Novak Djokovic pictured smiling at tennis charity event with kids a day AFTER testing positive with Covid
ANTI-VAX tennis star Novak Djokovic was snapped smiling while handing out awards to a group of young tennis fans AFTER testing positive for Covid.
The World No 1 tested positive on December 16, but was seen not wearing a mask during a ceremony at the Novak Tennis Centre in Belgrade, which reportedly took place on December 17.
Serbian Djokovic was detained in Melbourne airport for nine hours on January 4 after touching down to play in the Australian Open, and has been forced to isolate in a hotel since.
The nine time Australian Open champion sparked a major backlash after he was granted a vaccine exemption to play in the contest.
Organisers of the tournament initially confirmed that his medical exemption had been granted by two independent medical panels organised by Tennis Australia and Victoria state.
But Australia's Border Force confirmed Djokovic's visa had been revoked after he landed to take part in the Australian Open at around 11.15pm local time on Wednesday.
Djokovic's injunction request against the visa cancellation was listed for hearing on Thursday in the Federal Circuit and Family Court.
His lawyers have argued that he was handed a vaccine exemption because he had recently recovered from the virus.
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But new pictures appear to show the star smiling the day after his lawyers claim he tested positive, while surrounded by award winners.
Djokovic, who was not wearing a mask, attended the Tennis Association of Belgrade’s event at his tennis centre and posed for pics with the youngsters.
It is unclear if the superstar had taken the PCR test on December 16, the day that he got his results back, or both.
He also attended a special indoor ceremony at the Tennis centre on December 16, to receive a stamp being made in his honour.
Djokovic has not openly spoken about his vaccination status, but last year did admit that he was “opposed” to vaccination.
His legal hearing will take place on Monday, and he has been forced to tough it out in an infamous immigration hotel dubbed the "Alternative Place of Detention".
He has demanded a personal chef and access to a tennis court – which have reportedly been denied by Australian authorities.
Djokovic has been told he will receive no special treatment while he stays in immigration custody at the $109-a-night Park Hotel in Carlton, Melbourne.
He broke his silence yesterday ahead of his court hearing on Monday as his anti-vaccination row rumbles on.
The star thanked his supporters "around the world" who have backed his defiant stance after his controversial decision
In an Instagram post, he wrote: "Thank you to people around the world for your continuous support. I can feel it and it is greatly appreciated."
His wife Jelena also spoke out to applaud supporters while calling for "love and forgiveness" as tensions in the sports world rise.
The 35-year-old wrote: "Thank you dear people, all around the world for using your voice to send love to my husband.
"The only law that we should all respect across every single border is Love and respect for another human being."
Djokovic has previously come under fire for his anti-vaxx views, and blatantly ignoring medical advice during the global pandemic.
During lockdown the star openly flouted rules by partying with hundreds of fans in Belgrade after beating Roger Federer’s record for the most weeks as men’s world No1.
The star and his family watched on as fireworks took place in front of a mass crowd at their restaurant.
He was seen wearing a mask for some of the celebrations, but no social distancing measures were in place.
In 2020 he held the controversial exhibition Adria Tour, which took place without social distancing in Belgrade and Zadar, Croatia.
Videos later surfaced of Djokovic and other players partying in a nightclub, with their tops off.
After the farcical tour, where the sportsman, his wife and three others tested positive for the virus, he issued an apology.
Djokovic was criticised by Brit Andy Murray and Nick Kyrgios for the shambolic decision making.
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