Djokovic back home in Serbia after Australia deportation – Archyde

Djokovic is likely to be received as a hero in Serbia, with the Melbourne fiasco only seeming to boost his standing as a fighter at home who has dared to challenge the establishment.

On Sunday evening, the message “Nole, you are the pride of Serbia” flashed from an LED sign on a building in downtown Belgrade.

Ahead of his deportation from Australia, Djokovic said he was “extremely disappointed” after the federal court unanimously upheld the annulment of his visa on public order grounds.

He now faces a possible three-year ban from Australia, where he has won nine of his 20 Grand Slam titles – a tally that equals an all-time record alongside Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.

But while Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said that “a very clear message has been sent by the decision,” he hinted that Djokovic could return to Australia within three years.

“While (the ban) is spread over a three-year period, there is a possibility that they could return in the right circumstances and that would be considered at this point,” Morrison said in a radio interview.

The humble Djokovic boarded an Emirates flight from Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport and arrived in Dubai before dawn on Monday, accompanied by an entourage of coaches and aides.

Twice in the past 11 days, the Australian government had torn up Djokovic’s visa and placed him in immigration detention – on the grounds that his presence could stoke anti-vaccination sentiment amid a wave of Omicron variant cases.

The Serbian star fought the decision in court, winning a round but losing the decision in Australia’s federal court on Sunday, ending a week of legal drama.

“I hope that now we can all focus on the game and the tournament that I love,” Djokovic said, admitting the game was over.

The controversy looks set to continue as Djokovic’s image is seriously damaged and Australia has a growing reputation for hostility towards visitors.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.