World No 1 Novak Djokovic waves at fans from his quarantine balcony as he prepares for the Australian Open
- Tennis world number one Novak Djokovic is preparing for Australian Open
- The Serbian born star has started 14 days of hotel quarantine in Adelaide
- With influx of tennis stars arriving, Victorian Govt accused of double standards
The Serbian-born Djokovic, who has won the Australian Open men’s singles crown eight times in his glittering career, arrived in the City of Churches on Friday ahead of his 14 days in mandatory quarantine.
Djokovic, 33, was spotted basking in the sun from his balcony before chatting to fans, clutching his phone in one hand.
He was dressed casually, donning a grey jumper and blue tracksuit pants.
Widely considered one of the best to ever play the sport, Djokovic has snared 17 grand slam titles after first entering the professional circuit in 2003.
Tennis star Novak Djokovic (pictured above) has started 14 days of hotel quarantine in Adelaide ahead of the Australian Open next month
The world number one (pictured above) was spotted laughing and chatting with fans from his balcony
The defending men’s champion (pictured above) was also seen either sleeping or meditating from the comfort of his balcony
He will look to defend his title at Melbourne Park next month, and his cause has been aided significantly after Swiss maestro Roger Federer withdrew from the tournament last month, citing a knee injury.
Spaniard Rafael Nadal, who is also in Adelaide in hotel quarantine, looms as Djokovic’s biggest threat on the court.
Other stars already in Australia include US superstar Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka, 2019 women’s champion Naomi Osaka and Japanese excitement machine Kei Nishikori.
But with the Australian Open set to begin on February 8 in Melbourne, the Victorian government has been accused of double standards.
Over 1000 elite players and officials have been welcomed on chartered flights organised by tournament identities, while more than 37,000 Australian residents remain stranded abroad and interstate.
On Friday night, airline carrier Emirates abruptly announced it would suspend all its flights to Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne until further notice, presenting further obstacles for those overseas.
Away from the court Djokovic (pictured above) is a devoted family man with his two kids
Before flying to Australia, Djokovic (pictured above) enjoyed a family holiday in Marbella, Spain
Spanish star Rafael Nadal (pictured above centre) is also in hotel quarantine in Adelaide ahead of the Australian Open next month
NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance yesterday labelled the Victorian government ‘inconsistent’ when it comes to border restrictions.
‘Against the backdrop of having an international event and trying to maintain normalcy, that’s fine,’ he told reporters.
‘But I think where this falls short is the inconsistency in their decision making.
‘Throughout 2021, we need consistency around the trigger points that these state restrictions are going to have.’
Others have said that watching the sport will bring much-needed cheer to the country, and it should be welcomed.