Novak Djokovic received news of his deportation from Australia on Sunday after the Federal Court upheld the decision by Immigration Minister Alex Hawke. Despite having won the first appeal for a procedural defect, the number 1 in the world had his visa canceled for the second time on Friday.
For the Serbian phenomenon it was a very hard blow, which prevented him from defending his title at the Australian Open. The 34-year-old from Belgrade was on the hunt for his tenth title at Melbourne Park, the fourth in a row.
In the event of a 'Down Under' triumph, Nole would have overtaken Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the all-time Grand Slam standings. As a direct consequence of the minister’s exercise of discretion, Djokovic will not be able to enter Australia for three years.
This measure could be lifted, but the feeling is that the relationship between Novak and Australia has definitively cracked. In a recent interview with 'RTL', Jo-Wilfried Tsonga expressed his point of view on this matter.
Tsonga opens up on Djokovic
"The feeling I have is a lot of sadness for Novak Djokovic because it's a shame it's gone this far," Tsonga said. "We lock people up for their opinions (but) the rules are pretty clear, and the rules are the rules.
It's sad for Novak, for the tournament and for the players." Djokovic and Tsonga first locked horns in the 2008 Australian Open final, which they reached by defeating Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, respectively.
The Frenchman won the opening set but went on to lose the match in four. Tsonga bounced back to beat the 20-time Major champion five times in their next six encounters, including a five-set win over the Serb at the 2010 Australian Open.
The events leading to the Australian Open 2022 have had a massive toll on the entire tennis fraternity. The visa saga engulfing Novak Djokovic and his subsequent deportation from Australia have invited massive criticism from across the world.
Many people have expressed their displeasure with how the authorities handled his case. Hublot backed the Serb and said, “Novak Djokovic is his own person. We cannot comment on any of his personal decisions. Hublot will continue its partnership with the world number 1 tennis player”.
However, Lacoste was the only sponsor to cast a shadow on the endorsement deal with Novak Djokovic. In a statement, a Lacoste spokesperson said, “as soon as possible, we will be in touch with Novak Djokovic to review the events that have accompanied his presence in Australia”.