Ron DeSantis offers to smuggle Novak Djokovic into Miami by boat

Ron DeSantis Credit: Alamy
Ron DeSantis Credit: Alamy

Florida Governor and rumoured Presidential hopeful Ron DeSantis has said he would be willing to ‘run’ Novak Djokovic into his state on a boat from the Bahamas if necessary to get him at the Miami Open.

From anyone else this might appear to just be a joke, but maverick decisions have marked DeSantis’ leadership.

In September 2022, DeSantis chartered a plane to fly 48 Venezuelan migrants from the San Antonio, Texas to Martha’s Vineyard an island in the Northeastern United States.

DeSantis made it clear that he would be willing to do whatever it takes to get Novak Djokovic at the event.

“I would run a boat from the Bahamas here for him. I would do that 100 percent,” he claimed according to the Mirror.

“But I think his people are looking at it, and I’m not sure that’s the way they want to come into the country, which I understand. I think it’d be a great moment, but you know, nevertheless.”

Under the leadership of DeSantis, Florida was the first state to shirk lockdowns.

DeSantis has been accused of using this issue to trump up support for his rumoured run for the Oval Office.

However, Djokovic has vowed that he will abide by the decision made by immigration officials.

“Whatever the decision is, if I’m not allowed, I’m going to pull out, of course, before the draw,” he said. “Let’s see what the answer is, then I’ll take it from there.”

Djokovic applied for an exemption to enter the United States by air without a vaccination certificate, but it was denied.

He retains slim hope that President Joe Biden could bring the decision to drop the regulations up by a month.

DeSantis has slammed Biden for maintaining the vaccine mandate which he claims is unscientific.

“The only thing keeping Novak Djokovic from participating in the Miami Open tennis tournament is President Biden’s misguided and unscientific COVID-19 vaccination requirement for foreign travellers,” he aded.

“Mr. President – lift your restrictions and let him compete. Djokovic has already had Covid. You know, there’s something called natural immunity, which the CDC didn’t want to recognise, but we all know is a fact of life.

“And so he poses zero risk to the United States, zero risk to the state of Florida, and zero risk to Miami. So he should be allowed to compete.”

The Miami Open runs from Sunday 19 March until 2 April and is a joint WTA and ATP event.

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