(Reuters) – Novak Djokovic said he was “emotional” after the warm welcome from fans when he returned to Melbourne Park for Friday’s practice match with Nick Kyrgios. rice field.
Djokovic was deported and given a three-year travel ban on the eve of the Australian Open in January 2022 for not having been vaccinated against COVID-19.
But the former world number one’s visa ban was waived in November, paving the way for Djokovic to pursue a 10th Australian Open title, giving him a chance to match Rafa Nadal’s 22 Grand Slam titles. was given.
Before the match, Djokovic said, “I’m very happy. Thank you very much,” and the crowd cheered loudly.
“I’m a little emotional right now, to be honest. I was really looking forward to being back on this court. Thank you for being here tonight for a greater cause.”
Djokovic and Kyrgios played a tiebreaker against wheelchair athletes David Wagner and Heath Davidson and two juniors after winning shortened sets in practice matches.
Reporting by Aadi Nair, Nashik, India; Editing by Ed Osmond
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