Novak Djokovic‘s long-time doctor Igor Cetojevic has blasted Australia and its strict border policies, labelling it “absurd” that his man is seen as a public health risk despite being a “super healthy” athlete.
The Australian government revoked Djokovic’s visa for the second time on Friday afternoon, just days out from the Australian Open, where the Serbian would be gunning for a record 10th title at Melbourne Park and 21st overall major triumph – one which would move him clear of rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal as the most successful men’s tennis player of all time.
Djokovic has been vocally hesitant about vaccines since the pandemic began, and not only could it cost him a place in this year’s tournament, he now faces the very real possibility of being unable to return to Australia for three years.
“It’s absurd that somebody who has optimal health is a threat to the health of the public,” Cetojevic told AFP. “How can a super healthy guy be a threat for the Australian Open?
“It’s all politics. It starts with politics, not anything else.”
Djokovic has been in Australia since Jan. 5, when his visa was initially flagged due to an apparent mistake on his application. Four days later a Federal Circuit Court judge reinstated his visa and shortly after Djokovic was practicing on the Melbourne Park courts.
Friday’s backflip is the latest curveball thrown at the world No. 1, who will learn his fate on Sunday morning following what is expected to be a final hearing at 9:30am.
At this stage, Djokovic is scheduled to play on Monday against compatriot Miomir Kecmanovic.