Martina Navratilova tells Djokovic to ‘suck it up’ and ‘go home’
Novak Djokovic now has an opponent to prepare for in the first round of the Australian Open, that’s despite a decision over his visa still up in the air just days before the tournament starts. But the Serbian can now be reasonably expected to take on compatriot next week despite a delay to the draw suggesting that a decision over his visa from minister for immigration Alex Hawke was imminent.
Hawke is still considering the possibility of “a personal power of cancellation”, a move which could yet drag on for several days. The men’s world number one broke his silence over a number of accusations of breaking Covid protocol on Wednesday, and he conceded that he broke isolation and conducted an interview with French newspaper L’Equipe despite knowing that he was positive for the virus, such a transgression could result in up to five years in prison if proven that he lied about his positive test.
Djokovic’s problems rumble on further, too, with yet further questions, possibly from the Australian Border Force, over claims he misconstrued information on his travel declaration form, saying he had not travelled elsewhere before heading Down Under – despite photos emerging of him training in Spain just before the new year. Andy Murray has acknowledged Djokovic is likely to have to answer questions in public, too, after the isolation controversy, but hopes the Serbian can get back to focusing on tennis now.
Follow all the latest news and updates as Djokovic prepares for the Australian Open below.
Stefanos Tsitsipas: Novak Djokovic put Australian Open at risk
Stefanos Tsitsipas insists Novak Djokovic put the Australian Open at risk with his actions to enter Australia with an exemption for Covid vaccination.
The Greek player, who is the No 4 seed in Melbourne, also claims he has not played by the rules and has made the other players who took the vaccine “look like fools”.
The Greek player said: “For sure he has been playing by his own rules, doing something not many players have the guts to go and do. Especially after ATP announced certain criteria to enter the country.
“Nobody would have thought I could come to Australia unvaccinated and not follow the protocols they gave me.
“It takes a lot of daring to do, and putting the Grand Slam at risk. I don’t think many players could do that. I chose to go and be 100 percent ready for whatever was to come and not have to think about anything else.
“For me it worked in one way, for Novak another way, it doesn’t mean mine is the right one and Novak’s is the wrong one. It’s just each person’s perception.
“There are two ways to look at it. Every single player almost, the stats say 90 percent of the players have been vaccinated and did what they had to do to come and perform in Australia. One side of it is we followed the protocols to compete in Australia and been very disciplined in that part.
“The other sense I’d say it kind of seemed like not everybody is playing by the rules. A very small majority of that percentage chose to follow their…