Novak Djokovic is waiting to learn whether he can return to Australia in time for the first Grand Slam of 2023 after being automatically banned from re-entering the country when he was deported at the start of this year. And Australian Open boss Craig Tiley has now claimed that the nine-time champion Down Under has “accepted” his position as the decision lies in the hands of the federal government.
Djokovic found himself at the centre of a scandal at the beginning of the year when he arrived in Australia unvaccinated. He had his visa revoked and successfully appealed before the then-Immigration Minister used his powers to cancel the Serb’s visa for a second time, leaving Djokovic deported on the eve of the Aussie Open when his second appeal was not granted.
The world No 7’s chances of playing the Australian Open are now up in the air for the second year running as all people deported from the country receive an automatic three-year ban from returning. While Djokovic waits to learn whether this can be lifted for him to compete in Melbourne in January, the chief of Tennis Australia has now revealed that the 35-year-old has “accepted the position” he finds himself in.
“What we’re saying at this point is that Novak and the federal government need to work out the situation. And then we’ll follow any instruction after that,” Craig Tiley said as plans for the 2023 Australian Open were unveiled on Wednesday. Tennis Australia helped Djokovic get a medical exemption to arrive in the country back in January, but took a step back this year and said everything was up to the federal government.
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