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Novak Djokovic Wants To Play In Australian Open 2023 Despite His Three-Year Deportation Ban

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Novak Djokovic Wants To Play In Australian Open 2023 Despite His Three-Year Deportation Ban

Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic is hopeful to return to Australia in 2023 despite the deportation drama earlier this year.

The Serbian claimed the Wimbledon title over the weekend after ousting Australian Nick Kyrgios. 

Djokovic was permitted to play the grass tournament despite not being allowed to play the Australian Open earlier this year and the US Open later this year due to his vaccination status.

America’s Covid-19 laws restrict unvaccinated visitors from entering the country, however, those who already reside in the country and haven’t yet had the jab will be allowed to play.

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Djokovic won’t want to risk a similar situation to earlier in the year when he arrived in Australia without being vaccinated and was subsequently deported straight back out. 

Australian deportation laws also come with an automatic three-year ban from re-entering the country. 

However, despite the drama that unfolded the 21-time grand slam champion is hoping to make a return to the country in 2023 to play in the tournament he was banished from in January.

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He told reporters outside a training centre in Bosnia, via news.com.au: “I was deported from the country to which I would like to come back.

“I would love to come back to Australia. I love Australia, I had my best Grand Slam results in that country.

“Hopefully in January I can be there because I want to be there, and I also want to be in New York. I want to be in America, I want to be everywhere I can possibly play.

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“I am a professional tennis player, I don’t go into politics or anything else because that doesn’t interest me.

“I have my stance and I am a proponent for freedom to choose what is best for you. I respect everything and everybody, and at least I expect people to respect my decision.

“If I have permission, I’ll be there. If I don’t, I won’t be there – it’s not the end of the world.

“I still feel young in my own skin, I feel I have many more years to come so there will be a lot of opportunities.”

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Despite the current ban, there is hope in the tennis world that the Australian government will waive it to allow Djokovic to return.

Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley is hopeful that the Serbian will be allowed to play next year.

He told Sport Klub: “We are doing our best (to get him in the country).

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"Of course, it's not my decision whether he will be able to play at the Australian Open, but Novak is always welcome, he knows that many people in Australia like to watch him play.

"It is up to others to make a decision, but there is still a lot of time before the Australian Open next year. I think everyone should be enjoying his Wimbledon victory now."

Australia recently dropped rules requiring overseas travellers to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination before entering the country. 

Featured Image Credit: Xinhua / Alamy. REUTERS / Alamy.

Topics: Australia, Australian Open, Novak Djokovic

Jayden Collins
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