Djokovic clarifies moves, “disinformation continues” as Australian visa saga continues
Novak Djokovic has decided to clarify how mistakes were made on the immigration document he submitted upon arriving in Melbourne last week, before his visa was revoked and then reinstated in a COVID-19 vaccination saga that eclipsed the days leading up to the Australian Open.
A statement was posted on Djokovic’s social media accounts on Tuesday as the men’s tennis No.1 was at Rod Laver Arena for a training session against 20-year-old Australian Tristan Schoolkate.
The nine-time defending Australian Open champion is in limbo ahead of the start of the year’s first major tennis tournament next Monday. Djokovic won a legal battle on Monday allowing him to stay in the country, but he still faces the prospect of deportation as he is not vaccinated against COVID-19.
On the form, Djokovic said he had not traveled in the 14 days before his flight to Australia. The Monte-Carlo-based athlete was seen in Spain and Serbia during that two-week period.
In a statement posted on Instagram, Djokovic called the speculation “hurtful” and said he wanted to tackle “continued disinformation” in an effort to “alleviate broader community concerns about my presence in Australia.”
Djokovic said he had taken rapid tests which were negative in the days leading up to his return positive on a test he performed out of “over-caution” because he was asymptomatic.
He responded to the travel declaration saying that it had been submitted on his behalf by his support team and “my agent sincerely apologizes for the administrative error by checking the wrong box”.
“It was human error and certainly not deliberate,” he wrote. “The team has provided additional information to the Australian government to clarify this issue.”
The question is whether he has a valid exemption from the rules requiring vaccination to enter Australia since he recently recovered from COVID-19.
Immigration Minister Alex Hawke’s office said Djokovic’s legal team had filed further submissions against the potential cancellation of his visa.
WATCH | Djokovic has given the green light to stay in Australia, for now:
Djokovic’s father pleads for his son
Although Novak Djokovic still faces the prospect of deportation from Australia, his father supports Serbian public opinion by telling him that the case “is closed”.
The Serbs have rallied behind their sports idol, who hopes to defend his Australian Open title this month – if he manages to stay in the country.
But he faces the possibility of deportation because he is not vaccinated against COVID-19.
This did not prevent Srdjan Djokovic from pleading his case.
“An Australian court and independent judge, after seven hours of reviewing all the facts, determined that there was no ambiguity and that Novak was free to enter Australia and do his job,” a- he declared.