Novak Djokovic, dad, Srdjan, Vladimir Putin, Russia, supporters, photographs, video, press convention


Novak Djokovic has launched an ardent defence of his dad Srdjan after he was captured posing for images with Vladimir Putin supporters, claiming his father did not know he was with such folks and was “misused” by them.

After watching his son defeat Andrey Rublev in an Australian Open quarter-final on Wednesday evening, Srdjan was pictured with spectators holding a Russian flag that includes Putin’s face.

Amid the uproar it sparked, Srdjan mentioned in a press release launched on Friday that he wouldn’t attend his son’s semi-final towards Tommy Paul.

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Djokovic beat the American in straight units within the semi-final on Friday evening, earlier than being requested in his press convention concerning the controversy surrounding his dad.

“It was unlucky that the misinterpretation of what occurred … has escalated to such a excessive stage,” Djokovic mentioned after organising a decider towards Stefanos Tsitsipas.

“There was, I’d say, lots of conversations with event director, with media and everybody else.

“It’s got to me, in fact, as nicely. I used to be not conscious of it ’til (Thursday evening). Then, in fact, I used to be not happy to see that.

“My father, my complete household and myself have been via a number of wars throughout ’90s. As my father put in a press release, we’re towards the warfare, we by no means will assist any violence or any warfare. We all know how devastating that’s for the household, for folks in any nation that’s going via the warfare. That is the very first thing I need to say.

“The second factor I need to say … my father, as he mentioned within the assertion, has been going after each single match to fulfill with my followers on the important sq. right here in Australian Open to thank them for the assist, to be with them, pay them respect and make photographs.

“The photograph that he made … he was passing via.

“I heard what he mentioned within the video. He mentioned, ‘Cheers’. Sadly, a number of the media has interpreted that in a very incorrect approach.”

Former world No.1 Sam Smith joined a wave of critics, slamming the footage of Srdjan as “appalling” on 9’s Right this moment present.

Smith additionally raised the opportunity of Srdjan being unaware of what the spectators have been selling, however she mentioned he should be “switched on” as a member of Djokovic’s group.

‘I am appalled’: Smith weighs in on Djokovic dad drama

“I am sorry that that has escalated a lot,” Djokovic added in his press convention.

“However I hope folks perceive there was completely no intention by any means to assist any form of warfare initiatives or something like that.

“My father, as I mentioned, was passing via. There was lots of Serbian flags round. That is what he thought. He thought he was making photograph with any individual from Serbia. That is it. He moved on.

“In fact, it isn’t nice for me to undergo this with all of the issues that I needed to take care of final 12 months and this 12 months in Australia. It is not one thing that I need or want.

“I hope that folks let it’s and we are able to give attention to tennis.”

Watch the Australian Open dwell and free on the 9 Community: Channel 9, 9Gem and 9NOW.

The press convention diverted away from the subject of Djokovic’s dad, earlier than returning to the matter when the ultimate query was requested.

“Do you focus on with him how necessary it could be, given your platform, for him to watch out, as a result of it could be a mirrored image of how he otherwise you or your loved ones feels about a problem just like the Russian invasion?” a reporter requested.

Djokovic bristled.

“Now you are principally asking me a query like he did it deliberately, like he isn’t being cautious about what he is doing,” Djokovic mentioned.

“It may occur. It may occur to many individuals what occurred to him.

“He was passing via, made a photograph, it has escalated. He was misused on this state of affairs by this group of individuals. That is what occurred.

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“I am unable to be offended with him or upset as a result of I can say it was not his fault. He went to have a good time with my followers and that is it. That is all that occurred.

“After that, in fact he felt dangerous due to me, and he knew how that is going to replicate on me. The entire media strain and the whole lot that has occurred within the final 24 hours, 48 hours…

“However it’s what it’s. You settle for it and you progress on.”

Whether or not Srdjan returns to the stands for his son’s conflict with Tsitsipas within the closing stays a thriller.

“Let’s have a look at,” Djokovic mentioned.

“In fact, it wasn’t, once more, nice to not have him within the field. It is a choice that we made collectively. Simply did not know the way issues will play out, I suppose.

“I hope to have him. I hope he’ll be feeling OK to be within the courts as a result of I wish to have him there for the finals.”

Djokovic is aiming to hitch Rafael Nadal on a report 22 grand slam titles.

The Serbian celebrity has a 10-2 head-to-head edge over Tsitsipas, who he trumped in 5 units within the 2021 Roland-Garros decider.

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