Adelaide, Jan 2 (Ajit Weekly News) Serbian tennis great Novak Djokovic received a grand welcome back to Australia when he made a rare doubles appearance at the Adelaide International on Monday.
The Serb and his Canadian partner Vasek Pospisil suffered a 4-6, 6-3, 10-5 loss at the hands of Tomislav Brkic and Gonzalo Escobar, on his return to Australia for the first time since he won the 2021 Australian Open.
The 21-time Grand Slam champion received huge support from the crowd. He was greeted by loud cheers and chants of “Novak, Novak” when he walked out on to court.
Prior to the Australian Open 2022, Djokovic was deported because of his Covid-19 vaccination status and was handed a three-year ban from entering Australia.
However, Immigration Minister Andrew Giles overturned Djokovic’s three-year visa ban in November, allowing him to enter the country.
Last January, Djokovic, who claimed that he had obtained a medical exemption because he had recently recovered from Covid, was detained by the Australian Border Force on entering the country and forced to stay at an immigration hotel.
However, after a legal argument, the Australian government cancelled his visa citing that Djokovic did not meet the entry requirements and he was banned from entering Australia till 2025.
Djokovic is the top seed in the singles draw in Adelaide and will face Frenchman Constant Lestienne in the first round on Tuesday.
The World No.5 is a nine-time champion in Melbourne and is just one Grand Slam title short of Rafael Nadal’s record of 22 for male tennis players.
–Ajit Weekly News
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