Tennis star Novak Djokovic has hinted that he expects to be able to return to Australia in January to pursue a tenth Australian Open crown.
The Serbian ace was sensationally kicked out of Australia earlier this year after the Morrison government ruled that he was a risk to public order because of his opposition to Covid-19 vaccines.
Djokovic copped a three-year ban following the saga, but the Albanese government is reportedly considering overturning the sanction.
The reigning Wimbledon champion told Serbian media he expected to know within a few weeks whether the Australian government would permit him entry to compete.
“When it comes to Australia, there are some positive signs, but unofficially,” he said.
“We are communicating through my lawyers in Australia. In fact, they are communicating with the authorities in charge of my case.
“I hope to have an answer in the next few weeks – whatever that answer might be, but of course I am hoping for a positive one – so that I have enough time to prepare for the start of the season, if that start is going to happen in Australia.
“I really want to go there, I am over what happened this year and I just want to play tennis, it is what I do best. Australia has always been the place where I have played my best tennis, the results speak for themselves, so I am always extra motivated to go there. This time even more so.
“I am hoping for a positive answer.
“For the choices I made, I knew there would be certain consequences like not going to America. For Australia it was a different case, I had the exception, but in the end it did not work out. We know what happened, let’s not go back.
“This time I am waiting for the permission again. It is a good thing that they have now opened the borders for the unvaccinated foreigners travelling to Australia.
“I have that ban, I hope it will be lifted. As I said, it is not in my hands, I hope the people in the Australian Government will give a positive answer, that is all.”
Shadow Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews warned that overturning Djokovic’s visa ban “would be a slap in the face for those people in Australia who did the right thing”.
“I don’t think there is any reason it should be overturned because someone has a lot of money,” she said.