Australian Open chief defends Novak Djokovic over quarantine note, saying ‘they were suggestions’

Shahida Jacobs
Tennis Australia's Craig Tiley inside Rod Laver Arena

Australian Open Tournament Director and Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley insists Novak Djokvoic didn’t make any “demands” with regards to easing quarantine restrictions, saying “they were suggestions”.

After 72 players were forced into hard quarantine following a couple of positive coronavirus test results from people on board their chartered flights, many took to social media to complain about the strict regulations.

Reports then emerged that world No 1 Novak Djokovic issued a request to authorities to relax some of the rules, but government officials replied with a “firm no” to the proposals.

‘It’s a firm NO from me’ – Officials reject Novak Djokovic and co’s Australian Open quarantine requests

While some claimed he made demands, Tiley says it was nothing more than “suggestions”.

“In the case of Novak, he wrote a note, these weren’t demands, they were suggestions,” he said. “But he, too, is understanding what two weeks of lockdown means … every player coming down knew that if they were going to be close contacts or test positive that these were going to be the conditions.”

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Tiley also insisted that most of the players “have been supportive” of their approach to the self-isolation and quarantine.

“The vast majority, most of them have been fantastic and been supportive,” he told the Nine Network.

“(They) know that this is the contribution that they have to make in order to get the privilege of when they do come out to compete for A$80m (GBP £45.4m) in prize money.

“So we will turn the corner on those few that don’t have the right approach to this. But the rest have been really good.”

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