Novak Djokovic said he can’t remember how it felt to be expelled from Australia earlier this month. But, the Serb explained that his willingness to go back for next month’s Grand Slam shows how much he loves the country.
Djokovic, who was not vaccinated against Covid-19, was deported from the country on January 20, 2022.
Djokovic is now eligible to play in the Australian Open and hopes to match Rafa Nadal’s record of 22 Grand Slam titles.
Djokovic stated that “you can’t forget these events, it is one of those things which sticks with you,” in his first news conference since returning from Australia.
It will stay with you for the rest your life. It is something I have never seen before, and it will probably never happen again. However, it has been a life-changing experience that has been a great learning opportunity.
“But I must move on, and coming back home to Australia speaks to how I feel about Australia and what I think about playing here.”
Djokovic will prepare for the Australian Open with a warm-up match at the Adelaide International, which starts on January 1, and he hopes for a warm welcome from his fans.
Djokovic stated, “It’s great and the people of Adelaide, as well as Australia generally, love tennis and sports and it’s an sporting nation so hopefully there’ll be a lot people watching and we can all have a good time.”
“I am hopeful that everything will turn out well. Unfortunately, I cannot predict it. I will do my best to bring the crowd good emotions and tennis.
Djokovic stated that he was not affected by the January events in Australia.
Djokovic stated, “What I experienced 12 months ago was hard to comprehend for some time but I had the ability to move forward.”
“Those circumstances will never replace what I have experienced in Melbourne and Australia over my entire career.”
“So I arrive with positive emotions and really look forward playing there. It has been my favorite Grand Slam and the results show it.
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