Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic arrives in Dubai following deportation from Australia

AFP
Dubai, United Arab Emirates Updated: Jan 17, 2022, 05:42 PM(IST)

Tennis star Djokovic lands in Dubai after Australia deportation Photograph:( AFP )

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As the Australian Open got under way, the men's defending champion stepped off an Emirates plane carrying two bags and wearing a mask- his final destination unknown.

Tennis world number one Novak Djokovic landed in Dubai on Monday after his sensational deportation from Australia over his coronavirus vaccination status shattered his dream of scoring a record 21st Grand Slam title in Melbourne.

As the Australian Open got under way, the men's defending champion stepped off an Emirates plane carrying two bags and wearing a mask- his final destination unknown.

The tennis star walked off the aircraft, having landed at Dubai International Airport at 5:32 am local time (0132 GMT).

Read Also | Australian foreign minister says no 'convenient exceptions' over tennis star Novak Djokovic's visa saga

The dramatic deportation followed a protracted and high-stakes legal battle between the unvaccinated Djokovic and the Australian authorities that polarised opinion and tarnished reputations on both sides.

Djokovic said he was "extremely disappointed" after a Federal Court. 

The world number one was supposed to be the headline act in the opening night session of the Australian Open on Monday, but the unvaccinated Serbian is not defending his title after a court threw out his bid to stay in the country.

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