croatia. Both Dimitrov and Coric later took to social media to announce that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
“I just think it’s a poor example to set,” Evans was quoted as saying by BBC Sport.
“Put it this way, I don’t think you should be having a players’ party and then dancing all over each other. He should feel some responsibility in his event and how it’s transpired,” he added.
The first leg of the tour was won by Austrian Dominic Thiem in Belgrade, Serbia and around 4,000 fans came to watch it. The event concluded with players dancing close together in a Belgrade nightclub.
“Running exhibitions is good,” Evans said. “But even if the guidelines in that country are not two metres, it’s not a joke, is it?” he asked.
“Even if the guidelines were taken away in this country to normal, I’d still be trying to keep myself out of the way as much as I could from other people.
“I just think there’s been a total disregard to that, really, and it’s very unfortunate Grigor has it, Coric has it. I hope there’s no second guessing on the US Open now, because of some unfortunate events,” he added.
World No.40 Nick Kyrgios had also slammed the decision to go ahead with the tour and tweeted: “Boneheaded decision to go ahead with the ‘exhibition’ speedy recovery fellas, but that’s what happens when you disregard all protocols. This IS NOT A JOKE.”