19 year old Australian Olivia Gadeki Could have relied on a wildcard for the Australian Open, but doesn’t want to be vaccinated.
Last edited: 12/15/2021, 4:49 PM
The first definitive cancellations for the first Grand Slam tournament of the year were just a matter of time in coming. Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert canceled his participation at the Australian Open just days ago, Australian youth hopeful Olivia Gadeki followed today. Along with being denied vaccination, the 19-year-old also gave up a certain starting spot in Melbourne, as he would have been given a wild card by the Australian Tennis Association.
Missed chance for world ranking points and good prize money
Victoria state officials’ rules are clear – only vaccinated professionals are allowed starting with the major “down under”. It is profound that a young player should miss such a unique opportunity to gain world ranking points and unparalleled experience – not to mention financial opportunities.
Nonetheless, Gadeki had completed a respectable season of 2021. Without a ranking at the start of the year, the woman from the “Gold Coast” worked her way up to 237 in the WTA world rankings. In mid-February, she celebrated her victory over Sofia Kenin of the United States, who was then ranked fourth in the world, at the Phillip Island Trophy, a WTA Tour 250 event in Melbourne. She also won two ITF Futures tournaments and was in the finals of two others.