Tennis superstar Novak Djokovic admitted to breaking isolation rules following a positive test for COVID-19 last month.
“While I went home after the interview to isolate for the required period, on reflection, this was an error of judgment and I accept that I should have rescheduled this commitment,” said Djokovic after having attended an interview with a journalist from L’Equip, whilst positive for COVID-19.
L’Equpe journalist Franck Ramella wrote: “We arrived at the interview. The instructions had been clear: no questions on vaccinations and the intentions of the Serb over the Australian Open.”
“Even if we did ask, what would be the point?”
In his article, Ramella did confirm that the tennis star wore a mask for the entire duration of the interview, refusing to take it off even for five minutes.
The Serbian had his visa revoked on 6th January following his arrival in Australia amid questions over his exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine.
The resulting court case saw him win a sensational victory over the Australian government, earning him the right to play. He was subsequently released from detention with immediate effect.
The victory, however, did not clear him of the risk of being deported, with Australian immigration minister Alex Hawke reportedly pondering the use of his own ‘personal powers’. Were he to exercise them, the consequences could see the Serbian deported and banned for up to three years.
Djokovic also admitted to having declared, falsely, that he had not traveled for two weeks before his flight to Australia. The error, he states, had come from his support team.
He had flown to Australia from Spain on 4th of January, but updates on social media had shown he was in Serbia on December 25.
Novak Djokovic and Benfica’s handball player (the best, btw) Petar Djordjic in Belgrade today. pic.twitter.com/U7lti3xjcQ
— José Morgado (@josemorgado) December 25, 2021
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Djokovic still remains hopeful to claim a 21st Grand Slam next week. The win would make him the most successful male tennis player in history. Yet, recent developments could provide an unsavoury twist which could see the player not compete, at all.
In an Instagram post this morning, he alludes to fighting back against claims against him.
“I want to address the continuing misinformation about my activities and attendance at events in December in the lead up to my positive PCR COVID test result. This is misinformation which needs to be corrected, particularly in the interest of alleviating broader concern in the community about my presence in Australia, and to address matters which are very hurtful and concerning to my family.”
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How do you see this standoff playing out?