Novak Djokovic has opened up about plans to return to Australia as he admitted he was selfish by attending a photo shoot after testing positive for Covid-19.
“I want to come back to Australia in the future and play Rod Laver Arena again,” Djokovic told Serbian National Television (RTS).
“A lot of professional and personal wonderful things happened to me there. Despite all this, I have a great connection with Australia.”
The tennis star also admitted he was “selfish” when he attended an interview and photo shoot with French newspaper L’Equipe the day after he was told last December that he had tested positive for Covid.
“I admit that what I did when I came to the interview with L’Equipe was selfish. My mistake, which I admit, he said.
“I understand that not everyone will forgive me, and I understand the critics.”
Novak Djokovic admits he was selfish by showing up for a photo shoot after testing positive for Covid-19.
Djokovic said he did not regret his controversial attempt at the Australian Open.
“I don’t regret it. I don’t know if things would have been different if I hadn’t posted this.”
The 20-time Grand Slam winner said he liked his chances at this year’s Australian Open.
“Out of respect for the winning Rafael Nadal and all the players, I dare not say that I would have won, but I think I had a good chance.”
He said he was surprised to receive support from Australian Nick Kyrgios, who has previously been highly critical of Djokovic’s handling of Covid-19.
“Kyrgios pleasantly surprised me,” he said.
“I thanked him and everyone else who stood up for me.
Djokovic said he was surprised when Nick Kyrgios stood by his predicament in Melbourne in January. Pictured: Djokovic leaving the park hotel in Melbourne.
Novak Djokovic on a plane while returning to Serbia after being deported from Australia on January 17.
“I received a lot of private messages from some of the players, but they didn’t want to speak publicly. I understand the situation was difficult.”
As in a previous BBC interview where he confirmed he had not received a Covid vaccine, the Serbian again tried to explain his objections to the injection.
“As an elite athlete, I want to triple check everything that enters my body. If something changes by 0.5 percent in my body, I can feel it.
“I’m just careful before making any decisions. I will live with the consequences (of the decision not to get vaccinated).”
Djokovic was deported from Australia the day before the start of the Australian Open after Immigration Minister Alex Hawke used his discretion to revoke his visa.
He came to Australia believing he had medical clearance to play.
“I’m just careful before making any decisions. I will live with the consequences (of the decision not to get vaccinated),” Djokovic told Serbian television.
Djokovic told the BBC he planned not to come to Australia but was then told he could get a medical exemption after testing positive for the virus a month before the tournament.
He insisted that the error in one of his travel documents to enter Australia was unintentional.
“I was very saddened and disappointed with how it all ended for me in Australia. It wasn’t easy,” Djokovic said.
Under Australian immigration law, a 34-year-old cannot be granted another visa for three years, but the federal government, including Prime Minister Scott Morrison, has indicated that the ban could be lifted “under the right circumstances.”
Djokovic also stated that he would forfeit further Grand Slam titles rather than receive a Covid injection.
“I understand that I am not vaccinated today, I cannot go to most tournaments at the moment,” he said.
“That’s the price I’m willing to pay.
Novak Djokovic is pictured at the World Expo 2020 Dubai where he will compete in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship as the United Arab Emirates does not require visitors to be vaccinated.
Djokovic is currently in Dubai to take part in the Dubai Tennis Championships, a tournament he can compete in as the United Arab Emirates does not require visitors to be vaccinated.
This will be the first tournament he has taken part in since his visa was canceled and he was deported from Australia.
Djokovic and his wife Jelena were spotted at the Expo 2020 World Expo in Dubai ahead of the tournament.