After Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem, Denis Shapovalov withdraws from the Tokyo Olympics due to 'safety reasons'

This comes days after World Number 3 Rafael Nadal and No. 5 Dominic Thiem announced their decision of skipping the Olympic games this year.

Denis Shapovalov file image. (Image credit: Twitter/Denis Shapovalov)

World number 12 Denis Shapovalov announced on Monday that he will not be taking part at the Tokyo Olympics for Canada. Citing safety issues as Covid-19 still remains a global concern. Shapovalov is the highest-ranked Canadian in the ATP tour.

He expressed his concern over Twitter. “Hey everyone, after careful consideration I wanted to let you know that I will not be participating in the Olympics this year. Representing Canada means the world to me, but due to the current situation my team and I have decided this is the best decision for everyone’s safety.”

This comes days after World Number 3 Rafael Nadal and No. 5 Dominic Thiem announced their decision of skipping the Olympic games this year.

The 22-year-old Canadian is yet to make his Olympic debut, and will look to do so in Paris 2024.

“I can’t wait to represent Canada at future Olympic games,” Shapovalov added.

Denis Shapovalov won his only ATP title in 2019 at Stockholm. He was a runner-up at the 2019 Paris Masters and reached his third career ATP final last month at Geneva. The Canadian reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final at last year’s US Open.

But this latest withdrawal begs the question that if athletes start pulling out of the games due to safety reasons, should the Olympics even be held?

SHOULD THE OLYMPICS GO AHEAD?

The Olympic Games are less than 40 days away. With travel restrictions and the massive coronavirus surge all over have left athletes restless and confused. The two-week quarantine in many countries is another factor troubling them as they look to train or compete abroad.

Japan is currently fighting a fourth wave of the pandemic and several regions are in a state of emergency, though national infection numbers are now decreasing.

The government was widely criticised for encouraging domestic tourism in the middle of the third wave. Meanwhile, Japan;s vaccine rollout is one of the slowest.

Recently, opinion polls were held in Japan, whether the games should be held or not. The polls showed that between 60% and 80% want the games either cancelled or postponed.




WRITTEN BY
Sportslumo Desk

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