Djokovic welcomed back in Australia

January 3, 2023 5:40 am

Novak Djokovic (left) teamed up with Canada's Vasek Pospisil in the men's doubles. [Photo Credit: BBC Sports]

Novak Djokovic received a positive welcome back to Australia as he made a rare doubles appearance at the Adelaide International.

The Serb was deported prior to the 2022 Australian Open because of his Covid-19 vaccination status.

Djokovic’s three-year visa ban was overturned in November, allowing him to enter the country.

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He and Canada’s Vasek Pospisil were beaten 4-6 6-3 10-5 by Tomislav Brkic and Gonzalo Escobar on his return.

The 21-time Grand Slam champion enjoyed overwhelming support from the crowd throughout the match, greeted by cheers and chants.

The 35-year-old, currently ranked world number five, stayed behind after the defeat to sign autographs and take photographs with fans.

He is top seed in the singles in Adelaide and will face Frenchman Constant Lestienne in the first round today as he continues his build-up to the Australian Open, the first major of the season, which starts on 16 January.