Novak Djokovic included in Australian Open draw as top seed despite ongoing visa uncertainty

Novak Djokovic was included as the number one seed in the official Australian Open draw on Thursday, even as fury over the world’s No.1 vaccine status ahead of the big tennis tournament continued .

It is unclear whether the player’s visa will be canceled for the second time, as Australia’s top immigration official assesses the possibility of exercising discretionary powers amid concerns over Djokovic’s behavior regarding Covid-19 safety protocols and the vaccine.

Djokovic, who was training at Rod Laver Arena on Thursday after a judge ruled in his favor and ordered his immediate release from a migrant detention center, is now expected to play on Monday or Tuesday for his opener.

It was again drawn, unranked player Miomir Kecmanovic, a fellow Serbian.

The official draw was delayed by more than an hour by organizer Tennis Australia without any reason being given.

Barely 24 hours earlier, Djokovic had confessed to attending an interview with a French journalist when he tested positive for Covid in December, calling it an “error in judgment” in his statement.

The player was forced to reveal his Covid diagnosis as it formed the basis of his request for exemption from Australian rules requiring those entering the country to be vaccinated.

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