Djokovic Returns to Australia After Deportation

Image copyright: James Richardson [via Tennis365]

The Facts

  • Tennis star Novak Djokovic is back in Australia, nearly a year after he was detained and deported over his COVID vaccination status.

  • At the time, the Serbian had been world no. 1 and was due to defend his Australian Open crown. However, after arriving in Melbourne on Jan. 5, he was detained by the Australian Border Force and was required to stay at an immigration hotel after it was discovered he hadn't been vaccinated.

The Spin

Narrative A

Novak Djokovic is one of the greatest tennis players of all time and has won the Australian Open a record number of times. The tournament and title would carry less weight if he's not there to compete. He should never have been treated as a pariah by the Australian government.

Narrative B

At the time, Djokovic was treated appropriately by the Australian government given the circumstances and his actions. Times are different now, but no one should feel sorry about the past.

Narrative C

After a series of blunders, natural disasters and a once-in-a-century pandemic, the last three Australian Opens have been overshadowed by events off the tennis court. With Djokovic's return, hopefully this year it's the tennis that'll do the talking.

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