Novak Djokovic's exhibition event, Adria Tour, has become the centre of the biggest controversy in the world of tennis after two players who played there tested positive for coronavirus.
Grigor Dimitrov, who looked very unwell during a match last weekend, announced late on Sunday that he had tested positive for the virus and had been caught in the deadly pandemic.
Following his announcement, fans took to social media to express their outrage at the organisation of the event and how it was always a recipe for a disaster.
On Monday, Borna Coric, who played against Dimitrov at the weekend, also tweeted that he had tested positive as well.
Ahead of the tour, there were concerns about the safety of the players and staff and everyone at the event, considering it was to be held in Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia. Later, the Montenegro leg was also cancelled because of coronavirus rules.
However, Djokovic was quite dismissive of the danger and said, "You can also criticise us and say this is maybe dangerous but it's not up to me to make the calls what is right or wrong health-wise."
At the event, there was crowd, no social distancing norms were followed and all the players clicked pictures hand in hand like normal, and all of this in the middle of the pandemic.
Following Dimitrov's announcement, a video of the players partying also made the internet, which further enraged the fans. There were no social distancing norms being followed for the party - no masks, no distance and Djokovic and others were dancing the night away.
Now with two players testing positive, the fans have been calling out the event and are angry at how lightly the pandemic was taken during the tour.
Partying with no social distancing during a pandemic that's killed half a million? Playing a *charity exhibition* with no social distancing while grand slams are cancelled? They've put lives at risk for good PR. They're a disgrace to professional sport and should be banned by ATP— Patrick (@PatrickVolley) June 21, 2020
Should be dubbed Corona Open 2020.— Igor Noveski (@igornoveski) June 21, 2020
This was absolutely reckless & every single person involved in this event needs to take responsibility for prioritizing money over the health of thousands of people. This deadly pandemic is not over & I still can't believe that no precautions were taken. pic.twitter.com/F3XjiFvtt0— Max Gao (@MaxJGao) June 21, 2020
Novak was in a hurry to restart the Tour by holding this tournament to show the world it's ready to play tennis again. He is too obsessed in chasing Rafa and Roger's records. I like Novak as a tennis player but some of his decisions are head scratching.— TennisIsLife (@carlowithoutthe) June 21, 2020
This is such a fucking joke. When someone dies as a result of this ignorance label the organizers and players for what they are - murderers. No different thank Trump.— ygrd23 (@ygrd23) June 21, 2020
Wow ... I'm very surprised. This event was one of the most pathetic and irresponsible. Thiem, Djokovic, Zverev and all the other tennis players who participated in this need to be penalized with heavy fines. That was absurd.— Wow (@vierameloE) June 21, 2020
That Adria series was an infection waiting to happen...— Matthew Lumby #Lockdown (@MatthewLumby) June 21, 2020
What part of GLOBAL pandemic do these ppl not understand? As long as there's still ONE case , no one is safe. And we are far beyond apologies. You may be asymptomatic but how many people did you in turn infect? SMFH @DjokerNole— ? Cass (@_J_C_T_) June 22, 2020
That's why everyone should not shake hand and respect social distancing even for a picture.— beanbean (@beanbeanbusbus) June 22, 2020
A lot of athlete will miss the return of atp.
Get well soon.