The case of Novak Djokovic before the Australian immigration authorities has an echo of learnings among the organizers of international sporting events in Mexico. Directors of different competitions, including ATP and WTA tennis, shared with this newspaper the measures they must take to avoid chaotic logistics regarding the entry of foreign athletes and their staff, in case they do not have certification vaccination or have an anti vaccination posture.
The common denominator is that as organizers they know that Mexican immigration laws open the doors to any foreigner who has or does not have a vaccine against covid-19. However, they recognize that it is essential to have health controls in the care of their invited athletes and the attending public. Sporting events in 2022 will not have an exemption case like Djokovic’s, unless immigration rules change in our country.
Australia requires all foreign visitors to be vaccinated, otherwise they must spend 14 days in quarantine. But Djokovic, who has publicly expressed his opposition to the vaccine, defended that he had received a medical exemption and finally, after a hearing, his Australian visa was endorsed and with it, the number one tennis player in the ATP ranking will be able to defend his Australian Open title .
“Mexico does not ask foreigners for a PCR test or vaccination certificate, in fact the country encourages the use of vaccine issues to reject or accept international mobility. There are no cases like Novak’s in athletes or anyone else, because it is an open-door policy. I don’t see that we can have a similar scenario. Internment policies are carried out by the Migration Institute, our consulates have the information in case a foreigner approaches to request it. I have not received the case of an athlete who is not allowed to enter Mexico due to a Covid-related issue. Each tournament and organizer sets its rules for protection “, explains Erik Del Ángel, Executive Coordinator of the Technical Council for Diplomacy and Sports Cooperation of the SRE.
During the first half of the year, two WTA competitions will have been played in Mexico: the Akron Open in Zapopan and the GNP Seguros Open in Monterrey. The ATP 500 tournament will also be played at the Mexican Tennis Open in Acapulco. And it is not everything, it will have in the Tennis Showdown exhibition event at the Arena Ciudad de México the Russian tennis players Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev, located in place 2 and 5 of the ranking.
Later, in the summer, the Mexico City Marathon will be run, which usually has elite runners. Next, El Economista presents the reflections of six Directors with experience in organizing international events, without counting on the response of the NBA, NFL and the Mexico City GP.