Are Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal vaccinated, and will they be playing at the 2022 Australian Open?

Joshua Rogers January 6, 2022
Are Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal vaccinated, and will they be playing at the 2022 Australian Open?
Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

We delve into whether tennis greats Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are vaccinated, and if they’ll be playing at the 2022 Australian Open.

Novak Djokovic’s 2022 Australian Open plans were thrown into disarray when the world no.1 had his visa to enter Australia dramatically revoked on his arrival in Melbourne. The Serbian was detained by officials at the airport amid growing outrage among many Australians over the decision to grant him a visa and medical exemption from vaccination requirements.

The Guardian reports Djokovic has previously tested positive for the coronavirus. He is thought to be unvaccinated, although he has never officially confirmed his vaccination status.

As the tennis star awaits the outcome of his appeal, we look at two other tennis greats, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, to see if they are vaccinated.

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Is Roger Federer vaccinated?

Roger Federer is indeed vaccinated – he said so himself in 2021. The Swiss star confirmed his vaccination status ahead of the 2021 Geneva Open.

According to Sky Sports News, he confirmed to Switzerland’s Léman Bleu television that he had received the Pfizer-BioNTech jab. He said he got vaccinated against coronavirus out of concern for others.

“Yes, I’m vaccinated. I got the Pfizer,” Federer said. “I am happy to have been able to do it with all the trips I take.

“Even if I’m staying in Switzerland, I think there are advantages. Above all, I did it for others because I don’t want to give it to anyone else, even if I still remain very careful. We’re very careful with the family and with our friends.”

The former world No.1 was knocked out of the 2021 Geneva Open by Spain’s Pablo Andújar in the second round.

Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images

Will Federer be playing at the 2022 Australian Open?

The 20-time Grand Slam champion had a disappointing year by his high standards. However, he did follow up his Geneva appearance with a run to the quarter-finals at Wimbledon. Federer became the oldest Wimbledon quarter-finalist in the Open Era but was upset by 14th seed Hubert Hurkacz in the quarter-final in straight sets. 

On 15 August, Federer announced he was undergoing more knee surgery and subsequently withdrew from the 2021 US Open.

Federer won’t be competing at the 2022 Australian Open either. “Australia is not an option at all. But that’s no surprise for me. Even before the operation, we knew that a break of many months would be necessary afterwards,” Federer said.

The 40-year-old is unlikely to return to competition until mid-2022 as he recovers from multiple knee surgeries. He has even said he would be “extremely surprised to be able to play Wimbledon“.

Is Rafael Nadal vaccinated?

Similarly, Rafael Nadal is also vaccinated, despite testing positive for covid last month. He confirmed his vaccination status while weighing in on the Novak Djokovic situation in Australia.

“I went through the covid, I have been vaccinated twice. If you do this, you don’t have any problem to play here. That’s the only clear thing,” Nadal said (via The Independent.)

The Spaniard went on to say he felt “sorry” for rival Novak Djokovic, but added the Serbian superstar knew the risks involved.

“It’s normal that the people here in Australia get very frustrated with the case because they have been going through a lot of very hard lock-downs,” Nadal said via Reuters. “The only, for me, clear thing is if you are vaccinated, you can play in the Australian Open and everywhere, and the world in my opinion has been suffering enough to not follow the rules.

“He (Djokovic) made his own decisions, and everybody is free to take their own decisions, but then there are some consequences. Of course I don’t like the situation that is happening. In some way I feel sorry for him. But at the same time, he knew the conditions since a lot of months ago, so he makes his own decision.

“The only thing that I can say is I believe in what the people who know about medicine says, and if those people say that we need to get vaccinated, we need to get the vaccine.”

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

Is Rafael Nadal playing at the 2022 Australian Open?

Nadal was initially a doubt for the 2022 Australian Open. However, he seemed to confirm he would play the event by posting a picture of himself in Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne on New Year’s Eve.

Speaking before his covid-19 result was confirmed, Nadal said he hadn’t made up his mind about playing Down Under.

“The idea is to go there and try my best there in Australia… Being 100 per cent honest, I can’t guarantee it,” he told Eurosport. “I need to speak with my team. It’s more than six months since the last real official match. Things are difficult and I accept that.”

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Joshua is a senior sports writer with over four years' experience in online writing. He graduated with a BA in Ancient History from The University of Manchester before receiving an MA in Sports Journalism from The University of Central Lancashire. He became a trending writer for a leading social publisher and later spent time covering the 2018 World Cup for The Mirror Online. He then moved to a social marketing agency where he acted as website editor. His specialties on The Focus include F1, tennis, NBA, NFL and combat sports.