'Djokovic could have avoided all this rigamarole by simply getting vaccinated'
Following are reactions to the Australian federal court upholding a government decision to cancel Novak Djokovic's visa, ending the Serbian's bid for a record 21st Grand Slam title at the Jan. 17-30 Australian Open.
20-TIME GRAND SLAM CHAMPION NOVAK DJOKOVIC
"I would like to make a brief statement to address the outcomes of today's Court hearing. I will now be taking some time to rest and to recuperate, before making any further comments beyond this.
"I am extremely disappointed with the Court ruling to dismiss my application for judicial review of the Minister's decision to cancel my visa, which means I cannot stay in Australia and participate in the Australian Open."
CANADIAN TENNIS PLAYER VASEK POSPISIL
"Novak would never have gone to Australia if he had not been given an exemption to enter the country by the government (which he did receive; hence Judge Kelly's initial ruling).
"He would have skipped the Australian Open and been home with his family and no one would be talking about this mess.
"There was a political agenda at play here with the elections coming up which couldn't be more obvious. This is not his fault. He did not force his way into the country and did not "make his own rules"; he was ready to stay home."
FORMER AUSTRALIAN PM KEVIN RUDD
"The end of a week-long, political circus - all avoidable had Morrison not issued #Djokovic a visa in the first place.
"He then tries to look like a hairy chested Howard: 'we decide who comes here, nobody else'. Meanwhile hospital crisis off the front page."
FRENCH TENNIS PLAYER ALIZE CORNET
"I know too little to judge the situation. What I know is that Novak is always the first one to stand for the players. But none of us stood for him. Be strong @DjokerNole"
AUSTRALIAN SENATOR NICK MCKIM
"Djokovic gets deported to resume his privileged life. Meanwhile people who have been found to be genuine refugees continue to languish in Australian prisons after nine years of exile, murder, abuse and brutal dehumanisation. We must remove the Minister's god-like powers. Now."
FORMER AUSTRALIAN TENNIS PLAYER RENNAE STUBBS
"It's official. The 9 time defending champion will be deported from Australia. This is a sad sad day for tennis, Australia, the Australian Open and obviously for @DjokerNole. I honestly cannot believe it's come to this…."
TENNIS WRITER BEN ROTHENBERG
"(Periodic and important reminder that Djokovic could have avoided all this rigamarole by simply getting vaccinated like 97%+ of his tennis player peers have.)"