Nadal spoke amid Novak Djokovic's immigration controversy in Australia.  Photo: AFP

The Spaniard Rafael Nadal ruled out the idea that the possible absence of world number 1, Novak Djokovic, due to the immigration scandal with the Australian government, will tarnish the first Grand Slam of the year, assuring that there will be “a great Open with or without him “.

“The Australian Open is much more important than any player”, reaffirmed the Majorcan in a press conference prior to the start of the tournament, scheduled for tomorrow, Sunday at 9:00 p.m. in Argentina.

Djokovic, maximum winner of the Aus Open with 9 titles, swill open tonight if you can defend the crown which he has held since 2019 when he faces a key judicial hearing for his permanence in the country.

Nadal spoke amid Novak Djokovic’s immigration controversy in Australia. Photo: AFP

The lawyers of the tennis player, who today was for the second time transferred to a detention center of immigrants in Melbourne, they will try to reverse in a federal court the measure adopted by Minister Alex Hawke, who on Friday denied him a visa for non-compliance with the rules to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

“If he ends up playing, fine. And if it doesn’t end up playing, it is what it is“, Nadal summed up about the scandal with the Serbian, which began on Wednesday the 5th when he entered the country without the Covid-19 vaccine.

The former world number 1 expressed his respect for the Serbian “as a person, of course, and as athletes, without a doubt”, a sentiment that prevails “even without agreeing with many things he has done in the last two weeks.”

Novak Djokovic, in the midst of a Covid vaccination scandal.  Photo: AFP

Novak Djokovic, in the midst of a Covid vaccination scandal. Photo: AFP

Djokovic learned that he was positive for Covid on December 19, he then participated in social activities and used his diagnosis to obtain a medical exemption that would enable him to play the Open without being vaccinated.

In addition, in your declaration of entry into the country, the serb replied “no” to the question of whether he had traveled in the previous 14 days when he was indeed in Marbella, Spain, from where he arrived in Melbourne via Dubai.

“We are in a situation that has become more complicated than expected, that has gotten mixed up and that has dragged on over time,” said Nadal, uncomfortable with a foreign conflict.

“We are facing one of the most important tournaments in the world. There is none of us more important than sport itself“, closed the Spaniard, who, like Djokovic, is looking for his 21st Grand Slam title in Melbourne to break the record he shares with the Swiss Roger Federer, absent this year.

Source: Telam


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