Novak Djokovic blames agent for Australian paperwork ‘mistake’ and admits not isolating after positive Covid result | Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic has blamed his agent for an “administrative mistake” when declaring he had not travelled within the two weeks earlier than his flight to Australia and acknowledged an “error of judgment” by not isolating after he examined positive for Covid.

The world No 1 launched a press release on Wednesday in a bid to handle what he referred to as “persevering with misinformation” about his actions in December earlier than he got here to Australia in a bid to retain his Australian Open crown.

However Djokovic’s assertion, posted to Instagram, did not handle experiences by Der Spiegel claiming obvious anomalies together with his 16 December PCR check result. The reporting has raised questions concerning the positive Covid prognosis that varieties the premise of his exemption to journey to Australia.

Wednesday’s assertion claims he wasn’t notified of his positive result till 17 December regardless of Djokovic’s affidavit to the federal circuit courtroom that he was each “examined and recognized” on 16 December.


Australia’s immigration minister, Alex Hawke, has confirmed he’s nonetheless contemplating re-cancelling Djokovic’s visa, citing “prolonged additional submissions and supporting documentation” from the participant’s legal professionals as the reason for delay.

Djokovic had his visa restored by the federal circuit courtroom on Monday however his capability to remain in Australia was put unsure by the ministerial overview.

On Tuesday, it was revealed the Australian Border Drive was investigating his pre-flight declaration after pictures emerged suggesting he was in Belgrade lower than two weeks earlier than his flight from Spain to Australia on 4 January.

Assertion launched by Novak Djokovic relating to his positive Covid check and Australian journey declaration. {Photograph}: Novak Djokovic/Instagram


On Wednesday, Djokovic mentioned he wished to right “misinformation … within the curiosity of assuaging broader concern locally about my presence in Australia”.

“I need to emphasise that I’ve tried very laborious to make sure the security of everybody and my compliance with testing obligations,” he mentioned.

“I attended a basketball sport in Belgrade on 14 December after which it was reported that quite a few individuals examined positive with Covid-19.

“Regardless of having no Covid signs, I took a speedy antigen check on 16 December which was destructive, and out of an abundance of warning, additionally took an official and authorized PCR check on that very same day.”


Djokovic mentioned on 17 December he attended a tennis occasion in Belgrade to current awards to kids, after testing destructive once more on a speedy check. “I used to be asymptomatic and felt good, and I had not acquired the notification of a positive PCR check result till after that occasion.”

Djokovic mentioned after receiving the positive result he however attended his tennis centre in Belgrade on 18 December to uphold a “longstanding dedication for a L’Equipe interview” as a result of he “felt obliged” to and “didn’t need to let the journalist down”. Djokovic says he socially distanced and wore a masks besides whereas images had been taken.

“Whereas I went residence after the interview to isolate for the required interval, on reflection, this was an error of judgment and I settle for that I ought to have rescheduled this dedication.”

Djokovic mentioned the inaccurate pre-travel declaration of 1 January was “submitted by my help group on my behalf”.

“My agent sincerely apologises for the executive mistake in ticking the inaccurate field about my earlier journey earlier than coming to Australia. This was a human error and definitely not deliberate.”

Djokovic mentioned he has “offered further data to the Australian authorities to make clear this matter” however would not be making additional remark “out of the utmost respect for the Australian authorities and their authorities and present course of”.

Djokovic did not handle the Der Spiegel report which claimed the QR code for his 16 December PCR check confirmed a destructive result once they scanned it earlier this week earlier than subsequently giving a positive result.

It additionally claimed to have uncovered anomalies between the paper model of the PCR check result proven to be positive and the digital model of it as introduced by the tennis participant’s legal professionals.

The paper model reportedly means that the alleged positive check result is not from 16 December however – in response to the time stamped on it – from 26 December. Spiegel acknowledged the timestamp may additionally replicate when the result was downloaded by the examined individual.

In response to findings by the IT analysis group Zerforschung, and shared with Spiegel, the positive check from 16 December had the Serb testing system quantity 7371999. Djokovic’s destructive check result, carried out on 22 December, reportedly had an identification quantity that was about 50,000 positions decrease.

The Zerforschung researchers have advised Spiegel they’ve affirmation that the check ID numbers rise, reasonably than fall, elevating questions that the check allegedly from 22 December was carried out previous to the check allegedly from 16 December.

Novak Djokovic practises in Melbourne with Australian Open place in doubt – videoNovak Djokovic practises in Melbourne with Australian Open place unsure – video

Spiegel put inquiries to each Djokovic and Serbian well being authorities however by Tuesday night had but to obtain a response. The Guardian has additionally contacted Djokovic for remark.

A spokesperson for the Australian immigration minister, Alex Hawke, mentioned he was nonetheless contemplating use of his private energy to cancel Djokovic’s visa.

“Mr Djokovic’s legal professionals have just lately offered prolonged additional submissions and supporting documentation mentioned to be related to the attainable cancellation of Mr Djokovic’s visa,” he mentioned on Wednesday. “Naturally, this can have an effect on the timeframe for a call.”

Across the identical time that Djokovic’s assertion was launched, the world No 1 continued his match preparations by holding his first open coaching session on Rod Laver Area with Tristan Schoolkate, a younger Australian participant.

Djokovic’s first two practices since his launch from detention had been held in personal with the doorways of Rod Laver Area locked and the courtroom’s stay feed turned off on Tuesday.

Further reporting Tumaini Carayol

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