Novak Djokovic's father Srdjan misses his semifinal match amid Russian flag controversy

Novak Djokovic's father Srdjan misses his semifinal match amid Russian flag controversy

by Zachary Wimer

Last updated

The father of Novak Djokovic, Srdjan Djokovic, appeared to be posing fans that were holding a Russian flag, which is banned at the Australian Open, on the Wednesday night.

After the 21-time Grand Slam champion defeated Andrey Rublev in the quarterfinals on Wednesday, his father met some of his fans outside of the Rod Laver Arena. Srdjan Djokovic took pictures with fans, while they were holding a Russian flag.

These pictures soon went viral and many demanded clarification from Srdjan. He has since issued a statement and revealed, that he won't be attending his son's semifinal match against Tommy Paul.

"I am here to support my son only. I had no intention of causing such headlines or disruption. I was outside with Novak's fans as I have done after all of my son's matches to celebrate his wins and take pictures with them. I had no intention of being caught up in this."

"My family has lived through the horror of war, and we wish only for peace. So there is no disruption to tonight's semi-final for my son or for the other player, I have chosen to watch from home. I wish for a great match and I will be cheering for my son, as always."

Following his statement, Tennis Australia, also released a statement regarding the events of Wednesday night and Srdjan Djokovic. The statement reads:

"After the events of Wednesday night, we acted swiftly to work with police and our security teams to have the instigators of the protest removed from the venue Throughout the event we've spoken with players and their teams about the importance of not engaging in any activity that causes distress or disruption."

"Mr Srdjan Djokovic has issued a statement confirming that he will not attend tonight's semi-final. We will continue to strive for the safety of fans at the event and reiterate our position banning flags from Belarus and Russia. Tennis Australia stands with the call for peace and an end to war and violent conflict in Ukraine."


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