Djokovic free to play in Australian Open after being granted visa

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Novak Djokovic has confirmed he will be free to play in the 2023 Australian Open after his three-year ban from entering the country was overturned.

Djokovic was at the centre of huge controversy in January following his attempts to play in Melbourne despite being unvaccinated against COVID-19.

The 21-time grand slam winner was eventually deported after having his visa cancelled on public health grounds.

He was initially allowed to enter the country in spite of his vaccine status, amid widespread furore over his apparent flaunting of strict regulations.

His deportation resulted in an automatic three-year ban. However, with the vaccine mandate that was in place earlier this year no longer a barrier for Djokovic, the decision has been made by immigration minister Andrew Giles to hand him a visa.

Speaking at the ATP Finals in Turin on Wednesday, Djokovic confirmed the decision, saying: "Well, of course, I was very happy to receive the news yesterday.

"It was a relief, obviously, knowing what I and people closest to me in my life have been through this year with what happened in Australia and post-Australia. I could not receive better news for sure – during this tournament as well."

Djokovic has won the Australian Open singles title nine times in his career, last doing so in 2021 when he beat Daniil Medvedev in the final.