Former Australian Open tournament director Paul McNamee is sure Novak Djokovic did everything right and he absolutely didn’t deserve to be in this position.
After landing in Melbourne on January 5, Djokovic was detained at the airport for nine hours before being told his was cancelled.
Djokovic appealed the decision and now is awaiting the court’s decision.
“It’s not fair. The guy played by the rules, he got his visa, he arrives, he’s a nine-time champion and whether people like it or not he’s entitled to fair play,” McNamee told ABC News, as quoted on Tennis Up To Date.
“There’s no doubt there’s some disconnect between the State and the federal government. I hate to think politics are involved but it feels that way.”
McNamee not happy at all about the Djokovic situation
“He is the only player that I’ve ever known in the history of the Australian Open that has had his visa rescinded,” added McNamee. “Players need to know with confidence that if they’re flying round the world to events, there’s not going to be this sort of problem at entry.
“It’s a problem we’ve seen over the last two years in Australia and the victim of that is the No.1 player in the world.
“He was following the rules. Now you might be angry that he was given an exemption, but players need to have confidence that the rules they abide by are going to be enforced. It’s not fair to him. Whether you like the rules or not, he doesn’t make the rules – so he deserves his day on court and not in court, in my opinion.”
Djokovic is a record nine-time Australian Open champion and he has won the tournament’s past three editions.
Djokovic was excited after being granted a medical exemption as he believed he was set to compete for a record 21st Grand Slam title.