Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews doesn’t believe that the reputation of the Australian Open has been tarnished following the Novak Djokovic visa drama.
Andrews stated the Australian Open is “much bigger than any one person” and mentioned that Rafael Nadal made his position very clear.
After Djokovic’s visa was cancelled, Nadal said it all could have been avoided had Djokovic taken the vaccine.
“I think this tournament is much bigger than any one person. It’s much bigger than any one person,” Andrews said, per news.com.au.
“You know, I think that [Rafael Nadal] and a few others have made the position very, very clear. This is – this tournament is much bigger than any one person.
“It’s a Grand Slam, the biggest thing in tennis in the first quarter of the year, every year. It’s a massive event for us.
“And it’s bigger than any one person, whether that be, you know, in the court, or on the court. This tournament is much bigger than any one person.”
Andrews comments further on the Djokovic saga
Djokovic’s visa has been reinstated but Immigration Minister Alex Hawke could still make the call to cancel Djokovic’s visa.
“The issue of who gets into the country and their vaccination status is not an issue for state governments,” Andrews responded, when asked if he stood by his statement last year that anyone who wanted to come to Australia as part of the tournament should be fully vaccinated.
“I don’t issue visas, the Commonwealth Government does that. There’s a court ruling, whether that’s appealed is a matter for the Commonwealth Government. If the Immigration Minister wants to use his extraordinary powers, that’s a matter for him.
“I don’t want to offer comment on that. I stand by our comments. We have not sought to, in fact quite the opposite, we have not sought to convince the Commonwealth Government to allow anyone else. Quite the opposite.”