Novak Djokovic arrived in Serbia after being deported from Australia

Novak Djokovic is already at home after a short but intense passage through Australian lands, from which he was deported after the justice of the oceanic country rejected his work visa twice for not complying with the complete vaccination schedule, in addition of finding errors in the medical exemption documents you presented upon arrival.

The tennis world number one was unable to defend the crown at the Australian Open and finally returned to Serbia where he was greeted by a handful of fans who came to the airport to give him their support after what happened.

According to the Blic newspaper, the 34-year-old tennis player, considered a national hero in Serbia, flew from Australia to Dubai airport and, from there, took another plane to Belgrade, where he landed around 12:16 p.m. (11:00 p.m.). 16 GMT) noon.

Djokovic, who aspired to defend his Australian Open champion title and become the first tennis player in history to add 21 Grand Slams, returned after eleven days of sports, judicial and diplomatic controversy over his opposition to being vaccinated against covid.

Fans wanted to go to the airport to receive himThe president of the Serbian Parliament, Ivica Dacic, declared that Australia’s decision to revoke the Serbian tennis player’s visa “is the victory of politics over sport”, and assured that Djokovic’s treatment was “humiliating and disgusting”.

In addition, he recalled that Djokovic traveled to Australia with a medical exemption: “Objectively, everything was based on the internal political struggle in Australia and it is a very incorrect act by the Australian authorities,” said Dacic, who indicated that Nole is also a carrier of a Serbian diplomatic passport.

In Serbia, the Belgrade Tower lights up with Djokovic’s nameA widespread opinion in Serbia is that Djokovic has been a “scapegoat” in political struggles in Australia ahead of this year’s elections. Dacic indicated that the tennis player is an icon in his country, but that no one sees him as an anti-vaccine leader.

Serbia, which at the beginning of 2021 topped the vaccination rates in Europe, now has less than half (47%) of its population vaccinated with the full schedule.

Djokovic raised controversy as soon as the pandemic began in 2020 by declaring that he would not like to be forced to be vaccinated against the coronavirus in order to travel the world, and later defended freedom of choice, although he stopped short of actively advocating against the vaccine.

The Serbian press described the expulsion of Djokovic, who won the Australian Open nine times, as the “sports scandal of the century”. its cover with headlines like “Australia expelled their champion” and “Djokovic was deprived in an unsportsmanlike way of the right to fight for his 10th title”.

Robin Herman

Robin Herman was an American writer and journalist. She was the first female sports journalist for The New York Times and People News Chronicle. Herman had a successful and eclectic career, ranging from sports writing to assistant dean of communications for Harvard school of Public Health.

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