‘Big Loser of this Mess Is…’: Serena Williams’ Coach, Nick Kyrgios and Others React to Novak Djokovic’s Deportation

Published 01/16/2022, 3:35 AM EST
Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic practices at Melbourne Park as questions remain over the legal battle regarding his visa to play in the Australian Open in Melbourne, Australia, January 13, 2022. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

It seems that ambiguity and confusion go hand in hand with the Australian Open 2022. After tonnes of controversy around defending champion Novak Djokovic, and many stars dropping out, the Grand Slam seemed to be setting up for failure.

Things seemed to get better for Djokovic when a Federal judge intervened and reversed his visa cancellation. However, Immigration Minister Alex Hawke then used his personal ministerial power to cancel Novak’s visa again.


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Now, before his deportation, the Federal court intervened yet again and gave its final ruling on the matter today. Finally, there is clarity for the world on this matter.

Novak Djokovic is not playing the Australian Open 2022

The ruling is out, and the matter is finally at rest. Novak Djokovic will now be leaving Australia. Consequently, the 9-time Australian Open champion will not be defending his title at the Grand Slam.

Tennis – Australian Open – Men’s Singles Final – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 21, 2021. Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates winning his final match against Russia’s Daniil Medvedev. REUTERS/Kelly Defina TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Naturally, with as much traction as this issue has gained, the tennis fraternity has reacted to this news. Former doubles World No. 1 Rennae Stubbs OLY called it “a sad, sad day for tennis, Australia, the Australian Open and obviously for @DjokerNole“.

18-time Grand Slam champion Martina Navratilova tweeted that the only thing worth talking about is whether or not Novak Djokovic followed the rules laid down regarding his medical exemption. “The rest is commentary,” she said.

Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios, who had been extremely vocal about his support for the Serbian, tweeted a single emoji of a facepalm, expressing his exasperation and dejection with the final ruling.

Friends and fellow stars support the Serbian

Novak Djokovic’s Canadian friend and fellow founder of the PTPA, Vasek Pospisil, too, expressed his disagreement with the ruling. Pospisil wrote that Novak would have “been home with his family” and never come to Australia if he hadn’t been granted his exemption in the first place.

Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic departs from the Park Hotel government detention facility before attending a court hearing at his lawyers’ office in Melbourne, Australia, January 16, 2022. AAP Image/James Ross via REUTERS

Pospisil claims that there is a “political agenda at play” in Australia, and it is not Novak’s fault at all. “(He) did not ‘make his own rules'”, Pospisil wrote.

Former World No. 11 Alize Cornet expressed sadness that “none of us stood for him”, whereas Novak Djokovic “is always the first one to stand for the players.”

Even French Coach Patrick Mouratoglou took to Twitter to express his thoughts. According to Mouratoglou, the loser of “this mess is the tournament (Australian Open)” itself. Nevertheless, he tries looking on the bright side, stating that people will now “hopefully start talking about tennis” and nothing else, as the first Grand Slam of the year approaches.


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In fact, even Craig Kelly, the leader of the United Australia Party, expressed his dismay at the situation. He stated that “so-called human rights advocates” in Australia “should be horrified” at the events going on. Moreover, he even calls the people celebrating this ‘clowns’, by using the emoji for the same.


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What are your views on this mess in Melbourne? Should Novak Djokovic have been allowed to defend his title at the Australian Open?

WATCH THIS STORY: Rafael Nadal, Ashleigh Barty, And Other Tennis Stars React to Novak Djokovic Australian Open Controversy



Samarveer Singh

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Samarveer Singh is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. Holding a degree in English Literature and a diploma in Fitness Sciences and Training, Samarveer is obsessed with tennis and basketball. He is also an automotive writer at HotCars.