The saga of Novak Djokovic has finally come to an end in Australia. An Australian court struck down his appeal to have his visa reinstated for a second time, meaning he’ll be kicked out of the tennis tournament in Melbourne and deported out of the country.
The world No. 1 men’s tennis player and defending champion confirmed in a statement that the fight is over and he will not compete in the Australian Open.
He would have been attempting to win his 21st career grand slam event, which would be an all-time men’s record. At 20 titles, he’s tied with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.
While every country employs its own Covid-19 policies, it’s not clear what Djokovic’s status will be for major competitions going forward. He won the Australian Open nine times and three times in a row since 2019.
Italy’s Salvatore Caruso was handed a ‘lucky loser’ spot in the main draw in Melbourne after Djokovic lost his last-ditch legal appeal against the cancellation of his visa on Sunday.
The unseeded Italian was pitted against Serbian world number 77 Kecmanovic, who had already made clear his dissatisfaction with the treatment dished out to Djokovic, calling his absence “a huge loss” for tennis.
Caruso was handed a straight-sets drubbing in the Australian Open first round after stepping in for the deported Novak Djokovic, as opponent Miomir Kecmanovic pledged to dedicate victory to his countryman.
On Monday, Kecmanovic took advantage of his meeting with a much less decorated opponent, sweeping past Caruso 6-4 6-2 6-1 at Melbourne Park’s 1573 Arena, although the Italian will still pick up $36,000 in prize money.
Serbian star Kecmanovic, 22, will now meet Tommy Paul in the second round after the American eased past Kazakh qualifier Mikhail Kukushkin in straight sets in their meeting.
Prior to his match on Monday, Kecmanovic had reportedly vowed to dedicate any victory to the deported Djokovic. Ridiculous pharma policies can not be a sportsmanship breaker in the end.
It is clear that I am disappointed with the decision of the authorities in Australia. I think that tennis lost a lot with this event in Australia, because not having the best tennis player in the world is a loss for the sport, the spectators, all of us.
RT. com / ABC Flash Point News 2022.