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Novak Djokovic considers missing US Open due to ‘extreme’ restrictions

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World No 1 Novak Djokovic is thinking of skipping the US Open – if it is played – and instead returning to competition on clay ahead of the rescheduled French Open.

Novak tennic composure

Speaking to Serbia’s state broadcaster RTS on Tuesday, Djokovic said the restrictions that would be in place for the Grand Slam tournament in New York because of the coronavirus pandemic would be “extreme” and not “sustainable.”

“Most of the players I have talked to were quite negative on whether they would go there,” Djokovic said. “For me currently, as things stand, most probably the season will continue on clay at the beginning of September.”

Like many sports, tennis went on hiatus in March because of the Covid-19 outbreak. All sanctioned tournaments have been scrapped until at least late July.

That includes the French Open, which was supposed to end last weekend but was postponed until September, and Wimbledon, which was canceled for the first time since 1945.

The US Tennis Association is expected to make a decision as soon as next week about whether to hold the US Open. Main-draw play is scheduled to begin on 31 August.

If that tournament is played, possible precautions that Djokovic said he would not appreciate include a 14-day quarantine required for people arriving from outside of the US and restricted access access to courts, which he said means players “wouldn’t be able to train”.

Djokovic also said a limit of one person per competitor at matches, instead of the larger entourages some players travel with, would be problematic, as would the limited ability to move around New York, including keeping players at hotels near the tournament site in Queens and not letting them go to Manhattan.

“Quite extreme conditions for playing,” Djokovic said. “I don’t think that is sustainable.”

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End SARS: Details of Ooni’s meeting with Obasanjo emerge

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Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, the Ooni of Ife, on Monday hosted Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Nigeria’s former President, with an appeal to the End SARS protesters across Nigeria to retreat.

Ooni, while receiving Obasanjo at his Ile Oodua Palace, Ile-Ife, described the End SARS protests as a clear message by the Nigerian youth to the government.

He also urged the youths to give the government the chance to attend to their demands fully.

Daily Post Nigeria

The royal father said, “If you look at the End SARS protest, you’ll see that our youths have what it takes to rule the country.

“Since day one, they’ve shown leadership, accountability and a huge sense of responsibility which has sent a clear message to the government.

“Every day at 11:50 pm, they displayed their financial update, and to me, I am highly amazed by their sense of accountability.

“As a youth leader myself, I’m proud that we all have communicated our ideas, and it’s heartwarming that we’ve been heard.

“Dear youths, it’s time to retreat so as to prevent those with ulterior motives from hijacking the peaceful message of peace.

“The whole world is aware of our peaceful conduct, and we must not let some bad elements tarnish this enviable integrity.

“Once again, I wish to urge our youths to stop the protest, for now and give peace a chance. This will prevent the government from using force.”

Speaking earlier, NAN reports that Obasanjo described the EndSARS protest as the product of an extensive agitation by the Nigerian youth that needed to be attended to by the government.

He said: “More than 65 percent of our population are under the ages of 18 and 30; they aren’t only struggling to acquire education, they’re also aspiring for the best that life can offer them.

“Some of them did not even get educated, while those who are educated are getting frustrated because of lack of opportunities. We must realize that the lid on the boiling steam would’ve to be removed.

But, I believe that there are windows of opportunity which the government can explore to show that it cares about the people’s welfare, especially the youth, as the father of the country and particularly, as the father of the youth.

“Fortunately, the President has children, and he knows how youths behave.

“I believe that the opportunities can still be taken to let the youth know that he, as a father, understands their plight and that his government understands their plight and he’s ready to make life better for them.”

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